Introduction: Anti-Gravity Tree Stand

Picture of Anti-Gravity Tree Stand

A real tree in the house has long been a Christmas tradition.  The look, feel, and scent of a real tree far out ways the the downside of falling needles and sticky sap.

A few years back the puddle under the tree said it was time for a new stand.  The faithful plastic one (with a cool built-in adjustable tilt feature) had cracked.  A scramble to find a new stand a few days before Christmas proved fruitless...with the popularity of artificial trees; a live tree stand was no where to be found.

Improvisation once again found itself hot on the heels of necessity.  

With some spare parts from Santa's workshop... A floating Christmas tree is now part of our family tradition. 

Why would we ever go back to a conventional stand, with all the advantages the Anti-Gravity Tree Stand offers?
-  Its off the floor so its easier to clean-up the needles
- The tree spins, so you can decorate it standing in one spot.
- It won't tip over (a plus around small childen and pets)
- And best of all, It always points straight-up North!

In keeping with the spirit of the holidays and all...the instructions are roughly influenced (and I do mean roughly) by the poem "Twas the Night Before Christmas"

Please bare with...
And by the way; this Instructable is entered into the  Homemade Holidays Contest.  
Please come back when the Voting opens on December 28th.




Step 1: Instructables Poem

Picture of Instructables Poem

I stumbled upon this original Instructables manuscript while searching the attic for the Christmas Tree Stand...thought it should be published here in its entiriety along with accompaning photos. Enjoy.

HERE IS THE WHOLE INSTRUCTABLE AS TOLD IN VERSE.
(or as some would have it, told in prose - it's really much worse.)
And so, like a nut-covered treat to enjoy, if you please,
Here is a bit of Instructable-flavored, holiday Cheese.


(This is the lesser-known version of "Twas the Night Before Christmas" )


Twas a few nights before Christmas and all through the rug,
the tree stand had leaked much more than the dog.

I'd just settled the nerves with a long swill of nog.
contemplating how the tree would burn nicely as a fireplace log.
When up in the brain there arose such an instructable,
I stopped prepping the tree for the flames of a firey destructable.

I dashed to the garage and threw in the trash,
the old stand that I'd loved; it'd failed me for last.

The light on the bench of laborious toil,
gave hints to a solution that had started to boil.
When, what to my twitching eye should appear,
but a length of black pipe and steel cable right here.

With my little old driver so lively and quick
I drilled a hole in the floor and tapped it up quick.
Spreading an eyelet, I threaded this hook
behind the closet door where surely no one would look.

I fashioned some plywood to support a "cant" boom
and the length of steel pipe soon swung out, over the room
Secure at one end tucked under the hook tight.
From the other end dangled a steel cord with a loop and a bight.

Noose the tree up...and heave on the leaver
freed from the ground it will twirl from here eaver.

Usually, I thought these trees must be kept moist.
but how is it done, when up on a hoist?
Held tight to the stump by the threads of screw teeth
the 3 liter with water encircled the stem like a wreath

As bulbs that appear tangled by wild hurricane fly
when wrest by installer, blood pressure mounts to the sky.
So up to the tree-top the LED's flew,
With the help of twist-ties and a star'ed "Bumble" too.

Hang a cane on a tree or tree on a cane?
So that it seems like you know what you're doing, add a curled bit of conduit
to the top of the boom, made to look like a cane when red ribbon's are wound on to it.
As i'm reminded, it'd look more like the candy with ribbons red /
white
but when put away last year, they were too well-hidden from sight.

Thinking myself a right clever old elf
My wife laughed when she saw it in spite of herself.
til she ascended the stairs and found the pole in her path.
She let out a noise... not-so-much like a laugh.

Laying a cuff upside of my head
She stepped over the boom and headed to bed.
Never you worry, she couldn't have been much too sore.
for we've hung it like this, for the the last four years or more.

