Quest : Metal-ion : Ideas : Building your own batteries with household items

I built a battery with things I had lying around at home

Project Lab

Florian Lienert

Date: 07 July 2020 04:06

(for images see my Reddit post here)

You can built your own battery at home pretty easily with which you can then perform some experiments.

You need:

-a pair of scissors,

-a couple of pennies,

-aluminum foil


-vinegar and/or salt & water (or some other kind of electrolyte)


and then to test the battery you need some kind of wires and a LED or something similar


  1. Fold the aluminum foil over a couple of times until it's just small enough to fit a penny on it, then cut out a circle the size of a penny, so that you have multiple aluminum foil circles.
  2. Do the same with the paper/cartboard! So, fold multiple times, then cut out a penny-sized circle. You should now have multiple paper cutouts.
  3. Fill a small bowl with vinegar and clean the pennies in it.
  4. Dip the paper in either the vinegar or heavily salted water.
  5. Now we're ready to assemble! Stack the items on top of each other in the following order: Penny - Paper - Aluminum Foil - Penny - Paper - Aluminum Foil...
  6. Now attach your cables with sellotape to the top and bottom of your battery. The LED should light up!

You are now ready to experiment with it: Try different temperatures, materials, more or less layers, ...

Let me know if you tried building one yourself and how it went!

Edited: 07 July 2020 04:10

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