Intro: DIY Cotton Candy Machine
Hi guys! This instructable is about making a cotton candy machine of household goods shop. Basic idea is a machine, which I can take off the cupboard, pour some sugar and enjoy with twisting some cotton candy!
Also I made a step-by-step video guide, so you can watch it if you can't understang something on these pictures =)
Step 1: Concept
Let’s start with concept. Cotton candy machine is a centrifuge with sugar inside it. Centrifuge is heating from the bottom, sugar is melting and squeezing through tiny holes. Sugar threads are cooling down and a billions of these threads will create a big cloud of cotton candy.
At first we need to fix centrifuge on motor’s shaft. I am gonna drill a hole in the bolt and weld shaft inside it with cold weld. And then fix a centrifuge on this bolt with nuts.
Step 2: Centrifuge's Mount
Find a center of a bolt’s end by jabbing it with pointy screw while bolt is rotating in screwdriver. Also, bolt must be made of soft metal alloy, not of zinc-coated steel. So you will get a nice notch right in the center of bolt. Now Let’s drill A bolt!
Best way is using a vise, but if don’t have one, you can drill a hole in a wooden board and screw a bolt here. And now you can drill a bolt. Every 5 seconds twist the bolt clockwise on a quarter to make a coaxial hole.
Next step is about welding with cold weld, so we need do create a roughness on the motor’s shaft for best welding. I am using a two-components epoxy cold weld, now I mix it in the same quantities and carefully smear it on the shaft and in the hole. Welding… Check and correct an alignment, until cold weld is soft. Oh, I made it. It look very nice.
Step 3: Making a Centrifuge
For centrifuge I use a tin can without seams. The can must be opened by extraordinary way: by grinding an edge with a file. It is necessary to retain a cap, we will need it later. Grind it before you can see a gap between can and cap, then you can hitch it up and remove a cap. After eating and washing you need to find a center of tin can’s bottom. Again. I am using a paper circle which I made by compass and cut off with scissors. I superpose this circle to the bottom’s circles and make a mark, which will used for drilling a hole.
Step 4: Cleaning a Centrifuge
Now we need to grind all tin can with sandpaper. So fix it in a drill with some bolt and nut, and carefully grind it around, inside and outside.
Step 5: A Spherical Part
Next step is giving a spherical shape to the can’s bottom. Use a little hammer or some piece of metal. You should get a thing like on the last photo.
Step 6: Blades
Fix it in a drill again and make a circular mark around the can on distance about 4-5 millimeters from cylindrical part of a centrifuge. Also there will be blades on a centrifuge to rise a candy threads up. We will make 4 blades, I draw and cut them. Bend blades down.
Step 7: The Big Hole
Now we need to make a very big hole in the tin can’s cap. You can jap a contour and break out circle piece, or you can drill a hole and cut this hole with scissors. The centrifuge will be spinning clockwise to torque the nut on bolt, which is hold it on the motor’s shaft.
Step 8: Dozens of Tiny Holes
A little difficult part again: we need to make dozens of tiny holes in the centrifuge. You need an awl or a pointy nail. Carefully make a lot of tiny holes around cylindrical part of centrifuge. Very good.
Step 9: The Cap
Put a cap in the top of centrifuge, it is a little tight. Now we need to fix it. Make a holes through a skirting and a centrifuge in 4 places, then put a pieces of wire and twist them.
Step 10: Bending Blades
Blades needs to be bended in some angle, a bit less than you can see on the video. Centrifuge is done, lets work with a motor.
Step 11: A Motor and Its Mount
I use a motor from an old hairdryer, and it perfectly fit in this pvc coupling. I am soldering wires and a switch. Assembling… And test. It is working. It is time to assemble a candy machine.
Draw a circle on the bottom of plastic washbowl with pvc coupling diameter and cut off this big hole. I will glue a coupling to the washbowl with hotglue, so I am grinding for better glueing. It is a better idea to use a cold weld here, because of heating.
Step 12: The Machine's Base
Machine needs a base, so I mark mount places for foots. Foots will be made of wooden bar, I drill a hole in each bar and fix it with screws. Next step is drilling a lot of holes in the bottom of washbowl for blades, they will make an airflow through these holes.
The most hard part is to choose right source of heat, it should be electric, but in this project I will use a torch. Also we should strengthen machine’s foots for mounting a gas cylinder. Now I am making a big hole for the torch’s nozzle. And now, using a lot of hot glue, cable ties and skewers I will create a super strong machine’s base. I called it the hot glue chaos.
Step 13: A Torch
Also you need to make groove in a gas cylinder’s flange the same as that is already there, but on opposite side. Let me explain: a butane gas cylinder has a pipe inside, that is bended. A cylinder must be placed with groove upward while it is working. But in my design it will be placed upside down, so I need to attach a torch upside down to and make another groove for it. After make this you can plug a cylinder and start making a cotton candy.
Step 14: How to Use It
The motor should be supplying by adjustable source of DC, or you can use potentiometer to control a speed of spinning. I have got a best results with fast spinning and minimal fire. But it is a better idea to use an electric source of heat, maybe I make some and show it to you in another video.
How to use the machine:
- Pour some sugar inside the centrifuge
- Start the engine
- Ignite the torch
- Start spinning some tube or stick to make a big cotton candy's cloud on it
You can also see the machine in action!Here is my youtube video!
But no matter what, the machine is not so bad, and can produce big clouds of cotton candy. It is stable, easy to use, has a potential ways to upgrade but looks like junk. So, it is made of junk, and I am satisfied of it now.