Introduction: Electronic Wart Removal - No Blood! Little Pain.

Picture of Electronic Wart Removal - No Blood!  Little Pain.

I had a problem with wart removal over the years. The results have been anything but spectacular. I have tried most of the 'normal' methods,   

Burning - turns out the vapors are not good for you. I still have a scar on my hand from a doctor removed wart during childhood


                Chemical – Compound-W

Freezing with liquid nitrogen – Dr Scholl’s Freeze Away

Even doctors cryosurgery (freezing). 

I just couldn’t do the ‘wack-it-off’ method seen on some Instructable.

 

Still nothing worked to permanently remove the warts. 

 

I have wanted for many years to build a circuit I saw on the internet.  The claim: close to 100% effective, even large warts.  The circuit is very effective with warts on the hands which are the hardest to remove.  There is minimal discomfort during the process, and no scaring.

 

It is the Wart Zapper by Thomas Scarborough. 

 

As requested by the Webmaster – I will not print the schematic or their PC board here. (They are wrong and will not work anyway! I will only show my corrections here.  You will have to go to their site to find the rest of the circuit.)

 

You can find it here the Wart Zapper by Thomas Scarborough

 
Another similar circuit is here macroware wart zapper

And if you would rather just buy one, check out:  wartabater

  
 

The article for the Wart Zapper is great.  Listing the history of electronic wart removal, and how the circuit works. 

 

I was skeptical!  An electronic circuit, on the internet, that is supposed to remove warts – and runs off a 9Volt battery?  The professionals are using cryosurgery (freezing), if this other method really works why aren’t the professional also using it?

 

The circuit is very simple, but over the years I never made it as I was having a somewhat difficult finding the parts from one source – and cheap as I am, I didn’t want to pay for shipping twice.

 

So that is how it stayed for several years, my warts just getting bigger and in the back of my mind a circuit that ‘might’ work – still unmade.

 

I would just try some other ways like Dr Scholl’s Freeze Away just a few more times trying to keep this one somewhat small.  I also went to the doctor’s office, but still nothing would get rid of them.  Sometimes I would hide the big one with a Band-Aid.

 

Well I finally had it!  The warts kept getting a little bigger and bigger.  I couldn’t take it any longer.  Skeptical or not – I had to see if it worked.

Step 1: Parts:

Picture of Parts:

I found I could get the parts needed through Jameco Electronics.  Jameco does have some minimum part orders, but they were for the smaller items. So it was still cheaper than going to Radio Shack.  (Other sources are available; I just found Jameco somewhat easy to use their internet site).


I’ll only give the part number on the parts I couldn’t scrounge around for.

 

Part Number    Qty    Part

1          Copper clad board (2.25" x 1.8").  I still had a big piece of this lying around.

1          9V PP3 "matchbox" battery

11280              1          Battery clip for battery - or suitable case with internal battery terminals

                        1          Panel mounting on-off switch.  I found a great one on an old toy fire truck.

18914              1          Suitable ABS plastic case approx. (4.875" x 2.5" x 1")

                        1          1 meter (1 yard) plastic shielded wire for the electrodes.  I used a shielded audio coax cable.  I used the shield for the conductor. 

                        1          15 cm (6") long brass tube for the dispersive electrode.  I used ¾” diameter brass pipe from Lowes (hardware store).

                        1          Needle sharp tip filed off - for the active electrode.  I used a tapestry needle.  The tip is already rounded – no filing necessary!

                        1          Etchant if a PCB needs to be etched. Radio Shack sells some for about $10.  (See instructables for some cheaper methods)

                        1          Solder

 

Semiconductors

782823            1          6.8V Zener diode (¼-Watt is adequate)

                        1          Green LED (no other color) 

151247            4          1N4148 signal diodes

670207            1          IRF610 power "logic" MOSFET (alternatively IRF510, BUZ11, BUZ22)

51140              1          7555 CMOS timer IC

 

Resistors

690865            2          1k ¼-Watt carbon or metal film

691260            1          47k ¼-Watt carbon or metal film

691104            1          10k ¼-Watt carbon or metal film

255573            1          470k or 500k potentiometer, carbon track Linear taper.  This is really not needed.  I leave it full on all the time now.

