Flapping Angel Project

angel cover

Task: To create a flapping angel decoration
Difficulty: Intermediate

For this project you will need:

  • A Crumble controller, with micro-USB lead;
  • A computer with the latest Crumble software;
  • A battery pack with batteries (not rechargeable);
  • A gearbox motor with plastic wheel;
  • Two croc-leads.

You will also need: the printed angel template, colouring pens/pencils, scissors, a polystyrene cup, a lollipop stick, split pins, two sticky pads, glue and sellotape.

1 Gather your materials and print out your template.

2 Colour in the angel’s head and halo. You could also colour in the body if you wish.

3 Carefully cut out all of the parts from the template.

4 Mark where to cut your lollipop stick, so that it will fit in between the two black circles.

5 Cut the lollipop stick. We found scissors work really well. Then place it inside the folded piece of card.

6 Tape the piece of card shut around the lollipop stick – it needs to be solid.

7 Get the two wings and the lollipop-shaped piece of card, and pierce a hole through each of the four ovals (not black).

8 Then connect your pieces together using split pins, and fold them down. Make sure you give the pieces a wiggle so that they are free to move.

9 Now pierce a hole through each of the marked lines.

10 Connect the wing mechanism to the back angel using split pins and fold the split pins down.

11 Pierce holes through the marked spots (filled ovals).

12 Connect these pieces together using the split pins. Take care to get the same arrangement as shown.

13 Cut one of the sticky pads in half, and attach it to the plastic wheel.

14 Flip your angel over and stick the wheel to the cardboard circle as shown. Try and get it as central as possible.

15 Glue the heads of your two angel pieces together. We have added two extra split pins and a cardboard guide over our mechanism to stabilise it.

16 Your angel puppet should look something like this.

17 Attach the motor to the plastic wheel, and add a sticky pad to the back of it.

18 Take your polystyrene cup and cut four 1cm long slits in it, as shown.

18 Stick your gearbox (wires up) into your cup, and place the back and front of the angel into the slits.

19 You can wire up your angel as shown, with the red motor lead connecting to motor pad 1 (+) and the black motor lead connecting to (-).

20 Programming the angel is incredibly simple. All you need to do is run the motor.

21 To make it more interactive, we can add in a switch. Connect one end to the + output on the Crumble, and the other end to A (or B, C or D).

23 This is our program to get the switch to control the angel. The program halts until the switch is pressed, before moving on and turning the motor on. The wait 200ms is to prevent us accidentally triggering the next ‘wait until’ statement. The motor then runs until we press the switch, where it stops again.


And there you have it! Your very own flying angel, just in time for Christmas!