Introduction: How to Make a Flashlight From a Soda Can

Picture of How to Make a Flashlight From a Soda Can

This instruction shows how to make a flashlight from found objects from your house.  This is fun for kids of all ages.

Step 1: Materials Required

Picture of Materials Required

1.  Gather Materials

Materials for one flashlight

Qty 1, Flashlight bulb (normally 2.2v)
Qty 1, Pop or beer Can (minimum 12oz.  A tall 12oz beer can works well)
Qty 1, Paperclip
About 5" electrical wire stripped on both ends
Electrical Tape or masking tape

Wire Stripper
Wire Cutters
Can Opener

Step 2:

Picture of

2.  Make a hole in the bottom of the can with a screwdriver and a hammer.  This is the concave side and where you will be placing your bulb.  Note that the can is very good for a flashlight because of this concave, reflective end. 

Step 3:

Picture of

3.  Enlarge hole slightly (use end of scissors or other object) to snugly fit flashlight bulb. 
Do this slowly so that you don't make hole too big.

Step 4:

Picture of

4.  Remove the top of the can.  The best way to do this is with a can opener as it will finish any sharp edges.  If you use a different method, tape sharp edges.  The can may be sticky.  This would be a good time to rinse it out.

Step 5:

Picture of

5,  Tape two batteries together using tape (preferably electrical) with positive and negative terminals touching.

Step 6:

Picture of

6.  Place battery stack into flashlight with flat (negative end) touching bottom of bulb.

Step 7:

Picture of

7.  Stuff crumbled up newspaper or tissue strips around the battery stack to create stability.  Make sure the batteries can't shift inside the can.

Step 8:

Picture of

8.  Attach paper clip to one end of stripped electrical wire. 

Step 9:

Picture of

9.  Attach the other end to the bottom (exposed ends) of the battery stack (which is most likely sticking out of your can).  Use electrical tape to do this.

Step 10:

Picture of

10. Use two more pieces of tape to secure battery stack to bottom of can.

Step 11:

Picture of

11.  To make a switch, first scrape some of the paint from a small section about half way up the can (where you’d expect a switch to be).   This exposes bare metal and slightly recesses that area.  If you don’t do this, the circuit won’t complete since paint doesn’t conduct electricity.  Then tape the paper clip down.  After you do this, you should be able to just slightly tap or move the paperclip to “turn” the flashlight on and off.


john wayne harris (author)2016-02-22

that sonds cool!!!

ChipzAhoyMcCoy (author)2013-11-30

I wanna try that!

RegularTD (author)2013-09-08

How do you change the battery

RegularTD (author)2013-09-08

How do you change the batterie

badgirl1234567981 (author)2012-12-18

love your work......omg so cute

grendlova (author)2012-01-20

This is a great project! My 8 yr old daughter had to build a flashlight for a school assignment. I was not looking forward to helping her, but then we found this project. It was so simple and fun to do for both of us. Thanks!

About This Instructable




More by pburghmom:How to make a flashlight from a soda can
Add instructable to: