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Cheeseburger with side dishes
This long-spinning quintessential dish top comes with a number of tasty side dishes.
About this creation
Please feel free to look over the images and skip the verbiage.

"Cheeseburger" is a dish top in the likeness of a cheeseburger, with your choice of pickle on top. (Dill for me, please!)







(The planetary spinner in the background has its own MOCpage.)

I'm posting Cheeseburger mainly for The Royal Brick, who recently uploaded a brilliant Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene Burger. His burger isn't a top but manages to look downright edible, whereas mine just looks like plain old acrylonitrile butadiene styrene.



Also on today's menu are some tasty side dishes. The "group video" above shows all of them at rest and some of them in motion. Photos of selected side dishes serve as examples below.

On this page...


Dish tops

"Dish tops" have rotors consisting of either (i, left) one or more LEGOŽ wheels capped above and below by LEGOŽ dish fairings, or (ii, right) stacks of LEGOŽ dishes of various sizes and little else. Non-dish ornamentation contributes little to the top's total axial moment of inertia (AMI). (See my primer on AMI for details.)



That's "Biker Burger" on the left and "Sundae" on the right.

Stacking dishes with the outermost dishes convex-outward -- as in Cheeseburger above and "Over Easy" below -- makes for a rigid rotor with exceptionally low aerodynamic drag and a fairly high AMI per unit mass.



Sandwiching smooth-rimmed wheels between convex-outward dish fairings, as in Biker Burger above, has much the same effect, but the AMI/mass ratio is typically even greater. Either way, the usual result is an exceptionally long- and smooth-spinning top.

Some dish tops are more inclined to precess (orbit the vertical at an angle) than "sleep" (spin vertically in place). When dish tops do sleep, however, the "clean" ones lacking non-dish frills look like they're thumbing their noses at gravity while standing perfectly still. Cheeseburger naps below.



The air next to a clean dish top in motion hardly stirs. If the top makes any sound at all, it's the faint motor-like "purr" of a barely noticeable shiver of a wobble (aka nutation) interacting with the supporting surface via the tip. As heard in the group video (e.g., with Cheeseburger at 2:02), some dish arrangements seem to amplify the purring sound. What's never heard, however, is the unmistakable hiss of an aerodynamically dirty rotor.

The dishes need not be large to deliver long, smooth spins, but devising low-friction tips for 4x4 and smaller dishes can get interesting.





The pointy outer hubs on train wheels make excellent tips for lighter tops. (Thanks to good friend and favorite builder Shawn Kelly for that bit of outside-the-box thinking.)

Nor do the outermost dishes have to be opposed, but spin times are usually longer if they are.



Decorating dish tops can be fun, but every aerodynamically dirty ornament cuts into spin time and potentially smoothness as well -- unless you put the decorations on the inside.





Unlike most other designs, clean dish tops stay up much, much longer when spun up with high-speed spinners like the motorized tool beside Cheeseburger below. (Such devices can also spin perfect sleepers every time.)



Clean dish spin times routinely double with high-speed spinners, whereas many dirtier or less rigid designs are lucky to see 10% gains -- even at release speeds 50-100% greater than those attainable by hand! The difference goes beyond the fact that clean dishes can safely be taken to release speeds of over 4,000 RPM -- spin rates that would turn most other designs to shrapnel. After release, clean dishes also decelerate much more slowly than other top types.

Is it any wonder that sleek Stack of Dishes below could seemingly spin all day (OK, OK, 150 sec) with a little help?



The favorable response to high-speed spin-up sets dish tops quite apart from most of my studless tops and all of my expanding ring tops and Klingon tops.

Dish tops perform best when the dishes are secured as rigidly as possible to the top's main axle and adjacent dishes.





For this purpose, I make liberal use of 2x2 round plates and bricks, all of which have central axle holes.





As Over Easy, Biker Burger, and Sundae demonstrate, full length bushes and smooth axle joiners are also handy for locking dishes onto axles.

