Mesquite top and launcher

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Project by Jim Jakosh posted 03-02-2020 02:36 AM 1008 views 1 time favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is a top and a launcher made from some dry mesquite. The top is 3 1/2” in diameter , 1” wide and has a stainless steel pin in the bottom that it spins on. The launcher is 1 3/8” diameter and 6” long. The square block is a pad to run the top on. It has a concave top so the top will spin in one place. This one runs for 2+ minutes on a level table. I’m shooting for another 4 minute top.

They are finished with Danish oil.

This is more goofing around here in the sun!!

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

16 comments so far

View  woodshaver Tony C   's profile

woodshaver Tony C

8345 posts in 4634 days

#1 posted 03-02-2020 02:49 AM

Nice top Jim! 2+ minutes is really good. Hope you get to your 4 minute goal. Maybe a touch of pledge furniture wax on the the stainless pin and the platform it’s spinning on for some extra help!

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

View lew's profile


13442 posts in 5036 days

#2 posted 03-02-2020 03:00 AM

Cool! What can be done to make it spin longer?

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View therealSteveN's profile


9206 posts in 1855 days

#3 posted 03-02-2020 03:30 AM

Jim, you went and drug out the little boy in me. :-) Give me whimsy any day.

4 minute up time is awesome. Nice job.

Is that closer pic spinning?? Awesome if it is. Not sure my camera is up to that.

-- Think safe, be safe

View bushmaster's profile


4147 posts in 3563 days

#4 posted 03-02-2020 04:18 AM

Do you live in the land of the midnight sun. I don’t think you sleep. Well done

-- Brian - Hazelton, British Columbia

View Bob Collins's profile

Bob Collins

2847 posts in 4965 days

#5 posted 03-02-2020 04:27 AM

Another nice project Jim, seems like you have finally found work for the elves. Besides 2 minutes what makes the difference between the 2 and 4 ones?

-- RIP Bob C, Australia. Your best teacher is your last mistake.

View BusterB's profile


2365 posts in 3289 days

#6 posted 03-02-2020 04:36 AM

Jim you keep up with all these projects and there is going to be a shortage of mesquite bushes out younder. Lol
As always, nice work sir.

-- Buster, Ocoee TN (Critics are men who watch a battle from a high place then come down and shoot the survivors - Hemingway)

View doubleDD's profile


10795 posts in 3324 days

#7 posted 03-02-2020 05:29 AM

Cool top Jim. I like that it stays in one place. Have fun in the sun, we actually had a nice day here today. Don’t overheat the elves.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

View Ivan's profile


17046 posts in 4148 days

#8 posted 03-02-2020 06:25 AM

Nice work, cool project… fun indeed

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View Mark Wilson's profile

Mark Wilson

2951 posts in 2344 days

#9 posted 03-02-2020 06:40 AM

A little video of it in action might be nice, Jim. I haven’t a clue how it works.

-- Mark

View swirt's profile


6791 posts in 4253 days

#10 posted 03-02-2020 01:36 PM

Nice work on the top. If you spin it on some glass, I bet it will make 4 minutes easy.

-- Galootish log blog,

View mafe's profile


13403 posts in 4370 days

#11 posted 03-03-2020 10:04 PM

Super cool Jim, I’ll have to try and make on, one of these days.
Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect.

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

26997 posts in 4386 days

#12 posted 03-04-2020 02:24 AM

Thanks for all the nice comments. This was just some lathe time I had to have for my addiction!!

Hi Lew, one thing I can do to make it spin longer it to embed a ring of lead near the outer diameter…but I don’t have my lead pot down here. I hope to find a more uniform piece of wood and put more of the total weight on the outer ring for a a better gyroscopic effect.

Hi Steve..yes that shot is of the top spinning.

Hi Buster, I dream about projects if I ever do sleep and sometimes I get out of the shop at 9PM

Hi Dave. It stays in one place because I launched it on that piece of wood that has a concave top. Otherwise it would move around and bump into things and that really shows it .

Hi Mark. The way it works is that you put the shaft of the top through the hole in the launcher and then wind the string on it. Holding the launcher, you pull the string real fast and then lift the launcher and away it goes.

Cheers, Jim

Cheers, JIm

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View Grumpy's profile


26812 posts in 5132 days

#13 posted 03-07-2020 10:18 PM

Great toy mate. Beats the electronic gadgets.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

26997 posts in 4386 days

#14 posted 03-09-2020 12:42 AM

Thanks, Tony!!

Cheers., Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View Cliff 's profile


2049 posts in 3005 days

#15 posted 03-12-2020 05:53 AM

Tops are fascinating and modern kids still love them.
Nice turning and finish.


-- Cliff Australia : Snoring is good. It blows away all the Sawdust.

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