Wednesday 24 June 2009

A new backplate for my PoP wheel

Because I'm now committed to building what I believe will be the (finally!) successful reconstruction of Bessler's wheel, I have retired my current backplate. That is the wooden disc upon which I have mounted numerous mechanisms over the last year or so. I have about fifteen retired backplates of assorted sizes and I should throw them out but they represent such a lot of time and effort that they seem like old friends and I'm loath to part with them. The one I've been using has so many holes in it that it looks like it will fall apart. Now, when I drill a new hole
there is every chance I'm going to drop part way into an existing one and produce an odd-shaped over-size hole. So a new backplate for my proof of principle wheel is a must. The old ones vary in size but the new one I made yesterday is only two foot in diameter, which is smaller than I usually use.

Normally I make the backplate much bigger to allow for alterations to the size of the mechanisms and the number of them and their range of movement but in this new one I don't need such a large backplate. The material I use for the mechanism is mild steel and I am able to use and reuse this over time. Obviously the parts get altered and reduced in size in some cases, but because the new design is so similar to the one I last used I don't need to alter it much, so some parts are exactly the same. Because of this I know exactly how big to make the backplate because I have the existing arms and I can plot their range of movement precisely and fit them into an area whose size is also known exactly. This can be one of the difficulties in designing and building something from scratch, you have to use a certain amount trial and error, in part, to discover how big to make it so that it will not come into conflict with other parts and at the same time, keep the range of movement within the confines of its selected area.

So today I was hoping to mark out on the backplate the positions of the various holes needed to support the mechanisms, drill and fit the supporting posts and try to make one working mechanism which performs at just the right moment and in the right way. Because once I have one of them acting in the desired manner, its just a case of copying the same for the other ones.
That was in theory! In fact I had other calls on my time so I didn't quite get that far today.


Sunday 21 June 2009

No news is good news, on holiday or not!

I've enjoyed my break away from the news, the internet and all input about Bessler, but now I'm back and raring to go!

I spent several hours a day going over and over, in my mind and on paper,the best way to proceed and I believe I've covered every aspect of the reconstruction. It's not so much that it was wrong and needed redesigning but more a case of re-examining how else I might get the existing mechanism to operate at the right time. In the process I have altered it slightly and have made it simpler and there is less chance of any of the constituent parts coming into conflict with each other.

What is really interesting is that I think I've discovered (or re-discovered) an interesting leverage design which certainly complies with everything on the 'toys' page and which I, at least, have never come across before. It ties in neatly with parts A, B, both C's and D's and the E on the toys page. It is as far from what I originally thought the parts on the toys page meant as it could possibly be and yet it looks and feels right. I know that this is neither a suitably scientific approach nor a desirable engineering attitude but sometimes you have to go with your gut feeling.

For those who have no idea what the 'toys' page is about I can only ask you to read my biography of Bessler. It would take up too much space here!

I've written out a detailed sequence for the build and have drawn numerous sketches of each part to try to obviate any more errors due to haste and carelessness. So.....this time?

I've got to do a few things to do first and then I will get on with the reconstruction. I feel that time is slipping by and if I don't get this right soon then I have to make the decision about publishing everything. It is tempting to continue to worry at this problem in the hope of success, but I have to admit that the past thirty odd years have not seen success, as many people keep reminding me, yet I don't believe I have ever been nearer to victory.


Friday 5 June 2009

Spanish break.

Because I'm away to Spain for some R & R, and may have limited access to the internet I probably won't post anything on my blog for a couple of weeks. I have a plan written up for my return as I have worked out precisely what needs to be altered in the design of the mechanisms, but I shall mull over the design during my break. With luck I shall be back on course for reconstructing Bessler's wheel on my return.

It surprises me that, given everything I know about the mechanism, I should have made such a simple error as not ensuring that the mechanism operated at the correct time in the rotation of the wheel. I wonder how many other trials by other would-be inventors failed because of something similar, something that maybe went through unnoticed. How many near-misses have their been?

Lastly, thank you for the many messages of encouragement. I had no idea so many people were following this blog.

"Una cerveza, por favor!" - Make that "Una grande cerveza, por favor!" Just practising you know ;-)

Sadly for us Brits, we seem to be a country that is fast developing a binge-drinking culture with the predictable side affects of under age drinking. In Spain you see hardly any drunks and yet they appear to indulge for several hours a day. It must be the drip drip approach that allows them to maintain their dignity despite being several sheets to the wind. In the UK we seem to hit the ground running and attempt to get as many jars of the strongest nectar available down our necks in the shortest possible time - with predictable results.

What's that saying? Oh yes - Alcohol, the cause of, and the solution to all of life's problems.

See you when I get back.



Wednesday 3 June 2009

Reconstruction analysed

I have spent time testing the reconstruction I created and following analysis of the wheel's action I am certain that the problem lies in timing. In the paper I have written in which I described the design and principle which underlies Bessler's wheel I made specific comment about the necessity to get the timing correct. It is therefore somewhat embarrasing to admit that I had forgotten to ensure that the weights, when moved, did so, not one moment before a particular point during each revolution. In fact they are acting too soon and having an effect which is
tending to counter the advantage they give towards rotation.

There are a couple of ways I can correct this and one of them is to lengthen the operating arm which moves the weight so that it is further on in the cycle when the action begins; and another is to try to delay the initiating action of the operating arm. I realise that this means nothing to anyone who hasn't seen the design, which is everyone, but I still want to keep people updated as to the state of play regarding my project.

The paper I referred to above is still being kept confidential for now.


Tuesday 2 June 2009

Bessler's wheel still stationary!

Well I said I'd report back, so here it is - unfortunately the latest design doesn't work. Despite this setback I remain confident because the information I have acquired from Bessler indicates that I'm on the right track. There are variables to this design and maybe others that I'm not aware of at this point so I need to go away and think about the alternatives. I'm unable to work on the reconstruction for now, anyway, as I have other plans for the next two weeks.

This news of my failure to finish with a working model will hearten many and disappoint others, but for me it is a case of keeping going. Because, as I have said before, I understand the concept which underlies the Bessler wheel and I have also managed to find some sketches of the actual mechanism, which will doubtless provoke a great deal of interest. It may be that I have misread the sketches and need to review them in a calmer state of mind.

The concept or principle upon which the Bessler wheel relies is simple and obvious once you know and, in response to more emails received, I can assure anyone reading this that there are no physical laws which will need revising to accomodate it. There is no doubt about this and I have no fears of anyone disagreeing with me once they understand the principle.

Of course there will be some who will say, 'share it - now!' But my mind is made up not to patent it (if I'm sufficiently lucky to succeed in this self-imposed task) and that could leave me potentially penniless for all my hard work, so once I give it away I have only the book to provide for me and my family. That's when I'll share everything.


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