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Name: Kendra
Status: other
Age: N/A
Location: NY
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Date: N/A

What kind of things do magnets attract?

Generally it is iron, Kendra.

Magnets attract (never repel) the "magnetic metals". The magnetic metals are Iron, Nickel, and Cobalt. And it is iron much more often than any other metal. Magnets also attract or repel other permanent magnets, depending on which way they are facing each other. Permanent magnets usually have some iron in them.

There is a kind of dark-gray brittle ceramic called "ferrite" (pronounced like "fair-right"), which has iron, oxygen, and some other metals with oxygen. Ferrite can be magnetic too, because of the iron in it.

Sometimes you find a soft black plastic magnet. This is pretty much iron metal powder mixed into hot melted plastic and allowed to cool down.

Almost always the color is dark gray, or maybe silvery metal. Any other color (like red or white) is just paint on the outside. The paint does not matter to magnetism, it just goes right through the paint, same as it goes through air.

Jim Swenson

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