Picture of Stylish Two Drawer Faraday Cage

If you think you may need a Faraday cage and you don’t want to spend too much time or money and you want it to look nice in your den or home office then this is the project for you.  You can use your Faraday cage to store some of your electronic devices when they are not in use and protect them against the effects of a solar storm:


or an electromagnetic pulse from an exoatmospheric nuclear detonation:


If you do not have one already, you will need to purchase a metal file cabinet.


Step 1:

Picture of

This file cabinet has L shaped cut outs and a section of metal bent outward to act as stops to keep the drawer from being pulled out all the way.  I bent these back in and removed the drawers.

You will need some hardware as pictured.  The size does not matter as long as the screws, nuts, flat washer and lock washers all fit together. You will also need ring terminal crimp connectors and wire.

You will need to make three cable assemblies.  Two of them will have a ring terminal on both ends.  These are to electrically connect each drawer to the back or side of the inside of the file cabinet.  This needs to be done because the plastic slides that the drawers slide on are not conductive.  If the file cabinet you use has metal bearings, you will still want to attach the drawers to the inside of the file cabinet to insure a good electrical connection.  The other cable attaches to the outside of the file cabinet to connect the file cabinet to a metal grounding rod that has been pounded into the ground.

The cables that connect the drawers to the inside of the back of the file cabinet need to be long enough to allow the drawer to be opened up all the way.  You may want to make them long enough to attach both ends of the cable while the drawer is outside the cabinet.

flashbang22 years ago
to test it, put a cell phone inside the cab. and close it, call the cell phone to see if it does not ring, if it rings it is of no use using that cab.
nocera2 years ago
You do not ever ground a faraday cage or defeats the whole principle of how it works!
You many want to consider one of two things...

Either line the inside of the metal cabinet with cardboard (to insulate the electronics inside from being in contact with the conductive material, or, simply wrap or insulate each electronic device inside individually.

There are some arguments out there whether or not the inside actually needs to be electronically insulated (some feel that the EMP pulse will stay within the top outer molecular layers at it passes over the Faraday cage), but I would rather be safe than sorry by simply lining the inside with cardboard (bottom, sides).

Beyond that, good idea regarding using a metal filing cabinet!
luxstar (author)  ModernSurvivalBlog2 years ago
Good Thinking about the cardboard. Most of the smaller items in my other cages are in cardboard boxes and plastic storage boxes and bins. This new cage is still at work where I did the modifications. When I get it home I will probably put a couple of cardboard boxes in each drawer as this one and one of the other ones I have at home are bare metal inside. The other two I have are painted metal. By the way, that is why I used the star lock washers. To break through the paint to make good electrical contact, Also, I test my cages with a meter about once a year to make sure they are properly grounded all the way out to the soil a few feet from the cold water pipe. Thanks again for the comment. A little cardboard is cheap insurance after going to all the other effort.
luxstar (author)  luxstar2 years ago

By the way, modernsurvivalblog,

Welcome to Instructables. For those not familiar with your site I included the link below.


You really went the extra mile or two on this one. The graphics are fantastic.

I am looking forward to some instructables as well.

luxstar (author)  luxstar2 years ago
And here it is. Instructable #1:


Thanks ModernSurvivalBlog
putty1cat2 years ago
I use a metal biscuit tin lined with thin cardboard. Cheap, recycled and portable.
luxstar (author)  putty1cat2 years ago
Hello Kitty,

That will not work for me since I have so many things electronic (being the wirehead/geek that I am). Also I would not want to have that long leash (ground wire) hooked to the box to make it portable.
Some more info for you. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=GqZmac2Bg5M#!
luxstar (author)  putty1cat2 years ago
I will check it out this weekend.

Thanks P1C
Tupulov2 years ago
Good idea. Does anyone know if this would protect against EMP?