The Legend of Bessler's wheel.
Tuesday, 12 January 2021
The Legend of Bessler's wheel.
Tuesday, 5 January 2021
When I look back over my many iterations to find the solution to Bessler’s wheel, I’m amazed at the variety of designs I’ve tried, but some seem utterly useless in retrospect, and I wonder why I even thought they might lead to success. But trial and error is a great way to reach understanding - and a wealth of experience of failure helps! But sometimes it’s worth looking back at previous designs with the improved knowledge of hindsight.
I’m still working on the Bessler project and hoping to finish it with a working proof of principle wheel. I’m reluctant to share my work before I’ve finished it for reasons I’ll explain, but I’m providing an update because despite recent failed sims I’m still working on the project. There has been some fair criticism that with my recent failed design I did not explain how I arrived at that design and why I attributed it to Bessler’s clues. I could demonstrate what clues I used and my understanding of them, but without a working model they are no more valid than Ken B’s clues, so until I succeed I will say as little as possible about them.
The reason for my reluctance to share my work is because, in my experience, publishing examples of logical clue interpretation, code deciphering and inspired speculation, however impressive I might think it is, receives little positive feedback. I think that people are being bombarded with theories from all around the world and without any firm evidence in the form of a working wheel, it’s just so much speculation and hot air. Everyone has their own pet theories and any one of them might lead to success.
I am making this current version of the wheel according to my personal belief that I know the answer, which came to me from an article I wrote over ten years ago. It’s ironic that a design I considered so long ago and which might hold the answer was missed and its implications unnoticed. But better late than never.
I’m working on what I think is the design concept that allowed Bessler’s wheel to act within the rules of physics. It’s not an amazing revelation, just something that clicked in my mind when I considered three apparently unrelated items, a reported feature of Bessler’s wheel and something in the article I mentioned above plus a detail I had been working on previously.
I feel as though 2021 will be my best shot at making a working PoP wheel, and I’m going to finish it. I had a huge workshop until 4 years ago when we moved house, then it was the garage, now it’s a small corner of the garage, what next? Who knows? So simulating may well be the next step - but only after I’ve finished this build! It it works I can forget the sims. 😁
Wednesday, 30 December 2020
As we enter 2021 I marvel that way back in the New Year of 2012, I thought that that coming year would see us celebrating the 300th year since Bessler discovered the secret of the Perpetual Motion machine, with a working model of his wheel. Yet here we are, nine years later no nearer to success than we were back the ....or are we? But as I frequently say, there will never be a better time than right now, for someone, somewhere on this planet, to produce a working version of Bessler’s wheel. Really, it is desperately important that we solve this ancient enigma, because there is no cheaper, no simpler and more viable an alternative to producing electricity than Bessler’s wheel.
Saturday, 19 December 2020
In my biography of Johann Bessler, ‘Perpetual Motion; An Ancient Mystery Solved?’, I gave a fairly detailed explanation of how I estimated the weight of the Kassel wheel. I did that a few years ago and I think that I overestimated the weight.
So my new starting point was the translocation of the wheel between the two sets of bearings. Bessler explained that he had to remove the weights prior to translocation because despite the strength of his brother, it ‘would have needed the devil to lift it’. I had previously assumed that the two men might have been able to lift the wheel plus it’s axle and covering oil cloth, if it weighed no more than 300 pounds without the weights, but I now think that would still have been too heavy and prefer to assume an unladen weight of 200 pounds, so they would need to lift 100 pounds each.
How the lift was carried out is not described other than to say the wheel was carried a few steps to the second set of bearings. I speculated the presence of a movable platform on either side of the wheel, stretching from before one set of bearings to beyond the other, raising the two brothers so their shoulders could get under the axle which was at least six feet off the ground. But they could also have done without the platform by using a pair of special ‘Y’ shaped yokes resting on their shoulders and high enough to fit under the axle.
Alternatively if they used two long poles over thirteen foot in length, they could each support opposite ends of the two poles which passed along the two sides of the wheel and under the axle, and simply carry it from A to B. But those poles would be heavy so would add to the weight they had to carry. A system based on two specially adapted wheel barrows designed to fit under the axle would have worked, but I still favour the use of platforms because they would also make it easy for the examiners to study the bearings from close to, and from above, as well as below, something they were easily able to do.
