Friday, November 6, 2009

Duct Tape of the Magnet World

Rare earth magnet, is there no end to your usefulness?

This walnut mailbox with bloodwood flag has seen better days. But considering it's weathered the elements (though under a covered porch) for the last 9 years, it's not too shabby.

When I built it, I was going for a mission style—simple and sturdy—something nice to greet the mailman. And I came up with all kinds of elaborate ways to attach a flag that would tell him when we had outgoing mail.

Then it occurred to me that rare earth magnets might function as a pivoting mechanism. It worked, and still works perfectly. In fact it has just as strong a pull as ever.

The wooden flag cracked, the mailbox cracked. But the magnet is a real crackerjack.