Studies in wandmaking - Fitting electronics inside a straw [UPDATE 2020-07-25]


Sr Member
Appreciate the kind words! The switch itself never had a cover as far as once it was installed in the wand, the divot just kind of came naturally as I worked through the sculpt and ended up kind of looking like a knot or something to that effect. In hindsight I probably could have painted it to hide it a little better, but’s it’s fairly small and once the wand is in hand you really can’t see it.

I’ve spent a fair amount of time handling the resin replica wands as well as the plastic “interactive” wands from Universal and mine kind of feels somewhere in between. It’s definitely not wood but it doesn’t feel as “dead” as the solid resin ones.

I look forward to seeing more of yours as you refine the techniques, especially when your early attempts are so great


Active Member

There. It actually took a bit of work to find this stuff. I also had to double check because just giving the part number seemed to be able to send you in the wrong direction.
I compiled it all here so that anyone else who might want to try can test it out without digging too much.

First is the components placements on my boards. The letters on there came out too small but I'll upload a sketch of it so that you can position them correctly.
Second is the description of what it should be. If the site says something different it is not the right part.
Third is the part number as listed by manufacturers.
Last is a link to a webpage with the correct part. I don't trust that all the links will stay active for however long this thread lasts, but it doesn't hurt to include a fast way to get to the right place.

For the two chips at the end, I just bought them off of ebay. It was easier and cheaper, as sellers there had them in lengths of 10 a package, instead of 1000 each.





Scholtky Diode



Regulator Chip

Touch key Chip


True, when someone holds it that spot would be covered. It also doesn't risk paint getting something stuck and ruining it.
I'm surprised at how many people have come up with different ideas of how to make lightup wands. There are a lot of solutions to the same problem, but yours seem very robust.


As for the Elder wand, the two glueings I've tried have come up failures. In one the last broke through the fibreglass sleeve and in the other I still haven't been able to remove it. I've learned new techniques for the fitting though, like reinforcing the top in a different ways and pulling it through using wire. These techniques will undoubtedly make the other wands trivially easy in comparison, but the the Elder wand is still in the design phase.
The current glueing I haven't been able to remove yet. Don't know if it's just too thin or if there is an imperfection inside, but I might have to start over.

Right now I need to get something other than designs done, so I'll be carving another wand for a bit to clear my head and think of new ideas.


Active Member
I picked out a piece of ash that I had already drilled and reinforced and spent some time carving it.
Tried my best to make something that looks more natural and branchlike, and I'm happy that I worked the PCB into such a small diameter, because even with a straight core it's possible to go quite thin and wavy without breaking into the fibreglass.

A few places I did hit fibreglass, but those will be filled in with wood and colored dark so it will be fine. Even so it makes me want to try that bending technique, for even more wavy wands.

The pommel piece will be difficult to blend into the handle as the design is more natural flowy carving, but it will be good practice to try some carving challenges for a change.



New Member
Oh man, I completely forgot about this thread! I actually made a simpler light-up wand using scavenged electronics from an AliExpress wand, and making a shell the usual way I do, with rolled paper. It could definitely be made better though, and I might make an improved version, as I now have a 3d printer so I can make a more robust shell. Do SMD LEDs work without a PCB? I don't think I have the budget for a custom PCB.


Active Member
really enjoyed reading this thread and seeing the results, i love the detail and lengths you went to to share your work.
im sure you will have looked into it already but there are pipe bending springs i have seen as small as 6mm but possible could be available smaller... its simply a stiff spring that you feed into the tube you want to bend and it stops the walls collapsing and kinking. it could be a useful solution for your curved wands maybe? although i guess drilling a hole through a curved wand to receive the metal core is the challenge but then maybe you would have to make it in 2 halves and join together?

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