How To Make A Flashlight

Ever wonder how to make a flashlight? You may be surprised how easily one can be constructed and what types of materials can be used to construct it. Here is a step by step procedure outlining how to make a flashlight. To get started you will need the following items:

  • Cardboard paper towel tube
  • Dixie cup (select the small kind so that the small end will fit into the paper towel tube)
  • 2 brass thumb tacks
  • 1 paper clip
  • A small piece of aluminum foil
  • Cardboard (you can use the back of a notebook)
  • 3-volt flashlight bulb
  • 2 D-batteries
  • 6" piece of 22 AWG stranded wire
  • Tape

 Let's start building a flashlight.

  1. To make a flashlight, first fashion the cardboard parts. Cut the paper towel tube to 4". Then cut a strip of cardboard 1/2" wide by 2" long and mark the exact center of it before making a hole the right size to fit the 3-volt flashlight bulb snugly into. Line the inside of the dixie cup with aluminum foil and cut a hole in the bottom of the dixie cup the right size for the bulb to slip through.
  2. The next step in making a flashlight is wiring. Cut the 6" piece of 22 AWG wire in half. Strip the insulation away from the ends of the wire and attach each piece to a thumb tack. Attach a paperclip to one of the thumb tacks as well then push both of the thumb tacks through the cardboard tub about an inch a part. The paper clip should be long enough that you can swing it to touch the other brass thumb tack. You may have to bend the brass tacks over inside the tube. This is your switch.
  3. Now the flashlight needs a power source. Tape the D-batteries together so that the positive and negative ends of the batteries are together then place them in the cardboard tube.
  4. Next we need to attach the light bulb to the flashlight. Push the free end of one of the wires through the hole in the cardboard strip and wrap it around the 3-volt flashlight bulb. Press the bulb back into the hole. Then tape the strip to the positive end of the batteries you taped together in step 3 so that the rear (annode) of the 3-volt flashlight bulb is pressed against the positive terminal of the battery.
  5. Finish attaching the wires to the batteries of your flashlight. Tape the free end of the remaining wire to the negative (cathode) end of the batteries. And finally place the dixie cup over the 3-volt flashlight bulb to act as a reflector. Secure it with tape.

To operate the flashlight, simply slide the paperclip to make contact between the two brass tacks. The light should come on. And that is how you make a flashlight.

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