Introduction: Fairycopter – Rubber Band Helicopters

Picture of Fairycopter – Rubber Band Helicopters
I was looking for a fun craft project to help kids learn about aeronautics.  I stumbled onto WYE_Lance’s  Rubberband Helicopters Instructable and I came up with the following derivative based on his design that uses Disney Fairies Playing cards instead of the helicopter construction paper cut out.  Thank you WYE_Lance for the inspiration.

For lack of a better name, I refer to it as a “Rubber Band Fairycopter (Fairy Helicopter)”.  Although I used Disney Fairies Playing cards for my graphic art, the back of any themed or decorative playing card can be used.

Disclaimer:  This “Instructable” is provided “As Is” without any express or implied warranty of any kind including warranties of merchantability, noninfringement, or fitness for a particular purpose.  The Author of this “Instructable” does not warrant or assume responsibility for the accuracy or completeness of any information, text, graphics, links or other items contained within this “Instructable” post.  In no event shall the Author of this “Instructable” be liable for any damages whatsoever (including, without limitation, lost profits, business interruption, lost information, damaged electronic equipment and circuits, damage to property) or be liable for any personal harm / pleasure / death whatsoever (including intentional or unintentional, without limitation, cuts, scratches, lacerations, punctures, bruises, inhalation, swallowing, or insertions) arising out of the use of or inability to use this “Instructable”, even if the Author of this “Instructable” has been advised of the possibility of such damages or personal risks.

In short... Do your own engineering work and analysis of the approach for your specific implementation to determine validity, safety, and assume accountability for the outcome of your engineering assessment; assess and mitigate the risks specific to your scenario and skill level. Use good sense on how, where, and if to use this approach; if you are unsure, do not use it... I would have said common sense, but common sense is definitely not common.


Summary of Procedures:
  1. Getting your Materials (Parts & Tools)
    • Get Parts: 6" Diameter Nose Hook Propeller, 7" Motor Loops, 4.5" Craft / Popsicle Sticks (used colored ones for added flare), 8mm 18 Gauge Open Jump Rings, Standard 1/4" Staple.
    • Get Tools: Needle Nose Pillars, Drill, 1/16” Drill bit, Stapler, Tape Measure.
  2. Prepare Craft Stick
    • Drill 1/16” hole into one end of the craft stick; roughly centered between bottom and both edges.
  3. Prepare Motor Loop
    • Cut 7" Motor Loops in half and knot loop cut end.
  4. Assemble Craft Stick parts
    • Open Jump Rings and thread through drilled hole of craft sticks.
    • Hook modified Motor Loops on Propeller Nose Hook and threaded Jump Rings.
    • Place 6" Diameter Nose Hook Propeller housing onto craft stick.
    • Close Jump Ring and Propeller Nose Hook (if needed).
  5. Fasten Playing card to Assembly
    • Staple Playing Card onto Assembled Craft Stick with Propeller and Motor Loop.
  6. Operation and Safety
    • Wind the propeller clock wise until desired tension.
    • Release propeller and let go.

Step 1: Material List (Parts and Tools)

Picture of Material List (Parts and Tools)
Parts:
Item: Playing cards
  • Use: Provides graphic art for helicopter.  Any bicycle size themed playing card will work; I used “Disney Fairies Playing cards” to make Fairycopers
  • Price: Amazon has them for $1.95 a pack; each pack has 52 fairy cards or $0.03 per card. 

Item: 6" Diameter Nose Hook Propeller
Item: 7" Motor Loops
Item: 4.5" Craft / Popsicle Sticks
Item: 8mm 18 Gauge Jump Rings
Item: Standard 1/4" Staple
  • Use: Playing Card to Craft Stick
  • Price: This is a pretty common item at any office supply store.  You will usually need to buy a box worth; hopefully you just have this laying around.  You can usually get a box of 5000 for ~$3.00.

Tools:
  • Drill & 1/16” Drill bit: Drill hole into 4.5" Craft / Popsicle Sticks so that jump ring can be threaded.
  • Scissors / Utility Knife: Cut 7” Motor Loop band in half.
  • Needle Nose Pillars: Pry apart and close jump ring, open up noise hook (if needed), fully bend over staple (if not completed by stapler).
  • Stapler: Secure Themed playing card to 4.5" Craft / Popsicle Stick.
  • Pencil, pen, marker: used to mark drill hole for jump ring.

Step 2: Prepare Craft Stick

Picture of Prepare Craft Stick

Take a 4.5" Craft / Popsicle Stick and on one end mark a drill hole that is roughly centered between the bottom of the Craft / Popsicle Stick and the left & right edge.

Once the drill hole is identified, drill a 1/16” wide hole completely through the 4.5" Craft / Popsicle Stick.

Step 3: Prepare Motor Loop

Picture of Prepare Motor Loop

Take a 7" Motor Loop and cut it (with scissors, utility knife, or otherwise) making it one long string.

Fold the cut Motor Loop in half and cut again at the half way point making roughly two even halves.

Take one of the halves and make a loop.  With both end, tie an overhand knot leaving about a 1/2" end tail.

Step 4: Assemble Craft Stick Parts

Picture of Assemble Craft Stick Parts

Take the prepared 4.5" Craft / Popsicle stick and thread a 8mm 18 Gauge Jump Ring through the drilled hole.  It may be necessary to open the Jump Ring prior to threading; if so, it is recommended that you use the Needle Nose Pillars.

Once the Jump Ring is threaded, thread the modified Motor Loop into the Jump Ring and then close Jump Ring with Needle Nose Pillars.

Attached the 6" Diameter Nose Hook Propeller housing to the opposite end of the Craft / Popsicle stick
with the Jump Ring.

Hook the non-knotted end of the modified Motor Loop into the Propeller Nose Hook.  Depending on the nose hook bend, it may be necessary to either open or close the hook opening for proper performance; if required, it is recommended that the Needle Nose Pillars be used to perform the task.

Step 5: Fasten Playing Card to Assembly

Picture of Fasten Playing Card to Assembly

With the Craft / Popsicle stick housing prepared, take the desired themed playing card and center it on the opposite site of the Craft / Popsicle stick where the modified Motor loop is positioned.

The Playing card should be centered between the Jump Ring and Nose Hook Propeller housing.  Once satisfied with the position, use a Stapler to mechanically fasten the themed playing card to the Craft / Popsicle stick.  One staple should be sufficient; however, use your discretion if another staple or two should be applied.

If the staple does not properly fold or does not fold completely, use the Needle Nose Pillars to ensure complete fastening of the staple.

Step 6: Operation and Safety

Picture of Operation and Safety
While hanging on (with pinched fingers) to the opposing Propeller end of the Craft / Popsicle stick assemble, wind the propeller clock wise until desired tautness.

When ready to release, allow to the Propeller to start spinning and then release grasps of Craft / Popsicle stick assemble (release top, then bottom)  If desired, a slight upward momentum can be applied while releasing the assemble to gain additional altitude.  Under ideal conditions, the Fairlycopter can travel up to 40-50 feetvertically; however, 20-30 feet is more ideal.

Safety:
  • Watch finger while winding.
  • Watch face, long hair, and other people when releasing.
  • Highly recommend you stay away from trees, building, or other structures.

Thanks again WYE_Lance’s  and his Rubberband Helicopters Instructable design for the inspiration; this derivate was originally based on his post.

--Matt Royer

Comments

About This Instructable

3,082views

5favorites

License:

Add instructable to: