Introduction: DIY Headphones by Swayer

Make your own headphones

Step 1: Materials List

Materials list(Step 1):

3.5mm stereo jack

2x 10ft 28 AWG copper wire

2 neodymium magnets

electrical tape as needed

2 plastic cups


a piece of sandpaper

a sharpie

Step 2: Step 2: Sanding and Wrapping

First, take one of your 10ft pieces of wire and sand about 5cm of the coating off of both ends with sandpaper. You sand these ends to remove to nonconductive coating on the wire to that the conductive wire can be exposed and conduct electricity. Now, take your wire, and start to wrap it around the sharpie, leaving 10cm at the end (see video). Wrap it around the sharpie until only 10cm remain. When a wire is wrapped in a circle and current is running through it, the right hand rule says that the magnetic field generated will either repel or attract a magnet depending on the direction of the current. The more times you wrap the wire, the stronger the magnetic field will be.

Step 3: Step 3 Assembly

Put one of your cups upside down on the table. Put your magnet in the middle of the top of the cup. Put another magnet inside the cup, so that it attracts to the magnet outside the cup. Put your wire around the magnet. Tape it all down with electrical tape. The magnet should be place in the middle of the coil of wire because that is what produces the sound/music. The wire was coiled around a sharpie giving the shape of the coiled wire a circular shape. Once you have the current running through the coil of wire, it makes the wire a temporary magnet with alternating current which just means that the magnetic field attracts and repels, while direct current only attracts or repels. The magnet is permanent and the coil of wire is acting as a temporary magnet making the actual magnet attract and repel to the temporary magnet(coil of wire). Since it is surrounded by the wires, it can’t just go to one side of the coil of wires because the other side cancels the attraction. So, the magnet stays in place, while it is repelling and attracting to the surrounding coils, making it vibrate because the repelling makes the magnet move up, and the attraction makes the magnet move down, thus the vibration.

Step 4: Explanations

You need to sand the ends off because the copper wire is surrounded by a coating of rubber, which insulates it and prevents electricity from flowing. Since it is necessary to have a circuit to run current through in the headphones, we sand the enamel coating off of the ends so that we can connect them to our terminals. All sounds are vibrations that our ear interprets as sounds. Speakers function by making the voice coil alternately attract and repel the permanent magnet, which in turn creates vibrations which are amplified by the diaphragm. Because these three components of the headphones are the ones that create sound, they are considered the three main components of the speaker.

Step 5: Troubleshooting

If you don’t hear sound try some or all of the following:

Sand the ends of your wire more

Twist the wire around the terminals tighter

Twist the top connection tighter

Add more coils

Make sure your coils are tightly taped to the cup and magnet