How to Build a Spin Wheel

    by Alice Stewart

    About the Author

    Alice Stewart is an experienced freelance writer who has specialized in creating unique and informative Web content since 2005. Her previous clients include the Times Online, Wizz Air, Cyprus Air, BMI, Highland Experience and Scottish Tours. Stewart studied English language and law at Oxford F.E. College and completed a Post-Graduate Diploma in performing arts in 2007.


    A spin wheel, otherwise known as a carnival or prize wheel, is a circular device that spins when pushed. Spin wheels are used in party games to decide whose turn it is, or to award prizes at fairs and festivals. A large version of the spin wheel can be seen on the popular television game show, "The Wheel of Fortune." You can make a simple spin wheel at home for your own parties and games.

    Things You'll Need

    • Newspaper
    • Plywood board (at least 1/2 inch thick)
    • Saw
    • Drawing compass
    • Marker pen
    • Acrylic paint
    • Paintbrush
    • Palette
    • Lazy Susan

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    Adjust the compass and draw a circle.

    Adjust the compass so that the marker arm is 15 inches away from the spike. Insert the spike into the center of the piece of plywood, and rotate the marker around so that it draws a full circle with a 30-inch diameter. Cut out the plywood circle by sawing around the marker line.

    Draw an arrow shape onto plywood.

    Draw an arrow shape directly onto another piece of plywood. It should be approximately 8 to 10 inches in length. Cut out the arrow shape with the saw.

    Divide the circle into triangles.

    Place the circular piece of plywood on several sheets of newspaper to prevent damage to the work surface. Use a ruler to divide the circle into triangles, like sections of a pie. The number of triangles created is up to you, but a standard amount is between 8 and 12.

    Paint the triangular sections of the spin wheel.

    Squeeze some of the acrylic paint onto the palette. Wet the paintbrush with water before dipping it into the paint. Paint every triangular section of the wheel, making sure that no two triangles next to each other are painted the same color. Paint the arrow bright red. Allow the paint to air dry for several hours.

    Mount the Lazy Susan onto the back center of the spin wheel.

    Mount the Lazy Susan onto the back center of the spin wheel according to the mounting instructions on the Lazy Susan packaging.

    Spin your wheel to test the mechanism.

    Place the spin wheel on a flat table. Place the arrow pointing down towards the top of the circle. Spin the wheel.

    • You can further customize your spin wheel with glitter, numbers, writing and symbols.
    • You can write prizes or dares directly onto the wheel, or you can create a poster sheet to explain what each of the colors mean. This way you can adapt the game for different prizes.
    • Only adults should use the saw.

    Photo Credits