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Make it Real: Captain America Electromagnet Shield

You know that electromagnet Captain America uses in Age of Ultron to retract his shield? Yeah, we made that! And it actually works with our replica Captain America shield.

As soon as I saw Age of Ultron, I knew I had to make this! Now, with the release of Civil War, I decided I had waited long enough.

Not being an actual superhero, my arm needs padding, lots and lots of padding. So we started with a pair shin / knee pads that happen to fit my arm pretty well, provide good padding, and good structure to mount to. Next, we welded up a frame around the bracer with a handle to hold onto. A good strong handle is essential for holding the 30lbs of magnets and shield. The handle is also a good place for the button so we cut out a pocket and dropped in a 50A momentary push button. A little bit of hockey tape and was good to go.

It was then time for the magnets. We first experimented with the primary coil of a microwave transformer and these worked pretty well. Good strength but a lot of current and a lot of heat which is a problem for wearable tech. Magnetic force if linearly proportional to both the number of coils and current. Therefore by increasing the number of coils, we can reduce the current and heat while maintaining the same magnetic force. Instead of winding thousands of coils ourselves, we bought some industrial electromagnets from Amazon.  These things are powerful! At just 12v and 1.5A they will lift over 260 lbs. That means by running them at 72V, each magnet will pull close to 1600lbs… for a short period of time before they overheat and burn out. I love safety factors. Conveniently, they also come with an m8 threaded hole on the back so we bolted them right onto the arm bracer.  For the purpose of expedience, we ignored the fact that electromagnets are large inductors will probably destroy our 50A power button. It’s ok. They are cheap.

We are powering this monster with 3 lithium polymer battery packs from hobby king. Lithium batteries are awesome. Each of these batteries can pump out up to 175A at 24V.

Captain America is nothing without his shield… Well, nothing more than a super soldier. Luckily, MachinaProps makes solid aluminum replica shields. These things are the real deal. Check out how they make them below.

We also got a replica Captain American leather jacket from SleekHides on Amazon. This is a motorcycle jacket with removable armor. This is important because we mounted magnets in the back so we can holster the shield. Wicked!

The projects not quite done yet — stay tuned (and better yet, subscribe to our YouTube channel).

Update:

The test video is finally out and I can honestly say this is the hardest I have ever worked on a video. Check it out!

 

27 responses to “Make it Real: Captain America Electromagnet Shield”

  1. […] gewacht.” Het was niet bepaald een gemakkelijke klus, legt hij uit in dit filmpje en zijn blog op The Hacksmith. Het kostte veel tijd om ervoor te zorgen dat het schild (van 14 kilo, inclusief […]

  2. […] not exactly a simple task. As its creator James explains, a lot of work was needed to ensure the 30-pound shield (magnets and batteries too), could be held […]

  3. […] your arm after your movie theater lobby fight scene? James Hobson went the extra mile to create an electromagnetic shield that bounces back to attach to the wearer’s arm, just the way Steve Rogers’ shield does in those epic Captain […]

  4. […] your arm after your movie theater lobby fight scene? James Hobson went the extra mile to create an electromagnetic shield that bounces back to attach to the wearer’s arm, just the way Steve Rogers’ shield does in those epic Captain […]

  5. […] following your movie theater foyer battle scene? James Hobson went the additional mile to make an electromagnetic protect that bounces back again to connect to the wearer’s arm, just the way Steve Rogers’ shield does in people epic Captain […]

  6. […] dall’emozione di Captain America: Civil War, i ragazzi di The Hacksmith hanno realizzato una replica dello scudo di Cap che funziona tramite elettromagneti, che riesce a […]

  7. Kayla says:

    It’s really awesome of you to create this!!! I loved your other videos but this one is my favorite creation by far. I think it would be fun for my family and I who are all fans of Marvel to make this together this summer. Is there any way you could post more detailed instructions on the wiring of the magnets and the coils to the battery? I would really appreciate it… Thanks!!

    • Ian Hillier says:

      The electromagnets are wired directly to the battery with a button in series.
      Everything else is custom built and I do not have instructions.
      Good luck and happy hacking.

  8. Patel Yash says:

    Still I dont understand where have you used the microwave “TRANSFORMER”.
    Those Magnets are too costly, Is there something else we can use???
    I dont want to make CAPTAIN AMERICA shields and all
    Im just interested abt the magnets, Coz I need them for my college project.
    Please help me !

    • Ian Hillier says:

      You can make electromagnets out of microwave transformers. We were going to do that but ended up using commercial electromagnets instead. There are no transformers on our final design.
      Google will tell you how to make an electromagnet out of a microwave transformer.

  9. Brandon Alcocer says:

    Material is made the shield of Captain America i want

  10. […] The Marvel hero can hurl it at a baddie and then summon it back to his arm. Now, YouTuber the Hacksmith can […]

  11. […] shield. The Marvel hero can hurl it at a baddie and then summon it back to his arm. Now, YouTuber the Hacksmith can […]

  12. […] shield. The Marvel hero can hurl it at a baddie and then summon it back to his arm. Now, YouTuber the Hacksmith can […]

  13. Gabrielle Fortier says:

    I would like to now hom much would it cost if I would like tu purchase it! Thank you

  14. […] The Marvel hero can hurl it at a baddie and then summon it back to his arm. Now, YouTuber the Hacksmith can […]

  15. […] shield. The Marvel hero can hurl it at a baddie and then summon it back to his arm. Now, YouTuber the Hacksmith can […]

  16. Danielle says:

    Can you put up instructions for the arm brace you made for the magnets?

  17. Gage piller says:

    What would be the advantages of two magnets over one? I’m looking into building this same thing. With your videos as guides. But looking to save money whenever possible.

  18. Paul says:

    Hi! I like your captain american shield so i want to buy that how much is it?

  19. […] Tony Stark-contructed device, also seen in Captain America: Civil War, prompted a DIYer called The Hacksmith to make a Cap shield of his […]

  20. Raj Deshpande says:

    The question I have is how you were able to pump all the energy from the battery? Was it because of the switch or what? I am trying to make a similar circuit to the one shown in the video.

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