Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Hypothesis first, then mechanism design

I may be misreading the situation but it seems to me that many people attempting to find a solution to Bessler's wheel are designing new ways of achieving this and they do not realise they are effectively running on the spot,  and I'm not necessarily referring to those who attend this blog but in general.

I read that simulation software is useful because one can test many variations of designs and save hundreds of workshop hours.  While I don't doubt that these variations can be tested quickly and accurately, I think my point is being missed.  I spoke of variations in the design of various parts which occur to you when you are handling the mechanisms, where as the variations being tested in the simulation program really only apply to the changes available to you such as altering the placing of weights, pivot points or dimensions of the parts - it does not mean that the variations being tested in the software will cause an entirely new design to spring to mind just by looking at their animations.

When you have the physical parts in front of you and they don't work, you can see by means of an ability we all have - common sense -  why something doesn't work.  There is no need to run dozens of variations through the simulator when your common sense shows you why it doesn't work, and why no amount of variation in the dimensions or placings of critical parts will improve the outcome.

I often write that I have found and understand the basic concept which drives the gravitywheel, but actually that is too broad a definition.  The basic concept is the actual idea that gravity can drive a wheel continuously through action upon its weights.  All of us who believe this is possible, understand that concept.  So the extra thing that I understand is more than the basic concept.  I understand how it is possible, why it does not conflict with any of the accepted laws of physics, and what the mechanism must do. The key to success for me lies in designing a mechanism that works according to my hypothesis.

So we are looking for a hypothesis initially which will fit within current laws of physics and then all we have to do is design a mechanism which will operate within those laws and fulfil the hypothesis we have thought of. 

So to return to my first point, you must create a hypothesis to explain how the wheel could work and then you can design a mechanism which works according your hypothesis.



  1. @ JC

    My hypothesis of how Bessler's wheels worked is simple: their internal array of 8 weighted levers were interconnected with cords in such a way that they always kept the CoM of their weights on the wheel's descending side despite the rotation of the wheel. Then, during any 45° increment of wheel rotation, the four weights that were sinking (relative to their rim stops) lost a bit more energy / mass than was regained by the two weights which were rising (with respect to their rim stops). That extra amount of energy / mass "lost" by the sinking weights then accelerated all of the structures of the wheel and could be used to power outside devices. Such a wheel could, assuming no critical part failures, run at its maximum terminal rotation rate for billions of years or for millions of years while outputting tens of watts of power at a lower rotation rate! (So, in the absolute sense of the term, Bessler's wheels were not truly "perpetual" unless there is some natural process that would restore the energy / mass of their weights before complete depletion occurred.)

    You say that the "hands on" approach can inspire all sorts of variations to try in a desgin, presumerably, n order to turn one's non-runner into a runner. That is certainly true. BUT, I can assure you that the situation is no different when "building" one's wheels on a computer monitor. One can change the shape and dimensions of parts, their locations, limit their movements, and attach springs and cords where he wants in a matter of minutes. And all of this is done to overcome possible obstacles to the successful operation of the design.

    Most importantly, when testing a design I always know EXACTLY where the CoM of its weights is located with respect to a wheel's axle. This is usually something a hands on builder can only guess at. And, of course, I know when my weights' CoM is staying on the wheel's descending side during rotation and when it is starting to slide over toward the "punctum quietus" under the axle as the wheel's torque drops to zero.

    In fact, if I finally determine Bessler's design with enough precision to make working simulations from it that I am 100% certain are not the result of a glitch in the sim program (there are simple ways of determining this), then I may not even bother to execute a physical prototype of the design! I may just publish the design (basically the various parameters of the parts) along with a video of the running sim and let those with better crafting skills and equipment than me take over. After such a release, there would, no doubt, be at least a dozen people on this planet that would immediately get to work trying to build it. Of course, it would not be patentable at that point, but any improvements to it could be. Maybe then Bessler's wheels could finally become a commercially profitable way to produce power.

    Too bad all that did not happen 300 years ago...how different our world might be today!

  2. As far as the "simulation model" versus "physical model" debate is concerned, I would agree with those saying that both are necessary. I agree with technoguy that it is far quicker and easier to modify a computer model. Usually I can test such a model thoroughly within a day or so; sometimes it takes less than an hour.

    However, I would never try to claim that any computer model was a success without first building a physical model to prove it.

    I agree with John that the search for an hypothesis for the operating principle is paramount, and also that conditions are quite different, when handling mechanisms in a workshop, than when looking at a computer monitor. Having done both, repeatedly, I would argue that inspiration can strike in either case!