Something unusual born from a need, is really about nothing to whistle
but I rather like this one that twirls but won't topple down like a thistle.

The instructions are written and the photos you've seen
I hope you agree, A floating fir tree creates a wonderous scene...give it a try if you might
Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night.


Step 2: Silver & Gold (or at Least Some Type of Metal)

Picture of Silver & Gold (or at Least Some Type of Metal)


The light on the bench of laborious toil,
gave hints to a solution that had started to boil.
When, what to my twitching eye should appear,
but a length of black pipe and steel cable right here.


Materials Needed:

- 1" diameter steel pipe  10' long.

- 1/8" stainless steel cable  (approx. 8' in length)

- Cable clamps

- Hose clamp

Step 3:

Picture of


With my little old driver so lively and quick
I drilled a hole in the floor and tapped it up quick.
Spreading an eyelet, I threaded this hook
behind the closet door where surely no one would look.

Materials Needed:
- Threaded Eyelet
- 1" to 1/2" reducer fitting
- 1/2" 45 degree fitting
- Short length of 1/2" pipe

A steel eyelet with wood screw threads is used to anchor the end of the pipe.  The eyelet was "opened-up" to create a hook.  A pilot hole was drilled through the carpet and into the subfloor. 
The hook remains there all year and the 1/2" pipe fittings are slid under it.  

Note: The closet door can still close with the pipe and hook in place.  

I suppose with shorter sections of threaded pipe, and a few more fittings, the pipe could be made to follow the floor to be less of an obstacle in the hall than the diagonal path used here.  (Ref. last photo on this page)

Step 4: You Should Have Seen the Size of the One That Got Away!

Picture of You Should Have Seen the Size of the One That Got Away!


I fashioned some plywood to support a "cant" boom         
and the length of steel pipe soon swung out, over the room
Secure at one end tucked under the hook tight.
From the other end dangled the steel cord with a loop and a bight.



3/4" Plywood with a notch cut for the pipe is used to prop up the cantilevered beam.  The plywood takes the load rather than the molding at the top of the loft's railing.  It is placed on the floor and rests against the half-wall without any attachments..

A loop is made in the 1/8" steel cable around the 1" diameter black pipe and secured with two cable clamps.  A hose clamp is tightened around the pipe and is used to position the cable along the length of the pipe.   (Ref. last photo on this page)

Step 5: Hook Line and Sinker

Picture of Hook Line and Sinker


Noose the tree up...and heave on the leaver
freed from the ground it will twirll from here eaver
.



 A second loop at the working end of the cable allows a lasso to be slipped over the main stem of the tree (about 1 foot down from the top) and tightened like a noose.

Step 6: Water Water Everywhere

Picture of Water Water Everywhere

 
Usually, I thought these trees must be kept moist.
but how is it done, when up on a hoist?
Held tight to the stump by the threads of screw teeth
the 3 liter with water encircled the stem like a wreath


Cut the top off a 3 liter pop bottle... the poem says the rest.

Step 7: Bumbles Bounce

Picture of Bumbles Bounce

 
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky.
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of Toys, and St Nicholas too.


Wow! thats right out of the original poem....I'm not sure I can do much more damage to that stanza than the author, Clement Carke Moore, did but, I will give it a try.

As bulbs that appear tangled by wild hurricane fly
when wrest by installer, blood pressure mounts to the sky.
So up to the tree-top the LED's flew,
With the help of twist-ties and a star'ed "Bumble" too.


The power cord runs along the beam and down the cable to power the tree lights.  This allows the cord to wind and unwind as the tree twirls.

LED "branches" are used here to disguise the cable and the electical cord.  Three LED shrubs were tie-strapped to the cable.  (The shrubs are LED's taped to pose-able metal branches and sold as a unit)

Step 8: Is That a Candy Cane or a Shepards Hook Hiking Staff?

Picture of Is That a Candy Cane or a Shepards Hook Hiking Staff?

