Introduction: How to Make a Stirling Engine Powered Toy Car?

Welcome to my another instructable on making Stirling engine powered toy car.

A brief info about our current model. This is a beta type configuration; you can see both the displacer piston (Glass marbles) and the power piston (Glass syringe) are placed one behind the other. Test tube is the displacer cylinder, Cardboard Ratchet is the flywheel as well as front wheel for the toy car. Instead of creating a cardboard rear wheel, we have used a plastic toy car wheel.


1. The heat source will be placed at the end of testube, hot air expands and pushes the power piston outwards which then rotates the ratchet clockwise.

2. Once the power piston reaches top position, due to effect of gravitational force the glass marbles roll back and also the power piston is pulled back. Now the complete setup will be in its initial position

3. Again, due to gravity, the glass marbles roll forward and pushes the power piston outward. This cycle continues until the heat source is removed.

Materials used:







Tools used:




Step 1: Making the Ratchet

The ratchet is a 5.5cm in diameter. In order to create a ratchet for our project, here I have used cardboard but you can also use a readily available plastic ratchet for your project. The bearing diameter is about 2cm.

Follow this instruction if you are creating manually:

1. Print a sample ratchet image on A4 sheet

2. Draw the outline of the ratchet on a piece of cardboard

3. Finally cut the outlined ratchet using a sharp knife

Step 2: Making the Testube Stand and Holders

Testube Holder:

Make the testube holder exactly to the size of your testube (Testube size is of your choice). Make sure that the testube does not move back or fall forward during running process.

Apparatus holder:

Measurements as shown in the image. For our project I have used cycle spokes. It's rigid as well as bit flexible