Instructables
Picture of Silent Hedghog/Pet Wheel
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Photo Apr 14, 11 48 01 AM.jpg
Photo Apr 14, 11 49 11 AM.jpg
Hello there! So a few months ago I got a Hedgehog and when searching for supplies learned that they need a special wheel that isn't mesh or wire because their feet get caught. The ones that were online were way too expensive for my tastes, so I made my own!

Pretty much it's a Roller Blade wheel attached to a bucket, so it's super cheap to make, and takes very little know how to make.

BY THE WAY: This is a really good design for other small animals that need excersie wheels. See the last step for some tips. And I'll add good tips from the comments and credit you too!

Awesome! I got featured! Thank you so much!

So since this is out there among more people, who may not have hedgehogs, you can replace the bucket with a mesh wheel for rats or even a plastic ones for hamsters! Again, if you have any questions, post them in the comments! But hedgehogs NEED a bucket so their feet don't get caught!!
 
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Step 1: Materials:

I got most of the materials from Home Depot save for the ball bearings and rollerblade wheel which I got from PlayItAgain Sports, but you can probably find some of these materials lying around.
 

*1 Bucket big enough for a Hedgehog to run in(I got my 5qt Wide Mouth Bucket from Home Depot, but you can use any bucket big enough for your hedgie to run on!)
1 length of the smaller diameter PVC Pipe(the diameter isn't too important; just not too thick, not too thin)
2 PVC Elbow Joints
3 PVC End Caps
1 PVC Three way joint
1 Roller Blade Wheel with exposed holes around the bearing whole.
1 Roller Blade/Skateboard Ball Bearing
1 Carriage Bolt; See Detailed Picture(I forgot the measurements of it, so take your Ball Bearing to your local hardware store and find a Carriage Bolt that fits snug, and isn't too short.)  IMPORTANT!:  Make sure that the nuts and bolt you got don't impede the spinning capabilities of the Ball Bearing, and have them only secured onto the inner metal ring.
2 Washers
3 Nuts
4 Mini Zip Ties

Optional, but Recommended:
Dremmel Tool, but if you have your own way of cutting PVC and making precise holes in the bucket, go for it.

*: If you don't have a hedgehog, you can use one of those mesh wheels for rats, and the plastic ones for hamsters and mice. 
Love it! We just got our new girl Dixie today and the wheel was super easy thanks to you! Saved us lots and we are pretty proud of doing the work ourselves. Thanks for the direction! It really is SILENT!!!!! ...and inexpensive. You rock and good luck in the challenge!
trebory6 (author)  smathersapril2 years ago
Wow, haha that was fast! I'm glad it worked for you! :)
I made a similar thing yesterday, adapting an existing wheel that came with the hamster cage. I was going to buy a silent wheel as the one supplied was so noisy at night for my son. Our local pet shop wanted £14 for a small one! I looked around the house for a suitable bearing/spindle and found an old Xbox 360 fan. After some cutting, sanding and gluing it was ready. Installed it last night and it was so, much better.
Alba Gmelch made it!6 months ago

Hi! I want to share with you my version of hedghog wheel... I was looking for a solution for the skate bearing and wheel... and I found it!! Really simple and cheap too ^-^
Was that: use an industrial wheel. We take off the wheel... and the rest is how you see it. 4 screws and nuts to fix it to the bucket, the same screw and nut who comes with the wheel to fix the pvc elbow (no glue for this)... And this is all :)
A tip: when you take off the weel from metal part, take that and buy the elbow and pvc pipes according to it. (our wheel is aprox 7.5 cm of diametter, and the pvc pipes are 32, but i recomend first buy the wheel)
I hope this will be helpful.

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This is a great idea, using a castor wheel! Just curious, what size castor wheel did you use?

The wheel have a diameter of 7'5 cm. approx., the part which is attached to the bucket have dimmensions of 7'5 x 6 cm. (i hope this sizes could be helpful)
I recommend buying first the castor wheel and when you have removed the wheel, take the bearing part and try the differents elbows until find the right one.

So the PVC elbow will fit snugly into the space without any kind of adhesive,glue, etc.?

That was my case, but i think that a little of silicone or pvc glue could make it stronger. However, it has not been necessary.

jpham16 made it!2 months ago

Love this instructable! Finally got around to doing this project haha. I did something similar to what Alba Gmelch did.

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wtan84 months ago
Hey, do u sell these wheels? Its difficult to get some of the material like the roller blade wheel from where I came from. Possible to buy 1 ready made from u thr?
vinzxon12 months ago
tell me, is that any replacement for the roller blade wheels???

it's a rare and expensive part from where I come from,,,
Thanks I have been looking for a method to make a ferret wheel as the ones I have seen are over $100
SwtMelly1 year ago
For those of you that have rats, and hate noisy wheels, try this with the Fortiflex Mini Feed Pan found here http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B007N16G0C
soksok41 year ago
Is there any alternative for the skateboard wheel? thanks. Love the idea.
trebory6 (author)  soksok41 year ago
Well, it uses a roller blade wheel. If you're talking about the Ball Bearing, then no, there isn't.
soksok41 year ago
Please, reply... :( thanks.
mari32 years ago
This was a great idea! I made one or my two gerbils (: it just had to be smaller, and chew proof on the zip ties, I glued a metal lid to a jelly jar over that. I also added little toothpicks to the inside so they would have something to grip, I used Elmer's because it's nontoxic. A few have popped off, but it still works great. Winifred (the black one) loves it!
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Great Idea about gluing a cover over the zip ties that was on of my thoughts also was them chewing on it.
GunmmiB3ar2 years ago
Would hot-gluing the wheel to the back of the bucket and zip tieing it affect this in anyway? I just think that a little more support to hold it on would be better.
cool idea! i have considered getting mice but didn't like squeaky wheels (as i would have to share a room with them at night!)

i wish you could own hedgehogs in Australia....that is one adorable animal!!!
Mavs412 years ago
I got my hedgehog 3 days ago and finished the wheel yesterday, really appreciate it dude! I don't know if you've thought of this but the PVC took up a little too much space in the size cage I have. I ended up drilling a whole in the side of the cage (I use a large plastic storage container) and putting the bolt straight through that. Works great so far. Do you know what section of home depot you got that bucket in? I couldn't find anything like that and ended up having to cut one, but after that it was a little too flimsy and I'm afraid it'll bend under his weight.
trebory6 (author)  Mavs412 years ago
I got the bucket in the paint section with the rest of the Buckets. It's called a 5 qt Wide Mouth bucket. Here's the link to homedepot.com: http://www.homedepot.com/Paint-Paint-Accessories-Apparel-Buckets-Paint-Pails/h_d1/N-5yc1vZbobh/R-100066957/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10053&langId=-1&storeId=10051
rimar20002 years ago
Good design and work, congratulations.
trebory6 (author)  rimar20002 years ago
Thanks! :)