Flying Prop: With a Simple Popsicle Stick !

Introduction: Flying Prop: With a Simple Popsicle Stick !

About: I am an aspiring student and a part-time maker and creator

Hi everyone!

I've got another little project you can make from very easy to obtain parts, to make this fun little Flying prop made of a Popsicle stick and some other things that are relatively easy to find around the house, and is fun for people of all ages, so without further ado, lets get started on this Instructable! 😉

Supplies

You will need:

A popsicle stick,

A plain generic toy motor found in hobby stores and some motorized children toys

(take it out of the toy only if your child permits :) ),

some batteries, 9v is the best for performance, but even some AAs in a holder can do the trick..

an empty ballpen refill tube,

some superglue (Cyanoacrylate glue)

A nail (equal in diameter with the outer diameter of the pen refill) and a hammer, some scrap wood or something to keep under the Nail

some water in a pot you can boil for steam (In adult supervison only, please wear some Oven Mitts to help you not get burnt)

Time to have some fun !

Step 1: Choosing Your Powertrain..

Now we need a fast and speedy motor,

I luckily got this little motor from an broken Radio-Controlled Car, which is not only fast but is lightweight too..

Make sure that your Motor shaft (The spinning part) is the same diameter as the inner diameter as the Pen refill, and has a snug fit that is ever so slightly loose when half fitted onto the shaft..

for powering the setup, I have two AA batteries in an Double battery enclosure to provide me the required voltage to power the motor fast enough to make the Prop fly high!

I do suggest using a 9v battery instead, which makes any little motor go whee, but since this motor was already fast at lower voltage, I didn't need it..

Step 2: Making the Propeller

The propeller is something that might seem hard to make, but is actually easy once you understand the steps involved..

I chose something with more width on the outer edges and thinner in the center..

1. Take your wooden popsicle stick and try to mark the center point with a pencil, this needs to be as accurate as possible, I suggest trying to find the middle of both axes to get the center point. once found mark it... if you don't make it precise, it will wobble and not fly straight...

2. take your Hammer and nail, place it over the Center marking, and punch it to create a hole in the center, once created you can remover the nail slowly to see the remnant hole which we shall use for the Shaft coupling..

3. take your popsicle stick and keep it over to the steaming water, be very careful as this can burn you,

(children please do this under adult supervision, use Oven mitts to protect you from the hot steam and heat..)

Slowly and carefully twist the popsicle stick like you would with a candy wrapper till they achieve atleast a 35° angle of attack, this is how the Propeller is able to push air down with the necessary force required to fly..

Take your time with this step as it is very important.. otherwise your popsicle stick could split and break..

4.take the Refill and cut a small piece, about 1cm or less than half an inch should be fine..

Press it firmly into the hole created before, the hole may have shrunk a bit, but you can still force it in, once you have it in, make sure it is at the the length of the tube where if place flat on the table, the tube raises the rest of the propeller from touching the bottom surface..

then add a few drops of super glue to secure it in place..

If you want to decorate it, try using some markers and colors to decorate, using glue and glitter might disturb the natural balance of the propeller, and is not recommended

if you did this successfully, you now have a completed Popsicle stick propeller !

Step 3: Flying Sky High!

Now time for lift off,

Go outdoors to a open airspace with as little wind as possible,

Place the propeller just firmly onto the motor shaft such that is could fall off once it has started spinning at it's maximum speed..

Press down on the battery and it should rev up very fast, after just 5 seconds, a strong gust of wind on you hand and it is off !

Troubleshoot:

If it is spinning in the wrong way and is not pushing air down on your hand, try flipping the battery it should rotate the polarity of the spinning direction and should start spinning in the right direction and should fly off once at full speed

If it is spinning fast, but it is not coming off, try removing the power and let it slow down. make it a tad bit more loose and try again by powering on...

Please, don't point it at people or property that could cause harm or damage, do not look directly into it as it could injure you, take caution while having fun..

If you have comments or questions, please feel free to ask below. if you have made this yourself, please feel free to share your creation, we all would love it! ❤❤❤

stay happy and stay safe

Cheers!

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    6 Comments

    0
    ivymaker
    ivymaker

    1 year ago

    did this really fly?

    0
    MeanderingMaker
    MeanderingMaker

    Reply 1 year ago

    Yes it did, it went up to 20 feet in the air :)

    0
    ivymaker
    ivymaker

    Reply 8 months ago

    totally

    0
    salvatore.mazza
    salvatore.mazza

    1 year ago

    How cute!
    May I suggest a way to find the very center of the popsicle (of anything actually)? Try to keep it in equilibrium on a pencil tip (the best you can of course). This would ensure you get to the center of mass. If the popsicle is not completely straight or homogeneous, the point you find will not be the geometrical center (i.e. equidistant from the edge), but it is the very point you are looking for.

    0
    MeanderingMaker
    MeanderingMaker

    Reply 1 year ago

    Yes, that is also a good way to find it out :)
    but I went ahead to find the Geometric center as it was the same as the center of mass in the popsicle stick as it was symmetric anyway