 
Hang a cane on a tree or tree on a cane?
So that it seems like you know what you're doing, add a curled bit of conduit
to the top of the boom, made to look like a cane when red ribbon's are wound on to it. 
As i'm reminded, it'd look more like the candy with ribbons red 
/ white
but when put away last year, they were too well-hidden from sight.


Metal electrial conduit is bent into a curve to simulate the curl of a candy cane.  The conduit is slid into the black pipe beam and wedges in place at the start of the bend.

Wrapping the conduit and beam in red ribbon ribbon gives it a candy cane look.  (red and white ribbon would add to the candy cane appearance but I didn't have any handy this year so I had to settle for red and gold)

Step 9: Happy Holidays to All the Instructables Family

Picture of Happy Holidays to All the Instructables Family

 
Thinking myself a right clever old elf
My wife laughed when she saw it in spite of herself.
'til she ascended the stairs and found the pole in her path.
She let out a noise... not-so-much like a laugh.

Laying a cuff upside of my head
She stepped over the boom and headed to bed. 
Never you worry, she couldn't have been much too sore.
for we've hung it like this, for the the last four years or more. 

Something unusual born from a need, is really about nothing to whistle
but, I rather like this one that twirls but won't topple down like a thistle.

The instructions are written and the photos you've seen
I hope you agree, A floating fir tree creates a wonderous scene...give it a try if you might

Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night.

Comments

MadeByGloria (author)2015-12-05

I got quite a kick outa this. Hilarious and ingenious!

crapflinger (author)2009-12-23

a neat mod would be to hang the tree from some kind of motorized spinning contraption, so the tree would rotate on it's own....forever

 Same thought here.  I've got the motor and the mechanics lined-up.  Unfortunately, not so keen on the electrical side of the house.  Need some help with swiveling electrical contacts to keep the 120v flowing to the lights without the cord getting all wound up.   Remember the motto - no special order parts..."If I can't find it in my local "Har-Whar-Star" I can't build with it."

LondoB5 (author)hpstoutharrow2015-12-04

battery operated light strings

They sell them at Big Lots, Walmart, etc.

AND they're LED, so they can stay lit for a month. That should allow you to spin your tree without the electrocution or indoor bonfire.

Goodhart (author)crapflinger2009-12-23

using a reversable, gear reduced motor, one could turn it 180o  clockwise, and  then 180o counter clockwise.

crapflinger (author)Goodhart2009-12-23

or with the same method you could do a full 360 in one direction. hold for X minutes, then reverse a full 360 and hold

well...depending on how comfortable you are with house fires....you could just do a simple two track contact with some copper foil tape and a couple of machine screws...might also make a really nifty spark/light show (similar to old bumper cars)

lilshawn (author)crapflinger2009-12-23

uhm, no...probably not a good idea...lol.  especially since those trees are so damn flamable already.

i would consider maybe taking a look at a printed circut board with copper disk tracks on it and some altenator/motor brushes. maybe copper tubing sections and pvc pipe.

DIY Dave (author)crapflinger2013-12-21

You could hang it on your ceiling fan

rkinsel (author)2014-12-24

Always after good ideas, way cool!

Thank you

Rick ARGG

chuckstake (author)2014-12-24

love it saved for later thank you

DIY Dave (author)2013-12-21

I'm not sure I would like the pipe blocking the hallway, but good idea and great writing style.

Merry Christmas

them8triark (author)2013-05-17

I love this idea! I would actually try this, but I have no upstairs area in which to hang the pole...lol...AWESOME!

missyd1230 (author)2010-02-03

Doesn't this leave a huge pipe to trip over in the hallway? Maybe attaching straight to a ceiling beam ?

amberella1964 (author)missyd12302010-12-05

LOL hence the...
til she ascended the stairs and found the pole in her path.
She let out a noise... not-so-much like a laugh.

I have to say I loved this instructable and I loved the poem !!!

