Technology Make-a-Home-Made-Tattoo-Gun

Published on February 13th, 2010 | by Tim


Make Your Own Home Made Tattoo Gun

Are you headed to jail or simply too cheap to pay for a professional tattoo? Or maybe you find that pro tattoos simply don’t hurt enough because of your recent increase in manliness. We have the answer for you.

Tattoo Gun Ingredients

All you need to make your own tattoo gun are the following:

  • Mechanical pencils
  • Guitar Strings (will be your needle)
  • Black electrical tape
  • Spoon (your base to hold your tattoo gun)
  • Electrical motor (18V ideal) – VCR, remote control car, Video Game Controller
  • Cell Phone Charger
  • Pliers
  • Scissors
  • Sandpaper

Making Your Homemade Tattoo Gun

Before you get started, I feel it somewhat necessary to mention that all your gear should be sterilized prior to tattooing someone. He mentions boiling the needle (Guitar string) twice to achieve this. He also mentions not using the same mechanical pencil twice. You should probably also find someone who can actually draw.

Happy tattooing, gentlemen. We expect pics of half-assed tats in our inbox by Monday.


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About the Author

Tim is curator and co founder of When he’s not shaving his face with a bowie knife he’s helping men be better at what they already are: men.

47 Responses to Make Your Own Home Made Tattoo Gun

  1. Wow, what a great blog, how to make your own tattoo gun. I called myself tattoo removal as a sort of protest at my ‘job in the City’. I had some beautiful tattoos on my legs, but then got a job for a Law Firm, where I was expected to wear a pencil skirt etc,., the money good, so I got rid of my tattoos on my legs.
    Maybe me boyfriend cam make a tattoo gun and put a tattoo where only he will see it!
    Thanks for your info and video instructions

  2. el parto says:

    Ha you have given birth to a monster. Truly brave
    .-= el parto´s last blog entry: mamá a los 17 =-.

  3. katelynn says:

    so i took apart my old vcr that i know works. and pulled out all the other stuff and took the motor out but it doesnt look like that one. and i dont know wat volt or whatever you even want to call it. (not the smartest with that stuff) its a philip magnovox. the motor is about an inch tall and wide. any way u can help? lol

  4. where to buy tool above. I need it.
    .-= butterfly tattoos design´s last blog entry: New Tattoo Designs With Tattoo Art Typically Tattoo Flash Designs Art Gallery =-.

  5. Lydia says:

    What sort of ink should we use? I have a jar of India ink, how’s that sound? Also, how do we get the ink into the tattoo gun, just dip the tip in right?

    Thanks for the video, it’s cool stuff.

  6. You video tip is very well for all. Thanks for this video. ;)

  7. Chris says:

    to respond to Lydia, yes India ink is what you should use any calligraphy ink works, bet let this be a warning! you still can poison yourself with ink…even if it says non toxic! so be careful! and don’t dip the needle into the bottle of ink cause that can spread disease also, pour a little but out say in the cap from a 2 liter. clean the area to be tattooed, and yada yada… and if you want pouring a little bit of ink down the shaft of the pencil will work instead of dipping it over and over again… and as for the motor and all, it wont “burn” if you use a power source that is greater than it is, the motor i use is about a 3V and the power source is a 120V AC it just makes the needle go faster thats all it’ll do. trust me imma tech and another thing don’t leave any wires open or unshielded like he did in the video… thats a risk of electric shock no joke! please make sure to cover up all open wires! well i think thats all if i think of anything else i’ll be back with another long ass comment XD peace biotches!

  8. Matteo says:

    Complimenti x la video e sito…

  9. David says:

    what kind of charger should i use for a vcr motor?

  10. great post, I read somewhere that you can also make a tattoo gun out of and electronic toothbrush, but I always wondered if you will get results you want from something you made at home. you’re putting something onto your skin that will be there for the rest of your life, so is it really great idea to save on something that will be with you when you go to your grave

  11. Dez says:

    Okay, I’m 15 and made a tattoo gun, I didn’t use an electric toothbrush or a VCR motor, I used an electric shaver motor. Will it still work??? P.S. Instead of using a “charger strip” I used a rechargeable battery :) P.S. i left the Charge slot for the Shaver in it so you can recharge it easier, Or you can unplug it and use it with no wires attached. I thought it was clever. Thanks :)

  12. jake says:

    im 15 and made my first gun when i was 13 and you do not always need a cell phone charger you can hook directly to a disposable battery and also if you do not have access to a guitar store you can remover the red gas button on a bic lighter and there will be a very small 2 in spring if you warm that over a candle and stretch it out using pliers you can get about three needles off of it and if you mix cigarette ash water and lotion you can get that real old school jail tattoo look or you can use indian ink

  13. Make sure all equipments are clean and hygiene. Otherwise, you’ll suffer infections.
    .-= home made energy review´s last blog entry: Save Your Money on Power Bill =-.

  14. Seth says:

    Is there a spicific guitar string to use? Or will any that will fit in the mechanical pencil work? And where could I find/buy an 18V charger like that?

