With basic electronics of just a fan and a motor, a bubble machine is also a really easy first electronics project. This one I threw together with spare minutes here and there across the period of a week. The longest part was waiting for the centrifugal fan to arrive from Amazon, the best part was making a lot of mess in the Instructables office before realising that the shower would be a better place to blow bubbles while testing.
My bubble machine was made to keep my friends' toddler amused. She loves bubbles but is at an age where blowing them herself is rather hit or miss (not to mention messy). She spent a VERY happy 15 minutes running through and around them in the street outside, afterwhich the adults stepped in to play with heating the bubbles to see if they'd go higher, or experimenting with different bubble mixes to see if any where noticably better.
Earn 3 months pro membership: Anyone who makes their own bubble machine and posts a photo in the comments will get a code for 3 months of pro membership from me.
Step 1: Tools & Materials
To make it easier for others to reproduce this, I've done away with my normal format of exactly what to use and instead broken it down into the five main components the machine's made from. The 5 steps after this talk about what alternatives you could use and what each has to do to make a great bubble machine. I then give details on how to assemble it if you did it exactly like mine.
Trough: To hold the bubble solution. It needs to be waterproof and not too shallow, that's it.
Bubble Ring: A ring of holes that will spin slowly through the trough picking up the bubble solution. As it lifts out of the trough the holes pass before a blower to form the bubbles.
Motion: A slowly moving motor to spin the bubble ring. A continuous servo is perfect for this.
Blower: Something with a bit of puff. Will force the bubble liquid out of the holes in the ring, forming BUBBLES! I used this 12V centrifugal server fan from Amazon.
Power: A power source or two for the blower and spinner.
You'll also need nuts, bolts, hot glue or superglue to hold everything together.
The files I used for laser cutting are included in this step.