Simple Coil Winder




Introduction: Simple Coil Winder

In construction of my wind turbine, i needed a way to wind my wire into coils in the easiest, fastest, and cheapest way. I came up with a really easy way to make one out of household items, and aside from the wire, didnt cost me a dime. Sorry this isnt the clearest pic, i had to resort to my cell phone camera.

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Step 1: Meterials

To make this you will need:

Electric Drill and drill bits

CD (or two)



K'nex (optional)

Your own Spool of wire




Step 2: Cutting the Plastic

The first step is to cut your plastic. Note: you can use any plastic you want, I used CD's becase I had trillions. First, you need to get an idea of what diameter you are looking for. Say you wanted a 2" diameter, so then you would cut your plastic into a
2 1/4"x 2 1/4" square. So cut your plastic 1/4" bigger than you want your coil. After you have cut your desired size, make another one that matches.

Step 3: The Nail and the Drill

Next, Find you a nail that has the smoothest edge that you can find, it will make removing the coil alot easier in later steps. After you have found a nice smooth nail, you will need to find a drill bit that matches the thickness of the nail. Once you have done that, its time to start drilling.

Put your two pieces of plastic you cut on top of eachother, hold them or tape them down tightly. Then, find the center of your plastic pieces and put a nice hole through both of em'

The following picture will be the end result. (They don't have to be perfect, mine sure arent)

Step 4: The K'nex Spool Holder

This is an optional step that will make it a little easier to wind your coils, espically if your making a lot of them.

Basically what your trying to make is a device that will hold your spool in place and let it unwind freely while your operating the drill.

The steps will be explained in the pictures...

Step 5: Preparing for the Wrapping

Once you have a device that holds the spool, you will need to prep the two plastic pieces you made earlier and the drill.

First, put the nail through the two plastic pieces you made earlier. Now here comes the complicated part (Pt.I)

When you put the nail into the claws of the drill, the claws and the head of the nail will act as stoppers for the plastic sheets, so the closer the claws are to the head of the nail, the thinner the coil will be, and the further the claws are from the head of the nail, the wider your coil will be. The space between the plastic sheets will be where the coil is wound. The coil will push the plastic sheets ourward until the claws of the drill and the head of the nail stop them, thus, determining the width of the coil. Got all That? maybe the pictures will help clarify.

When you finally decipher how to do and understand this, you are ready for winding.

Step 6: Winding the Coil

Once you have the nail with the two sheets on it, and its in the drill claws, you are ready for winding.

First, Tape the begninning of the wire (the lead) to the outsde of the plastic sheet. Then (depending on the way your turning), wrap the coil around the nail by hand a few times to get it started.

Once you have done that, pull the trigger of the drill slowly at first, make sure its wrapping. Then once you get it going you can pick up some speed.

Get to a comfortable speed and then keep that speed as constant as possible. Be sure to keep an eye on the proccess at all times, just incase something goes wrong.

Step 7: The Second Hard Part....

This step requires a steady hand.

First get 3 or more pieces of tape at the ready, make sure they are longer than the coil.

Set the plastic pieces and nail (with the coil between them) on the ground so the point of the nail is sticking up.

Next, take the first sheet of plastic off Carefully!!! After that take 2 pieces of tape and put them on the coil so it doesnt fall apart.

Next, take the nail out of the coil and sheet of plastic carefully! You now should have your coil on one sheet of plastic with the leads taped to it.

Carefully untape the leads and let the plastic sheet fall off, hold the edges of the coil together to it doesnt fall apart, then tape the coil all up so nothing comes apart.

You may now change your underwear.

Step 8: Finishing the Coil

In order to get an electrical current out of the coil, you will need to remove the enamel surrounding the copper wire. This provides a clean connection for the curent to go through and is crutial if your hoping to see any results...

I have found it easies to first burn the enamel off with your lighter, simply put the wire in the flame and you shall see the enamel burning off.

But wait..thats not all, after you have burned off the enamel you will see that your leads have changed to a dark grey color, also not good for the current. To Fix this simply take a small piece of sandpaper and sand off the leads. your end result should emit a color of bright looking copper. Check the pic for a refrence.

Step 9: Other Info

For this project, i used 28 AWG wire, things may differ when using a different size. my magnets were about 1 1/2" tall so i tried to make my coils match those. When winding the coil, keep an eye on it at all times, i know this can be very frustrating when it fails because you can seldom recover the wire, i had wasted atleast 4 coils this size in experimending with different winders but this one seems to work the best.

I would like to give a special thanks to bhunter736, he is a great help with this kind of stuff ~Thanks Bro

If you have any questions please leave me a PM

This is my very first Instructable... I hope you like it!
Sadly this was the last of my wire so i really need some more =D


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    5 Discussions


    11 years ago on Introduction

    For your "second hard part" I'd run a bead of hot glue or epoxy around the coil while it is still on the plastic sheets, then take the sheets off- if you greased them lightly beforehand I'm sure they wouldn't stick, and then you could have the coil already glued before dismantling the winder.


    11 years ago on Introduction

    Yeah uhhhh, Does the wire automatically shift left to right to make perfect coils? I need one for my coil gun..


    12 years ago on Introduction

    Looks good, i just managed to follow it - the pictures are v blurry at times, but better than no pictures! nice job