Introduction: Iron Man Arc Reactor

Picture of Iron Man Arc Reactor

Here I will show you how to make an awesome Iron Man arc reactor prop.

You'll Need:

-7 White LEDs
-4 Resistors
-White candle wax
-Two Speakers
-A motor from a VCR player
-A small piece of window screen
-9v Battery


-Soldering gun
-Something to melt the wax in
-Scissors (to cut the screen)

Step 1: The Base

Picture of The Base

Take your motor apart and drill seven holes in the bottom big enough to fit the LEDs in

Step 2: The Speakers

Picture of The Speakers

You'll only need this part of the speakers, Then insert you speaker frames into the half of the motor. After that, melt some wax and pour it into the gaps.

Step 3: Inserting the Screen

Picture of Inserting the Screen

This is what you should have by now.  You can now glue the screen piece on the top of the first frame.

Step 4: The LEDs

Picture of The LEDs

Now place a LED in every hole and solder together ( I used two LEDs per Resistor)

Step 5: Finsished Pictures

Picture of Finsished Pictures

Here's in the light. And the picture in the dark is actually a lot brighter but i had to make it darker so you could see it (It was really Blury)


Ask for any questions


Sparkytastic (author)2011-11-02

Neat idea!
I took most of your design for my Steampunk Arc Reactor
(used my phone's cam. Bad pic)

lemonie (author)2009-05-14

Yea, good job! I don't quite understand how the LEDs are wired - can you add a circuit diagram? L

Emsaid (author)lemonie2009-05-15

Ok this the the best i can do, I don't have the Paint skills, so i think its in a series circuit.

peachamom (author)Emsaid2011-06-19

I love it!

lemonie (author)Emsaid2009-05-15

Is this schematic right? What resistors did you use (Ohm or colours)? L

Emsaid (author)lemonie2009-05-15

i think they are 130 Ohm (the color code is yellow purple black Brown)

lemonie (author)Emsaid2009-05-15

Yellow - purple - black is 47 Ohm - too low. Even 130 (brown - orange - brown) is a bit low, you might want to up these a bit? L

Emsaid (author)lemonie2009-05-15

ok the guy at radio shack said that they were the right ones

lemonie (author)Emsaid2009-05-15

Oh well, expert advice there. The fact that he made a sale wouldn't bias your judgment at all? If they are 47 Ohm the max limit on current you'll have is ~200mA (much too much). The LEDs will bring that down, but I'm not convinced these will last as long as they should. L

Emsaid (author)lemonie2010-05-07

lol they didnt, for some reson it stopped working

lemonie (author)Emsaid2010-05-07

Well, you can pick that apart. I doubted they would last, see if anything I said previously seems relevant now.


Emsaid (author)lemonie2009-05-15

oh they work really well

lemonie (author)Emsaid2009-05-15

They will, for now. But I think they might die prematurely. L

thetech101 (author)lemonie2009-05-18

220 ohm is a good resistor for running LEDs off of a 9V battery. I've got an LED flashlight that uses a 9V lithium battery pack and so far it has yet to quit (after 2 years).

lemonie (author)thetech1012009-05-18

That'll be running at 20 - 40mA? so sounds right. I'm not too sure about what we've got in this one (you know it's right if it lasts 2 years, 2 weeks and maybe not). L

thetech101 (author)lemonie2009-05-19

If your LEDs run at 3.5 volts and 20 mA, then wire two of them in series and put a 100 ohm reistor to the series. I've found this wizard to be helpful in designing an array.

lemonie (author)thetech1012009-05-19

Yes I think I have that bookmarked, it answers many questions. L

Dr.Bill (author)lemonie2009-05-19

I like his better. lol

Emsaid (author)Dr.Bill2010-05-07

yes me too...