So at what weight did it require ‘the devil to lift it?’ We don’t know how many weights there were, but Christian Wolff describes how he was able to handle one of several weights and estimated its weight at four pounds. If we begin by assuming that there were eight weights, one for each of the eight spokes that’s an extra thirty two pounds to the two hundred pounds of the unladen wheel.
If the wheel contained a mirror image of duplicate weights designed to turn it in either direction then the total weight of the wheel to be lifted is 264 pounds, but is that beyond the capabilities of the two brothers to lift it? I don’t think it’s enough, and of course many people think the mirrored mechanism wasn’t necessary leaving the total at 232.
Perhaps there were two four pound weights on each spoke? That would make the total either 264 or 328 pounds if it used the mirror image. I’m not even sure if Bessler would think that was too heavy, but at this point it’s worth considering how long it would take to remove and replace 32, 4 pound weights every time he did a translocation. How patient would his audience of high ranking men be? I don’t know, but Bessler was a natural showman I imagine he explained in humorous tones what he was doing and why, but it was still a fairly lengthy task.
Wolff describes the sound of a spring being ‘raised aloft’, but I don’t know what that would sound like, but I think it must have related to the way the weights were attached to levers. The simplest method allowing quick attachment and detachment would be some kind of split pin above and below the weights through the lever even so it might take at least 30 minutes to detach and reattach the weights, and move the wheel, each time he did a translocation.
Of course as many here know, I still think there might have been only five mechanisms which would reduce the weight of the wheel, leaving the option to add more weights.
Finally why did Bessler wrap the weights in a handkerchief prior to allowing them to be handled by witnesses? Although Wolff thought it was done to disguise the appearance of the weights I think it was to protect his visitors hands from animal grease used as a lubricant in the mechanisms. This brings me to another potentially limiting factor - the bearings,
I think the Kassel wheel was designed to achieve the endurance test, so it was designed to turn more slowly, yet still have the ability to lift the 70 pound box of stones. It also had to have bearings which could survive the endurance test without failing too soon. They were only three quarters of an inch thick to reduce friction and must have been well greased. Animal fats or combinations of olive oil or linseed oil and thickeners such as chalk were commonly used but were probably messy and with Bessler handling weights frequently they needed to be wrapped to protect his visitors from spoiling their hands and clothing. Apparently some lubricants in common use were ‘black slugs’ so that would increase the desire not to offend his audience by spreading their residue!
The size of the bearings must have limited the weight they could support without failing and therefore I would limit the maximum weight of the whole wheel to be no more than 500 pounds, which allows for more weights if necessary. These extra weights might be necessary in order to achieve the lifting of the 70 pound box of stones and the turning of the Archimedes screw. Perhaps Bessler included some kind of bath or reservoir of lubricant around each bearing during the endurance test to maintain sufficient lubrication during the endurance test.
Monday, 14 December 2020
The efforts to encourage the world’s governments to take action to try to slow global warming is becoming ever more intense. Besides planning on reducing or eventually ceasing the manufacture of gas driven cars and the burning of all fossil fuel by a certain date, the search continues for a new form of energy with which we can power our lives. The obvious solution is electricity, but the means to generate it without the current issues attached to that is proving difficult - and storing it at an economical price remains an obstinately intractable problem.
So why is it that we still can’t persuade any of the world's scientists, innovators, entrepreneurs or wealthy investors to take an unbiased look at the evidence of Johann Bessler’s wheel, and realise that the problem of global warming might just lie within this simple mechanical device? The answer is always the same; gravity is not an energy source. How many times have you read that? Too many!
Of course it’s true, but it is still used as an energy source indirectly. Everything which involves a motion which relies on gravity needs a system such as rain to replenish what ever has fallen i.e., water, or it has to be lifted back to its starting point, weights. There are lots of way this is done, and by doing this we use gravity as an energy source - yes I know....indirectly.