The Mother of Invention would be so proud :)

Anyone attempting this will add their own ideas and personal touch to it of course, perhaps improve on it.....isnt that what its all about??
(and yes I am missing some apostrophes...dang mini comp from Dell who put the apostrophe key way down low so I can never hit it!)

*thumbs up to the inventor of the anti grav tree!

dark sponge (author)2009-12-26

Somebody should make one that levitates the tree using precise, strong electromagnets controlled by a computer!

Kordan9090 (author)dark sponge2010-02-03

That would be fantastically expensive!

DrPizza777 (author)2010-01-29

 your poem is hilarious! XD!!!! i like how it rhymes, but maybe the rhythm/beat could have been improved.

good idea. it would look cool.

-segabud
domo arigato mr. roboto himi lo shiri tai!!!!

hpstoutharrow (author)DrPizza7772010-01-29

Why, Thank You!...The poem was just a satirical whim meant to be nonsensical and goofy.  Certainly not to be taken as serious poetry  - forgive me Frost, Dickinson, and Longfellow. 

XOIIO (author)2009-12-23

3 Litre soda bottle?

hpstoutharrow (author)XOIIO2009-12-23

If you are questioning the spelling of litre or liter...it works both ways as I understand...depending on who you ask.
If you are questioning soda versus pop...again it depends who you ask.
If the question is 3 versus 2  the answer is definatly 3.  Yes, they are out there.  A little harder to find and usually the off-brands.  Larger size plastic juice bottles also work well.  Depending on the trunk size, I have forced on a juice bottle and the handle indentations in the side of the bottle held the so tight I didn't need the screws.
If the question is, Question mark "?" versus Exclamation mark "!"...                   I leave that up to you :)

Zwee (author)hpstoutharrow2010-01-25

I usually find 3 L soda bottles at Dollar Tree stores. Faygo soda comes in 3 L bottles and can be found at my local (NW Chicago 'burbs) Dollar Tree. Your results may vary. :)

Oh, and I'm a Canuck ex-pat. I recently went back up home for Christmas and, though I still spell it 'litre' as most good Canuckians do, I still got teased for sounding 'merican because I've taken to saying 'soda' instead of 'pop'.
*sigh*
Just goes to show that you can't please everyone.

Oh, and great job on the tree, by the way!
Now vacuums need never be thwarted again in their quest to pick up all the dang pine needles! :)

crunchscar (author)hpstoutharrow2009-12-23

Hahahahahahahahahahaha, youre a smart dude

hpstoutharrow (author)crunchscar2010-01-06

 

"If the question is, Question mark "?" versus Exclamation mark "!"...                   I leave that up to you :)"

Why must it be either / or when the excellent and seldom used Interrobang will do the job of both. 

XOIIO (author)hpstoutharrow2009-12-23

I don't care how you spell liter. I'm not even sure how I want to spell it. I've just never heard of a 3 liter bottle of pop, sounds fun.

Xial (author)XOIIO2009-12-24

Depending on where you are, 3 liter sodas are harder to come by.
In my area (Central Florida, USA), I usually have to hit up bargain stores, like Dollar General, Family Dollar, or the Dollar Tree to find a 3 liter soda.

You may be able to substitute with a 3 liter water bottle (Zephyrhills bottles have a newer, rounder, 'eco-friendly' design that robs you of 0.78l of water in the process) if you can't find the soda bottle. It has the bonus of being a clear bottle, so you can either decorate or disguise it. :)

luckyy78 (author)2010-01-07

i would of mount it straight to the celling beam 

but oh well to each their own

Xial (author)2010-01-06

I'd be a mite surprised if Walmart doesn't have the newer water bottles that I mentioned, but as I stated, it's harder to come by a 3l soda bottle.


On an aside, why is everyone pasting interrobangs

IX Smith XI (author)2009-12-26

Epic

phynicfirebird (author)2009-12-25

its not really anti gravity but its a cool design.

thanx

 There's no such thing as Anti-Gravity?!  Egads! Why didn't anyone tell me this earlier?  
Gotta go and catch the tree before it hits the ground!

