Reusing Parts From A "Shake" Flashlight

Remember a few years ago when everyone bought 'shake to charge' flashlights? You'd shake them a few times and they'd charge up enough power to get around in an emergency which was VERY handy. However, eventually they stop working very well. As I was going through my box of things 'to fix or toss', I took apart this flashlight and was amazed at how many useful things were inside. Here's what to do with all the parts so that very little goes to the landfill, and have a little fun!

Usually, all you have to do is unscrew the cap over the light to get started. Inside, you'll find a round plastic magnifier lens that's small and handy enough to keep in your change-purse or medicine cabinet for when you need to read a bit of small print. If you glue the magnifying glass back inside the screw-off cap, it acts something like a stamp-collector's magnifier. Slide the cap around the page and you'll even be able to see those little counted cross-stitch patterns. :^)

Next fun thing is the REALLY strong super-magnet that will easily fall out of the other end of the inside plastic tube when you remove it from the case. It's strong enough to hold up a small pair of pliers, some scissors, etc., so it'd be a great magnet to hang up heavy-weight brochures, menus, or recipe cards on the fridge door.


If you're concerned about it being so strong that you might scratch the surface trying to remove it, just stick one of those little felt circles onto the end, the ones that are made to keep display items from scratching tabletops. You can cut out a bit of felt to glue on, if you don't have a package of pre-cut ones.

Next, you'll notice the copper wiring that was the 'power source' when the magnet was shaken back and forth through it. Remove the tape holding the wire's end along the tube. It's very fine wire, about the size of a hair, but will hold shapes. It'd be nifty for various craft and jewelry making projects, or it could be stitched or glued onto a scrapbooking page. I spent several dollars once for a smaller spool of fine copper wire/thread for a craft project, but will save this for my next one!

A good friend of mine has been embroidering on greeting cards with metallic thread that's very close to this same size. This is small and flexible enough to easily thread into a needle and hand-stitch to give your greeting cards and bookmarks a little 'glitz'.


Finally, what to do with the case of the flashlight? Why not use it to hold small screwdrivers and a few screws for minor repairs around the house, or leave them in the glovebox for the next time you're yard-sale shopping and need to take something apart to fit in your car?

It could hold spare pencils or pens and some post-it notes in your toolbox or junk-drawer, too. I'm always wishing I had something to take down a model number, or make a list, but pencils seem to get lost or broken easily unless put inside something. This flashlight case even has a lanyard at the end, so it can be hung onto a doorknob or out in your gardening shed to keep a pen and paper dry.


All that was left after my salvaging the fun bits, was a little rubber thingie and the tiny electronics, and I'll probably de-solder the little bulb and a few parts for some 'gadget project' in the future.

Now, wasn't that more fun than just throwing it away, or putting it back in the drawer because it 'used to work' and you hadn't the heart to toss it?

By Mary LaCaze from Mtn. Pine, AR

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February 16, 20120 found this helpful

Thanks for this great post. I love how you documented all the useful stuff so clearly. This is truly recycling at it's finest :)

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February 19, 20120 found this helpful

You are a genius! This is wonderful!

Blessings, Robyn

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Better Living Green Living ReusingFebruary 16, 2012
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