Woodturning Fascination – A Woodpecker Toy

Mixed Woodpecker 2015 5293 Pin

May also be viewed on YouTube

This woodpecker toy has been on my To Do list for a very long time.

The original was a small bird perched on a spring mounted on a small tube that fit over a stiff wire. The bird would rock back and for while travelling down the rod.

He’s truly fascinating.

This version is upscale from the original with more travel on a longer dowel. The bird is cherry and walnut. The spring came from a hardware store selected because it seems not to stiff and not too weak. The spring mounts to a short wood tube that fits loosely on a 5/16″ dowel. The dowel is mounted to a walnut base and topped with a cherry cap. The base has a taller center to try to protect the bird’s tail when it reaches bottom.

After some trial and error, the bird does his thing, rocking back and forth as he travels down the dowel.

4 Responses to “Woodturning Fascination – A Woodpecker Toy”

  1. Harvey Rogers says:

    Thanks. The woodpecker is delightful! I can’t wait for my grandson to get old enough to play with it.

  2. Chris Lowanse says:

    Love your work

    Could you please give me the dimensions for your woodpecker toy and spring size

    Thank you love you YouTube videos

    • Alan says:

      The spring was about 1″ long and about 3/16″ diameter. Springs vary a lot in size and “springyness”. As noted in the video, from the limited selection at the store, I purchased one that seemed to have enough flexibility. Then I made a mockup to see if things worked. then replaced the pieces of my mockup with finished pieces.
      The woodpecker action is a balance of mass, springyness, binding on the post. I don’t have a perfect specification.
      Good turning.
      Alan Stratton