Made ya look though, didn't it?

Thanks for the compliment.
Like your LED book light Instructable.  Clever use of the drill to twist the wires. Keep up the good work.

Mirime (author)2009-12-23

Are you by any chance an Engineer? Or are just one of those people that like  stuff like that?

hpstoutharrow (author)Mirime2009-12-24

Ponder this: Is it that - Its either a fish "Or" it lives in the water?  It can be the other without being the one, but,  it can't be the one without being the other.

To answer your question...A REAL Engineer would have: sketched a free body diagram showing the beam and the forces applied to it (the weight of the tree) and the constraint of the fulcrum (pivot point) and the equal and opposite force at the anchor point.  
Bending moments (also known as torque) would have be calculated as force applied at a length from the bending point (force x distance).
Being a stationary object the sum of all the forces and moments would equal zero.  
Then, the cross sectional bending moment of inertial would have been calculated for a hollow cylinder using the inner and outer diameter of the pipe and Young's modulus of elasticity for plain carbon malleable steel.  
With this information the strain on the beam would have been calculated to ensure that the stress was well below the yeild strength of steel with a comfortable safety factor.  
A well provisioned engineer might have also run an a compurtized F.E.A. (Finite Element Analysis) to analyze in detail the stress on the beam.
Only then would an engineer truly know the beam would not bend under the weight of the tree.  

I, on the other hand,  just took a chunk of pipe and hung a tree on it!

The Theoretical and the Applied Practical each has its place... you be the judge.


LMFAO....Yup! He's a Backyard Geek like the Rest of Us!

xadevox (author)hpstoutharrow2009-12-25

THATS DEEP! haha

mnbouchet (author)2009-12-24

 GREAT POEM! It must be great to have people walk in and wonder "how the H**L did that tree get off the floor?"

domestic_engineer (author)2009-12-23

really cool.
you should try putting a fake present over the soda bottle, to make it look a bit more decorative.
or spray pain tthe soda bottle gold.

 Excelent Idea about a fake present!  That would look the tree was a giant bow on the box.  Nice.
My wife usually puts on a Christmas "mini' skirt...What?...No!...ON THE TREEEE! -  to cover the bottle.  A clear bottle helps to check the water level.

big65mopar (author)hpstoutharrow2009-12-24

What you could do is put a short section of plastic tube into the bottle, one thats large enough to fit one of those old style cork fishing bobbers with the tall point on it so that it floats inside the tube or you could custom make one with a taller point.  Make it so that the point will be visible when the water level is within say 2 inches of the top of the bottle so that the top of the point is showing at the lip of the tube.  Put your fake present box in place with the tube sticking out ( wrap it like a candy cane ) and all you have to do is top off with water ( use sprite soda with a single aspirin each day as it helps keep the tree alive longer and the needles on longer ) each day and that will fix your when to water issue.

bassclarinet23 (author)2009-12-24

This is amazing, for lack of a better word. Unfortunately, I don't have a two story house, but I'll keep this in mind if I ever do!

timothymh (author)2009-12-24

 :'-) Nice poem!

biggy smalls (author)2009-12-23

thats amazing. i have never seen and instuctable done entirely in verse.
i applaude you.

dp mac (author)2009-12-23

Merry Christamas everybody in the Instructables Comunity.

knex_mepalm (author)2009-12-23

 Wow. I definitely absolutely must make this.

l3owzaaaah (author)2009-12-23

your poetry needs work, but nice ible.

MrLouque (author)2009-12-23

 6/5 for the song/poem thing. Great Instructable!!

rimar2000 (author)2009-12-23

This custom of "real tree" sounds so pretty ... But the fact is that 99% of the times (always leave a gap), which begins as a "living tree" ends up being a "corpse tree".

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