Emsaid (author)lemonie2009-05-14

i just wired them two LEDs per resistor randomly, I'll try making one

lemonie (author)Emsaid2009-05-14

The LEDs are in series, those are 1KOhm resistors? (hard to see) L

Emsaid (author)lemonie2009-05-14

I dont know anything about resistors ether does the guy at radio shack

zack247 (author)2010-10-31

how did you manag to get the magnets off of the speakers? mine wont come off

darknessfalls (author)2010-06-29

how would it look with blue wax? or a sheet of clear(ish) blue film over the wax but below the metal?

dtmoore13 (author)2009-09-28

how does it look under a shirt?

Emsaid (author)dtmoore132010-06-29

finnaly posted a pic

Emsaid (author)dtmoore132009-09-29

ill post i pic soon!

dtmoore13 (author)2009-10-07

how does it look under a shirt

Emsaid (author)dtmoore132010-06-29

ok it started working again so i Finally got a pic of it, sorry for the wait

Emsaid (author)dtmoore132010-05-07

sorry i didnt get a pic but for some reason it stopped working i think it was the wiring so im making a whole new reactor pics will be up soon!

ronchi84 (author)2010-05-11

do you know what size of speakers they are?   I do believe that it is wired in parrellel, if the share the + and - it is parrellel, if they are connected anode to cathode then it is series.

ronchi84 (author)ronchi842010-05-11

correction to my own stupid self, it would be a combination circuit.  and doing some research, a 1.5v led works best at between 180 and 240 ohms, but it does depend on the size of the led and the power source.   a good estimate would be like tech101 said and go with a 220 ohm (thats r,r,br)

Emsaid (author)ronchi842010-06-01

sorry i dont really know anything about this stuff

spaceboy22 (author)2010-05-31

does it have a light on it

Emsaid (author)spaceboy222010-05-31

it is the light

spaceboy22 (author)Emsaid2010-06-01

thank you for commenting

spaceboy22 (author)2010-05-31

what size are the speakers i want to make one

garagebandpunk (author)2010-04-26

Sorry to ask, but what part of the speaker is that?

srhadaham (author)garagebandpunk2010-05-06

its the part behind the paper/plastic front cone.
Here's a shot of a bigger one just for reference, the speaker is laying cone/visible part down

Emsaid (author)srhadaham2010-05-07

yeah its the metal piece, sorry i didnt get back to you sooner

stasterisk (author)2009-06-30

what's an arc reactor?

Emsaid (author)stasterisk2009-07-01

an arc reactor is a movie prop from the movie iron man, it is used to stop shrapnel from getting to his heart, its an electromagnet but of course the one I made is just some LEDs and wax

nerd12 (author)Emsaid2009-08-29

why didn't he just have an operation to get the shrapnel removed?.

Advocat (author)nerd122010-01-15

See the film and see for yourself! It's a good film and also the basis for S.H.I.E.L.D. But at any rate you will see that he did get surgery, and this was the doctors attempt. Although he did refine it, and get his secretary to stick her hand into his chest, YUCKY it was. It was pretty clever to have a magnet taking the shrapnel from going round your body ripping it apart, and the heart too. Th idea is quite simple and effecgtive, and is like the magnet in the oil sump of an engine, collecting all iron and steel, so that it doesn't mess up the engine and makeit lose any power. Essentially as the oil/lifeblood of an engine goes around the engine, it filters the metals from scratching up chambers of the engine, so that compression doesn't get reduced... etc.

nerd12 (author)Advocat2010-03-18

why not make the magnet stronger so it will pull out the shrapnel.
when stane removed the arc reactor that should have killed him nearly imdeatly

Emsaid (author)nerd122010-03-18

because pulling it out would shred his insides in the process, and the shrapnel moved very slow thats why it didnt kill him immediately

MrRodrigez (author)nerd122009-10-31

 lol don't ruin the concept..(i thought the same thing)

Emsaid (author)MrRodrigez2009-10-31

well the arc reactor gave him power

Guardians38 (author)Emsaid2009-09-28

Not to be rude or anything but in the movie the arc reactor was just the power source for the electromagnet. And btw really nice ible! 5 stars =)

Guardians38 (author)Guardians382009-09-28

Also where did you get the speakers? Were they in the VCR player? Or were they from other actual speakers?

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