Ferris Wheel Photo Frame




About: My name is Utkarsh and I am an electrical and electronics engineer by training, a maker by passion. When I am not pouring over circuit diagrams and soldering wires, I try to reuse and make artistic and craft...

We've all had those days when our creativity often strike at the right moment when we need it to. That is what happened when we were brainstorming to put up Instant Polaroid Camera Photo Album in an unusual yet beautiful way. The answer was a Ferris Wheel Photo-frame.

Step 1: Material Required:

  • Plywood
  • Super Glue
  • 8 mm Metal Rod
  • AC Synchronous Motor
  • Copper Wires
  • Spray Paint


  • Laser Cutter
  • Drill Machine
  • Dremel with Metal Cutter Attachment
  • Wire Cutter
  • Sand Paper

Step 2: Making Parts

The Structural parts of the project includes-

  • Wheels
  • Support Towers
  • Gears
  • Base
  • Fence
  • Photo Frames

I cut all these parts on a laser cutter. Laser Works V6 files are included for you to make your own. I made it at Maker's Asylum Delhi !!

Step 3: Wheels & Photoframes

Now that all laser cutting was done, It was time to assemble the parts.

I started with the Wheels first. To Join the two wheel with each other I used 8 mm Metal Rod in the centre which was also serving as an Axle for rotational movement. I then super glued 4 plywood pieces 5 cm away from the radius to prevent the wobbling of the two wheels and make the joint stronger.

The cameras that we were using were from Fujifilm Instax with film dimensions as follows -

Mini -

  • Film size - 108(W) x 86(H) mm
  • Picture size - 99(W) x 62(H) mm

Wide -

  • Film size - 54(W) x 86(H) mm
  • Picture size - 46(W) x 62(H) mm

So photo frames are designed according to these dimensions but files can always be modified to work with any size. The Photo-frames are assembled and fixed using super glue.

  • There are total 8 frames in the Ferris Wheel. In one frame 2 mini and 1 wide photograph can be fixed.
  • Frames are open from top in a way so that photographs can be removed and changed easily.

I also fixed the bigger gear on the outer side of the Wheel which is later to be used for the rotation mechanism.

After completing Wheels and Photo-frames I painted them with Lacquer Spray Paint while the inner side of the Supporting Towers was painted with Black Spray Paint.

Step 4: Base & Support Towers

Base is the bottom platform, on which the rest of the structure is to stand.

  • The two supporting towers were installed on to the base.
  • I also fixed a fence on the Base to add detail and give it realistic look.

Wheels were added next and this is the tricky part.

  • Axle is to be tight fixed on the Supporting Towers and Wheel had to rotate freely on the Axle (8 mm metal rod) following which I move on to the task of cutting and smoothing the Metal Rod so that wheels can rotate on the rod flawlessly. I cut the Metal Rod in required lengths using Dremel and then smoothed it using a drill machine and sandpaper.
  • The next addition was the frames that were to be fitted into the wheel. Here again the Metal Rod is serving the purpose of axle fixed on the Ferris Wheel on which Photo-frames are free to move.
  • These were then aligned to the structure for the same purpose of smooth functionality.

Step 5: Rotation Mechanism

Whats better then a Ferris Wheel ????
A working Ferris Wheel :D
For rotation of the Ferris Wheel I brought a low RPM Synchronous Motor. The motor works at 240 V (domestic voltage in India), so no special needs there.

This was followed by the installation of small gear on the shaft of the motor which I fixed on the Supporting Tower to transmit the motion to the gear fixed on the wheel, that would be responsible for the wheel’s motion.

Put all the photographs and you have the coolest Photo-frame to put your photos in :)



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    23 Discussions


    Question 1 year ago on Step 2

    the files are not working (rdw work v8.26)
    I would like to have dxf format.... thank you...


    1 year ago

    Hi, can I ask if you have .dxf instead? Appreciated.


    2 years ago

    Very nice, and I'd love to make this. But I can't read your .rld files. Our makerspace has Version 8 and I get a "version error"(?) when I try to open these.

    Can you possibly export and upload the files as .ai? (Adobe illustrator) or pdf, or, better yet, dxf?

    1 reply

    Reply 1 year ago

    Yes, have problems opening the file extension .RLD here too.


    2 years ago

    I have to make this as soon as I get a laser cutter. This is the best photo display I have ever seen.

    1 reply
    Canvas of Dreamsmrsmerwin

    Reply 2 years ago

    Hehe thanks Mrsmerwin :)
    All the very best for your new photo display :)


    2 years ago

    I'm actually enthralled after watching this. Amazing craftmanship man !


    2 years ago

    This is so cool!

    Aria Aura

    2 years ago

    All pretty nice and EASY with a laser cutter but...you "printed" everything but not a BOX FOR THE MOTOR?? If the motor is covered is more pretty i think... :/ Make it turn slower ?

    1 reply
    Canvas of DreamsAria Aura

    Reply 2 years ago

    Yes as I have already designed and provided all the files its very easy now. Covering the motor is a good suggestion....thanks i will update it soon.


    2 years ago

    Canvas of Dreams waiting for more and unique projects. All the best