Creative Magnetic Projects Perfect for Celebrating Mom

What mom doesn’t love a thoughtful, handmade gift? With Mother’s Day right around the corner, we have some quick and easy magnetic projects that mom will love receiving and displaying.

 

Sentiment Button Magnets

Picture of Sentiment Button Magnets one of three magnetic projects for Mother's Day

Making Sentiment Button Magnets is an easily customizable magnet project that kids can help with – from start to finish. First, gather all the needed supplies, including colored or patterned paper, clear glass flat pebbles, spray adhesive, and small round magnets. We used half-inch diameter ceramic disc magnets, which are readily available at most craft or hardware stores.

What You Need 2

It takes just a few items to make this special magnet project for Mother’s Day.

 

Using a nickel as a template, cut the paper to fill the back of the pebble (small pictures would work great for this too). Add any sentiment at this point.  Then spray the flat side of the pebble with the adhesive and apply the paper design side down. Glue the magnet in the center of the paper and viola – you have a customized set of sentiment magnets!

 

Decorative Magnetic Frame

Moms love to display pictures of their kids and this small, decorative frame featuring a favorite picture makes a lovely gift. This project only requires leftover scraps of paper, ribbon and a small flower embMother's Day magnetic projects includes photo frames like this oneellishment. We used a neodymium disc magnet with adhesive to finish off this magnetic project.

 

First we printed the photo and trimmed it to size (this one is two inches square). Next, we matted it on card stock and added a contrasting boarder. Washi tape would also work great for this step. A simple brad holds the flower embellishment. The ribbon finishes off the frame and also hides the magnet, which was applied on the back left corner. Neodymium discs with adhesive are very strong and will easily hold through the fabric (allow 24 hours for full cure time).

 

 

Reusable Magnetic Photo Pockets

If you have more digital photos than you know what to do with, then reusable magnetic photo pockets are a quick, clean way to display those cherished pictures. Simply print the images you want Mothers Day Photo Pockets together 2to display and slide into the open side of the pocket. It’s a great way to display photos, keep them protected and easily exchange pictures when needed.

 

Available in three sizes (3.5” x 5”, 4” x 6” and 8.5” x 11”) magnetic photo pockets are also a great way to display the latest artwork by a young Picasso. It makes a clean finished look for gifts that kids love to give to Mom.

 

 

You can find a wide selection of ceramic and neodymium magnets suitable for these magnetic projects at most local hardware or craft stores. If you’re looking for assistance with the best type of magnet for your project, our magnetic products specialists are available to assist.

Benefits of Magnetic Sign Holders for Merchandising

Creating the right retail environment involves taking into account every detail, including sign holders. The range of sign holders for merchandising can be overwhelming, and selecting the right sign holding system to best communicate sales and branding messaging is important to your overall retail environment. Magnetic sign holders provide many benefits from complimenting the décor to ease of simple installation. Photo of magnetic sign holders in front of a mannequin.

By definition, magnetic sign holders, frame holders, round base magnets, and hooks are repositionable sign holding systems, which are easily moved within a retail setting and not permanently attached to shelving or fixtures.

While that alone may sound attractive, here’s a few more benefits magnetic repositionable sign holders provide retailers.

  • Quick Change – Magnetic sign holders are repositionable and can easily be moved to a variety of locations within the store. Reorganizing aisles or placing new floor sets is as easy as picking up a sign holder and placing it in the new location – no tools required. In the case of some magnetic adjustable sign holders, accommodating a taller or shorter location is as simple as pushing a lever.
  • No Special Staff – Unlike certain systems that require outside design firms to install or change out heavy or unwieldy graphics, or even repair damage to walls or fixtures, magnetic sign holders can be set up and changed by the store’s own staff. Even when using magnetic hooks to hang signs from the ceiling, extender tools can be used to keep employees safely on the floor while changing out graphics.
  • Fits many environments – Magnetic sign holders come in such a wide range of sizes, styles and types that they can seamlessly compliment almost any retail décor. Repositionable sign holders have the advantage of accommodating seasonal decorating changes and branding updates; making the task easier and quicker for employees.
  • Cost effective – Available at a relatively low cost per unit, magnetic sign holders can be used over and over again. Reposition them where needed for maximum impact in the store. Simply change out graphics to reflect current sales, holiday promotions or new branding, and continue to utilize the existing sign holders. There is no additional investment in hardware.

