Sunday, December 31, 2017

Sand Timer-Flip Over

Here is a different type of sand timer. When it is upright the sand will flow from one side to the other and the weight of the sand will pull the block over. I tested it and it is 2 1/2 minutes on each side.

A 2x4 is will be used for the sand timer, it is a softwood and easy to work with.
The length will be 10 inches. 

I marked the centres of the wood block and  drew 2  channels. Note both ends have to be cut at 10 degrees. This will help the block pull over when the sand fills a channel.   

A  Miter gauge is set to 10 degrees and both ends of the block are cut. These can later be sanded to get the sweet point for tipping over after the sand is added.

To keep the cuts as neat as possible I started with a 1 1/8"  forstner bit for each end then the rest can be cut using a jigsaw. The channels will be cut the same width.  

A jigsaw can make the rest of the cuts but it could turn out a little rough. If it needs a little cleaning a file and some sandpaper will finish the job. Make sure you can see the pencil lines and stay as close as you can to them.


          Watch the step by step Video here and don't forget to  Subscribe to 
          my channel. 

Now is a good time to drill the hole for the sand. I will use a wire for this. 
The wire I used did not fit in the chuck of the drill so I cut a small piece of plastic from an electric wire and put it on the end of my wire drill bit and now it fits tight in the chuck.

Mini wire drill bit.                                               

After the hole was drilled a piece of 3mm Baltic birch was glued onto the back. I always like to cut a piece bigger than I need and then trim it down and fine sand it later.

                     Sand was sifted to make sure it would be consistent in size so no                      large pieces would clog the hole. A large cup of sand was ready to                      use. I tested what I had so far to make sure everything was flowing                  from one side to the other.  

I purchased a piece of plexiglass at a local plastic shop for $2.00. The Plexiglass was put onto the block and a Sharpie was used to mark where it had to be drilled. It was first drilled and then countersunk.  

  The plexiglass was trimmed on the bandsaw and then taken over to the belt sander and cleaned up even more taking off the rough edges and making it look smooth.

The sand timer is an easy build and so far I am using it in my shop for fun. The loud bang is makes a good alarm. It can be calibrated to get the exact time by adding or taking away sand and sanding the round edges.

 Similar to the pomodoro technique I am using to do small chores around the shop like cleaning, sweeping or organizing a drawer. 

See Also:

                 Puzzle box                                        Floating Dowel



  1. Great Article it its really informative and innovative keep us posted with new updates. its was really valuable. thanks a lot.

  2. This blog is a great resource for anyone looking to learn more about Sand Timers. The content is well-written and easy to understand, and ipvanish sale the author does a great job of exploring the history and potential uses of this tool. I'm sure I'll be referring to this blog often!