Thursday, March 13, 2008

New Thing #62--Windpower

Remember when you were a kid and made a pinwheel out of a piece of paper, a tack, and a stick? A while back a windstorm delivered a nice Slinky-brand Spinwheel to my backyard. It was made out of silver and gold metallic film and had a plastic handle. I saved it for today's thing-I drove down the street with a pinwheel stuck out of the car window.

Some random observations from the project:
  • 20-25 miles per hour seemed to be the optimum speed for the Spinwheel. At 30 it wobbled a little, at 35 it bent back a bit, and at 40 it crushed itself against the car and got ruined!
  • It was surprisingly hard to hold on to the handle when the car got up to a higher speed.
  • It was hard to close the car window enough to hold the handle in place. My automatic window has an automatic reverse. Who knew?
  • I drove behind a patrol car for about 3 miles, and was wondering if it would be a problem to have something sticking out of the drivers-side window. It wasn't.
Here's a picture of the Spinwheel after all its use:

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