Turn off your light switch from bed with pulleys.

Picture of Turn off your light switch from bed with pulleys.
Yep, pulley and string simple as that.

You will need:
4 pulleys (can be done with 3-5)
string or fishing line(enough to wrap up the wall, across the ceiling, and down the other wall)
Drill & Screws

Here is a video of it in action:

If anyone has ideas that would improve my idea please let me know. I would like a cheaper, lighter, smaller pulley that can directly connect to the wall.

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Step 1: Find where you wish to control your switch and screw

Picture of Find where you wish to control your switch and screw
Bed, couch, bathroom, special little place in the corner of your room.. etc
I put in next to my bed.

Screw 2 pulleys into the upper wall or ceiling so that the cord will hang where you can reach it.

Screw another pulley(s) above the light switch in the room.

Screw a pulley under the light switch. (you may be able to just slide it under the light plate or take off the plate and use the screw of the plate to hold the pulley)

Step 2: Thred from the bed to the switch.

Picture of Thred from the bed to the switch.
Thread the cord from the one bed side pulley to the one above the light switch and down. Tie it to the tube covered switch.
Thread the other pulley but go through the pulley below the switch and back up to the switch. Tie.

Step 3: Add ballast.

Picture of Add ballast.
Add weight to keep the cord on the track.

I used an action figure and a tech deck.

Show me yours!

NeonJuggalo4 months ago
i made this 20 years ago at a sleepover when i was a kid
Much better than a remote switch !!…
Has a Buster Keaton flair to it that I simply love !!!
thealeks2 years ago
Omg seriously you are my hero! I dreamt up this exact idea in my teen years but never actually built it. Maybe my wife will let me put it on our room...
archembo4 years ago
that reminds me of Mr Bean turning off his light with a gun...
guys.. wireless remote control was invented in 1956!!!
Behold the man who is a bean!
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Foxtrot703 years ago
I am happy to see that Rube Goldberg is alive and well in us all.
a better solution might be to add another pulley at the end, and make it so that the two ends run through the pulley as one piece (by tying the ends together where the know won't get in the way)
you can use some spray paint to mark "on"/"off". or even use beads in the string before closing the loop
hdavidb4 years ago
I did this MANY years ago when I was a kid, although I had a 4-post bed that I simply wrapped a long piece of yarn around the top indent of the post and around the dimmer (head of the bed was on the same wall). It was convenient, and my parents called me lazy :)
Nice. But a better option would be a remote controlled switch. Best home purchase I've made. A Lutron remote controlled programmable dimmer lightswitch. $40 from Lowes.
kdlevad5 years ago
or you could just buy a clapper
 only works for lamps
Punkguyta5 years ago
Haha, I remember trying to do this as a kid in my room, although it would only turn the light off once it was on.
Iridium75 years ago
I honestly think that this is too complicated. but good 'ible!
tommyrusso5 years ago
I sketch this out as kid but never tried it. Love it!
i tried to make a turn on lights automatically'ible, and i failed miserably. type in "simply simple" to view my horrible interwebs failure. also i have a ninja hood that should be next to it
CaseyCase6 years ago
Could have used this idea when I lived in the dorms. Very nice!
Hycro6 years ago
I did this sort of thing when I was younger, only I put a pop-can tab on the light switch, and I also stuck paper clips in the walls and ceiling.
microman1716 years ago
Does this work on and off? Mine is accomplished via sting levers. Too bad it can only be turned off...
icerc (author)  microman1716 years ago
Yes. You can see my video of it in action here:
I had thought out the EXACT same I dea when I was about 5-6 The only problem is I have lath and plaster walls. I even have that same G.I. joe dude (i know thats not what it is...) Be careful though, their abdominal rubber band will wear out with age.
Phil B6 years ago
I once did something like this. But, instead of placing a tube over the toggle, I drilled a hole in the toggle. I was attempting a fail-safe way to make sure the blower for a pipe organ was turned "off" before the rolltop cover was closed. Someone forgot once and it ran from Sunday to Thursday before we found it. I did not need to worry about "on," just "off." I had a piece of wood upright and fastened to the cabinetry outside of the rolltop. The switch was horizontally mounted inside the rolltop. A cord ran from the upright to the toggle. There was enough slack in the cord to push the toggle to "on." When the rolltop came down it shortened the string so the toggle had to flip to "off." You could also have controlled your light with a relay. You would have used a low voltage switch at your bed. Remove the wall switch, put the relay inside the wall box, put on a blank cover, and run clear speaker wire to your bed. See my Instructable on the Oven Timer Problem.
jumbuck6 years ago
Excellent idea!!
21GeeOff216 years ago
nice i always wanted to do this when i was younger never did though :P