Lets make a rattle. It is a percussion instrument and a toy; it is a lot of fun. Swing it slowly or fast and listen to the sound. The sound comes from a paint stir stick that acts as a lever and spring, or a spring-loaded lever as engineers would call it. The spring-loaded flexible stick is bend by the teeth of the gear and when they pass one tooth it slaps on the gear block making a percussion sound. One revolution of the rattle will give you four loud clicks, turn the rattle slow or fast and you can change the sound.
What you need: a paint stirrer, a longer piece of pine wood, same or a little larger width than the paint stirrer, a piece of dowel wood 3/8 inch diameter, a square block, about 45 millimeter square and 20 mm thick, a piece of wood, 2o millimeter square and about 8 centimeter long, some electrical tape for decoration, and some wide craft Popsicle sticks from the dollar store of hobby store. Try to get a good sturdy quality. You might also get a tongue-depressor at the pharmacy or doctor’s office, show them what you want to make and they will help you out!
The rattle base it is a piece of pine wood, 20 millimeter thick and 25 millimeter wide, and a little longer than the paint stir stick you can get from any hardware store or paint store, ask for at least two stirrer it is always a good idea to have a back up! The hole at the top is 3/8 inch in diameter to receive the dowel wood handle. Hardware and hobby stores sell dowel wood in different thicknesses, mostly measured in inches. Show the store keeper what you are making and he or she will know what you need.
The rattle gear is a square block with craft type Popsicle sticks glued to each side as shown. Use one small nail to secure the Popsicle stick while the glue is setting, use carpenter’s glue for all the parts. Note the hole is drilled to receive the handle. Use 3/8 inch dowel wood and make the hole the same diameter. Glue the handle into the gear as shown below.
The gear and spindle, also the handle of the rattle, is fitted loosely in the hole in the baseboard of the rattle. Put some tape on the left end to prevent it from backing out. You can also put some tape on the handle itself to make it more attractive and giving it a better grip.
The base block is glued to the stir stick, note it has two holes to allow it to be screwed to the base board.
The rattle put together before screwing the base of the spring/stirr stick down on the base of the rattle. Note that the flexible stir stick lays flat against the gear, after which you screw the bottom screw in. Then you bend the stir stick and screw the second screw in and tighten.
The rattle assembled and decorated, note the bow in the spring loaded paint stirring stick. The two screws in the base block of the lever/spring allows you to tension the stir stick and make the noise louder or softer.