Introducing "The Schulte" Spinning Top and "The Captive Nut" Keyring!

We are THRILLED to announce we are NOW SHIPPING our first two products: The Schulte Spinning Top and The Captive Nut Keyring! Hand designed and engineered by owner Bill Strahan, inventor of the Armored Fitness XPO Trainer, these are the first of many everyday carry products created by Bruce Charles Designs.

Check out the story behind each product now available!

"The Schulte" Solid Brass Spinning Top with Silicon Nitride Ceramic Bearing

The “Schulte” was designed several years ago after acquiring my first metal lathe and as I was gaining experience turning different materials, applying knurling, cutting threads, etc.  I made a list of projects as challenges for myself on the use of the lathe, one of which was a brass spinning top.

As I was sketching out my first design and planning the order of machining operations, a close friend texted me and said “Now that you have a lathe, you should make a metal spinning top!”  Enjoying the serendipity of the moment, I decided that I would eventually give him the first brass top I created, and if I ever produced it I would name it after him. So I did.


“The Captive Nut” Brass and Stainless Steel Keyring

“The Captive Nut” was one of my early lathe projects that started as a way to get better at turning threads and multiple machining operations.  I originally learned about it as a machinist’s puzzle to be made on the lathe, but my twist on it was to turn it into a keychain with an additional operation on the milling machine.  It served as a fantastic conversation starter as I carried the first one I made as my personal keyring for years.

When I made one for my friend Todd, I told him it was representative of the time he took me hiking in Colorado and I had no way to leave and return to civilization.  I told him that I was the “Captive Nut” for that trip. He didn’t think my joke was very funny either, but the name stuck. Over the years, I made a few more for friends, and even had the joy of teaching my daughter how to make one for her boyfriend.  It took many hours spread out over two days, but she got it done!

It’s simple; it’s just brass, stainless, and nickel plated steel rings.  But it’s not so simple when you hand it to a friend and ask them how to remove the nut.  Then, while they’re just starting to realize they can’t, ask them an even better question:  “How did the nut get on there?”


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