Clothespin Switch

Section VII

No. I

A spring type clothespin is used to make a circuit clos¬ing switch to actuate explosive charges, mines, booby traps and alarm systems.

26 11 Clothespin Switch

Material Required

  • Spring type clothespin.
  • Solid copper wire — 1/16 in. (2 mm) in diameter.
  • Strong string on wire.
  • Flat piece of wood (roughly 1/8 x 1″ x 2″).
  • Knife.


1. Strip four in. (10 cm) of insulation from the ends of 2 solid copper wires. Scrape copper wires with pocket knife until metal is shiny.

26 21 Clothespin Switch

2. Wind one scraped wire tightly on one jaw of the clothespin, and the other wire on the other jaw.

26 31 Clothespin Switch

3. Make a hole in one end of the flat piece of wood using a knife, heated nail or drill Tie strong string or wire through the hole.

26 41 Clothespin Switch

5. Place flat piece of wood between jaws of the clothespin switch.

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Basic Firing Circuit

26 6 Clothespin Switch

When the flat piece of wood is removed by pulling the string, the jaws of the clothespin will close completing the circuit.


Do not attach the battery until the switch and trip wire have been emplaced and examined. Be sure the flat piece of wood is separating the jaws

of the switch.

A Method of Use

26 61 Clothespin Switch

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