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How to Make a Trip Wire Alarm

Want a heads up next time that annoyingly chirpy coworker is heading over for some annoyingly chirpy chitchat? Rig up this little system and you’ll never be caught off-guard again.


  • Step 1: Wrap aluminum tape around clothespin tips Wrap aluminum tape around both tips of the clothespin, leaving a tab on each end so you can attach wires.
  • Step 2: Tape electrical wire to clothespin Cut a piece of black electrical wire, strip both ends, and tape one end to one tip of the clothespin.
  • Step 3: Connect negative pole to other tip Locate the wire running from the negative pole of the noisemaker—the pole marked with a minus sign—and connect it to the other tip of the clothespin.
  • TIP: If your noisemaker doesn’t come with wires already attached, just cut and strip another piece of your own to use.
  • Step 4: Connect wires to battery holder Locate the wire leading from the positive pole of the noisemaker and connect it to the battery holder. Now do the same with the remaining black wire coming from the clothespin.
  • TIP: You’ve just built a completed circuit. Connect the battery to make sure it works. Now DISCONNECT IT!
  • Step 5: Fold paper & string fishing line Start folding your sheet of paper into a triangle, but stop halfway. Now string the fishing line across the strongest crease, tie it off, and finish the triangle.
  • Step 6: Put folded paper inside clothespin Put the folded paper inside the clothespin.
  • Step 7: Tape to inconspicuous place Tape the clothespin, noisemaker, and battery to an inconspicuous place in your coworker’s path.
  • Step 8: Run fishing line to secure anchor Run the fishing line to a secure anchor across the way.
  • Step 9: Wait for “Mr. Chirpy” to head your way Now just wait for 'Mr. Chirpy' to head your way.
  • FACT: During the 2004 battle of Fallujah, U.S. military units played loud music and 'deterrent tones,' hoping to distract insurgents and 'increase their vulnerability.'

You Will Need

  • A clothespin
  • Some aluminum tape
  • Some red electrical wire
  • Some black electrical wire
  • A wire cutter and stripper
  • A battery-powered noisemaker
  • A 9V battery
  • A 9V battery holder
  • Some fishing line
  • A sheet of paper

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