Design Loop: Fidget Spinner Design Iteration

It took a long time for me to finally decide on what I wanted to make for the upcycle project, but once I found what I wanted it was a fairly smooth  process to complete. I decided to make something called a fidget spinner. They are typically made out of a bearing housed in either metal or a 3D Printed casing. Since I had plenty of skateboard bearings laying around, that was not an issue to find. The issue was how I was going to secure the bearings. I had originally thought of gluing them together, but I wanted to put these back into my wheels when I was done with project. I thought about making a wood casing but I didn’t have any extra available for use. I tried using duct tape and string, but I couldn’t keep the bearing secure enough. I then found some zip ties and that ended up working perfectly for this.


After making my spinner, I decided I like it so much that I am going to continue making design iterations for it, but probably not for this project. I want to make a 3D printed casing and well as milling one out of metal using a possibly better bearing.

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3 Comments. Leave new

  • This was a great idea. I’ve seen them displayed in internet videos and everything but never thought to make one. Probably one of the coolest functional projects that I saw. It would be awesome if you can take this even farther with some of our other projects throughout the semester.

  • Jeremy Parsons
    February 12, 2017 6:37 pm

    I also enjoy that you make a quick GIF of your creation’s function, it immediately allows a viewer to better understand the usage and dynamics of your intended design. I do think that you could easily speculate on some improvements that are probably easy to implement. Like what about a 3D printed top/bottom in lieu of the zip ties? Or a laser cut lid that is transparent and could showcase the interesting dynamics of the bearings? Good work on a fun widget.

  • Benjamin Fried
    February 9, 2017 9:34 am


    This is a cool idea. I like the animated image that shows this in action. I think the idea of using a CNC to create something sleek looking is a great idea. The zip ties work, but there could be pointy edges and other extrudes that could get in the way of the spinning.

    Also, that seems like a great design process. It seems like the “Brainstorm” and “inspriation” stages could occur at the same time. Why did you decide to have an order to them?


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