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Wag the Dog - Come and get it!


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Wag the Dog. The slightest tap on the box and the cute dog wags her tail. If you are a member you can download and make this pendulum powered model for free. None members can download it for a small fee.

Check out the YouTube video above (I think my music is getting a little better 🙂 then crack out the glue and start making your own model!

The file comes in both mono and colour versions. Print out the one of your choice. The first three sheet need to be printed onto thin card (230 micron / 230 gsm) the forth sheet should be printed onto paper. Note that the third colour sheet has a front and a back. Print out the front, flip the card and return it to the printer before printing out the back. Dashed lines are hill folds, dotted lines are valley folds, solid black lines show where to cut and grey areas where to glue.

Score along the dotted and dashed lines and cut out the holes berfore cutting out the parts,

Fold up and glue down the tab on the box back to make this triangular tube. This helps make the box top rigid.

Fold the tab on the box front and glue it down lining up the edge with the crease.

Fold over and glue down the tabs on the box sides making sure that the side is perpendicular to the main face.

Glue the two box sides to the box base carefully lining up the parts.

Glue on the box front and back again being careful with alignment.

Fold up and glue the box together and shown. Flip the box over and glue the back of the base tabs to the inside of the box.

Fold up and glue together the tail stand as shown in the picture.

Glue the tail stand to the box on the grey areas as shown.

Glue on the paper hinge.

Glue the tail stand to the paper hinge lining up the red line with the top of the tail stand.

Fold up and glue together the pendulum.

Glue the hinge to the top of the pendulum. Try not to get glue on the fold line as this stops the hinge working as well.

Glue the linkage to the underside of the pendulum. Use the narrow grey area on the hinge as a guide for alignment and use the picture to help with orientation.

Thread the pendulum into the box and glue the hinge to the box top.

Glue the end of the linkage to the tail support.

Glue the tail on to the tail support so that it has a ninety degree crease along its length.

Glue the body tabs down so that the body lines up against the edge of the hole in the box.

Curve the body over and glue it down.

Cut round the sides of the eye in the two places shown, that way they’ll pop from the head a little when you roll the head round.

Curve the paws a little to give them a little depth.

Glue the ears and nose to the head.

Glue the paws and head to the box.

Glue on the back legs noticing that the back feet go flat on the box top.

Take two coins (25mm diameter, 7 grams each- I used 2p coins) and fold round and glue down the coin holders. Flip the model over and glue the coins to the front and back of the pendulum.

That’s it! If the tail isn’t quite vertical you can adjust it by bending the pendulum back and forth.

Tap the box and your dog will wag her tail!

5 reviews for Wag the Dog

  • Dear Rob,

    Dear Rob,


    Congratulations for this new toy, the wag dog. It gathers two ingredients for success: simplicity and movement…It reminds me the maximum rule of Einstein: "do the things simplest you can but don't limit yourself doing just simple things". It's superb your model, Rob. I wonder new models and it makes me imagine a lot of things, like those tortoises (or dogs) that wave the heads…I just can't wait the release of next model: the dragonfly!

  • just made wag…. and its

    just made wag…. and its working really well I can't tell you how impressed  I am with the power of pendulum… and i thought they just grew inside grandfather clocks… i love this little dog. i too am looking forward to the dragonfly… in the meantime I'll just tap  wag one more time.

    • That was quick Trish! Thanks

      That was quick Trish! Thanks both for your comments.  I'm going to work on the dragonfly today.

      • Hi Rob,
        Your web page says

        Hi Rob,

        Your web page says "You can download all the projects posted after Dec 16, 2007 for free!
        Remember, the longer you are a member, the further back you can go into the archives!"

        Silly question, where are the archives? I don't see a button anywhere to get to them.

        • Not such a silly question.

          Not such a silly question. The archives are basically anything posted in the past. I'm in the process of moving the blog/shop together at which point all should become clear. Check here for progress but at the moment you'll need to link to the individual project pages from there to get to the free download links. 

  • So excited! Rob, is there a

    So excited! Rob, is there a way you could include your marvelous step by step photo/instructions as a pdf for these model downloads as well. Or alternatively, perhaps give us a way to print them from the site. (Whenever I print from the website, I only get the page that's showing vs. the entire post.)

    • I originally produced models

      I originally produced models with the instructions included as part of the download. I moved the instructions onto the blog page as I thought that casual viewers would be interested to see how the models are made.

      Rather than duplicating my efforts producing the same set of instructions in two formats I've provided a 'print' button at the top of the post which formats each page suitably ready for output to your printer. I hope this helps 🙂

      • OH! Thanks for letting me

        OH! Thanks for letting me know. I didn't see that before. It's a great model, Rob! Bravo! Standing Ovation.

  • Very cute — assembly went

    Very cute — assembly went without hitch. My son wanted to know why you had to tap the box, then did and was enlightened.

  • Rob: Here in the US our coins

    Rob: Here in the US our coins are light.  The weightiest coin we have is a nickel, weighing in at 5 grams and 21 mm.  Do you think this would be weighty enough.  If I used pennies I'd have to put 3 on each side and I'm afraid the balance would be off.

    I think nickels would be best – if you can afford it! – RI

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