Instructables

CoolRunnings: Hi Speed mouse/hamster wheel for 3 euros

Picture of CoolRunnings: Hi Speed mouse/hamster wheel for 3 euros
Hi everyone

This is how i provided a simple and effective way to the (too)many mice that me and my girlfriend are growing. Living in a tank may not be that much fun, so mice need to have toysand exercise tools in their homes to avoid becoming way too fat.

The obvious solution is a mouse/hamster wheel, but this toy tends to be a problem since it tends to get noisy at night.

Surfing the 'Net you can find "Silent" wheels that cost about 20 dollars/euros, but that's too much IMOHO and a very nice challenge trying to do i t myself. So I decided to make my own, spending far
less money (about 3 euros) and recycling things.

I named it "Cool-Runnings", just because I think it needed a name and this was the best I came up with :-)
 
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Step 1: Tools and Materials

Materials:
- 1 CD/DV Spindle cover, from a 25 or 50 Disk spindle
- 2 HD magnets (with metal base attached)
- 1 skate ball-bearing (20mm)
- Some nuts, washers, and bolts,
- small short wood screws
- 4cm x 15cm x 1cm wood board

Instruments:
- heavy duty drill (not pictured)
- hobby rotary tool
- 18mm flat wood drill bits
- hacksaw
- measuring tape, multi tool, pencil

I paid my ball-bearing 3 euros, that is much more than what you might pay for it on line or at a sate shop. You don't need a super-ceramic extra professional one... just one that spins smoothly enough

You can get the magnets form an old HD. I need the magnets and they must be strong since I use them to fix it to the walls of the plastic tanks I use as cages. If your cages are metal bars or net
you can find different ways to fix the wheel like zip-locks or metal wire
John_Edward2 years ago
I got my inspiration from this, and replaced the really noisy ballbearing of my "silent" spinner with a new and better one.
The act of replacing the bearing is closer to rebuilding the whole housing from scratch though, so if it had been possible in my terrarium, I would have gone with your mounting method

But now it truly is a silent spinner; I did a blind test, and I cannot hear if the wheel is spinning at a distance of about 30cm!
Even when I put it right next to my ear, the noise is just barely audible.
The annoying racket of my hamster running has been turned into really adorable sound of her tiny feet going like the wind.

Thank you :)
squishysim2 years ago
Thanks for the idea EmcySquare, I made one for my little winter white hamster as she was starting to get a little large for her 4' silent spinner. I really didn't want to spend another $20 on larger wheel. Shes in my bedroom next to the bed so a quite wheel is a must for me.

I didn't use the same mounting method though but drilled a hole in the center piece, took off the those locking clips, added texture lines and popped it onto the old wheels stand.
Rye21215 years ago
hey thanks. i used this and my hamster loves it. he found it hard to move the wheel so i drilled about 15 small holes, or 5 larger ones, into it and its perfect. sanding it helped, but it made it easier to move with the holes. thanks again! -Rye2121
Bongmaster5 years ago
now if u made it so it generated a bit of eletric to charge batterys then it would be cooler XD
EmcySquare (author)  Bongmaster5 years ago
I've seen such a project from MakeMagazine, but it only provided enough electricity to light up a led... The point is basically that all the power comes from the mouse muscles and a single mouse migh weight up to 15 grams... not much... ... of course you might thin of using BATTERIES of mice in parallel... ... ma parallel distributed mouse powered genreator... why not... ... based on this we might rewrite "The Matrix" !!
great now i have just imagined a field of towering matrix battery things with mouse wheels on instead of people bulbs -_-
theRIAA5 years ago
that's a great job, and an amazing concept. At first I thought the magnets were for stopping the wheel for when you wanted to get sleep, but I imagine that's quite quiet.
EmcySquare (author)  theRIAA5 years ago
Mice generally are more active at night (got great sense of smell and hearing but poor sight) thus they are far more likely to run at night. If you stop or remove the wheel at night it's like removing it at all... poor mice.. By the way, you can obviously also use light oil to prevent any friction and any remaining noise