                        1          Knob for potentiometer. Scrounged from some old equipment at work.

                       

Capacitors

332427            1          680pF polyester or ceramic

15272              2          100nF (.1 uf) polyester or ceramic

25541              2          220nF (.22 uf) polyester or ceramic

94432              1          100µF electrolytic 16V or higher

 

The parts only cost around $23 including shipping.  Extra parts added a little more.  With scrounging you could possibly do better.

 

 My order was in.  I had the parts in 2 days.  I was off to make my PC board.

Step 2: The PC Board

Picture of The PC Board

I have not made any PC boards for about 10 years so I wanted to try one of the ‘free’ PC board making programs.  These programs are mainly for those who want to order the boards over the internet and have them made and delivered.  You get very professional boards make this way.   I was hoping that I could print out the board’s art at home and make it here.  A little less professional, but it is fun to do.  I still had some of the transfer pages left over from the last time (Press-n-Peel PnP-Blue, TEK-5) so I wanted to give it a try.

 

The program I decided to use is ExpressPCB and ExpressSCH.  Why, I had downloaded it years ago and never gave it a try.  These programs help you draw out the schematic, then create a PC board.  The ExpressSCH came in very handy as it allow you to check your PC board connections against the schematic.

 

I wanted to make my ‘own’ design for a PC board.  I didn’t like the one in the article as I really hate jumpers on boards, and I needed it to fit in the box I got. 

 

I made a board using the program, and it did print it out in the correct orientation for the transfer pages.  I was ready to make the board.

 

I read a great PC board making instructable and I wanted to try it.

 

Sponge + Ferric Chloride Method -- Etch PCBs in One Minute!

As luck would have it, I sped read the article a few weeks before.  The day I needed it – my internet connection was down.  But I tried it anyway.  It worked.  Not as fast as One Minute, but since I didn’t read it again, I’m sure I did something wrong.

The board came out great! 

I installed all the parts, hooked up power and ground to the battery.  I checked for proper operation, as described in the article.   Remember, I was very skeptical. 

I used my DVOM and oscilloscope.  I found the oscillator running but the output voltage was only 4.5 Volts, not the “over 26 Volts” the article stated.  Something was wrong!

Step 3: IT DIDN'T WORK - Yet!

Picture of IT DIDN'T WORK - Yet!

I never like the looks of the ‘tripler’ part of the schematic.  It just didn’t look right to me and poorly drawn.  I’ve never been really good at multiplier circuits so I had to do some research.

 

I found the sight: http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/electronic/voldoub.html

 

This sight shows voltage Doubler circuits through Voltage Quadrupler.  Comparing the circuits I could tell the original was not right. After redrawing the circuit, I could tell that C4 was not connected correctly.  The PC board shown in the article is also wrong!  The left side of C4 should be connected to the other side of C3, not connected to IC1 pin 3 and TR1-g.

 

Here is the corrected part of the schematic.  All the other wiring is as in the original article.

This also seems to be a Voltage Quadrupler and not a Tripler as stated in the article.  I will leave it to someone who knows more about electronics to verify this.

 

Luckly, it was a simple rewire on my original board to make this change.  Powered up the circuit and the output voltage was at 27+ Volts!  I took some spray enamel and sealed the copper side of the board.

 

I have made corrections to my pc board files and include them here.  These are in the ExpressPCB and ExpressSCH format.

 

Step 4: Installing the Parts

Picture of Installing the Parts

I attached the pc board to the bottom of the box.  Added the switch, led, and pot to the cover and wired them together.

 

For the probe, I use an old mechanical pencil.  I removed all the mechanical parts.  Drilled the opening a little bigger for the needle.  Solder up the probe, and glued it together at the length I wanted the probe (about ½” long).  A little foam was used as a strain relief in the upper end.

