How to make a wooden spinning top in one minute ;-)
- If you want the tops to spin fast, then keep the main weight close to the shaft
- If you want the top to spin for a longer time then keep the most weight on the perimeter of the whorl.
- The heavier the top the longer it will spin.
- The greater diameter of the whorl the longer the top will spin.
- The greater the diameter then the more stable the top will be.
- The more weight on the perimeter the more difficult it will be to finger spin
- The more weight you have on the perimeter the more thought you have to put into the design of the finger spin shaft. i.e. the more weight the larger the diameter of the finger spin area of the shaft and also the great need for “grip” being built into the design (i.e. knurling) (Of course you can make it a “palm spin” shaft if you like!)
- The position of the whorl on the shaft has an effect on the stability and the processing of the top. The lower the whorl the more stable. Higher than one third of the shaft length begins to make the top more difficult to spin. Though palm spin (faster spinning) tops will work OK at above this height. Sure it will still spin ok but better if the proportional position is lower than one third.
- Whorl and weight principles can be stated more scientifically by talking about centre of gravity, instead of where the main weight is positioned.
- Design your top shape for streamline effect. Air friction does have an effect, though only really noticeable on a very “whiskery” top.
- Reduce friction at the contact point also., A sharp, but not penetratingly sharp point will be better than an blunt point. Metal is better than most woods as a spinning point. Glass is a great surface to spin them on. (I use a concave shaving mirror.. the sort that makes your face look bigger!! It has a nice retaining rim too)
This is a rough overview of the concept where I am right now. I’m thinking of a spinning top as an “object of happiness”. The top is separated in different categories for each exercise. When it stops spinning it falls down to one of the sides. The user can now use the corresponding exercise on his iPhone. Because of the randomness the user doesn’t have to make a choice what makes it easier for him/her to exercise. But he could also just choose a specific exercise by himself in the app.
While spinning the top lights up. The more it gets used the brighter it glows. To spin the top is also kind of a meditation tool itself. It helps the user to clear his/her mind and forces him/her to take a break.
I had a lot of ideas to put in my object. But I hade to consider space and price. That’s why I listed all the features and the corresponding technical requirements and then made a diagram where I sorted the features regarding the outcome and the complexity.
Right now I think the simpler the better just regarding the costs and required space. And the more technical parts inside the top the more difficult it gets to keep it in balance.
My first thought was to create a die with an exercise for each face. By rolling it the exercise would have been selected randomly or the die could have been set with a specific face up for manual selection.
But because dice are often related to gambling it could have been interpreted as gambling with your happiness. That’s why I was looking for or comparing other objects.
I found out that a combination of a die and a spinning top is perfect. It is more related to fun and joy but it can still select the exercise randomly in a playful way.