In the dim-and-distant days before computer games, children made their own entertainment – and sometimes their own toys too. An old favourite was the cotton-reel tank, made from cheap materials that were then readily available – a wooden cotton reel, an elastic [or rubber] band, a piece of wax candle and a couple of matchsticks. Reels for cotton thread were once made of wood, not plastic, and because most families did a great deal of sewing at home (mending and making clothes), empty cotton reels were abundant. With little money to spend on commercially produced toys, children would use their craft skills to turn them into military tanks.
1 x Cotton Reel
1x cocktail stick
See link for instructions: https://www.stevespanglerscience.com/lab/experiments/wind-up-racer/
- See more at: http://blog.adkinshistory.com/cotton-reel-tanks/#sthash.LAdRWmuh.dpuf