Have you ever wanted to peek around a corner without your head poking out? How about peering through your window without people seeing you. In this instructable, I'll show you how to make a super easy periscope that will keep you hidden while you spy!
How it works: Periscopes work by using mirrors to show you an image out of your direct line of sight. It allows you to to look past obstructions in your line of view, look around corners, or over walls.
Read on to find out how to make this super cool spying periscope!
Teachers! Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.
Step 1: Supplies and Tools.
To make this super cool spy periscope you're going to need:
1. Some sort of long narrow cardboardish box. You could use an orange juice box, or something with that basic shape. I used a Thin Mints box, because it was narrow, long, and sturdy.
2. 2 small mirrors. I found my two mirrors out of old make-up containers. They're easy to pry out of the top, but be careful, if the mirror breaks, it could cut you.
3. Duck tape.
4. A knife. I used my Leatherman, but an X-acto knife, or carpet cutter works too.
5. A marker.
Step 2: Prepairing the Body of the Periscope.
Take your cardboard box. It should be sorta long, and narrow in shape. The first thing you want to do is to close up the ends with your tape. Just close the ends and cover them with a piece or two of tape.
After you've done this, cover the whole box in tape. The tape adds to the rigidity of the box, and makes everything look cleaner and smoother than if it were left the way it was. And it makes it look less suspicious than a box of thin mints peeking up over the window.
Step 3: Cutting the Holes for the Mirrors.
After you've completely covered your box in the tape, you're going to need to cut the holes for the mirrors. These are the holes that allow you to see the mirrors.
Take your mirror and lay it on the box near the end, but about 1/3 of an inch away from the end. Trace the width of the mirror on the box like the picture below.
Once you have the shape of the mirror traced onto the box, cut out the square that you drew, but cut it out inside the lines. This will help keep the box rigid, and make the mirrors fit more snug into the box when they're put in later.
NOTE: After you've done one hole, do another on the other end, but on the OPPOSITE side of the box. So if you're holding the box so where you can't see the holes, you should have one in the upper left hand corner, and one in the lower right hand corner.
If you're using a Leatherman knife, be careful, please. I pushed the knife through the box too hard today and left a knick in my counter. Thankfully it's unnoticeable to the rest of the people in my house.
Step 4: Making Slots for the Mirrors.
After you've cut the holes for the mirrors, you're going to need to cut slots for the mirrors to sit in. It's very important that these slots be at about a 45 degree angle. You need two slots on each side of the box, and on both ends. They should all be pointing in the same direction, or the mirrors won't work when inserted.
I advise drawing the line first on both sides of the box as close to each other as possible. Then slide you're knife into the box and cut the slots. When you're done, slide the mirror through one and into the other, so that the reflective side of the mirror faces the opening of the hole.
On the opposite end of the box, do the same thing, and insert the mirror facing the OPPOSITE direction as the other. They should both be facing reflective sides out, but when looked through one, you see reflections out of the other.
Step 5: Finishing Up and Final Notes.
After you've inserted your mirrors, you can finish up by covering the edges of the mirrors in more tape. You don't want to accidentally cut yourself while spying and blow your cover do you? I thought not.
How It Works:Okay, to use your new spying periscope, it is advised that you are first hiding behind something, like a corner, or under a window sill. Place the periscope so that one mirror is eye level with you and you can look through it. Turn the other end, with the mirror facing out, towards what you want to spy on. If you are around a corner, you have to stick it out from around that corner. If you are under a window sill, you have to stick it up over that window sill. After you've done this, you will be able to look through the mirror that is eye level with you and see everything happening through the other mirror.
I hope you have enjoyed this instructable, and happy spying! I love feedback in the comments section, and positive ratings are appreciated!
Participated in the
The Instructables Book Contest