  3. Arktos wrote:

    "However, I would never try to claim that any computer model was a success without first building a physical model to prove it."

    I do agree with this, but, if I get to the point of having a sim that I am confident in, then the physical verification of it would probably have a 99% probability of following soon thereafter.

    However, no matter how confident one may be in a sim after careful checking, there is ALWAYS the possibility, although quite small, that the physical prototype based on it may not work as suggested. Thus, in Bessler research as in science in general, ALL hypotheses are ultimately held hostage to valid experimental results.

    For the immediate future, though, my only concern is to keep right on working out the details of Bessler's Connectedness Principle and seeing if I can finally achieve the "Holy Grail" of mechanics: an OB wheel that actually does remain OB despite its rotation! Bessler did it, it's therefore possible, and, sooner or later, someone else is going to do it too.

  4. As for me I would like to achieve my goal under the same handicaps and constraints that Bessler encountered.
    How can I say I won if I had received help outside.

  5. @ Trevor

    Your comment sounds like you are saying that you do not want to use simulation software because that is not the way Bessler did it and you don't want the "outside" help of such a program.

    Bessler did not use simulation programs because he did not have them. If he did, he probably would have used them.

    However, I see some evidence in the MT notes that Bessler was, indeed, "calculating" the CoM of various designs BEFORE he actually built them or considered building them. I wouldn't be surprised at all if he had used the early 18th century equivalent of a CAD program!

    Maybe he got a large sheet of cardboard and made a grid pattern on it. Then he made a circle with its center at the center of the cardboard to represent a wheel's drum. Next, he made cardboard cutouts of variously shaped weighted levers in sets of 8 and tacked them to the cardboard so that their pivots formed a perfect octagon within the circle representing the wheel (the center of the octagon would, of course, have coincided with the center of the circle).

    By attaching strings to more tacks on the cardboard levers and manually moving them about during an imagined 45°CW drum rotation, he would have found an interconnection scheme that caused those weighted levers to assume the same orientations that the 8 levers had at the beginning of the drum rotation. With only 8 cardboard weights present, he would only have needed to add up and average their 8 horizontal displacements (those on the descending side being considered positive in sign and those on the ascending side being considered negative in sign) from the vertical grid line passing through the center of the circle (which represents a drum) to instantly know on which side of the center (or axle of the drum) that the CoM of his wheel's 8 weights was located.

    Eventually, he would have found the "magic" lever design and have begun building a larger physical prototype based on it. Most likely, after the construction of this model, he realized that he had to add the springs in order to get the 6 moving weighted levers to shift smoothly during an actual 45° increment of drum rotation.

    It's entirely possible that we may, all along, have had the wrong impression of how Bessler finally found his working "prepondium". We imagine it was finally done with one laborious modication after another to some small basic OB wheel model he had that stubbornly refused to run. Maybe, however, that did NOT happen. Bessler, like the modern mobilist, was out to reduce the time, effort, and expense of his experiments as much as possible. I don't think he would have hesitated to use ANY tools that were available at the time to do this. I know I wouldn't have.

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  7. Look TG,..All I'm saying is,if Bessler had used simulations he would never had succeeded,knowing what I know now.No computer can predict the unforeseen.In any case I am on a par with Bessler because I also use drawings and calculations.

  8. @ Trevor

    This sounds like something that we will have to "agree to disagree on". The only way a simulation program would NOT have helped Bessler would be if the program did not contain the types of items that actually went into the wheel such as weights, cords, pivots, springs, etc. So far, I have not seen any sim programs that do not contain these basic items.

    Perhaps you are suggesting that there is something else besides these basic things that were used in his wheels? If so, then please feel free to describe it in detail.

    There are alot of hungry squirrels following this blog and some want more than the few "nuts" I've delivered so far.

  9. There's nothing extra other than the mechanism to exploit the secret principle. This Bessler referred to as the prime mover,no external force.
    Everything is powered by the wheel for use by gravity to turn the wheel.

  10. @ Trevor

    Well, the "prime mover" you refer to either can or can not be simulated with a computer program. I guess we will have to withhold judgement on that until you reveal the nature of this "prime mover".

    The squirrels out there are beginning to drool! They haven't been fed yet today.