Bessler’s wheel also used gravity but was able to lift the fallen weights back up ready to fall again. Another concept we’ve all read over and over again! At some point Bessler’s wheel will reappear and everyone will say, ‘of course, it’s obvious, why did no one think of that before?’ Why indeed. It’s not for want of trying, and if the world at large did not laugh at our pathetic attempts to create a perpetual motion machine like Johann Bessler’s, we who inhabit this niche world would be more forthcoming in public, whereas we only have each other at this time.
When I flew to Rome to be interviewed for RA1 TV, I was talked to on a one to one basis, but when the documentary came out there were several experts shown who gave their views on my interview and basically dismissed Bessler’s claims along with myself and the rest of us. We need a documentary done by someone who is open to the suggestion that Bessler’s claims need to be re-examined and the evidence of his success reviewed. I’m sure it would grab a lot of attention and maybe focus the minds of those who might be interested in financing legitimate professional researchers with a laboratory full of engineers using the best equipment.
Monday, 7 December 2020
This has been a traumatic year for everyone but hopefully 2021 will be better with the successful administering of one or more of the proven vaccines against Covid-19. Things tend to look brighter in the spring and I have that same old feeling I get each year that the new year will herald the birth of the new version of Johann Bessler’s wheel, a working replica of his original one.
This year, as every year, I remain confident because I found what I think is the solution ....again! I have been working on the same design for maybe three years only to find I had made a mistake. Three years of effort to come to a standstill. But that’s par for the course in this field of endeavour and a common experience among all of us and we never, ever give up. Because even though the ultimate reward may be less than we hoped for, to receive acknowledgement for our achievement would mean the world to us. But the reward could be huge both financially as well as beneficially for the planet Earth, leading to climate cooling, pollution reducing, energy saving.
What an amazing achievement for who ever succeeds, and it could be anybody and possibly more than one. To prove all the naysayers wrong - the scornful, the scientists, teachers and of course the bulk of the populations, how very satisfying that would be! So let’s all recharge our batteries over the holidays and start afresh with renewed vigour, optimism and determination not to let this solution evade our best efforts in 2021.
I’ll be 76 in February, some 60 years since I first learned of the legend of Bessler’s wheel, and I think it’s about time I was proved correct in my conviction that Johann Bessler did not defraud anyone about his claim to have invented the perpetual motion device for which he became so famous, (or notorious). So anybody out there who thinks they might have the answer, get to work, build a PoP wheel, or make a sim that proves we were right all those years ago.
Tuesday, 1 December 2020
The Legend of Bessler’s Wheel or the Orffyreus Wheel and the verifiable facts.
I think that the more we speculate the more confusion we can add. Speculation can be taken as fact and if further ideas are added that can compound the problem. I’m not promoting my books as the ultimate source of information on Bessler because there are so many historical documents which remain unexplored due to their poor condition or because they are lost in numerous private libraries. But for now they provide a quick and easy source of information on Johann Bessler and his perpetual motion machine.
Even though I published my biography of Johann Bessler several years ago, the information in it has not altered, because it is based on old documents written more than 300 years ago. There are new additional facts which need to be added at some point but they are details about his later life and although of interest do not impinge on the history of his perpetual motion machine. There are also Bessler’s own books which he published which cover his life in his own words and provide much information. The only other thing relevant to his story which I didn’t publish are two critiques written by his enemy, Christian Wagner and they are freely available in English at my main website, see below.
What follows is a list of my books, all but my biography were originally produced by Bessler to which I added a full English translation. The books are available in both hard copy and also as a digital PDF file. The digital file allows easy searches for words and names.
I hope that people will continue to use these books as a source of accurate information in their journey of discovery to find the solution to Bessler’s wheel.
1) “Perpetual Motion: An Ancient Mystery Solved?” View the synopsis for details of the book’s contents at my web site. http://www.free-energy.co.uk/html/synopsis.html. Briefly it is an account taken from of every document relating to Bessler that I could find from files held in museums around the world, researched and translated. Buy Now
3) “Das Triumphans Perpetuum Mobile “- this was Bessler’s most professionally finished book. It was written in both German and Latin and this edition is a faithful reproduction of the actual pages of the original book. It also includes a full English translation at the rear. A number of drawings are included by the original author and these are said to contain a number of clues as to his machine’s workings.
4) “Gruendlicher Bericht” - this was Bessler’s first publication, ostensibly produced by a friend although I think one can detect Bessler’s handiwork in places. This copy is also in the original German and includes a full English translation at the rear. It also includes the very first drawing which Bessler published and this also contains clues to the way his machine worked.
5) “Maschinen Tractate” - this was found in the Bessler’s possessions after his death, in the form of a number of pages (141) and which contained a message on the front of the volume which stated that he had removed the drawings which depicted how his machine worked but that some one with a penetrating mind could by studying several drawings ultimately discover the secret of its construction. I have reproduced the drawings as they were found. I included his handwritten notes with the best translation I could obtain, since the writing is very hard to read.
You can also read Christian Wagner’s two critiques of Bessler’s wheel at my main web site.
Copies of all the above books can be obtained from my web site at
Recently I discovered that the ‘buy now’ button had become corrupted, and it was difficult to use. Hopefully I can fix that, but I shall post the book page here and after a few days place it on the permanent side page with the option to buy from there.
Alternatively you can use the buttons in the lower part of the right side panel under the heading, ‘My Publications’, which also takes you to a payment page.
There are some excellent additional resources and a forum for discussion at the
The best German web site is at http://www.besslerrad.de/html/bekannte_details.html
That’s all. Of course some people prefer to continue their research into perpetual motion machines without referring to Bessler’s own efforts and I respect that, but for those who like to have the information relating to Johann Bessler aka Orffyreus to hand in an easily accessible format, the books detailed above provide a good digital resource.
Wednesday, 25 November 2020
Divergent Thinking - noun, thinking that moves away in diverging directions so as to involve a variety of aspects and which sometimes lead to novel ideas and solutions, associated with creativity.
I’ve tried to avoid that well-worn phrase, ‘think outside the box’, and offer some ideas of how to do that.
I note the interesting point in one of the comments in a recent blog, about how the researchers into this subject seem to be in one of two camps, those who seek Johann Bessler’s solution and those who seek any solution and not necessarily Bessler’s - in fact some try to avoid any of Bessler’s clues. I think that’s ok although some might see little difference, especially if both succeed, and the end result is the same.
For myself having become immersed in everything Bessler, it is no surprise that I should try to use my knowledge about him to aid me in my research, however I have, from time to time, diverted my attention to areas away from Bessler’s wheel and not just other wheel makers but the science of possibilities. (I borrowed the title of a book by Jon Freeman).
Having found what I believe to be coded information about his wheels, I’m bound to try to use that information to recreate his wheel, but that still leads to confusion as recent events show, so even though I’m a firm believer in Bessler’s solution I continue to try to approach the problem in new innovative ways.
I read that we tend to use the left brain for its logical thought processes, but we ignore the right brain for its creative abilities, at our peril. Something that can bridge the gap between the two halves of the brain is, for instance, poetry. I have written poems about the problem and the search for the solution over the years and maintaining the use of the right, creative half of the brain by writing poetry can help us see things more clearly. You don’t need to show anyone your poem, it’s there to help you. I have written dozens of poems over the years but I’ve published no more than two or three.
Alternatively draw a picture of the problem, again you’re working the creative right side of your brain. Working the problem backwards starting with the working wheel can help too, anything that helps us to look with fresh eyes may lead to a solution or part of one.
I also read a lot and I sometimes think of something while my eyes are fully engaged in reading but the old right brain is quietly ruminating on the problem and it might be nothing to do with what you’re reading, but something can occur that takes your attention away from the book and you may find yourself gazing into space thinking along a new thread that looks promising concerning the problem.
But is it possible that Bessler’s solution is the only one or might there be another way to get a working gravity wheel? My thinking is this, if Bessler found a concept, a design which worked for him, it seems to me that that might be the only concept that works, but there may be more than one way to incorporate such an action by means of a mechanism which achieves the same concept in a different way.
I also note that his explanations of how his wheel worked are so full of ambiguity that the right interpretation may only become known once the secret is revealed in a successful wheel.
Friday, 20 November 2020
To us, Johann Bessler’s thoughts and actions seems to suggest he was slightly paranoid, but given that his invention of the amazing gravity wheel, or perpetual motion machine, was the end result of more than ten years of intensive research, experimentation and trial and error, it’s not surprising. He was obsessively determined to keep the secret of its construction to himself until he had been paid in full by anyone who wished to buy his machine.
