What is the SPIKE?
The SPIKE is our third in a series of sculptures containing a paramagnetic liquid known as ferrofluid.
Ferrofluid was originally invented by NASA in the 1960's as a prototype rocket fuel, useful because it could be pulled into the engines using magnets in a zero gravity environment. In fact, its original formula was 85% RP1 rocket fuel (a highly refined kerosene), 10% nano sized magnetite particles (so you could move the fuel using magnets), and 5% Oleic Acid (to keep the magnetite from clumping).
It didn't take off as a rocket fuel (partially because RP1 is notoriously hard to ignite) but has found many industrial uses over the years, from magnetic adjustable shocks in luxury cars, to voice coils in loudspeakers, and even magnetic bearings in hard drives.
Since it is a paramagnetic liquid, when exposed to a magnetic field it forms spikes! We designed the SPIKE to showcase this amazing property. Simply place the handheld magnet on the top to create giant spikes!
The secret behind the spiking ability of the SPIKE is in its custom designed base.
This base allows the perfect placement of two separate N52 magnets in order to shape the magnetic fields.
When combined with the large handheld N52 neodymium rare earth magnet on the top, giant spikes can be formed.
Add a second magnet
Included Powerful Handheld Magnet
The included handheld magnet is extremely powerful and capable of lifting 50 pounds by itself! It contains an N52 rare earth magnet inside, and we enclose it in epoxy and surround with an anodized aluminum enclosure for safety.
*shown with optional second magnet
We've perfected our methods of coloring ferrofluid, and the results are spectacular red, gold and blue metallic colors.
Optional super bright LED
We have developed a super bright LED module that can be used to light up the SPIKE.
This isn't your average led light. It's more compact, much brighter, and has an average lifespan of 80 hours on a single CR2032 battery (included).
At night it looks like a high tech modern version of a lava lamp!
The extra light really helps to bring out the colors, even in a well lit office.
We also have a larger version available which is twice as large (220ml) and contains 9ml of ferrofluid!
The XL version doesn't pull the ferrofluid to the top vertically like the SPIKE because of its size, but it has a much larger interaction area.
These prototypes are final, production ready pieces that have been extensively tested including shipping, drop, pressure and other general torture tests. You can expect years of enjoyment from your SPIKE display.
Final parts and finishes have been sourced and production is ready.
We source our aluminum tubes from our supplier in China, and every other component is sourced here in the US (and assembled by us here in Alabama!).
Every square inch of the exterior of the SPIKE is beautiful anodized aerospace grade aluminum or lab quality glass. It's truly handmade art that will be the center of attention whether it's displayed in your home, office, or classroom.
We have been working with ferrofluid full time for the last 4 years and have manufactured and sold almost 10,000 of our current products, each one hand made here in our design studio. We are constantly perfecting our methods and formula and are positive that you will enjoy the SPIKE and have no quality issues with your sculpture. If you have any issues, we'll replace it for free!
My background is in Electrical Engineering but my passion has always been in creating art. I decided to start creating products full time the day after I was involved in a plane crash and realized how short life was.
I want my products to blend science with art, and maybe even help to inspire a new generation of thinkers and innovators.
They have an amazing impact on children and make for a great way to visually explain magnetism (with adult supervision due to the glass and strong magnets). We urge teachers to use them in STEM education and watch the children's reactions as they see magnetic fields come to life!
Thanks for checking out our campaign and help us bring the SPIKE to life by backing us now!
Want to feature the SPIKE in a story? Feel free to use any images from the campaign, as well as the high-res images and videos below:
Risks and challenges
Every project comes with its own set of challenges. We have launched 2 products previously through Kickstarter and each was funded and delivered on time (or early). We have our trusted suppliers in place (as well as backups) and are ready to place parts orders. Our team here is also ready to begin constructing your SPIKE displays as soon as parts arrive. Any challenges we encounter will be overcome transparently and quickly.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)