 

Pictures of the box and probe here.

Step 5: Using the Wart Zapper

Picture of Using the Wart Zapper

I started on one of the small warts first.  I put the copper pipe under my arm and pushed down to make good contact. 

 

I felt nothing for the first 30 seconds, then a sharp, heating type pain.  But as the article states “you must endure the pain until it is gone” I did.  After about 3 minutes the pain was definitely receding and the wart looked different.  The probe had pierced it and some ‘white’ puss like innards as oozing, bubbling next to the probe.  I left the probe on for a full 5 minutes.   The wart had changed.

 

I repeated this process for the next two, saving the large one for last.

 

I could feel where I treated the warts for the next 8 hours.  Which is very similar to using the freeze method.

 

After a day, the two smaller one turned black.  The larger one did not turn quite so dark.  I treated the big one again after a few days, as the article said, “…large ones may take more treatment.”

 

As of today, the large one has started to flake off and it looks like success.  The two smaller ones are still black, one with a big hole in the center.  I think that they could have used a little less time, maybe 3 ½ minutes? 

 

So it looks like it works!  I have started treating others and they are in various stages of ‘healing’.  If I didn’t get all the first ones, I know it is a quick treatment to get the rest of it.  This circuit has done more than the past three “Real-Professional” treatments that I have used.

 

As for the pain encountered, you do have to grimace a little.  Only once did I jump when that first shot of pain hits.  It is like the feeling of sticking yourself with a needle with a little electric charge on it.  Knowing that the pain will pass, and is necessary, makes it a little easier to take.  I believe that the amount and intensity of the pain is less than any ‘freezing’ method that I have used.

 

I don’t seem to be able to feel where I have treated the warts as long now.  At most, about one hour of feeling.  It might be that the battery is a little lower in output now.

 

Step 6: SAFETY!!!

'''WAIT'''

Please read and follow all the safety precautions listed in the article!  I am not responsible for any accidents that happen. 

 

They are in general:  Don’t put the probes (both) where current would flow from one probe to the other across the head or heart, use during pregnancy, or use by a person using a pacemaker, or use by anyone with history of epilepsy.

 

In short –don’t be stupid!

Comments

cornz (author)2013-04-24

The only version of this to trust is the original article.
Everyday Practical Electronics magazine, September 2004
THAT one works, as it is with no errors. I know, i built it and have destroyed 3 warts and am now treating a verucca on a friends foot.

cornz (author)cornz2014-10-09

Just as an update, although it took almost 2 months of regular 5 minute sessions, his verruca has gone and that had resisted every attempt the hospital had made.

It also removes moles and skin tags...

stbi (author)2014-09-20

My experience with this circuit are mixed. I built it on breadboard and made a "treatment" while watching the output voltage between the electrodes on an oscilloscope. I have documented my results here: http://tinyurl.com/wart-zapper-sb

forwardbias (author)2014-09-15

This circuit probably works on the same method as burning a wart off, it is a very small burn however. Passing 30 VDC through tissue with enough current is going to cause heating, but by using a small needle electrode you limit the area that is being burned and by limiting the power, it is a slow burn, and because it is high frequency pulsed DC, you feel less pain due to the skin effect. High frequency electricity flows more to the outside of a conductor rather than through the whole conductor. With this device you damage very little of your normal skin.


mhanyi (author)2012-03-10

Hi, im quite new to building electronics,
my first project was a radio kit from conrad.de an AM radio,

my 8 year old daughter got a wart and she is terrified over it.

I built the
http://www.zen22142.zen.co.uk/Circuits/Misc/wart_zap/wart_zapper.htm
I was quite proud to etch the board myself, the guy in the electronic store helped me get all the correct parts.

connected it up, and it puts out 24v, now I dont have a wart and just moistened my skin and I could feel nothing.I have thick skin.

is there something wrong with this circuit board?

Mike

jdl (author)mhanyi2012-03-10

Congratulations on building another circuit.

