Introduction: Pocket Size Escapement Toy

About: I like to make things. Art, inventions, tools, ukuleles, etc...

This project was an experiment to see if I could make the idea work.


scrap wood

3/32"steel rod

antenna from a broken radio

retractable key or ID lanyard

small piece of cloth

a bead of the right size

Step 1: Work Out Dimensions

First find some wood that will be pocket size when cut in half. Drill 3/32" holes in one half very close to the ends as shown. Install the center rod and place the rotating antenna piece on top. Make a connector out of some scrap wood as shown with 3/32" holes at right angles. Install the end rod. It needs to be taller than the rotating part but short enough to fit in the box. Mark the cross piece and cut it just short of the end rod. Don't drill the hole for the other end rod yet. You will do that after the box is together.

Step 2: Box Edges

Find or cut some scrap wood to form the edges of the box sides. Glue the sides on first, then sand the sides flush and glue on the ends. Then sand everything flush.

Step 3: The Hinge

Make sure all the rods will fit inside with the spring lanyard. Tape the box shut on 3 sides. Cut a piece of cloth to fit the hinge end. Spread on some glue and attach the hinge cloth.

Step 4: Add the Other Rod

Measure the distance from the center pole to the end rod and mark it on the other side.

Step 5: Glue in the Retractable Lanyard

Find a spot for the string thing where it can fit without preventing the other parts from fitting in the box. Glue it in with some thick superglue.

Step 6: Attach the Strings

For the drive string, find or make a bead and a washer that fits the antenna tube snugly. Pull some string out of the lanyard and put a clip on it to keep it from going inside. Feed the end of the string through the bead and then push fit it onto the end of the antenna tube. This wasn't easy. It takes some fiddling. Add a drop of super glue if the press fit doesn't seem tight enough.

For the tether string I used a tiny piece of vinyl tube that fit tightly on the cross rod with the tether string going through. This works well because you can adjust the length easily before cutting off the extra.

Step 7: Done

Have fun!

Pocket-Sized Speed Challenge

Participated in the
Pocket-Sized Speed Challenge