Convolution - Wood Mechanisms


Introduction: Convolution - Wood Mechanisms

This is a wood working project that demonstrates a variety of mechanisms and linkages. The project consists of all removable modules and has no metal whatsoever in the construction. The "Front" consists of four mechanisms tied together with a wood link chain. The rack and pinion in the lower left corner receives the power from a wood crankshaft through a set of gears with a 2:1 reduction. The ellipitcal gears on the back side receive power from a wood driveshaft attached to one of the four mechanisms on the front. The clapping hands on the backside receive power off the main crankshaft through a standard 1:1 standard set of gears. Because one of the mechanisms in the front cannot tolerate reverse operation, a ratchet gear with pawl is used to prevent reverse rotation and also add a unusual sound effect. A video can be seen here:



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    Ken, I don't even know where to begin! Incredible craftsmanship, imagination just to start! This has got to be the best Busy Box of all time! What shop teacher, mechanics teacher Drafting teacher (do they even still teach drafting?) or Elementary school teacher wouldn't love this?! This could be subtitled " Tribute to Da Vinci" or maybe " Leanardo Da Vinci and Dr. Seuss had an idea".
    I love the eliptical gears. My brain says yes, that can work, but my eyes say no, they will jam! Just amazing.

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    The best part of building this thing is finally watching it do what I hoped it would do. Since it's all wood on wood, I had to always be concerned with how much friction will it handle? Since I built it all modular, I was able to change sections with relative ease as I found better mechanisms to display. The weather really plays an important part if I intend to demo it for somebody. The wood is so close tolerance that any swelling or shrinking of the wood with the weather just about disables the unit. I did enjoy building this project however.

    Ridiculously fantastic, as is your street organ.


    simply fantastic, sir.

    That's fantastic- my kids would love something like this. Thanks so much for sharing!

    Thanks for the nice comment. Yes, the chain is all black walnut. The entire project is 100% wood.

    This is incredible! I enjoyed the video, and the project is very inspiring.

    It looks like you probably had to use just about every tool in a well-supplied shop. What tools were the most crucial for this project?

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    Thanks for the nice comment. The bandsaw, drill press, and belt sanders were crucial.

    It took about 4 months. Most of the time was spent on design and trial and error.

    Wow - time well spent, though.