Over the years we have accumulated a few different whirligigs, including a sentry, a carousel, a wood chopper and a fisherman. We periodically rotate these on the pole we have set in the front garden. The reason we rotate the whirligigs is because they require periodic maintenance after being outdoors for a while.
It seems that a typical whirligig mechanism is somewhat fragile and in many cases the makers of these things learned their craft at the school of shaky carpentry. When one suffers damage, I bring it inside for repairs and replace it with another.
I put the wood chopper up the other day. This was our first whirligig. It has a very rudimentary mechanism which had deteriorated over time. I fussed with it, tightened things up and freshened up the paint before re-installing. It works but its operation is a little rough, and with the clunky propeller this one has it will take quite a gust of wind to get any wood chopped. The fisherman has the opposite problem. He fishes so hard and so fast that his parts break from wear, and a big wind makes him go fishin’-crazy.