How to Wire Your Car to Shock Someone: A Dangerous Game

Disclaimer: Do not attempt to recreate what you are about to read. The following information is for informational purposes only and should not be attempted without professional training.

Have you ever been in the garage with your buddies, messing around with tools and just having a good time? Well, that’s how this story starts. The idea was born from hanging out in the shop with the guys. They would crank my vice down like crazy, which would strip it out and irritate me. I threatened that they would get shocked if they kept it up, and that turned into a game to see how tight they could make it.

Right away, I knew I was going to use electricity, but in order to get shocked, you have to complete a circuit. If you’re touching the vice with one hand, you’re not completing a circuit. My first thought was to put a metal plate next to the vice, but I quickly realized that wouldn’t work because of the rubber soles on our shoes.

Early on in this process, I was even considering using 110 volts right out of an outlet, but I knew that could be deadly. Then one day, while testing spark on a vehicle, I accidentally touched the ignition coil in the wrong place, and that’s when I knew what I was going to do.

If you know anything about cars, you know that ignition coils don’t mess around. They put out about 10,000 volts. I happened to have a Ford Model T ignition coil, which is super simple – you’ve got your ground, your spark, and your power. It normally takes six volts and puts out about 10,000 volts. We were going to use 12 volts, which would come from a computer power supply. These power supplies are easy to find at Best Buy, online, or even in your mother’s computer.

To wire it all up, we combined all the yellow wires and all the black wires to end up with a 12-volt power and a ground. Of course, we couldn’t just leave this thing running 24/7, so we had to put a switch on it. In this case, I actually modified my vise and put a temporary button right on it. This worked perfectly, and when I pushed the button, we had power.

For demonstration purposes, we connected the spark wire to an alligator clip to show you that while activated, our spark plug was sparking. That spark wire would normally go to the vise.

Again, we want to reiterate that this is not something you should attempt without professional training. We hope you found this story entertaining and informative. Remember, safety first, and please don’t try this at home.


What causes a car to shock you?
Put simply, what you're experiencing is a transfer of electrons called an electrostatic discharge. If you've ever noticed more “shocks” during wintertime, or in dry climates like the desert, that's because electrons build up easier in dry places with lower air humidity.
How do I stop my car from giving me electric shocks?
Hold the metal frame as you exit the car. Touching the metal of the car as you get out lets the charge balance out by flowing harmlessly through your hand. If you still get shocked, the paint on the metal might not be conductive enough. Touch bare metal instead.
Why does the live wire shock you?
The live wire causes shocks. Since the live wire has a very large potential difference compared to the human body, the live wire can cause shocks. When you touch a live wire, current flows through your body and causes an electric shock. Open circuits are still dangerous.
Why do I get shocked when I open the door of my car?
As the rubber car tyres are insulators, the charges can't escape to the ground. So while opening the door, because of the flow of electrons, we get an electric shock.