So, why don’t you feel anything? Troubleshooting depends on the equipment you have. Below you will find test voltages using a common volt/ohm meter.

But I would start with a simple thing. The brass pipe used for the common connection – is it clean and shinny? If not, take a little ‘Scotchbrite’ and water (fine sandpaper if that is all you got) and clean the part you put against your skin. I also find it works better after a shower (moist skin) and a little moisturizer on the wart. Also, you ‘feel’ more in sensitive skin areas – like the underside of the forearm.

I just rechecked the website you mentioned; http://www.zen22142.zen.co.uk/Circuits/Misc/wart_zap/wart_zapper.htm. It is not the same circuit as mine. There is a difference in where C4 is connected. My corrected schematic should be on my instructable (I haven’t looked in awhile – if not let me know). In my circuit; one side of C3 is connected to U1-3 and the mosfet only – nothing else (2 connections). The other side of C3 has D2 cathode, D3 anode, and C4.

I took some measurements throughout my circuit with the DMM.

All measurement are with the reference to ground. (Negative probe on the anode of ZD1 (the 6.8V zener.))

ZD1 cathode 6.6VDC
IC1 pin 1 -- 0 VDC 0 VAC
IC1 pin 2 -- 4.38 VDC .013 VAC (hard to read with my cheap DMM)
IC1 pin 3 -- 4.34 VDC 4.25 VAC (this is the oscillator output, 9 V P-P DC)
IC1 pin 4 -- 9.1 VDC 0 VAC
IC1 pin 5 -- 5.83 VDC 0 VAC
IC1 pin 6 -- 4.38 VDC .12 VAC
IC1 pin 7 -- 4.38 VDC 4.14 VAC
IC1 pin 8 -- 9.1 VDC 0 VAC

Quadrupler diodes:
D2 Anode 9 VDC Cathode 13.12 VDC (the voltage is already increasing)
D3 Anode 13.12 VDC Cathode 17.49 VDC
D4 Anode 17.49 VDC Cathode 21.4 VDC
D5 Anode 21.4 VDC Cathode 25.7 VDC

As you can see, the voltage increases alone the multiplier (D2-D5) circuit.

I hope this helps. Let me know if I can help further.

mhanyi (author)jdl2012-03-10

I will start with a very clean brass piece, actually mine is a flat copper sheet.

my daughter felt nothing, my wife felt nothing, I know there is 24v in it...

I could send you a pic and a list of my components purchased...
thanks for helping, If i really have to build again i guess i could,


mhanyi yahoo com

mhanyi (author)2012-03-10

I add comment, is ther instructions for idiots on how to fix
http://www.zen22142.zen.co.uk/Circuits/Misc/wart_zap/wart_zapper.htm

I have it built and a picture would be a great help-remember im an idiot
mike, I can open pdf,s

kasamiko (author)2012-01-20

Thomas circuit uses a CMOS version of 555, will it care if I used a standard version? like NE555?

Also I can't find BUZ11 in my place instead I got some IRFZ44 lying around..

Will it work for me??

jdl (author)kasamiko2012-01-23

Sorry it took so long to get back to you.
The circuit is not critical in parts. Not using the CMOS version will probably just make the battery drain faster. Not a problem with this circuit as it is only used intermittently. I unplug the battery every time I put it away.
For specs on the MOSFET check http://www.futurlec.com/Transistors/IRFZ44.shtml and http://www.futurlec.com/Transistors/BUZ11.shtml to compare them. It looks like a good substitute to me. Try it.
Let me know how it works for you.

kasamiko (author)jdl2012-01-27

Hi,

I used NE555 and IRFZ44 with 9 volts regulated power supply..

