Tops for Tots

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Project by NotaJock posted 12-04-2016 05:29 AM 996 views 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Tops for Tots
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I went shoppping for toys for orphans last year only to find the toys I played with as a child were not to be found. Tops, yoyos, jacks, car & airplane models and other simple toys have been replaced with expensive and fragile toys in the stores. Since I’ve had the chance to play with a lathe I decided to try my hand at making toys. Next year I’ll try yoyos perhaps.

-- Mike in SoCal, now East Texas

4 comments so far

View Ivan's profile


16893 posts in 4022 days

#1 posted 12-04-2016 09:39 AM

Beautiful work and colours are great too. I agree with you about wooden toys today. Kids don’t realise what they are missing playing only with electronics. There are lot of possibilities and creativity with various sort of wooden toys.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View  woodshaver Tony C   's profile

woodshaver Tony C

8087 posts in 4507 days

#2 posted 12-04-2016 01:00 PM

Great variety of colorful tops! The best toys are made by woodworkers like yourself. Nice work!

-- St Augustine FL, Experience is the sum of our mistakes!

View LesB's profile


3026 posts in 4597 days

#3 posted 12-04-2016 07:51 PM

I too played with this type of top as a kit. There was one game where you tried to knock the other persons top out of a circle drawn on the cement. With enough accuracy and force you could sometimes split the other top into pieces. The trick was to learn to throw the top overhand which produced more speed and accuracy.

I tried making these a while back and used doubled headed construction nails with the top head ground off for the metal point. They worked well but I had trouble finding cord that was “hard” enough to stay flatly wound around the top.

-- Les B, Oregon

View NotaJock's profile


183 posts in 2253 days

#4 posted 12-05-2016 11:09 PM

Les, did you put the grooves in your top? About every 2nd or 3rd wrap of the string drops into a groove which helps the string stay in place.
I’m currently using 3 strand tristed nylon like bricklayers use to align a layer of brick.
When I was a kid we mostly had cotton and after a couple weeks use it definately wasn’t ‘hard’.
The most common source I find for ‘hard’ string is my neighbor’s trash. When they throw out old venetian blinds I salvage the cords which are usually 1/16” diameter braided nylon.
I too us 2headed nails.

-- Mike in SoCal, now East Texas

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