I wanted to make a bike mounted device that would actively spread wildflower seeds along the wastelands and derelict areas that I often cycle through; thus helping our struggling pals, the bees and the butterflies.
I prepared to use what was to hand; a tennis ball and some bolts and brackets.
The trained monkey following a banana on a stick will come later.
Teachers! Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.
Step 1: Step 1
These are the parts-
A tennis ball
A 6mm nut and bolt
A strong strip of metal (this is a stabiliser bracket)
A bolt long enough to go through a tennis ball and two nuts (I used a 10mm bolt)
Step 2: Step 2
Drill a hole in the ball and then drill one exactly opposite to create your axis points.
Step 3: Step 3
Put a washer on the 10mm bolt and push it through; mark the equator and drill some holes about 1 inch apart around it.
I used an 8mm drill.
Step 4: Step 4
Rubber is hard to drill and closes up after drilling to some extent; also the fluff covers the hole.
I heated up a spoke and cleaned the hole up by melting the rough edges away.
Instead of any drilling I imagine that a soldering Iron could be used but it would smell a bit.
Step 5: Step 5
Bolt - washer - ball - washer - nut - bracket - nut.
The nuts are tightened against the bracket and act as locking nuts, allowing the ball to still spin freely.
The excess bolt is then cut off and the burr filed down.
Step 6: Step 6
On most bikes there is a hole for a mudguard attachment between the seat stays at the rear of the bike, below the saddle.
I fixed the whole ball assembly to this hole; the bracket was pre-bent to rest against the wheel with sufficient pressure to turn with the wheel.
Step 7: Step 7
These are the the wild flower seeds; they can be collected from abundant places in the summer or bought online.
For general meadow and wasteland areas-
For woodlands and along hedges-
Nettle leaved bell flower
These have to be funneled in through one of the holes; my funnel end was too big so I attached a Bic pen lid.
Step 8: Step 8
Well what do you know/ . . . I got my monkey after all.
This is the spreader in action.
It does work well but is difficult to catch on camera.
Thank you for ploughing through the instructable his far. . . you can stomach it, please carry on for the bonus material.
Step 9: Bonus Instructable Step 1
This is powdered chalk and I hoped that it could be used in my seed spreader to leave a temporary trail as I rode on tarmac paths, for fun.
Step 10: Bonus Instructable Step 2
It didn't really work; it just deposited the chalk on the frame.
I tried a cardboard cowl; that didn't really work either.
Step 11: Bonus Instructable Step 3
After some delibratiion I moved the ball to here; on most bike there is a hole that is used to fit bicycle stands.
Step 12: Bonus Instructable Step 4
Here are the test runs.
They do not show up very well on camera but there is a followable trail so use you imagination.
I suspect it will work better with white chalk which I will be trying soon; and maybe enlarging the holes.
Anyhoo have fun and please do not forget to vote if you have enjoyed this instructable.
Finalist in the
Spring Bike Contest