Introduction: DIY Fan

What is it?

The "Do it Yourself" Fan is a simple version of a fan for students in 6-7th grade. Everyone at some point in their life has felt "hot" or "warm" due to natural temperatures. Students can create this fan in the classroom, but also are able to create it with everyday materials. The goal for this fan is to create a cheap alternative for all students to be able to create a fan using a few electrical components and everyday items.

Learning Objectives:

Students will learn about STL standard 16 "learning about energy and power technologies" as well as STL standard 19 "developing an understanding of manufacturing technologies". Standard 16 will be used when students are taught how to complete a circuit in order to make the fan to work, as well as complete the circuit while adding in a switch. Standard 19 will be learned when students create the housing unit for the electronic portion of the fan. By using wood, students will have to measure out, cut, and glue wood together in order to fit the overall electrical components.

Cost Estimation will be about $10 per student.

Detailed costs will be in Materials list.

Design Process:

Ask: What is a problem that I have in my everyday life? I get hot often and need something that can cool me down.

Imagine: I drew up different fans with different housing units to see which one I liked the best. Some had cardboard as the housing unit, and some didn't have a housing unit at all to focus more on the electrical component, others used 3D printing to create the housing unit.

Plan: I decided to create a fan with a housing unit so that the fan doesn't look messy with the wires going all over the place. The housing unit will be made out of wood that students will have to measure and cut. I drew up a diagram to show how bit the fan will be and how big the housing unit needs to be.

Create: In order to create this, I had to first make sure that the circuit worked. I made a simple fan circuit then added a switch to it. After that worked, I measured out all of the wooden pieces and inserted the fan into the housing unit. I was constantly testing to make sure that the fan would continuously work even if I moved certain elements into the housing unit.

Improve: I had to improve constantly by first wanting to use cardboard. However, I thought that it may be too easy for middle school students so I decided to use wood. If I had more time, I would have sanded the wood down after I glued it all so that it would look nice and even. I would also have finished the wood so that I could paint it and make it look nice.



- Arduino Motor (1) $4

- Small Fan (1) $.50

- alligator clips (depending on if there is no soldering iron available) $2

- 9V Battery (1) $1.60

- 9V Battery pack (1) $1

- 12x12 plywood sheet (1) $1

Tools and Equipment

- Soldering Iron (optional)

- Pencil (for measuring)

- Ruler

- Chop Saw

- Drill

- Wood Glue

- Super Glue

Step 1: Purchase Materials

Gather all of the materials required. You will need to get a 12x12 piece of plywood from any hardware store and need to be able to cut it. The wood should not be any thicker than .25 inches.

Step 2: Create a Test Circuit Using Alligator Clips, Battery, Motor and Fan

In order to complete the fan to start spinning, there needs to be a power source (the 9V battery) and a complete circuit. As shown above, the red line from the fan needs to connect to the red line from the power source. Before connecting the two black lines together, plug in the 9V battery into the battery pack. Then connect the black wire from the motor to the black line from the battery. The fan should start to spin. This simple circuit will be used in the overall fan creation but later on we will add another component.

Step 3: Add a Switch to the Fan Circuit

Adding a switch is not that much different than the original fan circuit. In order to add the switch, you must first make sure that the switch is put up, so that the circuit will not be complete until you close the switch. Remove the alligator clip from the red wire connected to the fan. Clip the alligator clip to one side of the switch. then, insert the red wire from the fan into the other side of the switch. When you close the switch, it will complete the circuit and your fan will turn on. Everything else will remain the same except for the fact that the switch will be turned on and off.

Step 4: Measure Out the Plywood

Measure plywood so that you get the following sizes in inches (quantity)

1.5x1.5 (1)

1.5x6 (2)

1.75x6 (1)

1.75x5 (1)

Use a ruler in order to get maximum quality in the lines so that when you cut the wood, it will be precise.

Step 5: Cut and Sand the Wood

Using a chop saw, cut the wood so that you get the measured sizes of the wood. These pieces need to be somewhat precise.These pieces will be used for the housing of the electrical components of the fan. In the middle of the 1.5"x1.5" piece, drill a small hole about .25" in diameter. There must also be 2 holes that are 1 inch apart in the center of one of the 1.5x6inch wood peices. These hole will be used to put the wires through. After cutting all of the wood, you must sand the wood so that all splinters go away. This can be done using a sander or sandpaper.

Step 6: Glue Motor, Insert Wire, and Glue 4 Pieces Together.

Using wood glue, glue the two 1.5x6 inch pieces onto the 1.75x6 inch piece on opposite sides of each other. While you let that dry, insert the wires from the fan through the hole in the 1.5x1.5 inch piece and then glue the motor onto the wood by using super glue. Then, after all of that is done drying, wood glue the 1.5x1.5 piece into the top of the 3 other pieces that you glued together so that it now makes a 4 piece. Let it all dry.

Step 7: Glue Switch Onto the Housing Unit

In between the two holes that you cut out, glue the switch onto the housing unit so that you can attach wires onto it.

Step 8: Inserting Components and Closing It Off

Gather all of the wires and battery and battery pack and place it inside of the housing unit. Take out the two wires that you are connecting to the switch and pull them through the two holes. You can glue or solder these wires onto the switch so that they do not come undone. Super glue the battery onto one of the inside sides of the housing unit so that it does not fall out. Then, wood glue the final piece onto the two 1.5x6 pieces so that it closes off the housing unit. You now have completed the fan. The fan should turn on and off by moving the switch up and down.