How to create working circuits on paper

How to create working circuits on paper

Find out how to draw (yes draw!) electronic circuits on normal paper...

Circuit Scribe conductive ink pen

Circuit Scribe is a pen that you can use to draw electronic circuits. This means you can make working circuits from nothing more than paper, the pen, and a battery! It's quick, easy and very satisfying. Here's what we think.

Draw on virtually any flexible surface


The conductive ink pen can write circuits to any surface that a ball point pen can write on! Some surfaces work better than others, the silver ink works very well on glossy paper, we recommend this to give the best conductivity and will allow the most current to pass through the ink. This does not mean that you should only use glossy paper, it is possible to draw circuits on to any type of paper or fabric and produce a working circuit.

You can draw circuits around corners, through holes and over bumps, basically anywhere the ink will sit on the surface. The ink is quick drying and flows well from the nib and can be used with any electronic component.

Circuit Scribe conductive ink pen basic kit

A system of easy to connect electronic components


The modules are designed with magnetic feet so they can be held in position with a steel backing sheet and are easy to move around into different configurations, making them a great learning tool.

Circuit Scribe conductive ink pen

These modules can be used to complete basic circuits, that light up an LED for example, or far more complicated circuits that incorporate sensor inputs and control motors. There is no limit to the type of electronics you can make with the Circuit Scribe pen. Our favourite is the “Paperduino” a fully functioning Arduino board drawn directly on to paper!!

Circuit Scribe conductive ink pen basic kit

Paperduino 2.0 with Circuit Scribe via Instructables- Paper Arduino

The ballpoint pen that creates electronic circuits


The pen looks and behaves similarly to a normal ball point pen only this one is much more fun! Here are some conductive ink pen facts:

  • Standard copy paper can support 175mA
  • Photo paper can achieve near 800mA
  • Conductive silver ink is non-toxic
  • Each conductive ink pen can draw 60 to 200 metres of traced circuit depending upon the absorbency of the surface
  • It is possible to solder to the ink

Circuit Scribe conductive ink pen lite kit

Bring it all together with a kit


The kits are well thought through and come in graded levels of difficulty. The Lite kit is a great place to start for kids and adults wanting to get there hands on the ink and discover its applications. The basic kit is fantastic for a beginner in electronics but also offers plenty for the experienced user to experiment with. The maker kit comes with a host of components, templates and a workbook with tutorials.

Circuit Scribe conductive ink pen maker kit

To conclude - these kits rock. The whole idea of using conductive ink to conductive ink is brilliant and opens up a world of possibilities. We can't wait to see what you come up with!

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