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(Technical)

So here is a bit of info ferrofluids. From a bit of research the ingredients are tiny ferrous particles, a medium for them to move around in, and a lubricant (surfactant). I havent tried everything myself but it seems like the best diy recipe is kerosene as the suspending medium and oleic acid as the surfactant. Alternatively you can use citric acid. You can also use vegetable oil or mineral oil instead of kerosene, but it wont be as good.

Options for ferrofluids /  ferromagnetic particles:

This How to Make Liquid Magnets article has a nice overview of ferrofluid composition in addition to explaining the Ferric Cloride method. This Popular Science How to Make Ferrofluids article has a brief overview of several methods.

Try #1 will be with steel wool and some different oils since that seems the easiest and thus a good place to start.

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