Instructables
Picture of Mysterious Lightbulb Prank
Have you ever seen the Magic Lightbulbs magicians use? Here's how to make one that will drive people crazy! Thanks to Brad Graham for the fun idea! Watch the video and then follow along with the Instructable. Hope you enjoy it!

 
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Step 1: What you need...

Picture of What you need...
1. (2) ordinary lightbulbs - the older the better.
2. (2) CR2032 Button Cell Batteres
3. 1 High Intensity White LED

Step 2: Tools needed...

Picture of Tools needed...
1. Soldering iron/station
2. Solder
3. Knife or X-Acto
4. Work gloves
5. Needle nose pliers
6. Hot Glue gun

Step 3: Step 1

Picture of Step 1
Put on your work gloves and start to gently work the lightbulb base back and forth. After some patience the base should come loose from the bulb. If you are lucky, the bulb will come loose cleanly. In my case it didn't so I salvaged the base and removed the excess old glue.

Step 4: Step 2

Picture of Step 2
On the second bulb, I cut away a small edge of the base. Just enough to grab it with needle nose pliers and start 'unwrapping' the base from the bulb. Shen I was done I ended up with a clean glass bulb.

Step 5: Wire it up...

Picture of Wire it up...
After zip tying both batteries together, solder one wire to the lightbulb base in the center. Solder one wire to the edge of the base. There should be two nice globs of solder already there that you can use. Then solder one wire to each of the LED leads. Take note as to which one is positive (the longer lead). Then attach the positive wire to the + side of the battery pack by slipping it under the zip tie. Do the same for the negative wire.

Step 6: Put it back together...

Picture of Put it back together...
Now drop the battery pack inside the base of the lightbulb and insert the LED into the empty part of the lightbulb. I had to break away the smaller glass shaft that runs inside the bulb to make room for the LED. Make it nice and snug and then I used some hot glue to seal the base to the bulb.
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DFree2 years ago
I think it would be great if someone stuck this in their mouth.
most solder is made of lead... I wouldnt put that in my mouth...
Now lead-free solder- THAT is slightly better

lead-free solder is poop, generally.

drivanovich7 months ago

I love this idea. I did a similar thing a few years ago for a halloween costume (I went as a bright idea)

mrnadnad1 year ago
great idea! Next time a lightbulb breaks- I know what I will do
That is awesome! You have a great idea by placing small lithium batteries in the lightbulb :) I posted a similar idea using a solar yard light, cost about $1.50-$2.40 and batteries ARE included! Check it out at http://www.instructables.com/id/Wireless-lightbulb-Impress-your-buddies-for-1-2/
J-Five1 year ago
I finally found Uncle Fester !!!
tstilwell22 years ago
Please tell me how you remove the base without breaking the glass bulb. I have tried this several times and because the bulb is a under a Vacuum Pressure it breakes and I have never seen one come apart at the base as clean as yours. I would love to know which brand you are using so I could make one Thanks Tom
I have bought cheap brandless bulbs and removed the foot as well (it was for another project).
Just hacksaw through the lower end of the metal base and then just peel off the rest of the metal with pliers.

This leaves you with a closed glass bulb haveing a glass rod stick out at the bottom.

Break off that rod.
Then immobilize a belt sander somewhere or ask someone to hold it for you and gently but firmly press the base of the lamp against the turning sandbelt,

Turn the lamp a few times as you probably will not push it sgainst the belt completely straight.

Very soon you will have gone through the base and the inner glass off the lamp will be loose and yr bulb will be open
fishfryer4 years ago
there isn't much solder on my base and i can't get more to stick. help please?
This will be way too late, but the flux paste used for plumbing will nearly always allow your solder to stick to metal that doesn't want to take it. Cleaning the metal with some abrasive paper or wire wool also helps.
it's never too late to build random stuff! I'll try this out, but even if it doesn't work, thanks anyway!
DETHKLOK004 years ago
i used this prank at a friends party and scared the crap out of everyone lol
soapdude4 years ago
I'm having trouble cleaning out the base... How did you do it? And when it is cleaned how would i get the wire through the glue at the bottom to the solder on the bottom?
Hugsdrummer5 years ago
what happens if you pluged the bulb in?
Probably not as much as others are expecting. The LED will blow almost instantly, and that would break the circuit. Connecting the battery to AC could make it blow or cause a fire, but the LED would act as a circuit breaker in this case.
You get a little fire, a lot of nasty smoke and the bulb will probably explode (ok, the last one might not happen!!!)... :P Here in the UK we have a different type of bulb base, a Bayonet fitting, with the two contacts on the base, rather than a single one and the cap being the other, which I think would make this trick easier in my opinion... :)
In Greece we have both types and personaly i frefer the screw type. I 've seen this trick with the lamp from a vagabondv who was did some street shows....and then (I was 8 or 9 y.o.) i crown and appluse and i ask my unbeleiver big brother naive " Now how he did that?" and my brother replied "pfffffffff" and gone...Nice memeories of over that 30 years!!!
The world would end. Actually, I think it's pretty likely that you'd blow a fuse, and possibly ruin the lamp.
That would be a whole other prank.
The reason there isnt a resistor is because your skin is resistive.

Average normal skin (Not right after washing your hands) has the resistance of about 100,000 ohms (100k).

Buf if you really want to be safe, just add another resistor.
100K ohms with a 6V source would pass so little current I doubt you could see the LED light at all. He's not using his skin to close the circuit, but rather a palmed piece of metal (in this case his ring.)
 I liked the prank my friend couldnt make it light
110100101105 years ago
now throw in a transistor and it lights up bright if you touch it just with ya hand !
I'm sorry, how exactly?
the 2 extra resistors are both optional but very recommended the 100 - 1K one protects the transistor from overheating if lamp contacts are shorted together and not just touched with hand the 100K - 1M one prevents static charges etc from activating the transistor and lighting the led (which kills battery)
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12V 110100101105 years ago
but it would light up if someone else held it.
555mst5555 years ago
how come we can't solder directly to the batteries.....does it have a ayer of something that repels solder?
From experience, small batteries explode if you heat them fro too long with a soldering iron... :S You can try, but you have to be exceptionally careful and let the battery cool between soldering each side, otherwise they expel their contents... S
You know that you can pick one of those things up at a hardware store for a few cents right?
AT6 years ago
Nice! Uncle Fester would be proud.
Another Adams Family lover!
kinda sux that its like not on tv any more used to be my favorite show lol
HULU.COM has the shows
HULU rocks
-Hugs tightly- Thank you, thank you, thank you!
woody5585 years ago
On the first time you took the bulb apart. Why couldn't you use that?
volquete5 years ago
im a practicing magician, and this will help alot, thanks!
volquete5 years ago
KIPKAY ROCKS AGAIN _!!!

to solder the wires on, do i have to use a soldering iron or just meld some solder onto the wire to make them stay?
How about putting a reed switch inside the bulb? Holding a small magnet close would turn on the light.
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