Tried on my wart I felt like a burning inside or around the wart but it's tolerable..

tried it for less than 2 minutes..i think it's working...:D

jdl (author)kasamiko2012-01-28

It sounds like it is working. You should keep it on until the burning feeling goes away. I have found that happens between 2 and 4 minutes. I will usually leave it on for the full 4 minutes just to be sure.

kasamiko (author)jdl2012-01-29

A timer will be handy this time I think..:D

Thanks!

gtwo (author)2011-07-09

Does the WartaBater really work cause im really interested in buying it but I really really need to know if it works cause I dont have money just to throw around?

jdl (author)gtwo2011-07-09

While some may say - "why bother? just use duct tape" (or some other method), I have found my circuit 100% effective!, while the other methods (for me) have been less than 10% effective.

While I have no first-hand knowledge of the effectiveness of the WartaBater, (as I made my own circuit instead), my circuit has worked wonderfully for me. If I treat it soon enough (before it get too large) one treatment is enough. The larger ones took 2 to 3 treatments but got noticeable smaller with each treatment.

I believe the WartaBater uses the same type of circuit – so it should be just as effective.

If you are still unsure of the expense you could always make your own (as shown here) as it cost me only about $20 to $30. If I had scrounged more parts and not made a printed circuit board it would have been less.

I hope this helps – good luck!

frollard (author)2009-09-05

You don't mention trying the duct tape technique... Very good instructable, neat project...thankfully I've not had a wart in a decade so it's not much use to me :P

Doesn't that require leaving it on for a few weeks? That's not always practical, depending on where they are and how much you care about other people's opinions. He mentions hiding the wart with a band-aid, so I doubt the questions that would arrive by having the same piece of duct tape on your hand for a month would be welcomed.

Use duct tape and a small bandage to keep it hidden. Honestly, if covering it with less than a penny's worth of tape is not aesthetically pleasing, by all means, shock the crap out of it :D

legallyme (author)frollard2011-02-12

@frollard- It seems designing and putting something like this together requires a lot of work. It also seems like a lot of work to read something that is of no use to yourself. Furthermore, it sounds like an enormous waste of time to care so much how and why other people choose the treatments they choose for their condition(s).
As the post stated that's being replied to, duct tape is, "not always practical." Is there a reason you are so intent on convincing others about why their decisions are wrong?
btw- this article is 1.5 years old, so I don't expect a reply. Just for posterity...

jdl (author)legallyme2011-02-12

Sorry you waisted so much time and effort in commenting on this instructable. It seems your time could have been better spent.

It was written for those who (1) have a need for such a project, (2) like to dabble in electronics and make things themself, (3) have tried other methods and found they didn't work.

As for me, this is the only method that has worked 100 % of the time.
That said, if you find it useful - try it. If not - move on.

legallyme (author)jdl2011-02-12

@jdl- Sorry you didn't spend enough time reading what I wrote to see that the message wasn't directed at you. "@frollard" was the first thing in my post. In whatever case, I was actually defending your work, but maybe that was a mistake.

@legallyme- JDL wasnt talking to you, they were talking to frollard. they knew you were defending them.

frollard (author)jdl2011-02-12

I was not judging on the project's merit - clearly it works. If you understood my message in anything other than that tone you are mistaken.

I a firm believer in dabbling, repairing, and 'doing things more complex than they need to be'. I haven't yet posted my instructable on how to build a crane on your balcony to get couches out of an apartment without your landlord knowing. :) More work? depends on how much you like taking couches down a spiral staircase.

In this case, it seemed like the ible was tantamount to building a car to drive over fruit to make juice instead of 'just crushing the fruit'. Is it a bad thing? no. I simply offered a simpler 'less aesthetically pleasing' solution, which, as it turns out is commercially available in a skin/transparent patch variety now specifically for wart removal. Please do not take my comments as slight, they are simply constructive criticism.
I'm rather hurt that you would flat out 'ask me to leave' in so many words simply because I disagree with you. That is not in the spirit of instructables at all. Good day sir. (or madam)

jdl (author)frollard2011-02-12

Mea Culpa, Mea Culpa!

I am all for - "not re-inventing the wheel". I just found that nothing else worked for me.
As the project is relatively easy to make, cost less than 1/2 of the commercially available product - I thought it might be of some interest to others. If someone wants to try other methods - I'm all for it. But if you can't find anything that works - thy this.

