Salvage 9V Battery Clips From Dead Batteries




About: Middle aged geek username also works at,,,

You can use the top of an old 9V battery as a 9V battery clip for assorted
electronics projects. The "9V clip" is also used on some batter holders of
assorted voltages (ie a 4AA battery pack.)
Here's how to make a nice wire-lead version...

(This is an old idea. The only original part here is the "strain-relief" hack.
Still, new pictorials for old ideas can be pretty useful.)

Step 1: Find a Dead Battery...

Find a dead 9V battery. Batteries are supposed to be recycled these days,
so a good place to find dead one is at work, where they might have battery
recylcling stations.

The internal construction of 9V batteries varies a great deal, and some are
easier to convert to clips that others. Duracells are pretty good.

Step 2: Clip the Casing

Using wire or other cutters, clip the corners at the top of the casing.

Step 3: Peel Back the Edges

Use clippers or pliers of some kind to peel back the folded-over
edges between the cuts you made in the last step. Be a bit careful;
those edges are sharp!
(On some batteries, the bottom may be easier to open than the top, and
that will work just as well for our purposes.)

Step 4: Separate the Parts

You should be able to push out the guts of the battery from the bottom;
you should end up with the top, the cells themselves (may be attached
to the top by wires or straps), and a plate from the bottom.

Step 5: Separate the Top

If you're lucky, there are metal straps spot-welded to the contacts, which
are easier to solder to than the contacts themselves. Cut these near the
batteries so that you have some left to wrap around wires. (Here, one of
the spot-welds has failed, so it will only be half-easy)

Step 6: Prepare to Solder on Wires.

Wrap wires in tabs, and vis versa, if you have tabs. Maybe clean up
the contacts a bit...

Try to be consistant about which colors go to which contact. I try to use the darker
color for the negative contact ("male" nipple. Remember that it's reversed from the
polarity of the battery itself.)

Step 7: Solder...

Go ahead, glop on the solder. Some batteries have relatively heat-resistant
insulating material holding the tabs (another plus for duracells.) Other batteries
use normal plastic, and you'll have to be careful not to melt it too much.

Step 8: Provide "strain Relief"

Loop the wires around a bit over the insulator, being careful not to short
out any bare copper to any of the contacts. This will provide quite a lot
of strain relief in the finished connector, and help prevent the wires from
pulling off the contacts during normal handling.

Step 9: Attach Backing

glop on some hot glue and attach the bottom insulator from tha battery to
protect the wiring and your fingers. You should use enough hot glue to
pretty much fill in all the space the wires will make between the insulators.
squeeze together gently, remembering that hot glue is ... hot.

Step 10: All Done!

You probably could have bought one of these for $0.15, but I'm sure
that this was a lot more fun...



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    47 Discussions


    4 years ago



    6 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks for sharing! :) This will really help me because the connectors you can buy cost 3 dollars at my country.


    7 years ago on Step 10

    Cool! this thing is Real-Hard-to-Find around the city I live...
    Thanks a lot, Dude!


    7 years ago on Introduction

    some batteries are so poorly manufactured that they can just be pulled or shaken apart :)


    13 years ago

    i've been doing this for years. use a pair of small end-cutting pliers on the top crimp and then peel the can open like a sardine tin. it takes just a few seconds and the "used" clip is usually better than most purchased ones.

    2 replies

    Reply 12 years ago

    Purchased clips are pretty sucky. Lightweight wire with no strain relief. Easy to break. I was making a bunch of Sims costumes and hadn't made enough homemade clips, so I just bought some thinking they'd be fine. They weren't. Grr.


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    i fill the inside of the bought clips with hot glue (may work just as well with silicon) and this helps alot with strain releif also, just dont get burnt... but yours is better


    11 years ago on Introduction

    I already knew how to do this, but the radio shack here recently closed down, and an ugly "The Source! by Circut City!" Replaced it, their prices are insane. This is happening a lot in other parts of Canada too, so I hope this Instructable helps a lot of canadians.

    1 reply

    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    oh my god me too! We used to have an awesome radioshack but now all we have is the source!

    Me- Im lookin for a 500K ohm potentiometer
    Store Person- ....... Huh?
    Me- -_-'


    10 years ago on Introduction

    omg, lol i was so sure that no1 had put this on instructables yet :'( lol


    11 years ago on Step 10

    Sure you can get them for $0.15, but you'll have to wait a week for delivery. It's not like you can buy them in stores anymore. This is a very useful substitute for when you don't have any lying around and need one quickly. Thanks!


    13 years ago

    I think this is more of a lazy man's mod.. Who would take the time to get to the store to buy these things, when you can do it yourself at home? I've been doing this for years, and they work great.. I can make one in about 2 min max.

    3 replies

    Reply 13 years ago

    yeah, if you're going to count $5-10 in labor, don't forget to charge the same rates for the time it takes you to go to the store... Assembly will go quicker if you batch up the steps; save the pieces as you discard batteries, and to the assembly as needed, or when you have the soldering tools out for something else.


    Reply 13 years ago

    Or you can always have some children do it for 10 cents a day, thats the cheapest way.

    Like the big companies do, smart thinking. Eventually there will be no jobs in the US at all and we can all just sit around making gadgets.


    13 years ago

    yeah, but 9 volt batteries are actually batteries, not just cells. That means the acid is stuck in those other things that resemble AA "batteries" (cells)

    1 reply

    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    This does not matter. A cell is like a AA battery but smaller and has no label. The size is AAAA to be exact. Sometimes, AAAA's with tabs can be used in place of an AA or AAA. Don't try this, but this is to prove how similar they are.