Friday, January 29, 2010

Push-powered wooden musical automaton

I don't exactly have the words for this incredible creation since I've never seen anything quite like it. It's a wooden cart that -- when pushed -- plays a tune, a drum, and animates a human figure on the front. Another wonder from the mind of Osamu Kanda!

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Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Pin Wheels, Lantern Pinions & Peg Toothed Gears

While not as a elaborate as Del's Amazing Wooden Machine, the machine shown in this video makes great use of wooden pin-wheels, lantern pinions, and peg-toothed gears. Wooden circles and pegs can clearly be used to create many speeds and directions of motion. Well done!

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Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Series of Passionate/Arbitrary Decisions Machine

Here is a kinetic sculpture by Benjamin Cowden.

The piece is constructed of steel, concrete, brass, urethane rubber, and foam. Several mechanisms are chained together to produce the awkward spinning of the figure suspended in the center of the hoop. The overall effect works well with the title of the automaton: A Series of Passionate but Arbitrary Decisions.

Apart from being a great piece with an outstanding title, it also serves to show how useful good old-fashioned pin-wheels can be. Here the artist is using them to change the axis of rotation -- a fairly common use for pin-wheels. The particularly novel application is in the double-ratchet mechanism in which the pin-wheel's pins serve as "teeth" that are pulled in order to advance the motion. Clever, economical, and -- I'll wager -- robust.

Thanks, Falk!

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