  11. Algadoo and Working Model are the only two simulators I have seen. Are there any others?

  12. @ Fred

    Yep, there are many of them out there today. Most will cost you something, but give you a free trial before you decide to purchase. OTOH, some are free. Most importantly for the Bessler researcher is a program that is "stand alone", easy to use, and will allow MOTION simulation for at least 2D designs (you don't really need 3D capabilities for Bessler's wheels although your models will certainly look prettier in 3D!)

    Here's some to check into:

    AutoCAD, AutoDesk 2D, DV3, Dynamix, Phun (might be too simple!), Silux, Solidworks, etc.

    Hint: If it takes you more than 4 hours to learn the basics so that you can then go on to make about 90% of what you'll want to make with the program in the future, then its time to move onto ANOTHER program!

  13. There have been several postings referring to freemasonry, with the obvious allusions of Bessler being freemason. I'm told that freemasonry didn't officially come about until 1717 when the first grand lodge was formed in London. From here on it appears to have flourished into a world-wide phenomenon. Any thoughts of Bessler being a freemason can then be dismissed, as freemasonry wasn't there until well after he wrote (most ? all?) his books etc.

    However, various sources claim that freemasonry existed in other forms before then, some referring back as far as the building of King Solomon's temple. One idea that has been missed out is that while implying that Bessler was involved with mysticism, freemasonry and Rosicrucianism have close ties. I've read that at one time they were pretty much the same thing until they split (if that is the right word) into two entities. The Rosicrucian's are another "society with secrets"; it would be wrong to call them secret societies because everyone knows they exist! It is said to trace its roots back to ancient Egypt, though it's current and supposedly modern origins date to around 1607 or 1616. Gaining entry to any of these societies is via initiation, which is said to be relatively simple, though much misinformation has been spread about that it's almost impossible unless you're a millionaire, of high rank, or noble birth…

    As Bessler couldn't have been a freemason, maybe he was a Rosicrucian.

  14. Coincidentally, Desaguliers, who was Sir Isaac Newton's curator of experiments at the Royal Society, and was also the recipient of the letters from Fisher von Erlach, about Bessler's machine, was the man who, in 1719, was elected a Grand Master, and brought to Freemasonry the life it needed.[paraphrased from wikipedia] "Nothing is known as to his connection with Freemasonry until 1719, when he was elevated to the throne of the Grand Lodge, succeeding George Payne, and being thus the third Grand Master after the revival."

    It would seem from the latter reference that there was a freemasonry revival at some earlier point. One of Karl's sons was an important figure in the movement and many German noblemen were involved. It would seem that Bessler had an interest in all matters involving alchemy, hermeticism as well as freemasonry. But we have no evidence other than speculation.


  15. Apologetica 12 (where Bessler first sees a wheel apparently turning by itself) and 13 give some very big hints about Bessler's mystical learning's, especially such statements as "…the writings of the angels." Today these are referred to as Enochian, or relating to Enoch, who as the legend goes, was taught by the angels of their own specific language and its symbols. This knowledge was very difficult to come by, and only with the coming of the internet can one more readily access such writings these days. Even then they are often in codes. Bessler was well aware of the trouble he could get into if he was caught consorting with a rabbi so unsurprisingly he makes little comment on such of his activities.

  16. In a sense, Bessler was like the past leader of his own "secret society"!

    He alone possessed the ultimate secret of a working OB PM gravity wheel. Those who now pursue that secret rank below him in status within this "society". Those on the "right track", as I like to say, are the closest to obtaining that secret and even they can be ranked with regard to their position on that track. Below them are those active mobilists who are still on the "wrong track" and have not yet "seen the light". Next are the inactive mobilists or "arm chair philosophers". They believe that PM is possible, but are really clueless as to how it can be achieved. Finally, there are the "outsiders" who either do not really care about PM or "know" it is impossible (some of these are "burned out" former active mobilists who have "back slid" out of the society).

    It's obvious to me that Bessler was into all sorts of "hidden" knowledge which was derived from his own study of various estoric writings of his time. He uses various numerologically significant geometric figures, ratios, etc. beyond a frequency that would be purely coincidental.

    While all of this is nice to know, it will not by itself lead one to the solution to his wheel's secret mechanism. That will require continous effort and testing and no amount of philosophical speculation will serve as a substitute for that.

    Time to get back to work.

  17. I have a working wheel in WM2D. It's still working while every friction source is turned on and damping is added to the springs; but I am 100% sure that it won't work when I build it, because the motion of the weights are pretty unrealistic. The rolling friction looks like being not modeled correctly in WM2D. The softwares help but can not be trusted.

