In our previous blog, we looked at some of the creative ways that magnets have been featured in the James Bond movies. The legendary 007 has always had many gadgets and gizmos at his disposal, and several of them have featured magnetic technology. In this blog, we will continue to examine how magnets have played a role in the James Bond movies.
Magnets have Helped James Bond Win at Love and Life
Live and Let Die (1973)
For this film, Roger Moore debuted as James Bond. Ever a man of taste, Bond chooses to accessorize his outfit in this movie with a sleek Rolex watch. This Rolex watch is much more than a fashion statement, though. The watch is equipped with many features to assist Bond in his missions, such as a miniature buzz saw built into the face that helped Bond free himself after he was tied up by his captors.
This Rolex is also known for its magnetic properties. In one incredible scene, Bond uses the magnetic field of the timepiece to deflect a bullet at long range. It’s hard to comprehend how a magnet in a watch could deflect a bullet in real life, but we won’t ask too many questions.
In another much-remembered scene, Bond embraces his love interest, Miss Caruso, and uses the magnetic properties of the watch to unzip the back of her dress without laying a finger on her. Miss Caruso comments, “Such a delicate touch.” Bond smoothly replies, “Sheer magnetism, darling.”
Now, could this scene work in real life? It depends. First, the zipper on Miss Caruso’s dress would have to be made of a ferrous metal—that is, a metal containing iron. However, most metal zippers are made of aluminum, brass, or nickel—none of which are ferrous or magnetic metals. Additionally, even if Miss Caruso’s dress did have an iron zipper, a regular alnico or ceramic magnet wouldn’t be able to pull down the zipper with the force of its magnetic field alone. To do that, Bond would need a rare earth magnet such as a neodymium magnet. Unfortunately, this film takes place in 1973, and rare earth magnets would not be invented until 1984.
Cheer up, Mr. Bond—at least you still have your magnetic personality.
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