Physics on Etsy!

Mirror Anamorphic Cup & Saucer

Get a set here: 
From Etsy: BUY NOW Anamophic Cup & Saucer 

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Mirror Anamorphic Cup & Saucer: the cylindrical mirror of the silver cup reflects and reveals the distorted scene of a carousel ride with four horses and the buildings of Macau Heritage City. The shape of the mirror allows for a mathematical operation, a type of affine transformation, to map the distorted image on the plate to the restored image reflected on the cup. A nice example of mirror anamorphosis through the medium of ceramics. 

Split Vortex Marble

Check out Raven's collection of work on Instagram: @madglasser and DM Raven if you are interested. 

Some examples of Kevin O'Grady's vortex marbles are available on eBay: 
From eBay: BUY NOW Vortex Marbles by Kevin O'Grady 

A number of artists now offer vortex marble art on Etsy 
From Etsy: BUY NOW Vortex Marbles 

Split Vortex Marble: What does a vortex marble look like from the inside? Here are two examples of this amazing lampwork art: a split vortex marble by Raven Copeland aka @madglasser, and a classic vortex marble by the inventor of the art form Kevin O’Grady @kevinogradyglass (swipe to view). This rare split marble has been cut down the symmetry axis of the spiral and polished to reveal the inner workings of the vortex marble illusion, where the spherical clear glass face of such marbles acts as a convex lens giving the illusion that the spiral goes deeper than the diameter of the marble.


The Heritage Periodic Table

Periodic Table with 83 element samples: 
From Etsy store ProtoshopLLC: BUY NOW: Heritage Periodic Table

See also: The Collector's Edition with 85 samples

Note: this site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated

Please note: there are fradulent versions of this with only pictures embedded in the acyrlic being sold on facebook. The link above is the only place to get the actual version. 

The Heritage Periodic Table Display: a comprehensive collection of the chemical elements that can fit in the hand. Embedded in acrylic are actual samples of 83 of the 118 elements- including pure bubbles of the gaseous elements- represented by 75 high purity samples and 7 compounds. 2019 marks the 150th anniversary of the world changing periodic system of Dmitri Mendeleev (published in 1869). This table and collection is the creative work of Tim and Cory Marriott of Engineered Labs Protoshop LLC 

Pearl Vault Puzzle

Get this puzzle here:

From Etsy: BUY NOW: Pearl Vault Puzzle

Pearl Vault Puzzle: a tetrahedron assembly of four identical pieces traps within a pearl. Three challenge aspects to this puzzle: 1) get the pearl out from the center, 2) explain the physics of how the disassembly occurs, and 3) reassemble- for which 3) might be the most challenging. Swipe for reveal and note the conservation of momentum aspect of the solution. Designed by Bruce Patterson and expertly produced by Pyrigan Puzzles. 

Puzzle Proofs

Get these and many other interesting puzzles here:

From Etsy: BUY NOW: Puzzles from Jeux Efce

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Puzzle Proofs: three mathematical proofs in a physical form that use equivalent areas to make the case. The first video illustrates one of the most famous equations concerning the sides of any right triangle, the Pythagorean Theorem. The area of a square with side c of the hypotenuse is indeed equal to the sum of the areas of the squares of side a and b. One of the most used formulas when calculating vectors in physics classes! In the second video, similar comparisons of areas illustrate two special binomial products (a+b)² and (a+b)(a-b), and connects these famous algebraic equations to simple geometry. 


Deja Vu II: Kinetic Art

Get this amazing work of art and craftsmenship from this source:

From Etsy: BUY NOW: Deja Vu II Kinetic Art

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See this other amazing device from this creator: Impossible Marble Machine 

Deja Vu II: astonishing spring powered kinetic art. Crafted from wood this device has two disks, each with a pattern of curved spokes that can rotate at different rates and direction to produce interesting illusions of motion via moiré interference effects. A ribbon spring drives an ingenious mechanism that uses ratchets (and the rotational momentum of the disks) to create the various visual modes- a half rotation of the disks will result in 20+ minutes of motion. With a full loading of the spring hours of motion will ensue. Another amazing creation by artist and designer William Le.

5 Shuttle Trammel of Archimedes

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From Etsy: BUY NOW: Trammel of Archimedes

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See this great video by the Mathologer for more details: Secrets of the Nothing Grinder 

5 Shuttle Trammel of Archimedes: similar to yesterday’s post- but more math is revealed as extra shuttles are added. As the shuttles take turns completing their straight line journeys, the end of the crank arm traces an ellipse- and each of the five shuttle points define points on a smaller circle that rolls within the perimeter of the device. This version was crafted from fine maple, cherry, and oak by artisan Neal Olsen. 

Color Enhanced Lithophane: Escher Dragon

Get a color lithiphane here: (the dragon or photo of your choice)

From Etsy: BUY NOW: 3D printed full color lithophane

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Lithophane Color Escher Print: another modern take on the lithophane technique from the 1820s- this time with color changing LEDs and again via modern 3D printing that allows full color images through selective absorption and transmission of light. This lithophane was created using a photo of my black light poster (featured two posts back). Traditional lithophanes produced gray tone images by shining light through a translucent substance, initially porcelain, where thicker regions absorb the light and appear dark gray, and thinner regions look light gray. 3D printing allows a new method for producing this art form with amazing detail, where layers of colored plastic, applied in the right sequences and thicknesses, can produce lifelike and artistic results. Yet another amazing 3D print by Alex L. Kling!


