How to Make a DIY Pen Stylus

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A pen stylus is a great way to improve your accuracy when drawing or writing on your touch screen device. Try making your own stylus at home from basic materials. If you have a metal pen on hand, simply remove the ink tube and replace it with a cotton ball. Alternatively, use aluminium and foil to turn any pen into a stylus. These methods are quick and easy, and work on any device that has a touch screen.

Method 1: Using a Metal Pen


Remove the ink tube from a pen that has a metallic body.
 Unscrew the mouth of the pen to reveal the ink tube. Pull out the ink tube and the spring from the body of the pen and then screw the pen back together. Throw the ink tube straight into the trash once you remove it to stop it from leaking on your furniture

Push a little cotton ball into the tip of the pen. The cotton ball helps to conduct the electrical current and gives the stylus a padded pointer. Roll up a little cotton ball and push it into the nib of the pen. Try to push as much of the cotton ball as you can into the pen so that it doesn’t come loose when you try to use the stylus.

Trim off any excess cotton ball that is hanging out of the nib. This makes the stylus easier to use and makes its touch more accurate. Leave about 2 millimetres (0.079 in) of the cotton ball hanging out of the pen so that the tip of the metal pen doesn’t scratch your screen.


Use your pen stylus in the same way that you would use your finger.
 Press the cotton ball down on the screen to activate it. Move the stylus around the screen to navigate around the device. Keep spare cotton balls on hand to refill your stylus in case it falls out with usage or in storage.

Method 2: Creating a Stylus with Aluminium Foil and Cotton

Unscrew the pen to remove the ink tube. In order to make this stylus, you need a pen that can be unscrewed. Remove the spring and ink tube from inside the pen and then reassemble the pen.

Cut the middle of a Q-tip on an angle. Estimate where the middle of the Q-tip is and then chop it in half on a sharp angle. This creates a pointy end on the plastic part of the Q-tip which makes it easier to insert into the pen

Poke the pointy end of the Q-tip into the tip of the pen. Leave the cotton portion of the Q-tip and about 5 millimetres (0.20 in) of the plastic handle out of the pen. Don’t worry if the Q-tip is a little loose, simply hold it in place for now.


Secure the Q-tip in place with a piece of tape.
 Wrap the tape around the plastic portion of the Q-tip and the mouth of the pen so that it stays in place when you are using your stylus. If the Q-tip still feels a little lo0se, simply wrap another piece of tape around it.

Wrap a 9 cm (3.5 in) square of foil around the Q-tip and the neck of the pen. Cut out the aluminium foil with a pair of scissors. Wrap the square tightly around the plastic portion of the Q-tip and around the neck of the pen. The aluminium foil helps to transfer the electrical current from your hand to the tip of the Q-tip.

Moisten the tip of Q-tip with water each time you use it. Wet your fingers and then dab the Q-tip with your damp fingers. This small amount of water helps to conduct the electrical current and makes the point of the stylus more accurate. Use your homemade stylus to navigate your way around your device. If it loses its accuracy, simply place a little extra water on the end of the Q-tip.

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