Topic: gears

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Wooden domino row building machine

I first built a domino row building machine of this type in 1985 out of Lego, then built it again from memory in 2009 to make a video of it. The machine works by pushing a magazine full of dominoes forward along the t...

Three Gears are Possible

If you've ever seen an image of three gears all interlocking or an odd number of interconnecting gears, like those gears on some British two pound (£2) coins, you've seen a gear configuration that does not work. Howev...

A 3D printed mechanical laser show machine

Engineer, maker, and 3D printing enthusiast Evan Stanford has created a 3D printed, hand-cranked mechanical laser show machine that 'draws' with projected light. The drawn shapes are created with two rotating cams tha...

The Solitary Life of Cranes, a trailer

I originally got fascinated by the idea that there is almost another world above London (or any other city); yet most of us never look up to notice cranes or their drivers. The drivers, in turn, can see everything goi...

Turing Tumble, a DIY mechanical computer powered by marbles

The Turing Tumble, this small Pachinko-like puzzle game prototype, is also DIY mechanical computer. Programmer Paul Boswell designed the Turing complete toy to help kids (and adults) learn, see, and feel how computers...

The Universal Tea Machine, a huge mechanical ‘adding computer’

"The better your binary addition skills the better your cup of tea!" The Universal Tea Machine by Smout Allen is a huge mechanical 'adding computer' that mixes tea and mixes tea, a British tradition that became popula...

1953: Preserving and operating a wimmenumermolen polder mill

In a 250 year old polder mill in Noord Holland, Eric Zwijnenberg pumps excess water out of the area to avoid flooding. The drainage mill was first rented by his parents as a summer vacation house in 1953... After ...

The exceptional life of Benjamin Banneker

Born in 1731 on a farm in Baltimore, Maryland, Benjamin Banneker was an accomplished author, publisher, scientist, astronomer, mathematician, urban planner, activist, and farmer throughout his life. A free descendant ...

Rainbow Wave LEGO Great Ball Contraption

Featuring a 38 color rainbow of LEGO bricks, this Rainbow Wave LEGO Great Ball Contraption (GBC) was built in over 100 hours by Berthil van Beek. It's his first GBC build. Watch as tiny soccer balls and basketballs mo...

Curious Contraptions by automata artist Paul Spooner

Via the new Curious Contraptions exhibition at San Francisco's Exploratorium, meet artist and mechanic Paul Spooner. Within a community of British makers, Spooner created over 40 whimsical kinetic sculptures for The C...

JK Brickworks’ LEGO Drawing Machine

LEGO enthusiast Jason Allemann of JK Brickworks created a simple spirograph style LEGO drawing machine that can draw five patterns. Made with just under 100 pieces, it consists of a turntable, an armature, two anchors...

Hand-cranked kangaroo automaton (and friends)

As the kangaroo leaps, its ears wiggle. Its eyes roll. The flowers dance. Birds fly, and the cat's trying to hang onto a fish. This incredibly charming piece of mechanical mayhem, titled Hundredweight of Heads, was cr...

Great Ball Contraption (GBC) at Japan Brickfest 2016

Featured at Japan's Brickfest 2016, this Great Ball Contraption is made of 20 modules created by four designers: 3 modules from Finn, 2 from Toise, 1 from Y. Kuramata, and 14 modules from Akiyuki, who is famous for cr...

Meccano Rope-Making Machine

Engineered with metal strips, plates, angle girders, spools, chains, axles, gears, nuts, and bolts, this rope-making machine twists three strands of string into a rope. Built by Meccano enthusiast Peter Ashby, the mac...

Stadsmuziek (City Music) – Akko Goldenbeld

A three dimensional wooden map of Eindhoven, The Netherlands wrapped around a turning cylinder -- an external player piano mechanism -- Stadsmuziek (City Music) was a 2011 design project by Akko Goldenbeld: The tal...

Ma’agalim, Jane Bordeaux, & journeys inside an old penny arcade

"In a forgotten old penny arcade a wooden doll is stuck in place and time." This is Ma'agalim (Circles), a beautifully animated music video by Tel Aviv-based band Jane Bordeaux and director Uri Lotan.

JK Brickworks’ LEGO Orrery

Orreries, mechanical models of the solar system, are not about proper scale, but they are good for better understanding the basic positions and motions of the planets and moons in our solar system. LEGO artist Jas...

The Wintergatan Marble Machine, music made from 2,000 marbles

Multiple instruments are interlaced within this 3,000 part, hand-crafted invention by Swedish musician Martin Molin. With continuous cranking, lever flips, and other machine tweaks, his original composition comes to l...

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