Wind Mobile Made of Shells




Ever wondered what to do with all the shells your kids collect on the beach? Throwing it away is no option so create something beautiful.

All you need are:

-Shells loads of them
-Some driftwood
-Flathead pins which you can bend (not the ones for sewing) or pearl beats
-Nylon tread

Step 1: Making a Wind Gong

You can make all kinds of shapes.

Let the driftwood gide you.

Here some I've made

Step 2: Drill Wholes in the Shells

Select the shells you want to use and drill wholes in then using your dremmel with a small round shaped drill.

Be careful shells are not easy to drill, bits and peaces can be flying around so wear safety glasses.

Step 3: Drill Wholes in the Driftwood

Drill wholes in the biggest peace of driftwood.

Where? You decide all driftwood is different I'm just giving a general idea what you can do.

Put a firm rope on top and some nylon treads on the bottom.

On this one I put 3 nylon treads so later on I can attach a triangle shape.

Step 4: Adding the Pins to the Shells

This step looks difficult but after two shells you'll manage it. Put the pin trough the whole and wrap it up like a key ring. Just keep on rolling and moving your forceps toward the pin. Be careful if you reach the shell, if you push to heard it will break. There is no easy way to explain it in English when you are Dutch. You can also put the tread trough the shell and put a beat underneath.

Step 5: Attach the Shells to the Nylon Thread

Attach the shells with a single knot so you can slide them up or down until you are happy with the result. Also add some peaces of driftwood. Push the nylon trough the whole and knot something underneath. I put a miniature keyring under it to keep it in place. you can also take a beat or anything else to keep it from sliding down. Mine was wet so it was pretty heavy so be careful your tread does not break.

Step 6: Creating Some Space

Now you have to create some space otherwise the shells or driftwood can not turn around in the wind. I took 3 driftwood sticks and put 2 wholes in them. Push the tread trough two sticks one on top of the other. Take the third stick and place it under the bottom stick and put the tread trough the whole on the other end. Put the end of the last one on top of the first one and push again a tread trough. Attach one thread on every corner.

Step 7: Almost Finished

The treads on the corners you put again some shells and a driftwood stick with tree wholes in them. Attach the tread to the middle whole and make some firm knots and cut of the tread. Not to much it can still slide down. Put new treads on the corners and attach shells or driftwood.

Step 8: Finished

You are done! Some hard work but a lovely creation. Before you start try to immagine how the driftwood can twirl and turn. And attatch the rope on top firmly to wherever you are going to hang it. Mine came off and is 50% destroyed. I hope i have inspired you to some of your own creations with my first Instructable ever.



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    8 Discussions


    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    I'm sorry for the dissapoinment my dad can make a turbine for a small airplane tough! Not that is any help.


    9 years ago on Introduction

    I once made one of these as a present to the owner, of a deserted Island I stayed on. I left it in their hut, for them to find in a few years when they returned.

    1 reply

    9 years ago on Introduction

    Abalones are the rounded hemispherical one piece shell (Haliotis sp.)- 10-20cm. The limpet is a conical one piece shell that sticks to rocks and ship hulls (I forget the genus.)- up to 5cm. An oyster drill is related to the wentletrap- 2cm. You can look them up on the Encyclopedia of Life Online.


    9 years ago on Introduction

    Abalones and some varieties of limpets already have holes in them. Also, shells that have been attacked by oyster drills can be found on beaches with a neat round hole already drilled in them.

    1 reply

    Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

    You are quite the shell expert, I have really no clue which shells you are talking about. I know nothing on shells. In Holland you only find the shells I used. The ones with the hole I also found but the holes were to big for the flat head pin. With a beat it will definitely work.