Last year I purchased a toy gyroscope for Christmas. It’s been a fun toy to have around the house and my 5 year old daughter occasionally will, totally unprompted, come over to where we keep it and start playing with it. It’s hard for her to pull the string fast enough to really get it spinning but I can see her getting better each time she comes back to it.
This particular gyroscope has been a bit disappointing because of the loud noise it makes if I really spin it fast. There aren’t any bearing to speak of, just metal on metal and something just isn’t right. I added a dab of oil which helped a little bit. I think the product has a 3.5 star rating on Amazon which is about right.
I remember owning one of these when I was little so it has sentimental value. I’d pay more for a more precision gyroscope with better bearing and a nicer finish. I’ve looked around but haven’t found anything.
I’ve also looked at trying to build a motorized gyroscope after coming across this link: http://makeprojects.com/Project/Gyrocar/88/1
which describes how to build a gyrocar from basic materials. Seems like this would be a fun project to build with my daughter.
If we build one… I’ll post it here. That reminds me, we make a Bristle Bot a while back. I’ll post something on that too!