Black and white patterns have a timeless allure.

When embodied in a LEGO® spinning top, the patterns become not just 3-dimensional but in a sense 4-dimensional, as they also evolve as the top spins down.

The video opens with a flyover of some of my better black and white tops at rest. Those with more interesting dynamic patterns in video then spin for the camera from 2:47 on.

The eye and the video camera see the same top at rest but tend to capture very different dynamic patterns when the top’s in motion. The video dynamic patterns are subject to radical change as the top’s rotational frequency decays through harmonics of the video frame rate (here, 30 fps).

Additonal layers of visual complexity arise from the evolution of precession and nutation during spin-down.

NB: The very first top shown in the flyover was a gift from friend and fellow DENLUG member Ian Davis. The other 36 are mine.

Jeremy McCreary

Jeremy McCreary

Lego spintop crafter

Lego Tops

Most of the videos here are extracted from my MOCs pages there and are working gizmos born of a fascination with gadgets and the science and engineering behind them. Technical LEGO® — my term for the fusion of LEGO® with STEM (science, technology, and math) subject matter — brings out my inner inventor/designer/engineer/toymaker like no other medium.

My work owes a great deal to the folks on my list of favorite builders. Their imagination and ingenuity never cease to amaze.