As for the "move on" - no slight was intended. It was just my hope that you could find something on ibles that would be use to you.

As for the "why I am so intent on convincing others ", I'm not. I was just my way of "connecting with" and helping others who might be going through the same situation. And as you stated, isn't that really what the "spirit of instructables' is really all about - Helping others?

frollard (author)jdl2011-02-13

And there is the answer right there: :)

"why not just use duct tape?"

"because this works well, and is cheaper than the commercial solution"

Solved!

jdl (author)frollard2009-09-10

I did miss a couple of the other methods. Duct Tape and the Garlic method come to mind. I was tempted to try these great Instructables but decided to go with the one I had been wanting to try for a long time.

jdl (author)frollard2009-09-06

You're right, I have only tried some of the other methods. The first 'scab' from the treatment fell off this morning. No sign of any wart left! This method works for me!

jdl (author)2010-06-08

I was bowing to the experts for this statement. I believe the benefits and success far outweigh any ‘slight’ danger. But everyone has to decide that for themselves.

PompRocker (author)2010-01-05

The first line of the page at http://www.zen22142.zen.co.uk/Circuits/Misc/wart_zap/wart_zapper.htm says it is new and improved. Now that article isn't dated, which I feel all tech articles should be dated, but has it incorporated your corrections?

jdl (author)PompRocker2010-01-07

It is not my article, I just reference it for the information it has.

I have no idea how old it is.  I just remember seeing it years ago (I am guessing 4-5 years).

No this one is wrong - that is why I wrote this instructable.  My corrections for the circuit are on the instructable here. 

 

 

jdl (author)2009-11-30

Sorry! 
It seems that my instructable has been infected with some extra characters not in the original.  I have tried to restore it, but I may have missed some items or formating.  Please let me know so I can 'fix' these. 

These problems seem to have started when 'Instructables' started pushing the pro membership.  So some of the nice links are not working like they did before.  Maybe instructables is getting too big for itself!

As always comments and rating are welcome.

kill-a-watt (author)2009-11-29

Bad  link, but I found it elsewhere on the page:

http://www.zen22142.zen.co.uk/Circuits/Misc/wart_zap/wart_zapper.htm

Your link has a final forward slash at the end of the URL. That should not be there

jdl (author)kill-a-watt2009-11-29

Thanks, it looks like they all have an extra forward slash at the end.  I not able to change it for some reason - I'll look into it later to see if I can fix it.  Please use this link until then.  http://www.zen22142.zen.co.uk/Circuits/Misc/wart_zap/wart_zapper.htm

susantrixi (author)2009-11-13

I actually bought a wartabater because I was at my wits end with warts that would not go away, or would go away only to come back.  It worked  like a charm on 1 plantar wart, 1 finger wart, and 1 VERY embarrasing wart.  The wartabater makes sense and actually worked on 3 very different warts.  I am very thankful.

jdl (author)susantrixi2009-11-16

Fantastic!  I'm glad that this instructable gave you the courage to not give up and try  this method. 
I've have had the same success.  The one that I had attempted to remove using other methods first  took 3 or 4 treatments before complete success.  But after every treatment it was smaller - so I knew I was on the right path.
I hope your success will encourage others to try this method!

Choscura (author)2009-09-15

I had horrible warts for over 12 years. one wart on my food in particular was treated every way the doctors knew how- cryosurgery, duct tape, cutting, cauterizing (burning), 2 types of lasers, acids, and various chemicals. what finally worked? tobacco. I put some tobacco on a wart on my finger and held it in place with a bandaid- I used a drop of honey to make the tobacco stickier the first time, since it was dry, the second time I didn't- and within a few weeks, all warts, everywhere on my body, had completely disappeared. something like 24 major warts and probably other small ones I didn't know about yet.

jdl (author)2009-09-05

As in the original article by Thomas Scarborough said, this device is for the common wart. No other use is implied or suggested.

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