Introduction: Swimsuit Dryer

My sister-in-law shared with my about the swimsuit dryers they used on their trip to Hawaii. I was intrigued because my family often goes swimming at the pool and carrying bags of soaking wet swimsuits can be a smelly. Having a way to speed up the drying process would be great. Then I remembers a fan left over from a previous project and decided to hack it to become a swimsuit dryer.

Step 1: Tools and Materials

Tools

  1. Miter Saw
  2. Drill
  3. Scissors
  4. Paint Brush
  5. Drill Bit
  6. Orbital Sander
  7. Dremel

Materials

  1. Fan
  2. Plastic Planter
  3. Scrap Wood
  4. Coat Hanger
  5. Screws
  6. Paint
  7. Duct Tape

Step 2: Making the Basket

I used an old plastic planter that a small tree had come in. I chose it for its light weight and size. When selecting your basket I recommend you use the same criteria.

First use a smaller drill bit to make pilot holes. Then use a larger bit to make the holes. These will be the holes the water will fly out of when it spins. I used a utility knife to clean up the rough spots. Then cut the basket to the height you want it.

Step 3: Mounting the Motor

The fan I selected was from a standing fan. I used the stand to mount a lamp. I kept the fan and now it has found new life.

Because it was a standing fan it had a handy bolt that I used to mount it to a piece of wood from a pallet I had broken down. Then I screwed it to a foot to keep it upright and give it a place for attaching it to a base.

Step 4: Assembling the Box

You will need to assemble an open box to go around the basket. This keeps people from hurting themselves while it is spinning. Use a sturdy piece of plywood for the base and make sure it accommodates the basket. It should be wide enough so the basket won't hit the sides of the basket. The weight of the plywood will give it stability. Then secure two boards on the left side and two on the right. These boards should be taller than your basket. The boards should be placed at the corners. I used a corner clamp to help me hold them in place while I drilled and screwed.

Once the four boards are in place you can attach them with four more boards along the top. These four boards will secure the top and give you somewhere to put the lid.

Step 5: Sanding

I used an orbital sander to clean up the rough edges. I used and 60 to round the edge, then a 120 to smooth them out ,and finally a 240 to clean it all up. You can do this part by hand , but it will take longer. I forgot to grab any pictures of this part of the process, but hopefully you can imagine how it went.

Step 6: Painting

I decided to label the dryer to help others know what this thing does. I put a stip of duct tape on one of the boards and wrote out the words in permanent marker. Then I used an exacto knife to cut out the letters. After that I put on two layers of black paint. Once it had dried for a few hours I carefully pulled the tape off.

Step 7: Dry Some Swimsuits

It works well with the kids swimsuit. It has helped with keeping the suits from smelling as much and is fun to run. Be careful when operating because of the high speed there is danger.

Improvements

It needs a sturdier basket, a motor with more torque, a better enclosure. I would like to put it in a bucket, but the basket kept hitting the sides and slowing down. I will continue to work on the design. Thanks for your votes.

Comments

author
hulk1371 (author)2015-11-29

What about a old washing machine. Strip it to a frame and wire the motor to a switch so it spins instead of agitating.

author
ehudwill (author)hulk13712015-12-12

That would be interesting. I was looking for something more portable.

author
teppley (author)2014-08-07

A 5 gal bucket would be good as well as using a swamp cooler motor, they are fairly cheap and readily available. Also using the belt and pulleys from the swamp cooler department at Home Depot would provide more speed and torq

author
ehudwill (author)teppley2014-08-08

Another commenter mentioned a swamp cooler. I will have to see if I can find one here.

author
Robnelson (author)2014-08-08

Its a neat idea, but a little too much work for my family with only a couple people using the pool a day.

