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Free Magnetic Stirrer: Stirred not Shaken

Created by Liza 2010-05-27 09:59:53
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The magnetic stirrer is an essential equipment used in many chemical experiments. Basically it stirs a solution by rotating a magnet. It uses a stir bar, here referred to as metal rod, this is immersed into the solution, and it rotates by the movement of a magnet below.


Here is how to get one for free by building it on your own with elements you can find in your home.


What you need

A small engine, (such as the small fans inside any computer), a battery (or source of energy to power the small engine or fan), a magnet (such as those inside speakers) , a box (to hold the system), a jar (transparent), a plexiglass lid for the box (can be the cover of a CD) and a rod of metal (this will be your stirring bar).


Safety Note: This experiment is not suited for children without adult supervision. Remember, your safety should be your priority, and you should always work in a safe environment. For this experiment, make sure you are working in a dry environment. Keep in mind you will be using batteries and solutions. The copper wires, batteries or fan should not be exposed to water. Never use high energy sources, NEVER USE 220 volts from your home. Follow the instructions you should be fine.

Step one: Glue the magnet on top of the fan (or engine), so when it turns, the magnet should turn as well.


Step two: Connect the cables of the fan (or engine) to the source of energy (9 v battery, USB, or other). Use a switch to keep it off. If you have no switch, leave the positive end disconnected. Note: Copper wires should be insulated in all parts except the connections.


Step three: Place your fan (or engine), cables and battery inside the wooden box. If you can, make holes to the box on the sides, so the engine of the fan will not heat up. Do this before inserting the fan into the box. If you have a switch to turn on and off the fan, leave it outside the box. If you don’t have a switch insert the fan and cables but leave the battery outside the box to later connect the fan (this will be your on and off switch).


Step four: Use plexiglass as a lid to cover the box. You can use a CD cover, that is plexiglass. You can make some holes to the lid. However, the idea of motion in the stir is not the movement of the engine or fan but the movement of the magnet.


Step five: Put the jar on top of the box. Put the metal rod inside the jar, gently. Put the solution inside. Always remember that you are working with energy source off electricity.


Step six: Turn the switch of the fan on, if no switch connect the positive end of the battery to the engine. The magnet should rotate, attracting the metal rod and rotating both, causing a stir in the solution. The stir will appear as small the shape of a small hurricane inside the jar.

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