Bismuth Maglev Rod

Get this amazing and affordable science sculptue here:

From Etsy: BUY NOW: Bismuth Maglev Rod

Click here to see other diamagnetic toys and scuptures

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Bismuth Maglev Rod: Small magnets are trapped, suspended and floating, within the notch of a rod cast from the diamagnetic metal bismuth. Diamagnetic substances only have magnetic fields of their own when placed in an external magnetic field from another source- here the small floating magnet supplies the external field. Diamagnetic fields are pretty weak though, so a powerful neodymium magnet sits above the gap on the top of the rod, and its height is adjusted to help lift the small magnet against gravity. Another amazing creation by Ernie McElhannon of Element83.

Double Pendulum Chaos

Get a similar, and very well made, chaotic pendulum here:

From Etsy: BUY NOW Double Chaotic Pendulum 

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Double Pendulum: chaotic motion from a simple assembly of two physical pendulums (one attached to the end of the other) with the energy of the system moving frenetically back and forth between the potential energy of gravity to the kinetic energy of motion. An LED light attached to the end of the pendulum allows for a good visualization of the chaotic motion- characterized by extreme sensitivity to initial starting conditions, how tiny differences in how the system is released leads to dramatically different outcomes each time. 

Four Marble Puzzle

Get this well crafted puzzle from Creative Crafthouse here: 
From Amazon: BUY NOW Crossroads Four Marble Puzzle 
From Etsy: BUY NOW Four Marble Puzzle 

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Four Marble Puzzle: physics brain teaser- move all four marbles to their corner locations simultaneously. Each slot slopes down towards the center such that the marbles tend to stay at the center- so, how would one get them to roll outward at the same time? The solution to this puzzle (like others featured here) relies on some fun basic physics principles. Answer below and swipe to reveal solution. A beautiful and well-made puzzle from Creative Crafthouse. 


Phenakistiscope Spinner Set

Get these amazing spinners from aPyroDesign;

From Etsy: BUY NOW: Animation Spinners

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Phénakisticope Spinner Set: two spinners- one a laser cut and printed acrylic with a set of images similar to the animation design of a flip book (but in a repeating cycle)- and the second a black disk with thin slit openings. Spin them in opposite directions and then look through the black disk at the first to reveal an animated image, in this case a running stick person. The effect looks better in person in that the frame rate of the video capture process adds some artifacts. Using the second black disk like this turns the spinners into a phenakistiscope, the 1833 invention that started moving media animation that lead to the development of movies and video. Under very bright light the animation can also be seen using a smartphone camera in video mode, but the black disk allows one to see the animation without such technology.

Hexacon and Sphericon Rollers

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From Etsy: BUY NOW: Hexacon and Sphericon Rollers

Hexacon Roller: beautiful 3D printed versions of a recent mathematical discovery of new developable rollers (objects that roll where every point on the roller’s surface comes into contact with the plane upon which it rolls). Similar to the sphericon (based on a square) the hexacon rolls in a straight line with a peculiar wobble motion but has a hexagonal cross section (swipe to see video loop of each in motion). The hexacon (2019) and sphericon (1980) are two of a family of such rollers called polycons discovered by David Hirsch, and described in a paper by Hirsch and Seaton published in 2020. 

Motion of Rolling Sphericons

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From Etsy: BUY NOW: Hexacon and Sphericon Rollers

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Sphericons are unique solids that roll in such a way that every point on their surface comes in contact with the plane. Solids from the sphericon family all have one side and two edges. Each sphericon is based on an even sided regular polygon, with the basic sphericon derived from a square, and the next two possible shapes are the hexa-sphericon and octo-sphericon, each rolling with a more complicated path.


Magic Portal Illusion Redux

Get one, expertly printed and assembled, here:

From Etsy: BUY NOW: Magic Portal Illusion Desk Toy

Or print it yourself: 3D Print Files: Magic Portal Desk Toy

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Magic Portal Illusion Redux: another look at this new illusion I’ve been obsessed with where it appears as though these colorful strands are passing in and out of a 4th dimension- the illusion seems even stronger when operated along the horizontal. The mechanical principle employed is similar to that of a lead screw and slider type actuator, except here translating the slider back and forth rotates the helical strands at just the right rate to produce the illusion. An amazing 3D print creation of Ada Cohen, expertly printed and assembled by Alex L. Kling.

Perpetual Motion Simulator V2.0

This new demonstration transparent model is available here:
From Amazon: BUY NOW: Transparent Perpetual Simulator

Get the original here:
From Etsy: BUY NOW: Perpetual Marble Machine (reccomended seller: William Le of BackToNatureDecor)

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Perpetual Motion Simulator V2.0: a version with a transparent casing that reveals the sophisticated mechanism and electronics behind the newest “perpetual motion” toy that hit the internet a couple years ago. The original version was expertly crafted to make the base look like a block of wood (see post from November), but here we see a battery, a coil, a set of large capacitors, and a blue sensor unit along with circuit boards. The sensor detects the descending metal ball and then in an amazingly short amount of time the circuit discharges the capacitors through the coil to produce a magnetic pulse that accelerates the ball. Still looking into what kind of sensor is used- but this circuit is an excellent reminder that when someone claims a perpetual motion device the question to ask is “where’s the battery hidden?”

See Steve Mould's excellent video for details on the Perpetual Motion Simulator Circuirtry 

Trisected Sphere Puzzle

Get one here (color of your choice):

From Etsy: BUY NOW: Trisected Sphere Puzzle

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Trisected Sphere Puzzle: three identical pieces interlock to form a ball in this elegant 3D printed dissection puzzle. The sphere is sliced following a helical path from one pole to the opposite pole, creating a smooth disassembly and reassembly.

See other fun geometric puzzles here: dissection puzzles