Introduction: A DIY Fan That You Can Show to Family and Friends.
This is a fan that you can make from supplies found around the house. The clear bottle allows you to see the wires inside so you can impress your friends by showing them the wires inside. Since summer is approaching, it is going to get hotter and a mini fan can do just the trick to help you cool down a bit.
A bottle, a motor, hot glue, hot glue gun, cardboard or foam board (optional), electrical tape (optional), a power source which in my case was a USB, and a exacto knife or box cutter.
Step 1: The Motor
Since we are making a fan, we will need a motor to spin the fan blades. You can find a small motor in items such as an RC car, although you might have to unscrew a couple screws and get through some plastic to get to it. I used a old broken RC car I had lying around the house. Cut off the wires that are connected to the motor, but make sure you keep a little bit of wire on the motor for yourself to work with (as sown in the 3rd picture). The circuit in the car had a switch that I could have used but it was stuck really well to the circuit so I decided to leave it out.
Step 2: The Power Source
For this project I have decided to use a USB that was in the RC car I decided to salvage. In the RC car, it was how the RC car was charged. Other power options included, a 9V battery, or AA battery. I could not use them because I would have had to break apart another toy to have access to something that could use batteries. I have never used a USB as a power source before so I was excited to see how well this would work.
Step 3: Connecting the Motor to the USB
There are to ways to connect the motor to the USB. For me the motor had its own wires, so I stripped off the ends of the wires of both the motor and the USB, and twisted the wires together to connect the wires to each other. If you have electrical tape, which I unfortunately didn't have on hand, you can secure the wires by wrapping the tape around the area where both the wires are together. Another way that you can connect the wire to the motor is by taking the wires directly from the USB and hooking it to the little notches and the end of the motor. Right now it would be a good time to test if the connection works by plugging it in. I used a block that I had lying around to test it and it worked.
Step 4: Getting the Bottle Ready to Make a Fan
Now you want to take a bottle and cut the bottle about 1-3 inches from the top. keep both the top and bottom pieces cause they will be used in the project. I had to use a Powerade bottle because it was the only bottle laying around my house. The cons of using a Powerade bottle is that the fan turn out to be heavy and it is harder for the motor to spin the fan around. The pros of using a something light like a Poland spring bottle is that the motor will have an easier time spinning it.
Step 5: Creating the Fan
Now start cutting the bottle to creates the petals of the fan. Once they are all cut, fold them so that the bottle looks like a flower.
Step 6: Getting the Fan Ready to Be Glued Onto the Motor
To make this part easier, unscrew the cap off the bottle and use your exacto knife or box cutter to make a hole so that the stick on the motor can fit inside it
Step 7: Attaching the Motor to the Cap
For this step, take the stick on the motor and put it in the hole made inside the cap. Then use hot glue to secure it in place. Try to make sure that the cap is straight and not crooked because that can cause the fan to spin improperly. Next, screw the cap back on and test it to see how well the fan spins.
Step 8: Making the Bottom of the Bottle Edges Smoother
For this step, I made the bottles edge smoother by using fire. When doing this you can either use the exacto knife or box cutter to make it smoother. or you can use fire. Both ways are dangerous because the knife can get you to cut yourself and the fire burns the plastic and breathing it in is bad for your body. When I was burning it, I was in a well ventilated area and did my best to not breathe in the toxins from the bottle. Don't forget that "Safety is number one priority".
Step 9: Cutting Slits in the Bottle
Now you want to cut slits in the bottle so that you can feed the wires through and keep it inside the bottle. If the bottle is clear, it looks cooler because you can see the wires inside. I made one slit at the top and one at the bottom so that the wire can go in at the top and come out at the bottom. They are hard to show in pictures because the bottle is clear but if you look carefully, you can see them.
Step 10: Gluing the Fan to the Base
Once you have fed the wires through the slits you want to use hot glue to glue the fan to the base that you have made. Once you have done that, you are done. All you need to do now is tilt the petals in the right direction depending on which way your motor spins. To figure out which way is the correct way to tilt the petals, tilt them in one direction and plug the fan in. If you can feel a breeze coming towards you, that means that the fan is done. If the fan is blowing air on the wrong side, all you have to do is tilt the petals the other way. To make sure that you don't accidentally break something, I suggest that you unscrew the cap and then tilt the petals.
Step 11: (Optional) What to Do If Your Base Keeps Falling Because the Fan Is Too Heavy
In my case, since I only had a Powerade bottle, the fan was too heavy and it kept tipping over. To fix this, you can use cardboard or foam board to make a square base for the bottle base that you made.. The board will help keep the fan stable and keep it from tipping over.
Step 12: Why Was This My Design?
I made the design the way it is because it is very simple and easy for anyone to follow. You don't have to be a engineer to be able to make the fan I made. The material used in the project are stuff that you can easily find around the house. The hardest item to find in the project in my opinion would be the motor because it is something i found from a broken RC car. My original design was going to have a nice black box as the base made with black foam board but in the middle of making the project, I realized that I could reuse the whole bottle to make a base and it would look a lot cooler since you can see the inside of the bottle.