Build a Sellner Water Ride
was a Faribault inventor who loved fun. He first designed furniture.
Then he invented children's toys, including a sled with wheels.
In the 1920's, he began to design amusement park rides. His most
famous invention is the Tilt-A-Whirl, which is still manufactured
in Faribault. He also invented a Water Wheel ride. Advertisements
said could be used to teach diving. It was also used at resorts
and beaches. You can make your own version of the Sellner Water
Wheel using the pattern and instructions below.
Water Wheel, 1925
Water Toboggan Slide, 1925
Pattern and instructions
Click for printable version.
This Water Wheel can be made out of regular white
paper printed directly from your computer. However, it will be sturdier
if you use construction paper or cardboard.
You will need:
- An adult's help (mabye) if you're under 10
- Paper, construction paper or thin cardboard.
- A pen or pencil for tracing.
- A ruler.
- A pin or other sharp point.
- Markers or crayons for decorating.
- Glue, tape or a stapler.
- A round toothpick, straightened paper clip,
or other axel-type device.
If you will use the pattern printed directly
from your computer, go to Step 4. Otherwise,
follow the directions below.
- Step 1.
- Cut out and trace the pattern on your materials.
- Step 2.
- Add the dotted fold lines and the beam end cutting lines, using
a ruler to make sure they are straight.
- Step 3.
- Carefully use a pin or other sharp point
to transfer the small back dots on the wheel and beam pieces to your
- Step 4.
- Cut out your pieces on the solid lines.
- Step 5.
- Color or decorate your pieces. You can decorate both sides of the
wheel piece. You will want to decorate the back side of the beam pieces
(not the side the pattern is drawn on).
- Step 6.
- Fold your beam and frame pieces on the dotted lines.
- Step 7.
- Using a pin, pencil or compass point or small nail, make holes through
the black dots on the two beam pieces and the wheel.
- Step 8.
- Overlap Flaps A and B on the four beam ends and fasten with tape,
staples or glue. You will have two long, rectangular half-boxes.
- Step 9.
- Set your folded frame piece upside down in front of you so that
it makes a U shape.
- Step 10.
- This is the tricky part. Read carefully and check your work before
attaching your beams!
- Turn one beam so that side C is facing down.
- If needed, turn your beam, with side C still
facing down, so that Beam Side D (with the hole) is facing the center
- Set your beam into place on the underside
of the frame. The beam hole should be near the center cut, facing
the center cut. The beam edges should be lined up with the frame's
outside edge and center cut edge.
- Attach the beam to the frame at both beam
ends. Repeat Step 10 for the other beam.
- Step 11.
- Turn your model over. Insert toothpick or other axel-like item through
one of the beams. Place wheel in wheel cut, and finish by poking the
toothpick through the wheel and the second beam hole.
- Step 12.
- Use your imagination to create a ladder for the wheel and to build
additional scenery or other amusement park equipment. Amaze your friends
with your Sellner Water Wheel model! You can see more pictures of Sellner
devices at www.whirlin.com.