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Cheeseburger

Cheeseburger (44 g, 50 sec by hand), the specialty of the house, is the quintessential clean dish top, but it takes some muscle to fulfill the promise of long spin time. The main reason is that it carries its mass higher than most dish tops, and that means a greater center of mass (CM) height as measured with the top vertical.





Compare its axial mass distribution with those of Biker Burger (upper, 41 g, 122 sec by hand) and Stack of Dishes (lower, 62 g, 82 sec by hand). When upright, the latter two hold their mass significantly closer to the ground.





The issue ultimately comes down to "topple speed" -- the speed at which a top loses stability and falls over. Topple speed is exquisitely sensitve to CM height, with greater CM heights translating into higher topple speeds.

Since spin time is just the time it takes for a top to decelerate from release to topple speed, the only way to compensate for a higher CM in a given top is with a higher release speed. Problem is, reaching a sufficiently high release speed against an AMI as high as Cheeseburger's demands a lot of finger torque during the twirl. (Again, see my primer on AMI for details.)

Cheeseburger and Biker Burger have similar masses and aerodynamics, but the latter has a much lower CM. And because its mass is on average farther from the spin axis, it also has a greater AMI.

That combination's the key to a spin time that beats Cheeseburger's by a whopping 144%. The greater AMI reduces Biker's deceleration after release, and both factors cut Biker Burger's topple speed substantially -- with the lower CM being particularly potent in that regard. The result: Much longer spin times despite the lower release speeds enforced by Biker's greater AMI.

The group video ends with Cheeseburger and Over Easy being spun up by the electric spinner shown earlier, starting at 10:20. The motor pushes Cheeseburger's release speed to ~3,500 RPM and its (undisturbed) spin time to 101 sec -- double that of its spin time by hand.





Interestingly, these mechanical spinners also roughly double Cheeseburger's spin time by hand. The yellow wind-up spinner here packs TLG's best-ever wind-up motor. The black manual spinner below it uses a 2-stage inline planetary gear train with 1:16 overdrive. Both make putting Cheeseburger to sleep a snap.

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Specifications (Cheeseburger only)

Type:Dish top
Construction:All-dish rotor
Overall dimensions:80x122 mm (DxH) including stem
Mass:44 g
Spin times:50 sec by hand, 101 by motor
Modified LEGOŽ parts:Tip cut from a round-tipped 4L antenna
Non-LEGOŽ parts:None
Credits:Original MOC

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Comments

 I made it 
  November 16, 2015
Quoting David Roberts Hi Jeremy, I've been pondering other ways to make vehicles go along and came up with this: https://www.flickr.com/gp/davidroberts01341/17a350 Sorry to post it in a comment here but it won't be going on MOCpages.
Indeed you have! Using the tires to approximate a cycloidal surface for the square wheels to roll on is definitely outside the box, David -- or more specifically, underneath the box. MOCpage's loss. No worries about using a comment here, but if you'd like a more direct channel, by all means e-mail me directly at mocpages@cliffshade.com.
 I like it 
  November 16, 2015
Hi Jeremy, I've been pondering other ways to make vehicles go along and came up with this: https://www.flickr.com/gp/davidroberts01341/17a350 Sorry to post it in a comment here but it won't be going on MOCpages.
 I made it 
  November 16, 2015
Quoting Nils O. Very cool! I think I'll try to build a similar thing one day. Great job! :-))
Thanks, Nils! If you do, we can start a top group. I've just scratched the surface with LEGO tops.
 I like it 
  November 16, 2015
Very cool! I think I'll try to build a similar thing one day. Great job! :-))
 I made it 
  November 16, 2015
Quoting Topsy Creatori Fun spin on a top theme! Too bad Jimmy's 'Cheeseburger in Paradise' doesn't have the right meter/tempo to have been used as your background music! ;)
Thanks, Topsy! I'm automatically in paradise with a cheeseburger in hand, but adding a real tropical paradise to the mix would be nothing short of heavenly. "I'll take Tahiti with that burger, miss!"
 I like it 
  November 16, 2015
Fun spin on a top theme! Too bad Jimmy's 'Cheeseburger in Paradise' doesn't have the right meter/tempo to have been used as your background music! ;)
 I made it 
  November 15, 2015
Quoting The Royal Brick Awesome tops as usual, and thanks for the shout out! I always enjoy reading how you create your tops!
My pleasure!
 I like it 
  November 15, 2015
Awesome tops as usual, and thanks for the shout out! I always enjoy reading how you create your tops!
 I made it 
  November 15, 2015
Quoting Oliver Becker Delicious fast-food here, Jeremy! :) May all users of real burgers have the dynamic of your ABS- versions... LOL
Glad you enjoyed it, Oliver! I hear that Jackson Pollock used rapidly spinning burgers loaded with various condiments and sauces to make some of his paintings.
 I like it 
  November 15, 2015
Delicious fast-food here, Jeremy! :) May all users of real burgers have the dynamic of your ABS- versions... LOL
 I made it 
  November 15, 2015
Quoting Gabor Pauler This is the only rational usage of cheeseburgers...
Have you been talking to my internist?
 I like it 
  November 15, 2015
This is the only rational usage of cheeseburgers...
 I made it 
  November 15, 2015
Quoting Didier B Spinning tops Master !
You're too kind, Didier.
 I like it 
  November 15, 2015
Spinning tops Master !
 I made it 
  November 15, 2015
Quoting David Roberts A nice selection of smooth tops. I'm intrigued by the spinning machine with the planetary gear box. I was trying to make a Lego gyroscope yesterday but struggled to get sufficient rpm. (amongst othe problems, such as balanced wheels). Hkwever, I did discovere that if you spin a big, old 1980s Technic wheel fast enough, lack of centripetal force causes the tyre to stretch (whereas the more rigid hub doesn't perceptibly expand). Eventually the tyre loses grip from the hub and flies away! I can see the attraction of these spinning tops of yours!
BTW, there's a great photo of Bohr and Pauli standing over a top spinning on the floor with their faces full of fascination and delight, probably ca. 1930.
 I made it 
  November 15, 2015
Quoting David Roberts A nice selection of smooth tops. I'm intrigued by the spinning machine with the planetary gear box. I was trying to make a Lego gyroscope yesterday but struggled to get sufficient rpm. (amongst othe problems, such as balanced wheels). Hkwever, I did discovere that if you spin a big, old 1980s Technic wheel fast enough, lack of centripetal force causes the tyre to stretch (whereas the more rigid hub doesn't perceptibly expand). Eventually the tyre loses grip from the hub and flies away! I can see the attraction of these spinning tops of yours!
Thanks, David. I'll post that planetary spinner once this page fizzles. Meanwhile, I recommend trying the wind-up spinner. It's very powerful, more ergonomic, and dead simple. Many physicists consider rotational classical mechanics conceptually more difficult than quantum physics. I've been using LEGO to help me get any grip on it I can, as there's just no substitute for playing around with it (as opposed to just reading about it or even working problems). I've made some progress, but still run into puzzlements and surprises and fascinations every time I work with things that spin fast. I've learned more from tops than anything else.
 I like it 
  November 15, 2015
A nice selection of smooth tops. I'm intrigued by the spinning machine with the planetary gear box. I was trying to make a Lego gyroscope yesterday but struggled to get sufficient rpm. (amongst othe problems, such as balanced wheels). Hkwever, I did discovere that if you spin a big, old 1980s Technic wheel fast enough, lack of centripetal force causes the tyre to stretch (whereas the more rigid hub doesn't perceptibly expand). Eventually the tyre loses grip from the hub and flies away! I can see the attraction of these spinning tops of yours!
 
By Jeremy McCreary
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LEGO models my own creation MOCpages toys shop Cheeseburger with side dishes


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