But the negotiation was fraught with difficulty. He told prospective buyers to put the cash on the table and they could take the machine away. They insisted on checking that the machine was genuine by viewing the interior. Bessler could not allow this because they could note the design and then walk away and build their own. Despite the evidence of the only person ever allowed to see inside the wheel, the highly respected Karl, Landgrave of Hesse, who validated his claims, no sale was ever finalised. Bessler designed a number of tests which he hoped would prove his claims and even though we cannot imagine how he would have managed to fake it, without an internal inspection no one accepted the evidence presented.
Bessler would not have wanted to die without having sold his machine; and thus his claims dismissed and his books forgotten. But....he implies more than once that if he fails to sell the secret he would rather die than give his secret away. He also says that if the reader has questions he should study ‘this little book’, Apologia Poetica. His suggestion on the front of Maschinen Tractate to study ‘more than one drawing’ which will eventually lead to the answer. He says he was given much information of an esoteric nature and was taught, for instance ‘the language of angels’, which was an occult language used by John Dee in the 16th century in Prague, where Bessler lived for a time.
This led me to conclude many years ago, that Bessler intended right from the beginning, probably before he even found the solution to his wheel, to plant information about his wheel in future publications and had already learned about a number of ways of hiding it. So once I suspected that there might be information to be found, it became obvious that it was there but disguised behind a veil of innocent looking, uninteresting and easily dismissed pages of text and drawings.
Bessler’s first clue was the strange pseudonym, Orffyreus, achieved through use of an ancient and well-known cipher. This simple code was so obvious that one might wonder why he used it. It led one to look for other different codes but also equally well-known. This feature was developed extensively throughout his books and letters but the significant fact about all of them is that none of them seem to be helpful towards understanding his secret, which begs the question why?
The work done by Øystein reveals additional layers of mystery, Rosicrucian and Masonic codes. I have my own ideas about why this was done. If we accept that Bessler planned to hide instructions for building his gravity wheel in his publications, but deliberately hid it within an exceedingly complex code, so that it was very unlikely that anyone would manage to decipher it during his life, how could he be sure that someone would eventually find the code and decipher it? The answer would seem to be that only those people steeped in the subject of codes, such as the practitioners of Øystein’s Rosicrucian and Masonic codes, and perhaps some acquaintances of the Jesuit priest and the Rabbi, in Prague. They would be attracted into studying his books by the presence of apparently purposeless codes, recognise and decipher them. The knowledge that the more complex codes might be heralded by the simpler more obvious codes would attract the attention of certain members of semi-secret societies, the acknowledged experts on ancient codes.
Aside from the many graphic codes to be found in the Apologia Poetica book, there are the 600 plus ‘etc’s, previously identified as ‘x’s, but later revealed to mean ‘etc’ in Fraktur font. There are far too many of them to make sense other than being part of a code and there are none in his subsequent books. Then there are the 55 rhyming couplets in chapter 55 of Apologia Poetica, containing 141 Bible references, the same number as used in the Toys page, also numbered 141. Some Bible references are repeated, others cannot be found. Bessler also exhibited an apparent obsession with chronograms, providing numerous examples both in his private documents as well as his annual panegyrics to Karl. All of this suggestive of hidden information.
Bessler sought and received permission to build a tomb for himself and his family in the garden of the house he occupied during his final years in Karlshafen. It was an unusual request at the time and it is interesting to speculate on the possible reasons why. If we accept the two kinds of coded information I have surmised is buried within his publications, then it could be that Bessler left additional clues on his tomb. I think there might be some curious people who would like to visit his tomb and there they might read an inscription giving some extra information either about the wheel or the codes which lead to a description. Sadly the tomb has long since been destroyed. There is now a tarmac carpark covering what used to be part of his garden.
There is so much more, too much to go into here, but plenty to occupy the mind of a cipher expert. Perhaps we need the help of the Bletchley group from the Second World War, or better still, some modern equivalent.
I think this explains the reasons for the simple codes as well as the more complex ones.
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