Main Project Aesthetics – Plans and Alternatives for Propeller

For my main project I plan to make a vintage propeller from wood planks. The reason I want to do this is because I love all things aviation, and propellers are timeless symbols of flight.

In order to accomplish this I plan on following the rough plan outlined in the image below.

I decided that I would like to use ash wood because of grains found throughout the wood. The aesthetic the grains bring to the prop is beautiful and adds lots of character to the project.

The remaining steps involve shaping the wood to the final product. I do not have a lot of experience with woodworking, so this will be the most challenging part of the project for me. Cutting the ash board in half and gluing the pieces together is straightforward, but the rest will be a learning experience for me. I plan on using a band-saw to make the general form of the propeller, then sanding to create the final shape I want. This will involve a lot of eyeballing, as the curvature of the blade is complex and ever-changing.

After I am satisfied with the shape of the propeller, I plan to stain the wood and paint the tips. My initial vision is to have the Tips painted Air Force blue with a silver band to pay homage to the United States Air Force.

I am still undecided about what movement I would like to incorporate into this project. I have thought about making the prop a static display, have it spin freely or have a motor spin the blade. Currently I am leaning towards attaching the blade to a wall mount and having it free to spin but this may change as time progresses.

Image Citations:

Seamster. “Make a Wooden Propeller.” Instructables,

Previous Post
Ways Of Learning: Guest Lecture by Prof. Kate Goodman
Next Post
Plans and Alternatives: George Nakashima and Industrial Chic

4 Comments. Leave new

  • Noah: Really cool project. I’m excited to see your progress and how learning some woodworking goes for you! I’m curious if you allow it to spin if you would incorporate bearings into the mechanism or if you would just leave it static or spinning on a wooden spindle to retain the same aesthetic of material throughout the whole object. Keep up the good work, whichever direction you decide to go!

    • Noah Verspohl
      March 3, 2020 10:22 pm

      Davis, Thanks for the comments! I was thinking of using skateboard bearings and a metal shaft similar to the example image I used. This would allow it to spin freely.

  • Austin Ross
    March 2, 2020 9:51 am

    It looks like you have a good understanding of what you want to do and how to do it moving forward with this project. I noticed that the angles and geometry of the propellers will be very difficult to make and was wondering if there would be a method to prototype or test your skills with this before incorporating and fabricating the final project? Doing this rather than going straight into the final product might save you time and grief with the geometry fabrication. Just food for thought!

    • Noah Verspohl
      March 3, 2020 10:25 pm

      Thank you for your thoughts! I had thought of the complex shape, but I plan to just free-hand it until I get my desired shape. This will involve sanding, inspecting, then sanding again to reach my goal.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.