Introduction: Retractable Helping Hands (My Mini Soldering Helper!)

About: I've been making Instructables since I was 13. Now, I mostly make videos of my projects, however I'm still active here, so don't hesitate to reach out! Sick with a deadly disease called DIY-itis!

Most of us "electronics people" know that 2 hands usually isn't enough while working with electronics, It isn't surprising when you mess up because you have to hold a Circuit Board, Components, Soldering Iron, Solder, Wire Cutters, and a million other tools, With only two hands!

And for that exact purpose, The Helping Hands tool was invented. The only problem is that they can be pretty expensive.

That's why I decided to make a Retractable Helping Hands Tool using parts of an old IKEA reading lamp, Which means it was FREE!

Time to start making!

Step 1: What You'll Need:


A Flexible (IKEA) Lamp

Teeny Tiny C-Clamp- Buy a 2" C-Clamp here for $3, Or make your own here (My grandpa had these and gave me them, So I got them for free)

Epoxy Putty (Vinyl Gloves and a Utility Knife are recommended to use with Epoxy Putty)

Note: You can always use a small, cheap spring clamp if you want. It might look like a small version of this


Wire Cutters

Needle-Nose Pliers

Vinyl Gloves

Small Hammer (optional)

Flat Screwdriver (optional)

Step 2: Removing the Lamp Parts

Not all lamps are the same, But most lamps should be easy to take apart:

After removing the light-bulb, Cut the cord with wire cutters, And un-screw the reflector-protector-cover-thingy!

You should be left with the flexible arm, And the spring clamp (Picture #1)

Step 3: Clamp Holder

This isn't pictured, But I took the "reflector-protector-cover-thingy" apart and inside of it, I found another piece of metal that I thought could be useful (Picture #3). This part reminds me of a 110V plug, But DO NOT plug it in to an outlet! I said it reminds me of one!

I screwed it in to the flexible arm, And bent the prongs around the clamp. (Picture #1)

This can easily be done with Needle-Nose Pliers, A hammer might also come in handy

Step 4: Epoxy Putty

I decided to use Epoxy Putty to help strengthen the connection between the clamp and the flexible arm.

I kneaded the Epoxy Putty until I got the 2 chemicals mixed properly, And applied it on to the both parts. I made sure that the Epoxy covered everything

You might also be able to use a welder for this, But I don't have one, So I don't know...

Step 5: More Pictures/More Uses

Here are a couple more uses for my Retractable Helping Hands!

I hope you enjoyed my Instructable! If you wan't to see more projects like this, Don't forget to visit my Instructables page and subscribe for more future projects!

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If you build a something that is similar to what I built, Please post a picture in the comments to show everyone!

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