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Magnetic Motor

Make a magnet swing, using an invisible force!

For this magnet experiment, you’ll need:

How This Magnet Experiment Works

Run the string through the center of one of the ring magnets. Use a simple knot or piece of tape at the end of the string to keep the ring magnet from falling off. When you hold the ring magnet in the air with the string, it should be flat like a tire lying on its side. Place a second magnet on a table so that it repels the ring magnet tied to the string. Swing the magnet attached to the string about an inch above the magnet on the table.

Now, stop swinging the magnet and notice that it continues to move over the magnet on the table. You have a magnetic swing!

Next, place a second or third magnet on the table in the repel position and in the same line that the string magnet is swinging. Notice that the swing will act even more wildly! Now try taping the swinging magnet under a bookshelf or hanging it down from a chair, so that it is one inch above the other magnet(s). How long will it swing?

Why This Magnet Experiment Works

All magnets have a field of magnetic energy that surrounds the magnet and extends in all directions. The field created by the magnet(s) on the table keeps the magnet swinging by affecting it each time it passes overhead. The magnet will always stop eventually due to friction. All electrical motors and generators work on this repel concept.