 

Our knowledgeable magnetic solutions specialists can help you choose the right type of repositionable magnetic sign holders or frame holders for your P.O.P. or merchandising application. With over 80 different P.O.P. magnets, there is sure to be an option for your retail setting. Contact us for samples and solutions!

Creative Uses for Craft Magnets to Inspire Your Project List

March is National Craft Month, so what better time to look at some great crafting projects using magnets. Crafters by nature are creative people who do amazing things with a range of media – magnets included. Here’s a roundup of some of the most interesting projects we’ve seen using craft magnets. From Pinterest to Etsy to your favorite DIY blog, there’s a range projects incorporating craft magnets that just may inspire you to get your craft on!

 

Magnetic Terrariums

Photo of small terrarium attached to metal surface with craft magnets.


Photo by Melissa Caughey

This may be the most unique use of a craft magnet we’ve seen out there. Create small terrariums using succulents, tiny rocks and a small container. Just attach a small magnet to the back to hold this tiny terrarium on your fridge. Or maybe that boring filing cabinet in your office needs some life? For an even smaller space, hollow out a wine cork and add the air plant. Affix the magnet to the back of the cork for instant greenery. In both cases ceramic craft magnets can easily be attached with glue or use neodymium discs with pre-applied adhesive.

Check out this site for the how-to: bit.ly/1UcqUBz

 

 

Magnetic Poster Frame Rails

Image of magnetic poster rail being closed on a poster.

Photo by Skillshare.com

If you have an aspiring young artist with lots new work to display or teens who love to change the look of their space, these easy to make magnetic poster frames rails provide and easy way to hang posters and art without tape or tacks. The supply list includes thin wood, magnets, glue and string or ribbon. It’s a project easily customizable for décor and scale of room; making the project as complex or simple as desired.

Skillshare.com shares a great video tutorial: skl.sh/1VkF83C

 

Magnetic Bookmarks

Image of bookmark with magnetic strip at the bottom.

Photo by Master Magnetics

For the readers in your life, this magnetic bookmark stays put and has the bonus of being easy to make. Use your favorite card stock cut and scored to length desired so it folds in half. Embellish  with washi tape, card stock, paper flowers, or other favorite items. These types of bookmarks lend themselves perfectly to magnetic tape or flexible magnetic squares or strips. Simply apply the craft magnet to the inside of the bookmark and let the magnet grip the book pages. If you are looking for a kid friendly craft, with a little preparation, this one is perfect.

Check out this link for a quick tutorial: bit.ly/22oYzhd

 

Magnetic Jewelry

Photo by LemonLeeDesign

Photo by LemonLeeDesign

DIYers and Etsy enthusiasts may have noticed a fun trend toward interchangeable pendants and charms. These can be made of nearly anything (bottle caps, resin, buttons, small stones) – as long as they are backed with a small magnet that secures it to the necklace or bracelet. We recommend using small, neodymium magnets to insure the pendant stays securely attached to the base.

Visit this artist’s store at Etsy for some great magnetic jewelry: etsy.me/1nVogD5

 

 

 

Magnetic Frames

Image of Magnetic photo frame displaying craft magnet projects and photos.

Photo by Master Magnetics

Display photos, store small frequently used items or showcase your favorite craft magnet project with beautiful and functional magnetic frames. These frames are easily made with a few simple items found in craft and hardware stores. Simply insert a piece of metal into a pre-made frame, replace the back and hang. If desired, the metal can be covered with craft paper or fabric to achieve look suitable to your décor. Once your frame is ready you’ll need some magnets to make it functional. Small, but powerful, neodymium magnets are a great choice for holding pictures and notes – and they look sleek and clean. Or neodymium discs with adhesive are a great choice for making your own posting magnets.

Check out this link for tips on how to make: bit.ly/1SZ6qfr

 

Do you have a favorite craft with magnets? We’d love to see it! You can find a wide selection of ceramic and neodymium magnets suitable for crafting at most local hardware or craft stores. If you’re looking for assistance with the best type of magnet for your project, our magnetic products specialists are available to assist.

Printing Direct to Magnet: Achieving Quality Results

Printing direct to magnet is a cost effective method of creating high impact vehicle graphics, P.O.P. displays, calendars and other ad specialty items, portraits, decorative magnets, message boards, photos, way finding signs, temporary signage, and more. Achieving quality results from your printer and magnetic sheeting is essential for the success of every project.

 

Printing direct to magnet with the HP Latex 3000.

Printing direct to magnet with quality results doesn’t take an advanced degree, just a little extra time during setup. PrintMagnetVinyl on HP Latex 3000, HP certified.

