Instructables
A simple technique to make a variable resistor from paper and pencil.
 
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: List of materials required:

Picture of List of materials required:
All the things required to make this resistor are readily available in homes and
you will not require to spend any money to buy them.
The materials required are as follows:
(1) A thick (rather stiff) sheet of paper.
(2) A HB pencil.(preferably 3B,4B or 6B)
(3) A ruler or scale.
(4) Few metal paper clips.(will be used as the pins of the resistor)
(5) A multimeter or ohm meter to measure the resistance and calibrate your
resistor.
(6) pair of scissors.

Step 2: Lets make it !!!

Building this resistor will hardly take an hour.You can build it in just 5 steps.
Step (1):
SubSteps:
(1)First take the sheet of paper(as i have told before it should be stiff and rough).
(2)Cut a small strip out of it.(as I have shown in the picture).

Step 3: Start Scribbling !!!!

Now take out the heck out of the pencil ! This is was is the second step.
Step (2)
Substeps:
(1) Take a scale/ruler and your HB pencil and place the ruler near one side(the lenght i.e. the longer side) of the strip at about 0.5cm.
(2) Draw a demarker line with the ruler
(3) Now rub and scribble your pencil in the demarked area (as hard as you can !!).

*It is better if you scribble in a linear way ,horizontally and carefully seeing that no space is left blank in that area.

*If you use here a thin paper then it will tear off so I again recommend to use a stiff paper.
this can also be used to make a lighter, just make a big shape that looks like a upside down V and connect one wire from a motorbike battery or bigger to one side and other to other side here you go instant fire!
sonic12346 years ago
what does it do
Impede the flow of electrons through a conductor.
raju11924 years ago
Actually my question is how to connect with Multimeter?
and it will not get heated?
plz answer me.
does anything happen 2 the paper due 2 the heat generated by the resistor.....
jrt426 years ago
How about a strip of foil on paper?
LkArio jrt425 years ago
The resistance would be very low, much less than a quarter of an ohm
joinaqd5 years ago
hi i really liked your instructable because its so simple...someone once told me to make resistor out of pencil lead but its hard...your idea is so simple and easy...i hav a question..Can i use this to charge my 6 volt battery using a 12 volt charger if i use the resistor?please answer back.
It is a good idea buddy...but when days go on ,the resistance value will decrease gradually due to removal of carbon particles from the paper...any how you have given an alternative for resistor...gr8 job..!
Abizer7 years ago
very cool.i tried the same project yestrdy . it works
a_d7777 years ago
very cool thing... i just tried it... i could not find any paper to 'sketch' it on... i took a small calendar and sketched it on that... what wonderful results i got!!! my variable resistor varies from 90k to 1800k... below is a picture of it!
Picture 001.jpg
lemonie7 years ago
What practical range (Ohm) can you get out of this, and how much current will it take?
science4u (author)  lemonie7 years ago
I got the resistance range from 10k ohm to 2000k ohm and you can calculate the current from V=IR formula (that is ohms law).If you still have any doubt please do ask.<br/>
mje science4u7 years ago
I think what he's asking is really how much power it can handle. I suspect the answer has to be empirically determined.
lemonie mje7 years ago
Yes, correct on both counts. L
Kiteman7 years ago
You can make a variable resistor directly from the pencil:

Using your Instructables Leatherman (ahem), slit the pencil length-wise. If you're careful, you can split it cleanly along the glue, otherwise you may need to whittle a little wood to expose the "lead" (yes, I know it's graphite) along the full length of the pencil.

Then just clip on wherever you need to.

I like this idea though - I may pinch it to allow my pupils to keep something "real" in their exercise books.
Brennn107 years ago
Very cool indeed.
Sgt.Waffles7 years ago
I remember doing this before. Its a pretty cool DIY, and could help to teach youngn's about electronic stuff.