January 26, 2018

fan-fun: working tablefan with tiny working switch!

hi everyone, I'm so happy to say I got the tiny switch to work!!! So finally a succesful fan-tastic challenge, yay!

of course you have to see a miniature like this in action so I made a video of it: enjoy!

don't ask me how I did it though. A while ago (after lots of trying, exploring unused parts of my brain and trying some more) I had reluctantly
started to admit the space behind the switch was just way too small to work in. As well as I couldn't get the switch itself to not turn around while flipping it, making it impossible to connect again once it came out of the off-position. It also wasn't easy to come up with something - and even less so to execute - to keep the switch in the on/off position. So when I pretty much exhausted my inner ideadatabase I figured maybe I should just make it work without it. Still a working miniature and still fun right? Fortunately one of my 'worst' traits is not being able to give up 😉!

my determination was really tested a while later as you may have read about in my last post 'Murphy's law and a serious test in patience'. That wasn't all Murphy had in store for me though, he continued happily for a bit after my last post. And later I even almost ruined it altogether. But in the very end I was able to fix all of it and got the result I wanted!

like I mentioned once before I used a very small engine. It's 1cm/25/64 inch x 0,5cm/13/64 inch, just small enough for it to be to scale for this fan. For as far as I know it's the smallest kind commercially available.

and the working switch? Ha, crazy thought that was and as you can imagine quite the challenge all on it's own. The theory behind it was easy to come up with, to apply that in the small space behind the switch quite the opposite. Plus the additional challenges I mentioned in the beginning of this post. But..... nailed it, yay! The switch itself is a piece of a sewingpin I filed the right shape and wrapped a piece of superthin black electrical wire around it.

I had a couple of exciting moments, like after I almost glued the tiny rotating part of the engine stuck, three sperate times. First two with superglue because I really needed to glue stuff crazy close to that rotating part and a small part around it, almost touching it. Another time for similar reasons. And although I'm a bit of a superglue-nut, I really needed superglue both times, trust me ;).

the third glue-incident happened after Murphy thought it would be fun to throw his law in the mix. It was right before I would really finish it for the last time (at least I hoped it would finally be the last time) and only needed to glue the frame back on. Because after the fall, it had eventually come off when I tried to fix all the bend parts.

I would have accidentally glued the rotating enginepart completely stuck though for some stupid reason if it hadn't been for the Universe stepping in. Long story. Short version is something seemed to go very wrong in kind of an unbelievable way - again - but was actually what made me able to see just in time I had unknowingly almost ruined the whole thing and would have had to start all over again, new engine, new housing for that etc..

and there's more fun stuff like that ;). It all worked out in the end, but it probably gave me an extra grey hair or two(hundred), haha!

a few of the stages..

so all in all making this little piece-of-joy came with many expected and a number of unforseen challenges. Some of what I love about this hobby the most is the fiddling & problemsolving, but I have to admit it was a bit much with this fan. But hey, it is what makes it even more fulfulling now it's finished and I'm só proud!

candlestickholder by Jokra, blueish bowl by Alex Meiklejohn, real very small geode by Mother Nature ;) (from Stuart Dollhouse), white bowl by Ana Ankinaki, fruit by Dream Raven Designs, the rest is once made by me

glasses are by Itsy Bitsy, hamburger by Tristatin (Etsy), plate and vase by Elisabeth Causeret, the chair a kit from Arjen Spinhoven, de rest is once made by me (the flowers are dried ones)

before I go I'd like to thank a very dear & special friend of mine for the very generous birthdaygift of a luxury led-illuminated-tableclamploupe ànd watchmakers glasses (they're basically a microscope on your nose) he surprised me with. Which happened to be in the process of making this fan. He only knew me for 4 weeks at the time and didn't even know it's what I wanted (and for quite a long time even), I never mentioned it :D. It's just what he thought I could really use for making miniatures. I was over the moon with both of them as it was, but they actually turned out to be invaluable already. So thank you so SO much again for that, I love you!

ps: for anyone who's waiting for my butterflypalm-tutorial I ask you for some (more) patience. As always I had and have good reason to abandon that - and everything else I haven't finished yet ;) - for a while to focus on the rustic-vintage-industrial-scene, this fan and what I'll do next


  1. an amazing job! what a magnificent challenge!

  2. Yay! It works! Congrats! You made it in spite of that darn Murphy.

  3. Oh how wonderful Monique, congratulations. It is just wonderful...fan-tastic!

  4. Very well done Monique! I'm so glad yo managed to make it work.

  5. *claps* Wonderful! Amazing details on this fan and it works! I'm sure you would enjoy the work of Bill Robertson. I'm sure you know about him but if you don't check out this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2dKohUA_xQQ
    He makes working minis too! :)

  6. Just amazing! I could believe that it is miniature!

  7. Hooray!!!!! It's a gorgeous work of art.

  8. ONLY YOU would make something this Mechanically Intricate and this Incredibly Interesting! I am dumb-founded by your ingenuity and persistence! BRAVO Monique!!!

    and I LOVE the little video featuring your assistant Mrs. Longarm, and I hope that we'll soon get to see more of her! ;D

  9. The fan itself is truly wonderful, and with the working blades - a true marvel!!! Also love the Hand-y assistant!

  10. Un trabajo increíble,enhorabuena!!!

  11. You definitely should be proud I knew you'd get it working. And it was so worth the effort, it is wonderful. Thanks for making a video. I remember getting some tiny motors from zip-zap cars with the dream of making fans but I never got time to play with it. So I get to live vicariously through your beautiful fan. Murphy be damned hahaha

  12. A fantastic achievement and so cute! Great work!

  13. Superb! And great video as well. Wish I could see how it blows away a tissue ;-)

  14. Yay! Geweldig werk Monique! Perfect tot in het detail. Kan die Murphy lekker afdruipen met zijn wet.
    De foto's zijn erg sfeervol en de video is geweldig. En net als Marion hierboven kan ik nog wel een leuke video bedenken met iets dat wegblaast of opbollende gordijnen of zo. Dat zal best een uitdaging zijn want ik denk dat er niet heel veel lucht verplaatst wordt door de ventilator.

  15. Dear Monique, Did I ever say how Amazing I think you are??? I join the chorus of mini-makers who can't quite believe you can achieve the stuff you do!!! It is absolutely mind-blowing!!! Not only does it have all the antique looking parts... but they are in perfect scale and they WORK!!!! I will say that I had complete faith in your ability to overcome all Murphy-tests-of-patience because I have seen some of your other creations! The fan is Gorgeous! The Video is awesome, and the "assistant" is such a wonderful touch!!! I admire everything you do! Thank you for sharing!!! :):)

  16. Hello Monique,
    This is a mini masterpiece and a mega triumph. It looks wonderful and seeing it work is mesmerizing. Well done my friend.
    Big hug

  17. Hi Monique, I am in awe and utterly intrigued - it is delightful!! I love visiting here and looking at all your wonderful creations, but this little fan is super special. Well done!
    Anna x

  18. You have, as always, solved a complicated idea and reproduced it perfectly in miniature Monique. The fan is fantastic! Well done making another mind blowing miniature 🙂

  19. It's exquisite, I'm so glad you fixed it. I liked the video and your 'helping hand' :-)