Magnetic sheeting is considered a semi-rigid substrate, and, like all semi-rigid substrates, takes a little know-how to produce the best quality product. Here are some tips for printing direct to magnet.

 

  1. Choose the right top coat. Selecting the type of magnetic sheeting is critical, as different inks react differently with different coatings. PrintMagnetVinyl™ is a vinyl topcoat that is designed to work with solvent, eco-solvent, UV, and latex printers. For aqueous-based ink printers, PrintMagnet™ a magnetic sheeting with a paper topcoat, is an ideal match.
  2. Choose the correct thickness. For roll-fed wide format printers, thinner magnet can be advantageous as the weight of the magnet pulling through the machine can get quite heavy. Many printers prefer staying below 30-mil for this type of printer and have the best success with 20-mil. Sheet fed or flatbed printers can handle slightly thicker magnet. Be sure to check your owner’s manual for the recommended maximum thickness to ensure that the printer can handle the thickness of the magnet for the required application.
  3. Avoid strikes. As with other semi-rigid substrates, it’s important to steer clear of head strikes. In order to avoid damaging printheads, adjust the printer’s head height to the highest setting. Your owner’s manual provides information on the thickest material that it can handle in order to prevent head strikes.
  4. Make some space. As some printers may have metal platens, it is important to cover this piece to keep the magnet from sticking or catching during the printing process. A simple strip of heavy tape will do the trick, as will a thin piece a chip board. The point is to create a little air gap or space that prevents the magnet from attracting to the metal as it passes over.
  5. Raise it up. Elevating the roll of magnet sheeting in a way that gives a slightly straighter feed into the printer or lessens the steepness of the angle from the feed spindle to the printing area often provides better printing results. The goal is to prevent the magnetic sheeting from rippling, bunching up, or pulling too taught while feeding through the printing area. Check your owner’s manual for the maximum weight restrictions on the feed end of your printer.
  6. Slow and steady. Now isn’t the time to rush. Take the time to adjust the printer settings and be patient. Slowing your printer down and having patience is a necessity when printing on magnet. It is NOT a “set-up and walk away” type of printing job.

 

Mutoh ValueJet Printer w-PrintMagnetVinyl

Mutoh ValueJet Printer printing direct on PrintMagnetVinyl

On a final note, it’s always a good idea to contact your printer manufacturer for recommended printing profiles. And we always recommend using material tested for compatibility with your printer.

 

Our team of magnetic solutions specialists can help select the correct type of magnetic sheeting for your printer and application. Contact us for samples and solutions!

 

 

*While we want you to be successful, Master Magnetics is not responsible for damage caused by improper product use.

How To Select Magnetic Inventory Labels

Warehouse imageWith the unique challenges faced in business today, most warehouse and distribution centers face the added tasks of scalability, flexibility and easy navigation. Magnetic inventory labels, a relatively low-tech item, can provide a quick and re-positionable solution for shelving and storage areas.

As companies grow, reorganize, bring in new products, and discontinue old ones, magnetic inventory labeling makes sense as both the holders and the cards can be relocated with the product.

Master Magnetics offers four types of categories of magnetic inventory labels: Data card holders, magnetic strip with vinyl top coat, plain magnetic strip for pre-printed labels, and label holders

It’s important to fully understand the scope of the labeling project to determine which product will work best in your warehouse or storage application.

Some things to consider include:

  • Will you relabel shelving or items frequently? Seasonally?

    Magnetic Inventory Labels - Data Card Holder

    Magnetic Data Card Holder kit available in four standard widths.

If this is the case, then data card holders or labels holders make it easiest to simply relabel the magnet.

  • Are your labels generated by a bar code machine, RFID or by hand?

Pre-generated labels work best with any of the magnetic inventory label systems except for the vinyl topcoat. Be sure to take into account the size of label your machine generates and match it to the corresponding size magnetic label.

  • Is your warehouse racking or shelf storage smooth or is does it have a texture that might interfere with the gripping power of the magnet?

Any surface that isn’t smooth may need a thicker magnet to ensure the label stays put. Both the standard magnetic strip and the magnetic vinyl coated strip are available in different thickness.

  • Do aesthetics matter?

In areas that are customer-facing, label holders present a cleaner, more polished appearance.

Other considerations to take into account include determining if the labels should be pre-cut, score cut or uncut? Will  standard lengths and widths work in your environment, or do you require custom sizing?

Our seasoned team of magnetic solutions specialists can help you choose the right type of magnetic inventory label to help organize your space. Contact us for samples and solutions!

