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Magnetic probes- Need a strong one..

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  • Magnetic probes- Need a strong one..

    Any recomendations on a magnetic probe (to pick up ferrous items in hard to reach places) that has a magnet on the end strong enough to pick up 2+ pounds ? I could epoxy a stronger magnet to the one I have already I suppose...but prefer to just buy another...ideally less than 1/2 inch diameter magnet.

  • #2
    Neodymium magnets are very cheap on ebay and even a very small one will lift 3+ pounds. Way stronger than most any store bought telescopic magnet "probe" (or whatever they are called).
    Master Floor Sweeper


    • #3
      I have some rare earth magnets that are 3/8 dia.x1/4 thick that lift almost 4 pounds.You can buy them by the bag (10/15)for $10 or so.Google rare earth magnets,you'll find a bunch of them.

      They got bigger ones that raise blood blisters too....


      • #4
        check these out


        • #5
          Your local fastener shops and auto parts places can set you up. They have some dandys with lots of pull. Problem with strong magnets is extending them past iron masses. It's hard to feed them to the target. Sliding them down a piece of plastic or non ferrous pipe works pretty well if you have to get there.

          Also if you have enough room try an electric brake puck and a battery charger.


          • #6
            well ,I have to ask- what have you dropped and what have you dropped it in?

            I have visions of a FP4 with a 2 pound hammer inits gearbox....... tell me it aint true.............................................. ..


            • #7

              I went through harbor freight looking for the strongest magnet..

              It turned out to be one of them teloscopic pick up toos..

              My pattern follower? I still have not found a magnet I wanted to put onto it.. Seems you put the knurled shaft through it and it sticks to a metal template...

              The gantry is only a bit off anyways.

              NOW, setups.. a gas tank holder while painting.. fender holders.. them two square magnets on flatbar they sell work well... NOW, I want to be able to UP/down and rotate while I am painting.. still drawing.. a foot brake.. I watch the pro's paint with it dangling-swinging in the breeze on a wire.. gee them guys are good. I need all the help I can get.
              Excuse me, I farted.


              • #8
                I have one of outstanding design made by Craftsman. It is a long flexible gooseneck that holds its shape when bent. The magnet (very strong) sits inside a tube so you can move it past ferrous objects without any 'sticking' problems. When you start fishing for the lost object, just press a button on the end of the handle and the magnet protrudes. It really works great.
                Problem is, apparently Sears had discontinued the device - I did a search and am unable to find anything similar.
                Location: North Central Texas


                • #9
                  D. Thomas,

                  I can't recommend any but for what it's worth Snap-On sells a magnetic Pick-Up tool that that is claimed to lift 3 1/2 lbs. It is 21 inches long.... $14.70. Item No PT40A. The catalog doesn't mention the magnet diameter.


                  At one time they sold an Electromagnetic Pick-up tool that operated on three AA batteries... but I can't find it on their site. If interested, you might ask them about that...the part number is/was EMPT20P (Black handle pick-up tool). They offered handle choices in 6 "brilliant" colors.

                  Anyway, here are some others offered by Snap-On:


                  Yikes! Just noticed they sell one that they claim can lift 10 lbs. $15.70, Item No. UPT50A

                  Last edited by Mike Burdick; 01-06-2007, 05:04 PM.


                  • #10
                    I just bought some 1/2 x 1/2 that are supposed to lift 22 lbs.
                    Master Floor Sweeper


                    • #11
                      K&J Magnetics
                      An industrial supplier of rare earth magnets. Very good prices.


                      • #12
                        I've made a number of different magnetic pickup tools, but the one I use the most is the simplest. Just a 5/8" diameter 5/8" long neodymium rod magnet stuck into the end of a broomstick. There's enough wood surrounding the edges of the magnet that it only grabs from the end so it can easily pass by steel things on the way to its prey. It'll lift my heaviest Crescent wrench, file or pretty much any other tool I drop. It's easy to stick under the lathe carriage to fetch out a handful of swarf.

                        Dale Young is a great source for magnets. An enthusiastic, affable guy with a stellar eBay rating, he runs a business called Rattlesnake Magnets:



                        Frank Ford
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                        Frank Ford


                        • #13
                          Magnetic probes- Need a strong one...


                          Just trying to smart off, but my flip answer is too short!
                          Today I will gladly share my experience and advice, for there no sweeter words than "I told you so."


                          • #14
                            I made one from a section of SS tubing and a round Neo magnet.5/8" OD tube and magnet(ball shape),I just pressed the ball into the end of the tube about 1/8" past the balls center streching the tube in the process.The press fit holds the ball better than any glue and the Neo magnet is good for about 6lbs.The SS tube shields anything from sticking to the sides which helps guiding the thing in.Hope that helps.
                            I just need one more tool,just one!