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Shocking pen...is this dangerous?

Discussion in 'Electronic Design' started by P!erCer, Aug 15, 2003.

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  1. P!erCer

    P!erCer Guest

    I bought a shocking pen from a booth at a fair. When it broke I took
    it apart and found something like this:

    / <- This is an internal reed switch, normally ON, turned
    OFF by I1
    +------/ ---+
    | | / <- This is a momentary on connected to the pen
    cap
    ---- +-----/ ----+
    -- |
    ---- +--UUUUUUUU---+
    -- | I1
    | |
    +------------+-------This wire just connects to the main shaft of the
    pen.

    The battery is 1.5 volts.

    I modified a 12v relay to shock people in the same way, using a 9v
    battery, but is there any potential danger from the high voltage spike
    I1 sends through your hand as its field collapses? From what I
    understand it should be of very low amperage and not enough to hurt a
    normal person even if through some acrobatic stunt they push the cap
    with one hand and hold the pen with the other, sending the voltage
    across their chest, but I have no way of testing.

    Thanks for your time,
    P!erCer
    P!erCer
     
  2. Well, it's only one single heartbeat that seperates the living
    from the dead.

    BTW, I don't like this kind of practical jokes.
     
  3. Don't stick it up your nose.
     
  4. Active8

    Active8 Guest

    try rats that smoke cigarettes and have a history of heart disease, OP.
    run em on the squirrel cage (or throw salt water on 'em) a while to get
    'em good and sweaty so they at least die fast. then again, they might
    NOT die and you'll have hurt their little rat feet.

    now before anyone chimes in about cruelty to animals, i'm just kidding
    and if you've ever used poison on a rodent then don't even speak. i saw
    a poisoned mouse recently and i'd rather not die that way. shaking,
    spasms, one eye shut, and slow death. why was the mouse poisoned? the
    person with the mouse problem is afraid to touch a trap with a mouse in
    it. great. the damn thing crawls into an inaccesible location and stinks
    to high heaven OR i'm asked to deal with it if it's laying out in plain
    view. grrr...

    i wasn't sure it was poisoned at first. it may have gone in the house
    after an ordeal with a cat (the shut eye.) after giving it water, trying
    to get it to walk, and watching it a while i knew it was the poison.
    besides, cats are pretty good at keeping their toys from getting lost.
    good point, Norm. i bought my first 12v 1A transformer when i was 12 and
    one day discovered that by holding the power cord prongs on a 9V batt
    with my index and middle fingers and then disconnecting the batt, i got
    a real nice zap - same principle. luckily i fall into the normal group
    and was able to repeat the test without failure.

    br,
    mike
     
  5. <snip>

    It is my not-so-humble opinion, speaking from 24+ years of
    electronics experience, that anything which uses ANY form of electric
    shock as a prank or practical joke should be outlawed.

    There are far safer ways to generate amusement. Whoopee cushions,
    superballs, etc. Stick to them.
     
  6. Active8

    Active8 Guest

    if you were the editor of whatever incarnation of Popular Electronics it
    was that ran the acticle on the PCB shocker many moons ago, it would
    have been spiked.

    even if the shock doesn't hurt you, a fast withdrawal of the hand is
    enough to slam our elbow into the wall or something worse.
    twiddle your thumbs, put a CD in YOUR uWave, ...
    plastic fecal matter...

    look at how much trouble people caused with those cheap laser pointers.

    br,
    mike
     
  7. John Fields

    John Fields Guest

    ---
    You're a fucking idiot if you can't see that inficting _anything_ on
    _anyone_ without their permission is taking away _their_ freedom.

    Regardless of any statistics you may come up with, the fact remains that
    if someone is involuntarily subjected to an electric shock, the person
    causing the shock should not have. Period. End of story.
     
  8. John Fields

    John Fields Guest

     
  9. Ian Stirling

    Ian Stirling Guest

    Or the nose of anybody significantly bigger than you...
     
  10. DesignElect

    DesignElect Guest

    Aside from the utter stupidity of unnecessarily subjecting someone to
    It might be a bit silly to do it, but I wonder if it really is dangerous.

    Looking for info on the web, I've found one explanation which says that from
    6mA to 200mA across the heart is enough to kill. That seems a fair bit of
    current to get straight across the heart. Does anyone know how much current
    normally flows from a shock pen when you grab it with a sweaty hand?

    When I was a small boy, an older boy in our street had a metal bowl filled with
    water connected to the mains through (I imagine/hope) a transformer. He would
    put money in the bottom and challenge us to retrieve the money from the water
    at varying levels pain. If you very slowly moved your hand through the water,
    you could get the money without hurting too much. But if you swiped at it, it
    hurt a lot. It never killed any of us and it was a lot more powerful than any
    shock pen type thing I've ever felt. And maybe it made me a bit more aware of,
    and respectful towards, electricity from an early age.


    Pete
     
  11. John Fields

    John Fields Guest

     
  12. N. Thornton

    N. Thornton Guest

    Yup! When you physically attack someone you lay yourself right open to
    comeback. And the comeback isnt always proportional to the cause.


    Here our mains voltage is high enough that you dont need a
    transformer. But I dont recommend it, people die from shocks at the
    rate of about 50 a year here (UK). Not sure I'd want to be a part of
    that.

    Regards, NT
     
  13. [snip]
    The latest fad in rat and mouse control is the sticky trap. The
    critter gets stuck and screams itself to death, making everyone in the
    vicinity distressed at the sound. I think the best trap is the simple
    SNAP! of the good old fashioned Victor mouse or rat trap. It's
    quickly effective.

    [snip]


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  14. Foobar

    Foobar Guest

    Think what would happen if someone (like me) who's prone to cardiac
    I think the question should be: How much insurance do *YOU* have?
     
  15. Even beter is one of those ones which put the rodent in a little box, so you
    can take it outside and release it.

    Andrew Howard


     
  16. Si Ballenger

    Si Ballenger Guest

    I've used the below one for catch & release.

    http://www.smithsax.btinternet.co.uk/products.htm
     
  17. Active8

    Active8 Guest

    i know, i wouldn't want to be stuck to one. i like the positive sound of
    a standard Victor. flush the critter down the toilet, wash the trap (or
    don't - i don't think the smell of their cousins blood is enough to keep
    'em away from that tempting PB or bacon fat)

    and you never have to worry about that poison getting into something
    where it doesn't belong.

    mike
     
  18. Active8

    Active8 Guest

    i'll keep my eyes open for one or just rig one up. i like that idea, and
    i think my friends with snakes will like it also.

    i found a black snake skin in a house i lived in once. no mice! just
    something that sounded like an elephant in the drop ceiling at night for
    a short time. maybe the snake got it.

    mike
     
  19. Daniel Haude

    Daniel Haude Guest

    On Sun, 17 Aug 2003 02:40:52 GMT,
    We used to use one like that. My little sister, however, insisted that the
    mice were just tossed out of the pantry window instead of taking them away
    a larger distance because how would they "find their way back home"
    otherwise? The critters probably enjoyed this rigmarole for while until
    they decided to move out after couple of weeks.

    --Daniel
     
  20. onestone

    onestone Guest

    Although this version is meant as a joke, there is a serious side to
    this. Many moons ago I built a similar system as a training aid for
    troops going to Northern Ireland. Basically to teach them not to touch
    anything they don't know the source of. Pens were a favourite booby trap
    item at the time, although there were torches, pens, batteries, wallets,
    all sorts of versions. Better a mild sting than a more permanent reminder.
     
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