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Forums > Other Toys > Folding Finger Spinning Fire Fans

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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:Hi All, I'm a bit quiet on these forums, but in short, my names Charlie, and i design and build fire toys, the one i make for HoP is the folding fire fan HERE.

I have decided to start my own thread rather than continue to hi-jack an assortment of other peoples threads on fire fans.

What i have been working on for some time is a folding finger spinning fire fan, this has been a 2 year project (along with about 8 other projects I'm working on simultaneously).

It was set to be released on March the 1st, however about one week out from the release date i hit a sizable snag, the company that produces the springs I use on the fans could not physically produce the spring they had sent me samples of.

WARNING - Tech Speak
The spring needed for the finger spinning version of the fire fan needed to be almost twice as strong as the standard spring to fight the effects of inertia while spinning (or simply, they have to be stronger so the fan doesn't just close as it spins). The samples had been hand made, which produced a tighter coil with higher initial tension than the machine which was going to do the mass run.
/Tech Speak

So, that said, this design is delayed indefinitely until i can find a company that has a single point coiling machine, or can hand coil me 100m+ for a reasonable price, as the alternatives to not having a stronger spring make an expensive prop even more expensive (around a 50% increase in the price as opposed to a 15% or 20%).

I'll post updates here as they happen, as well as a sneak peak photo and maybe a video of the prototype i made with the sample springs.


One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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squid
BRONZE Member since Apr 2007

squid

sanguine
Location: sur

Total posts: 382
Posted:gah, that's depressing news, Charlie. I'll just have to keep my fingers crossed that you'll have success on that soon. Now I have to decide if I want to hold out or buy the original fans of yours.

le sigh


"to a man whose only tool is a hammer, the whole world looks like a nail." Abraham Maslow

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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:UPDATE

I have found a manufacturer and am testing a sample of the required spring.

Joy of all joys, if I have no further hold ups i should be able to get this project back on the road ready for release in a few weeks smile

Approx RRP on these is looking around max of NZ$250+GST (if your outside of NZ you won't need to worry about the GST) I will be doing everything i can to lower that figure though, my Target is $225-$235, as I am very much aware that to my knowledge these are by far the most expensive Fire Fans in the world... though perhaps one could say they are also the most advanced wink

An upgrade Kit will be available (initially) at the price difference between the standard and spin version so as not to disadvantage those who simply couldn't wait to get there hands on them smile


One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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squid
BRONZE Member since Apr 2007

squid

sanguine
Location: sur

Total posts: 382
Posted:how does the upgrade work?

"to a man whose only tool is a hammer, the whole world looks like a nail." Abraham Maslow

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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:The upgrade will simply be those components which are different in the spin version, i.e. the center blade and springs. Will probably knock up some instructions to go with the kit as it requires complete disassembly then reassembly of the fans.

One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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Icarus Forde
BRONZE Member since Apr 2010

Icarus Forde

Just Icarus//Spinner//Pyro//Geek
Location: New Zealand

Total posts: 261
Posted:That looks really good actually. Do you have any footage of it lit? Would be really cool to see.... grin

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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:I have some footage tucked away somewhere, though none i can lay my hands on just now.

But here are two special sneak peaks in one photo for those following the development (I'm looking at you squid wink )


Non-Https Image Link


The above shows the 7 Blade prototype, and size/shape/placement of the prospective ring. (note that in this photo the ring is just resting on top of the centre blade, it will actually have a full hole in the centre tongue2 )

The only assembled finger spin prototype was destroyed during Product Testing at Kiwiburn wink not that I mind, my philosophy is simple, if you can break it i didn't build it right, go have fun. Admittedly the death blow actually came from being accidentally danced on instead of danced with, funny stuff.


One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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Icarus Forde
BRONZE Member since Apr 2010

Icarus Forde

Just Icarus//Spinner//Pyro//Geek
Location: New Zealand

Total posts: 261
Posted:Haha, how did you manage that? tongue2 I mean, I know that we NZ'rs can be clumsy sometimes... But to dance on it? tongue2

Keep us posted though, I'm interested, even if I'm more of a staffer... You never know. smile


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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:I'm not sure how it was managed, but of all the sets of these fans that have come back to the workshop for repair, underfoot manipulation is the only cause of damage, normally i can straighten them out, but the prototype set were a write off.

The Staff/Fan combo can look quite cool (if I do say so myself)

I was briefly contemplating making a bullet proof stainless steel version, but they were going to be too heavy to be feasable, and one of the most common things i hear back about mine is how happy people are that they are light (around 350gm each)


One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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Icarus Forde
BRONZE Member since Apr 2010

Icarus Forde

Just Icarus//Spinner//Pyro//Geek
Location: New Zealand

Total posts: 261
Posted:So these are made of aluminium as opposed to steel?

Actually, just considering the fan/staff combo..... I suppose it could be interesting if you mounted the fan into both ends of the staff, effectively having 14 mini flames on it... Only thing I'd be worried about is getting them caught in my shorts. tongue2


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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:Yes they are constructed of NZ Smelted and extruded 6060 T5 12x3mm 1.5mm Radius Edged aluminium wink

I would not recommend that with these as any drops or accidental ground touches would be catastrophic... For my staff/fan I had staff in my right hand and fan in my left and away I went.

If you like the idea of a mega-multi headed staff look up 'Dragon Staff' i think Gora or someone over on the European side has made some pretty cool ones.



One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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Icarus Forde
BRONZE Member since Apr 2010

Icarus Forde

Just Icarus//Spinner//Pyro//Geek
Location: New Zealand

Total posts: 261
Posted:Nice.... Smelted in Bluff? tongue2

Mmmm, the other thing with the staff/fan combo would be the speed drop... frown

Actually, that dragon staff looks dead cool. I think I'm gonna have to build me one sometime after I build my main one.... grin


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Posted:Ok I am officially psyched!! I'm following this progress with keen interest!

