How to Make a Water Leyden Jar




Introduction: How to Make a Water Leyden Jar

A Leyden Jar is a HIGH VOLTAGE capacitor that can "capture lightning in a bottle", a salt water leyden jar is a simpler version that is significantly less dangerous. and takes much less time to make. The water leyden jar is easier to make than a normal leyden jar because putting foil perfectly on the inside of a container can be very difficult. A leyden jar is simply two conductors separated by an insulator. Charging one side, then touching the two conductors together creates a discharge of static electricity which makes a spark appear

Disclaimer: The leyden jar is a high voltage capacitor, high voltage capacitors are one of the most dangerous things you could ever use in electronics. A large charged leyden jar is potentially lethal if you touch its live terminals, and a small charged leyden jar can cause injury and it still be lethal in some ways. So, I am not responsible what ever you do with this information and leyden jars.

Step 1: Step 1


  • Container
  • Hot Glue
  • Hot Glue Gun
  • Aluminum Foil
  • Salt
  • Wire
  • Electrical Tape
  • Paper Clip
  • Piece of a Coat Hanger

Step 2: Step 2

Grab your container!

Step 3: Step 3

Fill 1/2 to 2/3 full with water!

Step 4: Step 4

Add a lot of salt!

Step 5: Step 5

Stir until completely soluble!

Step 6: Step 6

Poke hold into container lid and strip coating off of the hanger. Then hook the bottom of the coat hanger piece!

Step 7: Step 7

Poke hanger through hole so the hook will be enclosed inside the container.

Step 8: Step 8

Put a paper clip on the hook so that the clip will be submerged in the water/ salt solution. Make sure the paper clip is not touching to bottom once it is closed.

Step 9: Step 9

Ball up aluminum foil and stick it on the top of the coat hanger. Hot glue the coat hanger to the lid so it stays in place.

Step 10: Step 10

Hot glue the aluminum foil ball to the coat hanger.

Step 11: Step 11

wrap the container in aluminum foil, tape on with electrical tape. Make sure the aluminum foil isn't covering/ touching the bottom on the container.

Step 12: Step 12

Strip wire and place electrical tape over the stripped part, then tape directly onto the aluminum foil.

Step 13: Step 13

To charge the Leyden Jar, use pvc piping and fur to create a charge on the piping.

Step 14: Step 14

Rub piping on the aluminum foil ball. Do this 3-4 time to make sure it has a good charge!

Step 15: Step 15

To test if it is working. Bring the other end, that is not attached to the container, close to the jar. You should see a spark once it gets really close.

Step 16: Step 16

Recharge the Leyden Jar. Grab the end of the wire with your thumb and pointer finger, then with your middle finger on the same hand, touch the aluminum foil. You should get a small shock!

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    5 Discussions


    3 years ago

    You all seems to understand this very well. I'm just 14 years old so i don't really get it, so do any of you have a suggestion for me (to study).


    5 years ago on Introduction

    Nice little make.

    (You do know that you don't need the salt, don't you?)


    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    The salt is quite necessary if you want the Leyden Jar to be more successful and efficient.


    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    Nope. Since the charge is all stored at the surface boundary between the water and the glass of the jar, not within the water (basic physics), it matters not what the water contains.

    The idea that the charge is in the water is a left-over misconception from the early days of electrical study, when it was thought that electricity was a form of fluid (which is also why we still refer to moving charges as a "current").

    If you want more "success and efficiency", get rid of the water altogether, and line the jar with metal foil, with a direct connection to the central contact.


    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    I guess you would only need it if you were using distilled water, because otherwise the water wouldn't conduct. Water needs an electrolyte, in this case salt, to conduct electricity.