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Make a Magnet

Magnets are unique - but with this experiment you can actually transform an ordinary object into a magnet!

For this magnet experiment, you'll need:

One or more magnets. If you need to purchase one that will work with this magnet experiment, try Dowling #731012
A ferrous metal object, such as a nail, a paper clip or a pair of scissors

How This Magnet Experiment Works:

Hold the metal object to be magnetized between two of your fingers. Rub the magnet across the surface of the metal in one direction only, lifting the magnet at the end of each pass (do not use a back and forth motion.) Repeat this procedure at least 50 times. Then you can test your new magnet by trying to pick up a non-magnetized metal object such as a paperclip. Congratulations, you have just made a temporary magnet!

Why This Magnet Experiment Works:

When you rub the metal object with a magnet, the iron particles are rearranged into straight, parallel lines. This process is called polarizing. When iron, nickel or cobalt is polarized, it becomes a permanent or temporary magnet.