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PComp | Week 2 | Spinning Switch

There's a dollar store that sells fidget spinner near to where I live, so I thought, let's make a switch with a spinner!

I also bought some supplies like wire dish cleaner, rubber tape, aluminium foil, at the dollar store.


My first plan was to tape foil-roll at each end of the spinner, and connect the foil to the circuit using wire. It looked like this:

Background: Brooklyn Bridge Park. Just because.

And this worked! But every time I spun it, the wire connecting the foil-roll would get more and more entangled with each other.

No longer in the park cos I mostly live on the floor.

So I pivoted, and thought of ways I could integrate the spinner into a circuit as a switch. I sketched out some ideas, and this was what I settled on:

Explanation: when the spinner touches the base & top plate, it acts like a conductor and therefore closes the circuit.

This was how I implemented the base & top plate. Just folded sheets of aluminium foil, and hoped for the best.

Not the prettiest.

So apparently it worked! Downside was I had to use my finger to hold the spinner in place because I could not figure out how to fix it onto the cardboard.


And now that it was done, I intended to connect one more LED onto the circuit, so that when the spinner spun, the LED's would take turn to light up.

An implementation of the earlier sketch.

All seemed okay, but in reality, having aluminium taped onto cardboard with rubber tape did not give you a very sturdy structure. The spinner kept moving the aluminium foil out of place, or the cable would get smack and disconnect from the foil plate. It was very hard to get both plates to work well with the spinner.

This can be seen below. The LED kind of lighted up randomly because the base plates were not sturdy.

Imagine the spinner spinning awkwardly at the side. It was very hard holding a phone and spinning the spinner at the same time.


// Bonus: the plate can be use as finger buttons too!

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