Saturday, November 7, 2015

Bicycle rim wind spinner

I wanted to load a video of our wind spinner spinning but I couldn't get it to work, so above is a picture.  The video is much better.  If you want to see the video you can visit my facebook page.

I have always been fascinated by kinetic sculptures and have been wanting to try making one.  The one I made (with help from my husband) (I had no idea bicycles had bearings in them) is the simplest form of wind spinner, but I hope to make a better one in the future.  Here's how we made this one.

If you know me, you know I normally make my projects out of things I have on hand, or things that are easily found, inexpensive and recycled.  I am the queen of thrift and upcycling.  My projects require more creativity and work than $.

I removed the wheel from a medium sized bike.  I also dis-assembled an old steamer.  I wanted something small, and light weight to catch the wind.  I thought the steamer fins would work perfect, and you can usually find these old steamers at the thrift store.  

I bent the end of the steamer fin so it would stand up using a pair of pliers.  The fins are soft and easy to bend.  To attach the steamer fins to the bike rim I loosened the screw holding the wheel spokes and slid the bent steamer fin underneath.  Then I re-tightened the screw.  I placed them at a slight angle to catch the wind.  

Below is the rim with the fins installed. 

I had pictures of the whole process until I got a new phone and they didn't transfer to my new phone as promised :(  So, you're going to need to use your imagination a bit for the rest.

We put the rim back onto the bike where it had been previously, minus the pedals, chain etc.  If you look closely at the picture below you can see the front of the bicycle is upside down.

If you look at the picture below, the part on the pole is where the handlebars used to be.  Basically the bike is turned upside down.  We cut off the back of the bike.  The part to the left that catches the wind used to attach the seat and the back part of the bike.  We covered this section with some aluminum flashing we had on hand.  Hubby helped a lot in this part.  He cut the bike apart with the sawsall, and riveted the aluminum sheeting on.  I was going to use screws to attach the aluminum sheeting to the bike frame.  We added the aluminum sheeting to both sides. 

To get the shape of the sheeting to match the bike, I laid the aluminum flashing under this section of the bike and traced the shape with a pencil.  I then cut it out with tin snips.  

I know it's kinda primitive and basic but we sure enjoy watching it spin in the breeze.  

You could easily pretty it up by threading beads onto the spokes, painting it bright colors,etc.  Just try to keep it light.  

If you make one please share, and have fun!

1 comment:

Karen said...

I love this! My husband has an avid interest in kinetic art, too! Great work!!