Wind Spirals

8 years ago

tin can spirals
Wind Spirals:

Materials needed:
Any sort of metal sheet or flashing such as roof flashing, sheet copper, tin can lids, etc.
Tin snips

Cut your metal into a circle. (WEAR GLOVES! - at least on the hand holding the metal.) The finished length of the spiral is determined by the size of the circle. For example: a 12 diameter circle makes a spiral approximately 4 feet long; 20 will make a spiral 6 feet or longer. Tuna can lid makes a spiral about 12; large tomato can makes a spiral about 18.

Starting at the edge of the circle, cut a ribbon ¼ to ½ inch wide around the edge. The width depends on whether your circle is large or small - the larger the circle, the wider the ribbon should be (for stability). Continue cutting the ribbon in one piece around toward the center of the circle. When you reach the center you will have a small tab-like end. Punch a hole in this tab and use it for hanging.

If you are using a tin can lid or other metal that has differences in the finish on each side, the side facing up when you cut is the side that will show most on the spiral. When you cut, the metal will spiral down from the snips. This is most important to remember when cutting a can lid as some cans have a dull gray interior which doesnt make an attractive spiral. Some cans have a gold interior and silver exterior and you can choose to have a gold or silver spiral depending on which side is up when you cut.

Hang with fishing line - it is light and spins easily. I run the line through the hole in the tab, through a small bead to secure it, and back up through the hole to make a hanging loop.

The photo is three different size can lids (short = dog food can; medium = tuna can; longest = large canned tomatoes). One is hung upside down to show the tab end. The shortest one also has a row of beads hung down the middle (connected to the fishing line); it doesnt seem to effect the spirals ability to spin.

These look especially nice when several of different sizes and finishes are hung near each other. They can also be painted (pre-cutting) with metal paint in all sorts of colors, sprayed with glitter spray, or whatever else you can think of.