Rolling Toy

  • Advertise with us
Project by HerbC posted 03-28-2014 02:23 AM 3091 views 16 times favorited 36 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I made this rolling toy using the plan from issue 66 of Woodworker’s Journal (Nov/Dec 87).

The roller disks were made by laminating 1/2” thick oak and 7/16” thick spalted sycamore.

Finished with several coats of Behlen gloss lacquer.

I actually made three of these, so a couple of friend’s grandkids will be getting a surprise.


-- Herb, Florida - Here's why I close most messages with "Be Careful!"

36 comments so far

View JL7's profile


8793 posts in 4462 days

#1 posted 03-28-2014 02:38 AM

Very cool Herb. The spalted sycamore steals the show!

-- Jeff .... Minnesota, USA

View HerbC's profile


1823 posts in 4357 days

#2 posted 03-28-2014 02:44 AM

The neat thing is that the sycamore came from a piece of scrap that was so badly warped it was totally useless for anything that require wood that was flat, straight, true, etc…


-- Herb, Florida - Here's why I close most messages with "Be Careful!"

View DIYaholic's profile


19921 posts in 4172 days

#3 posted 03-28-2014 02:50 AM

I’m thinkin’ you enjoyed making them…
I see grandkids enjoying them….
I can also see cats & dogs chasing them around….

Jeff is right….
& you done good finding a purpose for the sycamore!!!

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procrastination a bad thing?

View firefighterontheside's profile


21617 posts in 3354 days

#4 posted 03-28-2014 02:57 AM

I really like the spalted sycamore. I’ve got a piece of spalted oak that I held over the trash can the other day but I couldn’t do it. Figured there just be some use for it. Nice gifts.

-- Bill M. "People change, walnut doesn't" by Gene.

View Karson's profile


35301 posts in 5898 days

#5 posted 03-28-2014 03:10 AM


I made about 100 of them for our Mason Dixon Woodworkers Toy Workshop, about 5 years ago. I think and hope that they were a big hit for the kids/babies that received them.

Yours look better than mine. We used three different colored dyes on the dowels.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia [email protected]

View lightcs1776's profile


4280 posts in 3151 days

#6 posted 03-28-2014 03:13 AM

Nice toy, Herb. I recall playing with wood toys when I was real young. Now most of them are plastic. The spalted sycamore looks great.

-- Chris ** If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace. — Tom Paine **

View HerbC's profile


1823 posts in 4357 days

#7 posted 03-28-2014 03:16 AM


Thanks for the compliment. I like the dye job on yours, wish I’d done that on these.

I really admire and appreciate all the work you and your group does making the toys for children each year.

I hope to be able to get involved in something like that once I retire in a few more years.


-- Herb, Florida - Here's why I close most messages with "Be Careful!"

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30679 posts in 3835 days

#8 posted 03-28-2014 08:35 AM

Love the wood. Adds character. Good job.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View eddie's profile


8565 posts in 4111 days

#9 posted 03-28-2014 08:47 AM

Herb, they look great and the spalted sycamore is a cool touch

-- Jesus Is Alright with me

View hunter71's profile


3564 posts in 4684 days

#10 posted 03-28-2014 10:53 AM

Cool, made some over the years, always a hit, kids love the noise

-- A childs smile is payment enough.

View TechTeacher04's profile


497 posts in 3029 days

#11 posted 03-28-2014 11:27 AM

I have made the same toy for my nieces and nephews, I used mineral oil as a finish so I did not have to worry about them ingesting any finish that could be toxic.

View Nathan H.'s profile

Nathan H.

76 posts in 3061 days

#12 posted 03-28-2014 02:41 PM

Cool toy!

-- - Nathan H., Iowa

View Thewoodman2000's profile


822 posts in 3468 days

#13 posted 03-28-2014 06:47 PM

What a fun looking non-electronic toy! I want to play with one. I like how you gave the end a “cap” of color.

-- (the only thing in there she says is....tap on head..........tap..........tap..... saw dust) - James

View HerbC's profile


1823 posts in 4357 days

#14 posted 03-28-2014 06:59 PM

Chris, Monte, Eddie: Thanks for the kind comments. I have quite a bit of sycamore, just finding things to use it can be “interesting” since some of it is spalted to point where it is almost “punky”...

Hunter, yes the noise maker is a neat thing about these toys. Of course the parents will probably be ready to kill me after a couple of days listing to the click-clack of those dowels. < BIG GRIN >

TechTeacher hopefully the finish will not be a problem although of course your concern is quite valid.

Thanks Nathan.

James, I’m tempted to keep one myself. And I liked the idea of using the wild markings on the sycamore to dress things up a lot better than the painted green colored spiral design shown in the magazine article.

-- Herb, Florida - Here's why I close most messages with "Be Careful!"

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 4187 days

#15 posted 03-29-2014 12:19 AM

I may have to make a couple of these for my daughter’s girls. That sycamore is really special! Flat sawn sycamore just never wants to behave.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

showing 1 through 15 of 36 comments

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics