Telekinetic Pen!




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Watch as an ordinary Sharpie pen comes alive! You can make it move with your mind...or can you? Hear are the links where you can find this great project.

NOTE: The URL in the video to the MAKE Store should be No 'www'.

Telekinetic Pen Project
Telekinetic Pen PDF

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Step 1: What You Need...

You will need a few things to make the Telekinetic Pen:

1. Fine Point Sharpie, any color
2. Soda Straw
3. Coffee Stirrer
4. Energizer 9 Volt battery (Yes, it HAS to be an Energizer)
5. Crayon, any color
6. MAKE Telekinetic Pen Kit or a pager motor, magnetic reed switch, spring, washer, brass tube and pin.

Step 2: Tools and Other Stuff...

You will need the standard tools; soldering station & solder, drill & 1/16" & 11/32" drill bits, wire stripper, x-acto knife or razor blade, hot glue gun, wire, neodymium magnet, small washer.

Step 3: Prepare the Assembly...

1. Insert the crayon in the tube and drill a 1/16" hole as close to the end of the tube as is reasonable. The crayon serves as a cushion and support for the drill bit. Works great!

2. Solder one lead from the reed switch to the pager motor and solder a piece of wire about 3" long to the other connection on the pager motor.

3. Cut a small piece of coffee stirrer and insert it over the body of the reed switch.

Step 4: Finish the Assembly...

Afterhacking open the Energizer battery use one of the AAAA batteries you will find as the power source. I made a small piece of wire and wrapped it tightly around the button end of the battery and secured it will hot glue. Then solder the other end of the wire to the remaining contact on the reed switch. Slip a piece of straw over the reed switch and the pager motor. Insert the completed assembly into the brass tube and solder the remaining wire to the very edge of the tube. That's the ground contact. Test the pager motor by holding a magnet near the reed switch. The motor should spin/vibrate.

Step 5: Prepare the Sharpie...

Pull the Sharpie apart. I used vice grips but would not suggest that because they leave a mark on the end of the Sharpie. All you really need is a pair of pliers and if you wrap a cloth around the end and just grab it with the pliers and move side-to-side, the top should come loose. Discard the ink reservoir. Pull out the ink tip and cut it back to about 1/4".

Step 6: Final Steps...

Drill out the top with the 11/32" drill bit. I had to really work the top to get it all to fit right. After inserting the completed assembly into the Sharpie, re-inserting the ink tip in the top and putting the Sharpie back together, your Telekinetic Pen is ready to go! I pulled open small lock washer and wrapped it around my ring and then stuck the magnet to that. I guess you could super-glue one to your palm as well. Practice the proper technique of waving your hand over the Sharpie to get it to vibrate and dance. I hope you enjoyed this Instructbale from MAKE Magazine!

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    106 Discussions


    11 years ago on Introduction

    Anyone considering this might like to check out this site:

    If you scroll about 2/3 of the way down, they are selling neodymium magnet rings, people won't suspect you're carrying a magnet.
    (Note: not affiliated in any way with the site, just thought it was a good idea)

    7 replies

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    You wouldn't want to wear that ring near a Hard Drive, or any electronic equipment for that matter.


    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    Nah, it won't do anything, I put a stack of 10 1 inch by 1/4 inch thick N40 neodymium magnets on a hard drive and let it run overnight, next morning, all the data was there. Tried moving it around and still nothing. If you want to erase a hard drive you really need a deqausing field. Maybe one of those 5 pound monsters from united nuclear would do something but it would probably just burn up the motor from CEMF in the disc. before it did anything to the data.


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Had to repair a computer once where the girl had on a magnetic bracelet while working on her laptop. needless to say, she didn't "erase" anything but the head crash she caused when the magnet pulled and stuck to it really did a number on it.
    she didn't feel or hear a thing.. it just started clicking on her. Wasn't until I opened it and said, "WTH did you do, wave a magnet over it?" that she mentioned her bracelet.


    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    I'm fairly sure most hard drives wouldn't care (the magnetic field strength drops proportionally to the square of distance from the magnet and since hard drives also have a fairly solid metal shell, erasing them with permanent magnets isn't as easy as you might think). Definitely will want to stay away from any CRT screens you still have around though, as well as the magnetic stripes on your credit cards. The actual biggest concern I'd have with one of these is that it makes friends with some large immovable object (with your hand still attached) and shatters into a bunch of small sharp pieces. NIB magnets have a tendency to do that.


    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    You do have to be careful with ipod classics and other mobile HDD devices, as they lack such a shell.


    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    About CRT screens + magnets, I remember one day, in first grade, when we were all given permanent magnets and were told to go around the room finding magnetic things. One of my friends, not knowing any better, stuck a permanent magnet on the CRT screen of an iMac (you, know, the old ones that were made of colored plastic and didn't have a floppy drive?). He said, "Look! The computer is magnetic!" The screen had a big, rectangular dot in it from that point on. I can't remember whether it was fixed or replaced, but that was my first lesson about magnets and computers.


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    Excellent suggestion! Thanks. I did not know they existed. Would have made this a better project.


    7 years ago on Introduction

    i bought a reed switch but it only closes when a magnet is actually touching it, so it didnt work