Would the thing be painted? I've a pair of HOP large fire fans, and the paint job has speckles of paint that will be harsh on the finger when spinning. I guess I could always sand them down, but just saying.

Also, I'm interested in the dimensions in terms of length, though if I can use the large HOP fans with 6-inch light sticks attached to them, this pair of amazing fans should be no bigger than the regular HOP ones right?

Can't wait for this product to come out and congrats again on having overcome the spring problem!


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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:Hey There,

It will not be painted, though in future i am investigating powder coating them, it will be bare aluminium which has been filed and sanded on any rough spots to ensure comfort of use.

The dimensions of each finger/blade are 40cm long which is just under 16", the span when open is 80cm or 31.5". The wicks are small at 5cm or 2", but a 10cm/4" version is in development at the moment which will have a slightly larger span to keep the flames a comfortable distance from the hand.

Thanks for your questions smile


One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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Posted:Ooh one last question: will you sell wickless versions of the fan too?

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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:Yes it's in the works that I will be selling such a version, TBA if HoP will stock it though.

One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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Grottbags


Grottbags

Just Say Neigh
Location: Pie Town

Total posts: 36
Posted:Charlie, I have to say that the fan looks fantastic, I have not had much experience with them myself, but I have looked into buying them in the UK and these are far superior to the ones available in shops over here.

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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:Thanks for your feedback Grottbags smile

They are simply like any other folding fan with a bit of modern technology thrown in to replace the leather straps or chain, to me the design was the obvious step forward and evolution for them.

I think in time other designs and manufacturers may follow suit (imitation is indeed the sincerest form of flattery, and each time it happens i take it to mean my design is spot on), i am aware of one hobbyist fire toy manufacturer who has very closely replicated mine, however instead of using springs he has used stainless steel cable, which works in a similar way though the stainless will fatigue eventually and cease to operate as a spring (which is why I don't use it).

It's definitely a goal to have these distributed by someone in the northern hemisphere some time, so they can truly break in to the northern hemisphere market.


One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:Just a quick update.

Problems with the new manufacturer, long story short, they are going to charge me twice the quote i accepted... le sigh.

Enter a thought that popped in to my head as i was running home from work today, the only issue is, does it look any good? Chris and I were not fans of running two sets of springs on their own bolts etc, but it occured to me that two springs could run off the same bolt, keeping cost down and actually making the fan function better.

What do you think? sorry for the bad photo quality, but you get an idea.


Non-Https Image Link



Non-Https Image Link

EDITED_BY: Charlie Fox (1272609762)


One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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squid
BRONZE Member since Apr 2007

squid

sanguine
Location: sur

Total posts: 382
Posted:open: they look cool. I like the ellipse it makes. Kind of reminds me of an eye shape.

closed: looks bulky. Im trying to envision what several of them would look like together when they're all bunched up.

Its a minor gripe though when it holds the potential of keeping the cost down and improving function. Besides which, few folks will be looking at the hardware when the wicks are lit.

Do you think the bulk of all the springs would interfere with being able to slide your hand up the shaft and hold the fan in the middle?


"to a man whose only tool is a hammer, the whole world looks like a nail." Abraham Maslow

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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:No I don't think it will prevent that.

I'll try make a full fan like that on Sunday, need to source new bolts though as it adds around 2mm of thickness to the assembly.


One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:Sneak Peek Photos, Video to follow.

These are some side by side comparisons for a single and a double spring design.


Non-Https Image Link



Non-Https Image Link



Non-Https Image Link



Non-Https Image Link


One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:and a video; Shazam!





One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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Grottbags


Grottbags

Just Say Neigh
Location: Pie Town

Total posts: 36
Posted:Looking good mate, as with all things simplicity is the key, and I am suprised that no one had thought of this design for a folding fire fan with spinning loop before!

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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:Heh, whilst the design looks simple, there is a little bit of technology that goes in to making everything work as it works, as i've said before, this design is perhaps just the next step in the evolution of the fire fan, in time, other prop designers may follow suit, as there are around 3 or 4 design using leather tethers and 2 or 3 designs using chain tethers, but only one (commercially available) design like this.

One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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squid
BRONZE Member since Apr 2007

squid

sanguine
Location: sur

Total posts: 382
Posted:Yep, Im convinced. Imma definitely buy this set when released. I also have to say that this is technologically the most exciting toy to come out since Dai's Buugeng.

"to a man whose only tool is a hammer, the whole world looks like a nail." Abraham Maslow

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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:Thats a big call there Squid, your support means a lot, hundreds of $$ and hours have been thrown into this new design (without going into how much went in to the original design *shudders*), so i'm very happy with it, and eager to see it take off globally.

One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:Another update guys;

After some number crunching and soul searching i've decided a single spring is the way forward.

All that is left is to possibly adjust the span size as Chris quite rightly pointed out that the 80cm span may be too long for some people to spin.

Perhaps a S & M size are in order...


One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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culp5945
SILVER Member since Sep 2009

Iain C.
Location: Nanjing, China

Total posts: 3
Posted:Ohh I am so excited. That video clenched it for me. Especially the drop test :P:P

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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:Have slapped a tentative release date of the first week of July for these.

Still a few fine details to straighten out including a last minute revision of the spring setup.


One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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Charlie Fox
PLATINUM Member since Jun 2006

Charlie Fox

Burinating the village like Trogdor
Location: West Auck, NZ

Total posts: 156
Posted:I just did some research into Anodizing these black, would add around NZ$40/set... Really too pricey says me...

One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
- A.A. Milne

Don't join dangerous cults: Practice safe sects!
- Anon (I think)

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