Fidget Spinner Motor

For Fathers day I got a nice fidget spinner as a present from my son. I like these things but after playing with it for a while it became
a permanent fixture in my laptop bag. Never being used again…
I was thinking about a hobby project to do at home and I recently ordered some very strong neodymium magnets for another
project and had some left.

How about creating a magnet based motor from my fidget spinner and a self created electromagnet and reed switch.
Yeah lets do it…

Parts list


Opposites attract they say and with magnets this is absolutely true :-)
Same poles push each other away and this mechanism is what we will use to make this fidget spinner turn.

The nail is attracts all magnets on all poles as it is magnetic. But we can create a magnet from a nail making it an electromagnet.
When energized it will become a magnet and I made it so that it will push the magnet away when that happens.
The trouble is that when that happens the next magnet will also be pushed away but the other way and the spinning will stop.

So we only want to energize the nail for a very short while just to push the magnet on the fidget spinner away and again when the next
magnet comes by.

We can do this by using a so called reed switch. A Reed switch will make contact when a magnet goes by and disconnect when gone by.
So if you place the reed switch at exactly the correct place it will enable power at precisely the moment the magnet passes the nail.
And it will be pushed away disconnecting the nail again making it attract the next magnet again. When that happens it will connect the reed switch
again and the magnet will be pushed away again by the nail-magnet. and so on…


First I gathered all the above parts and luckily in my case I had everything on hand.

The small round magnet you see here on my finger I used to create a so called reed switch. I hot glued it to a pressure switch I salvaged from
an old electrical toy when it broke. I almost always break these things apart to see what I might be able to use. I’ve boxes full of these things
in my shed and now and again they come in handy. In this case it was a switch one can also easily create oneself.

The magnet is placed om the switch and the pole of the magnet is the opposite from the magnets glued to the fidget spinner.
And as you can imagine… all the magnets glued to the ends of the fidget spinner must face with the same pole to the world.

Leave a small space between the nail and the magnet on the spinner. Just enough that the spinner can turn without hitting anything.

It took me a while to find the correct placement for the reed switch but when found it performed great. As my reed switch is not a
bought one but self created with a small magnet its probably not as efficient as it can be but I can tune it a bit by hand.
When it gets to be oxidized by all the small sparks during the connection I can clean it myself. The next version of the reed switch might even be
completely self made, so stay tuned :-) (#JustBecauseICan)