With the threat of an EMP rising, now is the time to make preparations to protect your electronics. There are different types of Faraday bags on the market, but most don’t accommodate unique shape or lager items.
Faraday cages, however, can be made any size you need to give you much needed protection from an EMP blast or a Solar flare.
The design we are going to show you today can be scaled all the way up to fit a generator or large solar charging system.
This specific build takes about 3 hours to construct, and will cost you between $50-100, depending on the size of the box you are building.
This is a very inexpensive price to pay for peace of mind regarding your critical electronics.
Take this basic step to guard your gear, then move on to preparing on other fronts.
Unlike most Faraday boxes that people build, our design also helps protect our electronics not only from an EMP, but also from water and being crushed by heavy objects.
We are building our box to fit inside in a watertight plastic container. The container also gives us built-in handles for easy moving, and offers an additional level of protection.
You can make your Faraday cage any size to accommodate the amount of gear you need to protect. Because of this, we are not going to give any specific measurements, just the know how-to build a Faraday cage that works.
- Aluminum screening or copper mesh
- 1×2 finished wood
- Nails and staples
- Wood Glue
- Plastic construction box
- Tape Measure
- Hand saw or Power saw
- Optional Tools – Nail gun, pliers and wire cutters
Building Your Faraday Cage
Start by measuring the inside of your container to determine the size of the base for your Faraday cage. Using 45 degree cuts and join them with glue and nails, your base will soon be complete.
To keep your items off the bottom screening, use 2 more pieces of 1×2 or a piece of plywood. We found an old piece in our shop that did the trick.
Use 2 pieces of 1×2 wood to make an “L” shape to create the corners of your Faraday cage. These are once again glued together, then nailed to the base from the bottom. The length of these pieces is based on how tall you want your Faraday cage to be.
Now the Faraday cage is starting to take form. Add 1x2s between the corner sections to create a top frame for the lid to sit on.
It is important to make this as level as possible on the top to create a good seal with the lid later. A Faraday cage only works if there are no gaps in the aluminum screening.
This is where the screen comes into play. Start by cutting it to the width that you need to cover the base of your Faraday cage. Make sure to leave at least 1 inch on all four sides to hold up and attach to the side of the base as well.
The easiest way to work with the aluminum screening is to lay it flat on a table or the floor and fold it back and forth to create a panel that is 5 layers thick.
You want to have nice crisp and straight edges, so after each fold, use a hammer or a rubber mallet to press the folds nice and flat.
Once the screen is cut and ready to be attached to the cage, simply line it up on the outside of the base, and use a stable gun to affix the screen to the wood.
You can cut the corners of the screen to make a nicer corner on the base. Think of it like you are wrapping a Christmas present!
Now that the base is covered with screening, it is time to enclose the sides. Once again it is easier to measure the screening and lie it on a table or the floor to roll it out and create 5 layers.
It is very important to create a tight seal with the base. To help avoid any gaps in the screen, measure one inch above the top rail and one inch below the base.
This will allow you to fold the screening over the top and the bottom of the box to create a tight seal.
When you are rolling the screen around the sides of the cage, use a few staples on each upright to keep the screening tight. Use your hammer again on the corners to create nice sharp bends in the screening.
With the cage complete it is time for a test fit in the container.
With the box part of the Faraday cage completed, it is time to move onto the lid. Go back to your 1x2s and build a frame identical to the base frame that you built at the beginning.
Attach the 4 pieces of 1x2s with glue and nails again. Make sure that the lid is nice and sturdy, because it will get most of the work opening and closing every time you need to get into the cage.
Now you have to create a lip around the outside of the lid using 4 more 1x2s. Nail these to the outside of the lid, creating a lip that will hang over the side of the cage creating a tighter seal.
For the last time roll your screen out and double it back on itself until it is five layers thick. Measure your screen so you have an extra 2 inches around each side of your lid.
Now lie your screening on the inside of your lid, and staple it to the frame. Allow the screening to be loose on the lips of the lid, and let the excess screening go pass the lip of the lid. This will tighten and create a great seal when it is pressed onto the box.
This is what your box and lid will look like once everything is done!
Notice the screening hanging out from under the lid. You can trim some of this off, but make sure not to cut too much. The extra screening helps create the seal around the cage.
Now just put your Faraday cage inside your plastic container, and you are ready to fill it!
As you can see, a Faraday cage gives you tons of room to store your key electronic devices. I have a Goal Zero Yeti power converter, flashlights, radios, and a portable solar panel in this box…and still have tons of room for more items.
This is an easy and fun project that you can do with kids even. Just take your time…measure twice and cut once! The metal can poke you, so gloves are recommended!