How Do You Permanently Magnetize Metal?

Casey Fleser/CC-BY 2.0

Permanently magnetize metal using a simple circuit touch process that includes rubbing a magnet several times on a piece of metal. It only takes a few minutes. You need four pieces of iron or steel bars, soft iron, and a horseshoe magnet or two bar magnets.

  1. Lay the bars in a circuit.

    Place the four pieces of iron or steel on a flat surface. Arrange them in a circuit pattern. Place one bar horizontally. At each end of the horizontal bar, place a vertical bar. At the lower ends of the vertical bar, close the circuit with another horizontal bar. The bars should form a square. Place a piece of soft iron at the right side of the circuit

  2. Move the horseshoe magnet over the bars

    Hold a horseshoe magnet over the circuit. The ends of the magnet should correspond to the two horizontal bars. Touch the magnet ends to the two bars at the left sides. Move the magnet to the right. At the end, slide the magnet off the bars onto the soft iron. You may substitute the horseshoe magnet with two bar magnets.

  3. Repeat the process

    Repeat this process several times, always moving the magnet in the same direction. Do not move the magnet backward and forward.