Tips for Taking Magnetic Vehicle Signs the Extra Mile

Image of magnetic vehicle sign on a work van.Magnetic vehicle signs are a popular way to give many businesses an inexpensive method of advertising. They can be printed locally by most sign shops, can be easily switched between vehicles and, with a little care, last several years.

In order to withstand highway speeds, most magnetic vehicle signs are printed on .030” magnetic sheeting. This ensures the magnet has enough sheer strength to stay on the car during driving. But selecting the right material is just part of the equation. Properly applying and maintaining your magnetic sign takes this investment the extra mile.

Application Tips
One of the appealing things about magnetic vehicle signs, is that there is no expert installation needed; just a few common sense tips.

  • Thoroughly clean and dry the vehicle surface where the magnet will be applied.
  • Ensure the magnetic sign is clean and free of any debris – especially if the sign has been stored and is being reapplied.
  • Select a smooth, flat, vertical, metal surface to apply the magnetic sign. Car doors are the most common spot for these signs.
  • The magnet being applied should be room temperature (at least 68 degrees F). Cold magnets become rigid, making them difficult to smoothly apply and strongly attach to the entire surface.
  • Beginning with a corner, gently place the magnet – letting it ‘grab’ the surface as it is placed.

Don’ts:
Ø Don’t drag the magnet across the surface of the car. If you need to reposition the sign, simply remove it by pulling back on a corner. This protects the finish of the vehicle.
Ø Don’t apply the magnet over rust, trim work, deep curves, or vinyl car wraps. These things create air gaps, which prevent the magnetic sheeting from fully gripping the metal. As a result, the sign is likely to fall off.
Ø Don’t trap water or grit between the magnet and vehicle surface. Not only does this create an air gap, but it can damage the finish of the vehicle.

 

Storage Tips
In between uses, take care to extend the life of your signs by showing your magnet a little love.

  • Keep magnetic vehicle signs, flat and dry.
  • Store where the temperature will not exceed 150 F (not in the trunk of a car).

Don’ts:
Ø Don’t store more than one sign with the magnet sides touching.
Ø Don’t store heavy items on the signs

 

Maintenance Tips
To prolong the life of the magnet and for the benefit of the vehicle, it’s ideal to periodically remove the sign and clean both the vehicle and magnet.

  • Magnetic signs can be cleaned with Windex or a gentle detergent. Dry thoroughly before reapplying.
  • Take care to avoid creasing or bending the corners of the sign during removal.
  • Ideally, magnetic signs should be removed prior to going through car washes to avoid damaging the graphics, trapping dirt and moisture between the magnet and car, or losing the magnetic sign altogether.

Looking for more tips on flexible magnetic sheeting or guidance on what material is right for your application? Our magnetic solutions specialists can help.

Science Fair Projects Featuring Magnets

Magnets make a fascinating topics for science fair projects,  as well as illustrating many basic principles of science and generating downright fun experiments.

As science fair projects begin in earnest, here is a collection of some of the best science fair projects or experiments involving magnets we’ve seen.

 

Illustration of the cross-sectiion of what a mag-lev train looks like.

Illustration from Science Buddies.

 1. Magnetic Levitation- Maglev trains have been big news in the past year. Explore the science behind the future of mass transit with basic (or not so basic) magnet levitation experimentation. Simple experiments show how magnets levitate using their repelling force. Science Buddies details a great experiment building a small maglev train. More advanced students can also build propulsion mechanisms with the train, or measure how other variables like temperature, weight and material selection affect the motion.

 

2.  Electromagnets- Homopolar motors are the simplest electric motors generating rotational movement; and are simple to create with basic components and magnets. In this link, see how to make a simple car using just a basic AA battery, two rare earth magnets and some foil. Other versions of this project include shaping wire to spin, or adding a screw or bolt into the configuration. Regardless of the setup, these experiments are excellent introduction to electromagnets and motors.

 

Photo of a science fair project or experiement where a magnet is hovering over a bag of cereal and pulling the iron to the top.

Can you stomach this experiment? Photo from Steve Spangler Science.

3.  Eat Iron – This simple experiment is visually amazing, involves searching out iron in ‘iron fortified’ food and might require a strong stomach. Cereals, and other iron-fortified foods, really do have iron added to their recipe, making them healthier for many. In this experiment, dissolving the cereal in water lets students see the exactly how much iron could be consumed as the magnet pulls the element away from the food. Compare types of cereal, breads, pastas, or snack bars. Visit Steve Spangler Science for more information on this experiment.

