So you want to put a magnet in your finger…
  • JackJack August 2012
    …then you've come to the right place.

    Before you ask any questions, check out the Magnets category. There are number hundreds of topics there produced by people that are thinking about having the procedure done, who are trying to acquire the materials, and who have good advice for those thinking about doing it.

    EDIT: New magnet threads that don't cover new ground will be closed and sunk with extreme prejudice.

    You can also check out the information in the wiki. We'll be moving some of the information produced in the forum into a new FAQ there.

  • IanIan August 2012
    I just added such a page, with a few questions, to the wiki.  Obviously, you're all free to tinker with it, add more questions, improve my word choice, etc.

  • rdbrdb August 2012
    There should probably also be a wiki page outlining the different types of magnets (neodymium/alnico, disk/cylindrical) and sizes, with comparisons.  Maybe I'll find some time to work on that.
  • countsevencountseven March 2013
    Is there a consensus on how deep below the skin the magnet should be for maximum sensitivity?  
  • rdbrdb March 2013
    I would guess that most of the nerves in the fingertips are near the surface and that you should try to tuck it right behind your skin.
  • TinyTiny July 2013
    I know this thread is rather ancient but it did occur to me to ask out of curiosity - has anyone using these fingertip magnets had any issues with airport security?
  • IanIan July 2013
    I haven't, myself.
  • I wonder if Neodymium Magnets are non-ferrous metals, so perhaps don't set off metal detectors?

  • SaalSaal July 2013
    NdFeB-- Neodymium+Iron+Boron.

    Definitely ferrous, it's the size of the implants (relatively small) that make the difference; airport security isn't built to detect metal artefacts that small.
  • syolesyole July 2013
    I would much prefer an electric magnet in my finger, so I could turn it on and off, possibly connected to an external device?
    The idea of a weak magnet in my finger which takes many months to heal and loses potency over three years seems like a lot of pain (not all physical) with very little to gain.

    What are the chances of heavy metal toxicity, maybe the magnet should be covered in a form of coating also?
  • SaalSaal July 2013
    1. You're going to have some difficulty implanting an electromagnet in your fingertip.
    2. Neodymium magnets take several thousand years to demagnetize naturally...
    3. Yes, they are very toxic. Some options for bioproof coating that have been used are parylene C, PTFE, and various silicone compounds.

    P.S. search "bottlenose" on this site; some pretty intsyeresting uses have been developed for the neodyms...
  • IanIan July 2013
    4.  Even if you do manage to implant an electromagnet, you're going to have your work cut out for you in designing a practical device to turn it on.  The reason the Bottlenose works is because the neodyms are naturally magnetic, so all I have to do is aim the correct magnetic field in its general direction.
  • TinyTiny July 2013
    Ian, just to clarify - you've gone through and had no issues? Or you haven't travelled and your second response is just good technical knowledge about the detection level of airport scanners/metal detectors.
  • IanIan July 2013
    I've gone through with no issues, yes.
  • AmmonRaAmmonRa July 2013
    I also have been through airport metal detects several times and they haven't picked either my magnet or my rfid implants.

    I would be interested to see if the wands can detect them.
  • TheGreyKnightTheGreyKnight August 2013
    Just cause I'm curious, what's the most powerful magnet you've implanted? Any suggestions about what kind of magnets to start with?
  • SaalSaal August 2013

    The strongest magnets available are N52 (neodymium).

    I recommend these:

    That parylene doesn't stand up to mechanical stress very well though. @Cassox coats them in dental resin to compensate for this, click his name and send him a pm for more details.
  • TheGreyKnightTheGreyKnight August 2013
    Thanks. I'll do that. Have any of you had any problems with your implants around other neodymium magnets, like hard drive magnets for example?
  • SaalSaal August 2013
    Hard drives are safe, as well as credit cards etc. :)
  • ThomasEgiThomasEgi August 2013
    i think the question was more targeted at handling those magnets, rather then the hdd itself. (as in taking the hdd apart and playing with the magnets themselves)
  • TheGreyKnightTheGreyKnight August 2013
    @ThomasEgi Exactly. 
  • begoniabegonia August 2013
    Saal, with the magnet you linked, is it necessary to add a coating? I was under the impression from other posts that it was already coated sufficiently. 
  • SaalSaal August 2013
    Many grinders implant them as is, with the parylene. Parylene is certainly an effective bioproofing method, but it's super thin, like 20-30 microns. I'm going with @Cassox' idea and adding an additional coating because of this; even rubbing them together slightly to pull them apart has resulted in the parylene scratching off some of mine. There's also been a study (can't remember where) showing that years after implantation the body perforates the parylene as tissue bonds to it, messing up your bioproof seal. The medical it's usually used for are generally biosafe anyways (titanium) but for us that's a problem.
  • begoniabegonia August 2013
    I think I would rather just implant it as is, rather than messing with resin that I have no idea how to use safely. The first one I'm implanting, I am not planning on leaving in for years anyway. I just want to get used to the sensation. 
  • SaalSaal August 2013

    Here's a fairly detailed explanation of how to apply the resin:

    He also sells them precoated. But to each his/her/its own :)
  • begoniabegonia August 2013
    I may buy a precoated one from him. I don't have any of the materials or skills necessary to do all of the coating safely. @Cassox What are you charging for the precoated magnets?
  • SaalSaal August 2013
    $25, $20 With the $60 implant kit he also sells. I can vouch for the kit being quality merchandise, and I'll be implanting a magnet I coated myself with the resin he recommends for more feedback on that.
  • begoniabegonia August 2013
    I would probably just get the magnet. I couldn't do the nerve block on myself. I would rather have pain than try to jam a needle into exactly the right spot.
  • SaalSaal August 2013
    Digital nerve blocks don't require nearly as much precision as you're thinking, and are actually quite simple (I tried it a few times following @Cassox' instructions). The implant kit he sells isn't a lido kit anyways. It contains quats for instrument sterilization, 2 different scalpels (1 disposable), hemostats, forceps, suture scissors, a sterile suture kit, 3x1mm magnet (resin coated for an extra 20, plain parylene otherwise), hairbands for tourniquets, chloraprep for incision site sanitization, antibiotic cream, alcohol wipes, sterile surgical gloves (medium), etc (might've been a few more things, I don't have my kit in front of me)
  • begoniabegonia August 2013
    I have most of that already, just in my medical kit. I'm a trained first responder, and mostly trained EMT, so I keep all of that at my apartment in case something happens. I know it doesn't take that much precision, but just based on the fact that I'm doing it to myself, I would rather not deal with the issues that needles can cause. 
  • TheGreyKnightTheGreyKnight August 2013
    Just because you don't want to use an injector doesn't mean you have to deal with the pain. Use a topical anesthetic or a patch. I've also heard that icing the target hand for 30 minutes beforehand (With a glove on the hand) also minimizes pain and blood loss. Or, If you've got the money, use one of those fancy Iontophoresis machines to deliver the Lidocaine.
  • begoniabegonia August 2013
    I have topicals, and was planning on cutting off circulation/icing. I really am not too concerned about the pain though. If it is particularly bad, I will probably take a narcotic. 
  • CassoxCassox August 2013
    Is that Santa Barbara Mission as your picture begonia?
  • begoniabegonia August 2013
    Nope, Stanford. You got the right state though. The outward extensions off of the SB Mission are smaller, although the angle makes it hard to see in that picture. I just liked the contrast of the building and the clouds. 
  • TheGreyKnightTheGreyKnight August 2013
    Does the orientation of the magnet have any effect on the sensation it causes?
  • TheGreyKnightTheGreyKnight September 2013
    Meaning Pole-wise?
  • IanIan September 2013
    @TheGreyKnight:  No, with one exception:  a strong field with the opposite orientation will sometimes flip your magnet.  It isn't really painful when that happens, just a bit uncomfortable.
  • CassoxCassox September 2013

    See, I wonder about the orientation myself. I mean, sure. I expect no difference if the "north face" is "in" vs. facing "out." But, what about magnetized through length vs. diameter? I chose through diameter simply due to availability, but I could see this making a difference.

    I mean, through the diameter would seem to pull the whole disc towards the surface in one piece, while through the length would pull one end peripheral and push the other end deep. The magnet would pivot really. There must be a different subjective feeling to this at the very least.

  • TheGreyKnightTheGreyKnight September 2013
    I wonder if there's any difference in sensation between the magnet rotating beneath your skin and the magnet simply pushing against it.
  • benten5525benten5525 September 2013
    I would lo to have the implant done in every finger but I am only 10,but have the give me your email IT CANNOT HURT

  • SaalSaal September 2013
    @benten5525 Sorry buddy, but you're gonna have to wait a few year :) we could go to jail for helping you do something like this.

    The good news: if you're 10 years old, that means you have 8+ years of bill-free time to learn some really cool skills you can use to contribute when you're ready :) Focus on LOTS of science--biology, chemistry, etc--and if you're interested in cybernetics pick up physics/circuit analysis as well (I wish I had!!)

    Good luck :)
  • CassoxCassox September 2013
    Strange. I can't tell if its a joke or not.
  • begoniabegonia September 2013
    I wonder how the legal issues would come out on this sort of thing. Piercers and tattoo artists are really on their own to decide what to do as long as there is parental consent. But that would likely be seen as less invasive than minor surgery. @Benton5525, something like this is going to hurt, you should understand that. 
  • TheGreyKnightTheGreyKnight October 2013
    @Cassox Just out of curiosity, have you ever considered using a laser scalpel or an obsidian/diamond scalpel for implant procedures? I know it's overkill... and ridiculously expensive, but hypothetically, what would the benefits be?

  • JamesTJamesT October 2013
    somebody already said that hard drives and credit cards are fine; would it be safe to handle RAM or sensitive electronics/components without damage or data loss ?
  • ThomasEgiThomasEgi October 2013
    @JamesT unless your device is explicitly sensitive to magnetic fields (such as FloppyDisks) it's usualy no problem. Most electronic is not affected by static magnetic fields anyway.
  • absolalone111absolalone111 November 2013
    Got a question about this, has anyone had any problems with having these in, and playing an instrument? is it possible that it could mess with what the pickups on my bass receive?
  • TheGreyKnightTheGreyKnight November 2013
    I've thought about that, because I play the bass as well. If I get my implants before you do, I'll let you know.
  • absolalone111absolalone111 November 2013
    Thanks, you probably will though. I'm not going to be getting mine for at least three years, and it's not hard to guess why.


    Plus, I play bass with a pick anyway, so it may be a little less of a problem for me.
  • jacquelineejacquelinee November 2013
    Hi there! I'm working on an article about biohack. Anyone would be available to talk about your experiences with it? What did you implant? Why did you do so? What has improved in your life (senses, usefullness, day by day routine)? Please feel free to contact me - [email protected]
  • SaalSaal November 2013
    I actually only just completed my first implantation last night, but I'd be more than happy to talk about my experience/reasons behind my decision. The email will have "Saal" in the subject.
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