  15. Janice says:

    You make sense in a way that you had catch the attention of some people who’s fund of tattoo’s. Just a bit curious if, this machine has to include some hygienic measure to prevent infection. This will probably work for people who can’t afford to pay professional assessment for putting tattoos.
    .-= Janice´s last blog entry: skin tags =-.

  16. timili says:

    well from what i’ve heard and seen from people who would tell me that they would use ink from a pen and a hot needle and trace the design on their skin …and plus i just want a damn tattoo.

  17. shay says:

    why dont you just buy machines from me 10 wrap for only R450 each or a tattoo kit R1550 email me

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  20. The Oi Boy 1 says:

    echt top erklärt,..
    ist ja recht leicht zu bauen.
    viellen dank und nette grüße aus deutschland

  21. mason says:

    im going to make this and tattoo my ass for practice

  22. mason says:

    what can you use for a stencil , i saw that shit on miami ink and they put this paper on there skin and it left an out line where do i get that

    • michael jf says:

      draw a picture on a piece of paper with a sharpie and put some vasoline or deoderant something oily yet sanitary on your arm or wherever your gonna ink up and put it on top of the vasoline press down hard and let it sit

  23. richardM says:

    i am trying to make the exact same homemade tattoo gun as you.
    when you said not to use a 12 volt battery charger because it will blow up an 18 volt motor then how many volt should i use for the 18 volt motor?

  24. nate says:

    @richardM, if you have it most rechargable electric shavers have a battery type thing in them that allow you to just recahrd it like i saw in one post above, also any guitar string that fits into the mechanical pencil will work from what i have seen. another thing what i did before i saw this video is that if you have a sharpie of any kind and a thin sowing needle just use that prick down till you see a bit of blood coming out and you can do that, it hurts like a bitch but hey, it works.

  25. Pingback: Tattoo needle homemade – Tattoo needle | Tattoos » Blog Archive

  26. Alec says:

    i found the motor and everything but what kind of button do i need for the topof the motor?

  27. aluph new entry says:

    i am going to make it ,tattoos are not comen in india so, tattoo guns too, so if need to get a tattoo i must make a gun and draw it self. i need a tattoo so i going to make gun and…………

  28. rob says:

    I made a machine exactly like this but I have some probs I can’t get the string to stay in the eraser when I plug in it throws the string out no matter how good I stab it in also I used a motor from a rc helicopter its way smaller then the regular motors idk if it spins to fast or something but I tried everything and im starting to think it’s the problem help me out people hit me up with suggestions

  29. connor says:

    i have made one just like this but i always get a 9 volt motor i don’t like messing with electricity haha still runs great just need a 9 volt battery still fast enough to do tattoos. when you did the tattoo on your hand how did you shade it? because usually you’d need more then one needle? or did you just go ahead and use one needle? also i recommend a paperclip for people that cant get guitar strings just get a jumbo one and un bend it bend it straight and get a sowing needle and use sowing thread and tie it on and then get 1-2 drops of hot glue and rub it on to keep it more tight.

  30. alex says:

    I’m new in this but the gun I made thanks to you is perfect. I just had a question what type of ink do I have to use?

  31. Tatiana says:

    i made this exact gun and hooked irup but the top rod on the motor doesnt turn, it just vibrates. is my chargwr too small or maybe my button isnt on tight enough?

  32. Deal Dash says:

    This ρoѕt proνіdеs cleаr idea in fаvоr of the new ѵiewеrs
    οf blοgging, that truly how to do running а blοg.

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  34. Niccie Bunny says:

    India ink fades very quickly. Boiling 100 times is not sterile it is clean only! You need an autoclave to sterilize $1,000 and up. They sell premade pre sterilized needles cheap enough for less than the cost of an infection some with tip and grip included. You can buy cheap tattoo machines for 6$ that you can adjust to prevent scaring. Avoid china inks online! Mom’s is top quality you can get a bottle at a time or 55 in different sizes. Never reuse ink/ pour it back in the bottle (a 1/2 oz will go a very long way it’s not worth a blood borne disease) or needles tubes or grips. Only tattoo safely! People don’t make good practice subjects get fake skin or grapefruit! If you can’t draw then you can’t trace and you sure as hell can’t tattoo!

  35. Chris Parisi says:

    Well, I copied this method on youtube and I love it. You have done very good on this video, sir. I am 14 and I am getting my first pro Tattoo in like 5 days. I am useing this to Tattoo my friend for free because he is jealous I have a Tattoo and he doesn’t… So, thanks for all of this.

  36. johnny skovik says:

    Im 11 and just finishd makin my first tatoo gun. my mom will get mad if she finds out but im hiding it in my bedroom.

  37. amyn says:

    it was simply the best i am an tattoo artist and i say this that was a perfect idea,,,,, keep moving…

  38. Shaine says:

    when i put the needle threw the button and plug it in it does not spin i wanna know whats the problem

  39. Pingback: Making Homemade Tattoo Gun | Homemade Tattoo Gun

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  41. sarooj gill says:

    how to make ink at home????

  42. Fun in Funeral says:

    Can I use a motor from a game consul remote that glitches out sometimes?

  43. jamie says:

    I can not keep the needle in the eraser it flys out everytime what can I do

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