Hopping Toy Rabbit

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Project by Jeff Farquhar posted 07-22-2016 09:21 PM 1367 views 1 time favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch

My friend’s daughter was turning four and I decided that I would make her a wooden toy from a book that my dad gave me about animated wooden toys. As this was my first attempt at this type of project, I decided to make the hopping rabbit as it seemed to be a little more simple than some of the others. That being said, the first attempt did not take as I broke the ears. TIP: Do not drop a wooden rabbit on its ears, they will break. RIP first rabbit.

On the second attempt, I cut the body out of a 2” oak board with my bandsaw. I drilled three holes for 1/4” dowels that would be the axels and the eyes. I burned the ends of the eyes with a woodturning tool to make them black. Using 2” and 2 1/2” hole saws I cut the wheels out pallet wood. I drilled the holes for the dowels in the front wheels off center so that the rabbit would hop when pulled by its leash. I eased the edges of the body with sandpaper and rounded over the edges of the wheels with my router. So as not to have another ear mishap, I drilled a 1/2” hole through the top of the ears and a 1/4” into the body. I inserted a 1/2” dowel into that hole to better protect the ears from breakage. As that was rather unsightly, I decided that this would be a girl rabbit and tied a bow around that dowel and the ears. The leash is paracord attached to wood from the oak board and runs through a hole in the rabbits nose. I sanded to 220 and finished it with natural Danish oil.

This project was a huge success! My friend’s daughter loved it and it appears to be getting quite a lot of “exercise”. However, there appears to be a custody battle with her little sister for it.

5 comments so far

View CFrye's profile


11081 posts in 2718 days

#1 posted 07-22-2016 09:55 PM

Awww cute lil bunny! I love these old style wooden toys. Maybe orient the grain to run straight along the length of the ears for added strength? Your dowel solution is probably more durable. Maybe add a face grain plug over the end grain of the dowel? What is the name of the book? Thanks for sharing.

-- God bless, Candy

View Richard's profile


1943 posts in 3569 days

#2 posted 07-22-2016 10:38 PM

Sounds like a Second Rabbit is due soon. Rabbits are know to multiply rapidly.
I would like to know the name of the book as well since I have a bunch of grandkids.

View bushmaster's profile


3953 posts in 3161 days

#3 posted 07-23-2016 12:32 AM

nice toy, will have to make one for my grand daughter, thanks for sharing.

-- Brian - Hazelton, British Columbia

View Jeff Farquhar's profile

Jeff Farquhar

23 posts in 1809 days

#4 posted 07-23-2016 03:47 PM

Thanks for the feedback everyone. The book is called How To Make Animated Toys by David Wakefield.

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 3745 days

#5 posted 07-23-2016 09:17 PM

This is cute and the kids will love it.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

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