 

4.  Lenz’s Law – Explore Lenz’s Law with a stop watch, various thicknesses of copper tubes and magnets. This is a YouTube favorite, and for good reason – it’s a strong visual representation of eddy currents as they relate to a magnetic field. Education.com details a basic experiment, which can be expanded to add different materials, thicknesses of materials and strengths of magnets. Watch a video detailing this here.

 

These experiments can all be done with materials – including the magnets – found at your local hardware store or craft store. In some cases, complete kits are available from educational suppliers. If you’re looking for assistance with types of materials needed, our magnetic products specialists are available to assist.

If you, or your favorite student, has a magnetic science fair project or experiment, share the experience with us!

Understanding Magnet Grades

Grading of magnets can be a perplexing myriad of abbreviations and numbers on a curve. Understanding the grading is important factor in choosing the correct mMagnet Grade Chalkboardagnet for the application.

Permanent magnets are graded by the maximum energy the magnet produces. Typically, the higher the magnet grade, the higher the corresponding strength of the magnet.

Magnetic strength is most often measured in two ways, grade and pull strength. Raw magnetic materials are commonly measured by grade, and magnetic assemblies by pull strength. For the purposes here, the focus will remain on grades. For information about pull strength, refer to our post Measuring Pull Strength.

Determining Magnet Grades
To determine the strength of a permanent magnet, we measure Gauss, which is the amount of attractive force the magnet possesses. Additionally, we measure Oersteds, which is the permanence of that force. Because both traits are desirable in magnets, multiplying Gauss and Oersteds determines the Max Energy Product referred to as MGOe (Mega Gauss Oersteds) – which is the number used to grade the magnet.

Because temperature plays a large role in the long-term performance of a neodymium magnet, there may also be a letter after the grade of neodymium magnets. This is a standard rating for progressively higher temperatures for neodymium 35 (M, H, SH, UH, EH, or AH). For standard neodymium, no letter simply indicates a maximum operating temperature, which is 80⁰ C.

The Magnets
Currently, the strongest grade of magnetic material is neodymium, however each type of magnetic material has its advantages.

 Common Magnetic Material by Grade Range:

Magnet Grade Chart

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Application Considerations
Choosing a magnet may not be as simple as selecting the highest grade available. The application is critical in the specification process. In most cases, the same strength can be achieved by utilizing a slightly larger magnet, with a lower grade and at a cost savings. Heat, moisture, torque, and chemical exposure can all affect the strength and size of the magnet required for a project.

We always recommend consulting with our magnetic specialists to help select the best magnet for the application.

Measuring Pull Strength

One method of determining magnet strength is through pull strength, or a pull test.

Pull testing a magnet

Determining strength of a magnet through a pull test.

Pull strength is a reliable method of measuring the maximum strength, or holding power, that a magnet has before it is separated from ferrous material. It is measured in pounds or kilograms.

Magnetic assemblies are measured by the pounds of pull in a vertical test. Obviously, the higher the pull strength, the stronger the magnet. Permanent magnetic materials are commonly measured by grade. For more information about magnet grades, refer to the post Understanding Magnet Grades.

The Process
We rate our magnetic assemblies by pounds of pull in a vertical test. Each magnet’s entire magnetic surface is tested against a .5” thick, ground steel plate. Beginning with a clean magnetic surface and a clean steel surface, the magnetic assembly to be tested is attached to the steel plate. A hook with the measuring device is attached to the magnet and it slowly pulls the magnet upward until enough force to break the magnet away from the plate has been created. The measuring device records the pounds pull. By repeating this test multiple times, we can establish an accurate reading and pounds pull rating for the magnetic assembly.

Pull tests are widely used across the industry and it’s common for magnetic assemblies to have a rating of pounds pull in order to provide users with accurate insight of the product’s capability.
However, it is important to note that pull strength will vary with:

  • differing thicknesses of steel (particularly less than .5”)
  • types of steel composition
  • coatings on the steel, including paint or grease
  • or uneven surface area, such as rust

To see a brief video of testing process, click here.

Application Considerations
Choosing a magnetic assembly might be as straightforward as selecting the right pounds pull for your application. Considering things like how many poles are needed; if it there will be air gaps at any point on contact; how hot or wet the environment is; and the storage area can all affect the type of magnet best suited to a project.

We always recommend consulting with our magnetic solution specialists to help select the correct magnet for the application.

The History of Magnets – An Infographic

The History of Magnets