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Old 03-16-2017, 01:39 PM
 
Location: SC
5,066 posts, read 2,972,914 times
Reputation: 7136

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I'm working on my car, and need to thread a nut that is hard to see and worst, hard to reach. If I drop it, it will be difficult to find and fish out.

So, determining that I need a magnetic socket, I decided to magnetize a 3" socket extension.

I went up into the house, grabbed a coil of about 16 gauge wire, wrapped it around the extension two+ times, and attached the stripped leads to a 14.4 volt battery I have for my tools.

I could only hold the leads to the battery for about 15 seconds as it got very hot fast. It took about 15 minutes for the extension to cool off enough to handle, but it now has a weak magnetic field. I'd like it to be stronger.

In order to achieve this, I guess I need to get a lower voltage battery (guessing about 3-5 volts) to be able to hold the leads without burning myself and being able to hold the coil to the batter longer.

At this point I am guestimating. Is there a rule of thumb or table that will work out the gauge, number of coils, diameter of the target rod, and voltage needed?

Last edited by blktoptrvl; 03-16-2017 at 01:59 PM..
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Old 03-16-2017, 05:41 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
14,790 posts, read 43,769,953 times
Reputation: 21103
Try adding a resistance in the circuit (lamp, whatever) to lower the current to a manageable level, heat the extension slightly, place it in the field and tap it repeatedly with a hammer as it cools. The mix of metals will partly determine how much you can magnetize it. Warming and tapping encourages the atoms to re-align. The effect again will be slight, but should help.
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Old 03-16-2017, 06:15 PM
 
Location: SC
5,066 posts, read 2,972,914 times
Reputation: 7136
Quote:
Originally Posted by harry chickpea View Post
Try adding a resistance in the circuit (lamp, whatever) to lower the current to a manageable level, heat the extension slightly, place it in the field and tap it repeatedly with a hammer as it cools. The mix of metals will partly determine how much you can magnetize it. Warming and tapping encourages the atoms to re-align. The effect again will be slight, but should help.
Yes, I read about the tapping... And thanks for the lamp suggestion, great idea.
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Old 03-17-2017, 09:42 AM
 
23,249 posts, read 33,174,700 times
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LOL!!

Sears.com

Sears.com
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Old 03-17-2017, 12:53 PM
 
Location: Not far from Fairbanks, AK
15,157 posts, read 23,538,385 times
Reputation: 10566
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tek_Freek View Post
That's an easy way.


This works for me: I saved numerous of the very small and extremely strong magnets that the old Sonicare electric toothbrush heads had inside. When it was time to replace the brush heads, I always removed the two magnets and put them away. All I do is to glue one of the magnets to the end of the extension using RTV silicone. The magnets are small enough not to interfere with the socket's connection to the extension.
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Old 03-17-2017, 02:00 PM
 
32,287 posts, read 31,626,686 times
Reputation: 12624
Use an electric glue gun. Glue the nut or bolt right to the wrench or socket.It's easily broken once it's threaded.
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