Fool Friends with this Light Bulb Magic Trick
Did you want to be a magician or maybe one of the X-men when you were a kid? Did your friends tell you it was a crazy dream? With April Fool’s Day fast approaching, learn how to trick the non-believers into believing you’re magical (or a mutant) by lighting a bulb in your hand in just five steps.
Want you’ll need:
- Two old incandescent light bulbs
- Two CR2032 cell batteries
- One LED diode
- Three 2-3 inch wires
- A couple zip ties
- Soldering iron
- X-acto knife
- Work gloves
- Needle nose pliers
- Hot glue gun
- A metal ring (like a wedding band)
Step 1: Salvage a base. While wearing work gloves, carefully work the base of one light bulb back and forth until it’s loose enough to separate from the glass. Ideally the pieces will separate cleanly, but it is possible the glass will break, so do this over a smooth surface you can easily wipe down. You might get lucky enough that it’ll come out cleanly, but usually you’ll need to remove the old glue from inside the socket.
Step 2: Salvage a bulb. Use your X-acto knife to chip away at the top of the other bulb’s base, just enough to grab with the needle nose pliers. Then use the pliers to peel away the base until it comes off and remove the light bulb’s guts from inside the glass. This method has a much higher chance of resulting in an intact glass bulb, but it does destroy the base, which is why you need two bulbs.
Step 3: Wire the inside. Start by stacking and zip tying the batteries together with the positive side of one battery touching the negative side of the other battery. Solder one wire to the edge of the base and one to the center of the inside of the base. Note that there should already be some solder you can reuse on the base. Then solder one wire to each lead of the LED diode, note that the positive lead on the LED is the longer one. Attach the positive lead wire (the one that was attached to the longer LED lead) to the positive side of your battery pack by sliding the wire under the zip tie and folding it back over. Repeat with the negative side.
Step 4: Reassemble the bulb. Place the battery pack in the base and the LED in the neck of the bulb. Use your hot glue gun to seal the base and bulb together.
Step 5: Make some magic. To light your new magic bulb, put on a ring with a wide metal band on your middle or ring finger of your “magic” hand. Hold the bulb so the ring touches the base between the side and bottom. When you hand it over to an audience member to inspect, it’ll go out. Like magic! Just make sure you NEVER use this magic light bulb in a normal light socket. Bad things will happen.
Ready to fool your friends? Share your April Fool’s Day pranks in the comments section below and be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn or Pinterest for more tricks, tips, and how-to’s.