I do have a "salad spinner" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salad_spinner

for drying lettuce leaves and other vegetables. I might try that and see how well it works. It certainly spins fast enough! thanks for the idea!

author
ehudwill (author)Robnelson2014-08-08

Thanks for sharing. Let me know how that works out!

author
nmarks2 (author)2014-08-07

Great job. The plexiglass enforced base with the mounted omnidirectional wheels just shy of making contact with the plexiglass for stability. The lid sounds good but I suggest plexiglass if possible with maybe a hole in top to just toss in some trucks. watching it spin is part of the fun!

author
ehudwill (author)nmarks22014-08-07

You are absolutely right! Watching it spin is the fun part.

author
NitroRustlerDriver (author)2014-08-07

What about using a 5-gallon bucket with a lid for the "basket". Just drill a bunch of holes in it.

Mounting the basket on a separate shaft of some kind would help eliminate a lot of off balance vibration. You could also then use different size pulleys to get the speed you want.

author

I have a bucket all lined up. I just need to check the dimensions. Thanks for the suggestion!

author
cerberustugowar (author)2014-08-01

maybe the wobbling could be minimized if you mounted three wheels around the bucket, 120 degrees apart. I would agree that it needs a sturdier basket as well.

author
EM6 (author)cerberustugowar2014-08-07

For wheels, how about small inline skate wheels with sealed bearings? The rubber wheels would minimize noise and vibration, while the bearings would minimize friction.

author

I had though to the wheels too. I would mount four wheels on the internal side of the wood structure, to keep the bucket from swinging

author
clay.in.co (author)2014-08-07

This might be just the use for the old giant roof-mount swamp cooler that I have lying around. The motor is good and the blower is basically a big steel basket. It even has two speed settings. Pretty fancy.

author
ehudwill (author)clay.in.co2014-08-07

That sounds awesome. Please post it if you build it.

author
ptrobrn (author)2014-08-07

It would probably be safer to go and get one of those large pot strainers that you can drop into the pot while you boil a chicken... this way its made of steel and you don't have to cut holes into a flimsy plastic planter which you are going to spin up.

author
ehudwill (author)ptrobrn2014-08-07

I will look into that. What is the weight on one of those? Thanks for sharing.

author
ptrobrn (author)ehudwill2014-08-07

http://www.amazon.com/Winware-Professional-Aluminu...

I guess they call them boil or steam baskets. this one is 10.2" diameter and is 1.8 lbs.

author
ptrobrn (author)ptrobrn2014-08-07

To help with unballanced loads what about 4 pulleys placed around it and two belts running around two pulleys and the basket. This way the basket has some wiggle ability but can't get jammed up against a wheel. The basket is going to wiggle, there is no way around it but what you can do is try to control it.

author
ehudwill (author)ptrobrn2014-08-07

I had not thought of belts and pulleys. I did try some bungee cords, but they did not do the job very well. With belts and pulleys I bet I would be able to adjust it more.

author
ehudwill (author)ptrobrn2014-08-07

Nice, I like it. Thanks!

author
mcain2 (author)2014-08-02

I repair the professionally available units, retail for about £600.00 each. The principal is the same but the basket is s/steel - no chance of finding a junked mini washing machine? Adding a lid with switch activated 'on' will make it safer, simple contact on when the lid is pressed down. Having a smaller basket will kill most of the wobble

author
ehudwill (author)mcain22014-08-07

Thanks for sharing. I had heard that the more professional type was lid activated. That is a great idea. I will have to add that to my next build.

author
Fikjast Scott (author)2014-08-06

what a project! well done, thanks for posting

author
ehudwill (author)Fikjast Scott2014-08-07

Thanks!

author
ASL1014 (author)2014-08-05

I suggest submitting this to kickstarter

author
ehudwill (author)ASL10142014-08-06

Wow, thanks. I have thought about doing this. Now I think I will definitely look into that.

author
kbc2 (author)2014-08-01

maybe a piece of 1/4" plexiglass cut to the diameter of the bucket to add strength to the bottom of the basket but saving weight. glued or 2 pueces to sandwich the bottom.

author
ehudwill (author)kbc22014-08-02

That might work. Thanks for the idea.

About This Instructable

27,261views

122favorites

License:

Bio: I am a former English teacher turned Interactive Media Instructor. I like to make, fix, and take apart. Few things are more fun than taking ... More »
More by ehudwill:Star Wars Lightsaber UtensilsMusical Activated Light Up Christmas TreeWireless Weather Indicator
Add instructable to: