My flapping goldfish has been by far my most popular video on YouTube with 148,000 views to date. I have now revised the mechanism to take advantage of the Sherline lathe and mill that I have invested in. This has enabled me to make much more accurate mechanisms using brass and nylon for smoother action and increased longevity to go inside the wooden automata. This fish is a charming ornament in its own right but also has a convincing animation.
A nylon rod holds the 2 magnets. A slot prevents the rod rotating and also restricts its movement within the wooden case. A small spring acts to return the button to the starting position.
A nice simple mechanism although the fish does take a little carving, especially as the segments keep moving about. Acrylic painted, sanded and then thinly reapplied gives a super finish.