I’d been puzzling over this for a while now: There has to be an easy way to get Circuit Scribe ink to draw conductive lines between different sheets of paper, up and down and around corners.
It turns out there is! The same way our silver ink is conductive on a single sheet of paper, you can jump between sheets with tin foil to make collages and artistic creations and who-knows-what-else on multiple sheets. We’ll post some project tutorials on this soon, but first: To get a circuit to jump to another sheet, you need a couple supplies:
- A glue stick
- Aluminum foil
You can see the final result in this image – we have the electric current going from the battery through Circuit Scribe drawn traces that then turn the corner going upward onto the yellow house, and then back around to meet ground. (How did we get the LED to stick to the side of the house? Read on – all will be revealed.)
Cut and Glue Aluminum Foil Strips
As we all know (right?!), aluminum is a conductive metal. So cut a couple aluminum strips. Then glue-stick one side of each as it rests on a piece of paper (so your glue doesn’t wind up on your desk).
Here are pics of glue-sticking your aluminum foil, then placing it sticky side down on the two pieces of paper you want to bridge and smoothing it down with your finger. First you glue the bottom of the foil.
Next you smooth out the foil with your fingernail to get it glued nicely on the underside.
Notice how the tin foil attaches glue-side-down on top of the conductive silver traces you’ve drawn with a Circuit Scribe pen (or if you’re not using a Circuit Scribe pen, same deal with copper tape or wire or whatever).
I was pretty sure this wasn’t going to work, because I expected an insulating layer of glue to prevent conductivity from the drawn silver traces up into the foil. But I suppose the smoothing out of the foil with your fingernail sort of squeegees enough glue out of the way on the underside to conduct current between the drawn silver line and the foil.
Getting Modules Magnetic on Vertical Surfaces
Another mini-revelation I had from doing this aluminum foil science project was to realize that you can make Circuit Scribe modules stick to vertical surfaces by using a paperclip as a magnetic anchor.
So you place a metal paperclip on one side of your vertical piece of paper, then clip the magnetic circuit module’s feet to it from the other side of the paper.
As an aside, there is a product called Z Axis Conductive Tape made by 3M that is a sticky tape that will conduct current vertically (that is, through the thickness of the tape) but not horizontally down the length of the tape itself. However, it’s pretty expensive, and you probably already have aluminum foil and glue sticks on hand.
Now that we can see how to get Circuit Scribe current to jump sheets of paper or travel over, under, in, around, and through, let’s have fun inventing some activities! The next stop on my journey is going to be to make a “tunnel book.”