Giant Spirograph Delights Children, Dwarfs Banana

giant spirographLate last year at a craft show, [hahabird] and a friend came across a laser-cut Spirograph and they both had a go at it. After mocking his friend’s lack of fine motor skills, [hahabird] was struck with the idea of making a giant-scale Spirograph that would (hopefully) be less frustrating for kids of all ages.

He generated the gears using an InkScape plugin, and then moved the project to Illustrator for adjustments. After nesting the inner gear drawings, he was able to print them out on one 3×3′ piece of paper at the local FedEx-Kinko’s. To make a template for routing he pieces that make up the eight-foot diameter outer ring, [hahabird] first cut it out of MDF and then bolted that to plywood. The outer ring’s size was dictated by the number of sections that fit on a 4×8 piece of plywood.

The challenge of the inner cogs was to make them move smoothly and still mesh with the teeth of the outer ring. [hahabird] solved this by mounting casters on raised platforms, which double nicely as handles. Each inner cog has a series of PVC couplers that take the 1″ PVC chalk holder insert.

So far, [hahabird] has cut 22-, 35-, and 44-tooth cogs, all of which are painted in nice, bright colors. According to his reddit comments, he will have a video or gif of it in a few days. We hope he makes the plus sign cog and the tongue depressor piece, too.


  1. Lord Nothing says:

    that headline wins the internet

  2. RunnerPack says:

    I, too, enjoy the headline. The project itself ain’t too shabby, neither!

  3. had simular the Soviet toy

  4. SavannahLion says:

    Holy Hell…..
    I’m seriously considering moving some of my projects to the back burner to make this.

  5. Mycotox says:

    Finally, ‘banana for scale’ has infiltrated Hackaday.

  6. echodelta says:

    Banana for scale?
    The bananamobile comes to mind or the 2 story house side banana “art” advert that a large apartment conglomerate has here in West Lafayette.

  7. Hirudinea says:

    In my day we just drew on the sidewalk freehand, my day sucked! :(

  8. Rob says:

    …just look at it!

  9. HaHaBird says:

    Here’s the video of it in action:

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 96,704 other followers