How to Build a Spin Wheel

Written by alice stewart
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How to Build a Spin Wheel
Spin wheels are popular at fairs and festivals. (wheel of joy image by Empath from Fotolia.com)

A spin wheel, otherwise known as a carnival or prize wheel, is a circular device that spins when pushed. Spin wheels are used in party games to decide whose turn it is, or to award prizes at fairs and festivals. A large version of the spin wheel can be seen on the popular television game show, "The Wheel of Fortune." You can make a simple spin wheel at home for your own parties and games.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • Lazy Susan
  • Plywood board (at least 1/2 inch thick)
  • Saw
  • Drawing compass
  • Marker pen
  • Acrylic paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Newspaper
  • Palette

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Adjust the compass so that the marker arm is 15 inches away from the spike. Insert the spike into the centre of the piece of plywood, and rotate the marker around so that it draws a full circle with a 30-inch diameter. Cut out the plywood circle by sawing around the marker line.

    How to Build a Spin Wheel
    Adjust the compass and draw a circle. (compass image by Sid Viswakumar from Fotolia.com)
  2. 2

    Draw an arrow shape directly onto another piece of plywood. It should be approximately 8 to 10 inches in length. Cut out the arrow shape with the saw.

    How to Build a Spin Wheel
    Draw an arrow shape onto plywood. (arrow image by cherie from Fotolia.com)
  3. 3

    Place the circular piece of plywood on several sheets of newspaper to prevent damage to the work surface. Use a ruler to divide the circle into triangles, like sections of a pie. The number of triangles created is up to you, but a standard amount is between 8 and 12.

    How to Build a Spin Wheel
    Divide the circle into triangles. (pie chart 1 image by jovica antoski from Fotolia.com)
  4. 4

    Squeeze some of the acrylic paint onto the palette. Wet the paintbrush with water before dipping it into the paint. Paint every triangular section of the wheel, making sure that no two triangles next to each other are painted the same colour. Paint the arrow bright red. Allow the paint to air dry for several hours.

    How to Build a Spin Wheel
    Paint the triangular sections of the spin wheel. (painter's palette isolated on the white background image by Elnur from Fotolia.com)
  5. 5

    Mount the Lazy Susan onto the back centre of the spin wheel according to the mounting instructions on the Lazy Susan packaging.

    How to Build a Spin Wheel
    Mount the Lazy Susan onto the back centre of the spin wheel. (screws image by dinostock from Fotolia.com)
  6. 6

    Place the spin wheel on a flat table. Place the arrow pointing down towards the top of the circle. Spin the wheel.

    How to Build a Spin Wheel
    (Ferris wheel image by michael langley from Fotolia.com)

Tips and warnings

  • You can further customise your spin wheel with glitter, numbers, writing and symbols.
  • You can write prizes or dares directly onto the wheel, or you can create a poster sheet to explain what each of the colours mean. This way you can adapt the game for different prizes.
  • Only adults should use the saw.

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