Want to keep the TNW Conference vibe going?? Tickets for TNW2022 are available now >>

Your sardonic source for consumer tech stories

This article was published on July 31, 2017

Mad scientist builds intricate electromagnetic crane to retrieve a lost AirPod

Mad scientist builds intricate electromagnetic crane to retrieve a lost AirPod
Mix
Story by

Mix

Former TNW Writer

Mix is a tech writer based in Amsterdam that loves cinema and probably hates the movies that you like. Tell him everything you despise about Mix is a tech writer based in Amsterdam that loves cinema and probably hates the movies that you like. Tell him everything you despise about his work on Twitter.

Apple aficionados who’ve had the misfortune to lose one of their already pricey AirPods know how painful it is to shell out $69 for a single measly earbud. But there might be cheaper ways to retrieve a missing unit.

So when recreational inventor Tyler Efird accidentally dropped one of his precious AirPods at the bottom of a 10-foot shaft below his window, he knew the fastest way to restore the full set might be to whip up his own DIY apparatus to retrieve the missing earbud. And so he did.

In a matter of hours, Efird was able to devise an improvised elctromagnetic crane to dig up the dropped AirPod. To put together this contraption, he used a little magnet wire wrapped around a bolt, an old worn-out Ethernet cable and a DC bench supply.

The tinkerer has since documented his elaborate solution in a comical two-minute clip, appropriately titled Saving Private AirPod. Check out what preparations it took to recover the lost earbud here:

Needless to say, there are other ways to keep your Apple wireless earbuds in place – with some solutions being less ridiculousthan others.

But should you find your lone AirPod at the bottom of a tight space: Magnets might be your best friend. Or as one intrepid science enthusiast said it in the modern television classic Breaking Bad: