GizmoGuy411's Geocaching Gizmo Signature Item

Have you found one of my Gizmo's in a Geocache or elsewhere? If so, then you have found GizmoGuy411's Geocaching signature item.

You are welcome to keep the Gizmo for yourself, or pass it on to another Geocache or Geocacher.

If you have no idea what Geocaching is, then you are invited to visit www.Geocaching.com to learn more about Geocaching, and what "signature items" are all about. You are also welcome to visit www.NWOGeo.org, which is our local Northwest Ohio's Geocaching group.

The Gizmo signature items are labeled to invite people to visit this page and learn more about the Gizmo, more commonly known as a Rattleback™.  It, is also known as a "Rattlerock", "Celt Stone", "Wobblestone", and most recently also dubbed by marketing types, as "Space Toy".

I hope you have at least spun it clockwise and noticed how it spins a few times, then stops, reverses direction, then spins a couple time counter-clockwise!  The reason it reverses directions has to due with it's uneven shape and nothing to do with why people think that water swirls down a drain differently in each half of the world's hemispheres! :)

(video of wobble action to be inserted here)

Experiments to try with the (Rattleback™) Gizmo

  • Place the Gizmo on a smooth, flat, hard surface with the curved side down.
    • Spin it clockwise and it will stop, "rattle" up and down and automatically reverse direction.
    • Tap either end and watch it spin.
    • Rock it from end to end and it will spin.
  • Hold it up to the light and observe the internal "twist".
  • Turn it flat side down and use it as a magnifying glass.
  • Hold the flat sides of two Gizmos (each a primary color), together up to a light to see the new colors they make.

Mathematical model: http://www.autolev.com/WebSite/SampleProblemRattleback/Rattleback.html

Explanation: http://www.4physics.com:8080/phy_demo/rattleback.htm

History, Analysis, etc.: http://www.sfu.ca/~closari/projects/ensc100/

[Edit 4, 20065/05/01, Created 2005/01/28]