Picture of spin painting wheel
A spin painting wheel is a great way to make cool pictures easily. It can help if people are not feeling confident to draw, allowing them to make something really good looking.

I have a gallery of spin paintings here .
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Step 1: Stuff you need


* a saw or jigsaw
* a drill with a range of bits
* some spanners (ideally cone spanners for wheel bearing adjustment)


* old bike wheel, I've only used fronts but I'm sure backs would work too
* some thin board like particle board or mdf
* a short plank of pine or ply
* long cable ties
* some large washers that fit round the bolt of the bike wheel

Step 2: Adjust the wheel

Picture of Adjust the wheel
We need to move the whole wheel along the bolt so that none sticks out on one side. This is pretty much the hardest part of the project because it is fiddly, especially without the cone spanners. It's probably worth looking up your local community bike project and going along on one of their open days to do this part. Here is a video of adjusting a wheel's hub; which is essentially what we're doing.

The bolt has 2 nuts on each side that are locked together. The nuts closest to the wheel are the cones, and they press against the bearings.

We have 2 options;

1/ loosen the nuts and take the bearings out, then reinsert them later

2/ loosen and tighten on the other side, so we edge the bolt through while keeping the bearings safe inside

Last time I made one, I tried to do option #2, but ended up having to do #1 when all the bearings fell out! So keep a cloth or something underneath to catch them.

After you've moved the nuts along the bolt, tighten the nuts against each other at one end, then slowly tighten the other side's cone into the bearings. Test the feeling in the wheel, we want a combination of low wiggle (play) and smooth turning. When you've got it right then tighten the other side's lock nut and test again.

onetonmagoo4 years ago
I'm building a pedal powered spinner, using a "fixie" wheel so that it can go both directions, as fast or slow as you want. To be used at my "interactive art" event on Second Saturday in Sept.
Lyn01044 years ago
I have used a salad spinner for this. The only thing - your pics are small.
ridgrunner4 years ago
The quick and easy method:
Take an old fan and take the front screen off. Tape round piece of cardboard to fan blades. Make a paper wrap around the outside to catch the over spray. Plug in and go to town. That is what my old art teacher did for the school carnival. Paper sheets can be taped down or make paper "corners" that the paper can slide under. T-shirts can be pinned down.
matthewvenn (author) 4 years ago
good idea with the t shirts!
Thanks everyone for the comments!
onemoroni14 years ago
These are fun. I remember doing this at carnivals. However, you might want to be aware of the throw off of excess paint splatter.
I think that's what BtheBike meant about "Old Shirts...come out!"
matthewvenn (author)  CaliforniaCbeee4 years ago
right I thought BtheBike meant to protect the clothes of the spinner. Though I've not really had a problem with using inks unless spinning very fast and doing splattering or dropping inks on.

I want to try those cool brush pens with the ink inside the body, they'd be good for kids.
Very cool, I had a toy like this as a kid and loved it! Great instructable.
BtheBike4 years ago
Old Shirts... come out come out !! =)
Aweosme idea. Buy some cloth markers, pin the shirt down, and go crazy!
Very, very cool. Will be doing this one as soon as my other projects are done. The kids are sure to love it !