Monthly Archives: May 2014

How the Sip & Spin™ Works

Written by : Posted on May 13, 2014 : No Comments


Kids remind us that the world is a pretty interesting place—so many things to learn, explore and experience. It doesn’t take much to join in the fun, especially when you are learning along with them. Sometimes the simplest things can teach us a lot about how the world works.

As engineers, we love figuring out how to use our understanding of the world and make things that works for us. The concept of the Sip & SpinTM came from the desire to create a product that performs better and is more fun than any other cup in the world. Let’s talk about how it works.

sip and spin owl feeling air pressureDid you know that every square inch of your body is experiencing about 15 pounds of force right now! That’s literally tons of force acting on you from head to toe. Gravity is pulling all of the air in the sky above you and trying to squish you with it. So, why don’t you feel squished? Our bodies are used to the air pressure – the pressure inside our ears, stomach, and lungs is the same as the air pressure outside, so we don’t feel crushed.

sip and spin owl taking a drinkWhen your kiddo takes a sip of water through the straw, the pressure inside her mouth is slightly lower than the pressure outside. This pressure difference forces the water up the straw.

We can truthfully say that the Sip & SpinTM is jet powered! As the water moves up the straw and into the disc area, it passes through a specially sized hole that creates a fast moving water jet.


sip and spin CD under faucet demo

The effect of the water jet pulling on the disc can be demonstrated with a CD under a faucet

That fast moving stream of water (the jet) pushes and pulls on the disc, using friction to drag the disc along with it, causing the disc to spin. You may have thought that friction is always bad, but it can be harnessed for good, too.

Are you surprised that a slippery liquid generates friction? The water molecules in the jet (and everywhere) can be thought of as tiny magnets. As the water molecules pass by one another, they push at each other with their inertia and pull at each other with their “magnetic” (inter-molecular) forces. They also push and pull at the disc surface too.

So your kiddo is utilizing the forces of nature to develop jet power, forcing the disc to spin! That’s pretty cool, and she gets a refreshingly fun drink of water in the process. If you are like us, the joy of learning about how stuff works is equaled only by the joy of teaching what we know to our little ones.

Stay tuned as we tool up and start producing the first real Sip & SpinTM cups in the next few months.

nuSpin Kids
Good. Healthy. Fun.