How Fast is Your Fidget Spinner?

From Ken Olsen of The Maker’s Box:

How Fast is Your Fidget Spinner?

You never know what people will do with your ideas, and it is always fun to see someone do something I would have never thought off with them.  I got a video from someone who built my Programmable Fidget Spinner, and used a leaf blower to see how fast they could get it to go.  Fortunately, they were wearing safety glasses, and no, it didn’t come flying apart.  It did, however, start displaying erratically at about 3600 RPM (the fastest I can get it by hand is just under 2000 RPM).

So, what is going on?  TLDR: I figured it out and fixed it, and here is proof.

How Fast is Your Fidget Spinner?

POV Fidget Spinner

From MakersBox on Instructables:


Programmable POV Fidget Spinner

Fidget spinners are fun, and you can find one at about any check-out counter for just a few bucks these days, but what if you could build your own? And it had LEDs? And you could program it to say or show whatever you wanted? If that sounds geeky cool, THIS IS THE PROJECT FOR YOU.


I’ve always been interested in using blinking LEDs to get kids interested in programming. The most simple project with an Arduino microcontroller is to blink an LED on and off. Then you get them to see how fast an LED can blink before it looks like it is on continuously (about 12 millisecond intervals). Then you shake the LED back and forth and you can see it blink again! This phenomena is call “persistence of vision” (POV) and is how this project works. It can lead to discussions of both how the eye works and how incredibly fast computers are.

This project uses a programmable 8-bit microcontroller, eight LEDs, and a coin cell. It spins using a standard skateboard bearing, and uses a Hall-effect sensor and a magnet to determine rotation. It is made using beginner-friendly through-hole parts and can be programmed using the Arduino programming environment.

MakersBox has shared the board on OSH Park:

Geek Spinner 0.1

Order from OSH Park

POV Fidget Spinner

Internet of Fidget Spinners

writes on Hackaday:


Hackaday Prize Entry: Internet of Fidget Spinners

Last week, everyone on was busy getting their four project logs and illustrations ready for the last call in this round of the Hackaday Prize. These projects are the best of what the Internet of Things has to offer because this is the Internet of Useful things [..]

This is a PoV fidget spinner, which means the leading edges of this tricorn spinner are bedazzled with APA102 LEDs. Persistence-of-vision toys are as old as Hackaday, and the entire idea of a fidget spinner is to spin, so this at least makes sense.

Find out more on the project page by Matthias:


IoT POV Fidget Spinner

A WiFi fidget spinner, taken from concept to ordering parts in one weekend


The KiCad design files are available on GitHub:


Screenshot from 2017-06-10 14-39-57

matthias has shared the board on OSH Park:

IoT POV Fidget Spinner (192a97b)

Order from OSH Park

Internet of Fidget Spinners