  18. Yellowson, would you consider sharing it with us? Arktos is very well-versed in simulation software and uses (AFAIK) Silux, which is pretty good. Maybe the sims are wrong, but on the other hand, it may be close.

  19. The vast majority of simulation programs are based on Finite Elements analysis, and I would certainly agree that those cannot be trusted. I have used Ansoft Maxwell, the leading program for electrical/magnetic work, a lot, and have learned (the hard way of course!) that it can give errors in certain cases of electromagnet to permanent magnet repulsion, even though the model is built correctly.

    The main reason I like silux for mechanical analysis is that it uses the completely different Finite Differences method. See http://www.silux.com/faq2.cfm for details. I have never caught silux making analysis errors. A correctly built model either works correctly, or else it explodes, so you know something is obviously wrong then, and can correct it.

  20. I, too, have had my share of erroneous "runners' using motion simulation programs. I've noticed that this tends to be a problem in designs that use spring loaded parts that vibrate alot or in models with an excessive number of interactions between parts.

    One way to tell if your "runner" is the real thing or not is to increase the accuracy of the calculations that go into making each of the frames of the simulation. For example, with WM2D one can access the "Accuracy" menu and manually input the number of integration steps per frame. As that number is increased, it will take longer and longer to compute each frame of the sim, but the results will be more accurate. In the vast majority of cases, when this is done, one sees that his "runner" is not the real thing because the newly calculated sim stops running altogether.

    Of course, if one's runner passes this test, then it's time to see if it is actually outputting any energy in excess of that needed to overcome the various frictions its parts are subject to. For example, does the wheel turn with constant velocity at all times? If so, this is a bad sign. When you have the "real" thing, it should be able to accelerate smoothly from a standstill to some CF limited maximum terminal rotation rate and this rate of acceleration will vary with the mass of the parts being used.

    If I finally find a working sim for Bessler's wheels, one of the first things I am going to do is see if I can make the wheel operate a bit of external sim machinery. I'm thinking along the lines of a small trip hammer similar to the stamping mill that his Merseburg wheel operated.

    Unfortunately, without alot of extra programming, it is not possible to have a WM2D wheel hoist a weight attached to a pulley to simulate those "fast" lifts that the Merseburg and Weissenstein wheels performed with loads suspended outside of a nearby window. But, even so there might be some simple modeling ways to get around this obstacle.

  21. To Arktos,

    Do you have access to the Silux Script Language Guide? I have searched the 'net, and can find this nowhere. I find the graphical interface quite tedious, and would like to try more at the command line. The Language Guide would make it much easier. Luckily, I have access to AutoCad, and do most of my modeling using that, and transfer elements to Silux through a .dxf, and then build my objects. The Language Guide would be a great help.

    Good luck in your building and research, and my best to everyone here.


  22. Hutch,

    I do have the silux Script Language Guide, (~160 pages) as well as the User Guide (~460 pages) and the Upgrade Manuals for Versions 1.2 and 2.0. But I had to buy those as hard copies, i.e. books, (the only form in which they are available, as far as I know) from silux ag in Switzerland.

    The whole lot, together with a (redundant) set of the three free pdf documents cost me 180 Euros, with free delivery, in 2002. Two email addresses that I have used are: info@silux.com and freymond@silux.com

  23. @ Hutch

    Sorry I don't have the guide you require. My use of sim programs tends to be intuitive. That is, I fiddle around with them until I get a "feel" for the way they are intended to work. Sort of like a musician that plays an instrument "by ear" rather than by note. I generally try to keep things as simple as possible. Afterall my focus is on solving the Bessler mystery, not learning yet another programming lanquage!

    However, you might want to try contacting the Silux people and asking how to obtain their Script Language Guide. Maybe its available on CD for a mominal price.

  24. @Andre
    I have another idea based on the same design. Let me try that first. Let me also say that if I am right, Bessler may have discovered something so basic that when you'll see, you'll be amazed. No promises though :)

  25. @ John Collins

    John, inside the front cover of my now falling to bits spiral-bound copy of MT you state that Apologia Poetica was published in 1715. On the front cover of Apologia and very clearly at the bottom of the page Bessler gives the date of this work as 1716. - – 1717. Please can you tell me which of these three years is the original year of publication? It can’t be all three!


  26. The problem I have with "simple" designs is that, if they were so simple, then one would expect one of the tens of thousands of mobilists who lived in the last three centuries to, like Bessler, have stumbled upon it and we would be using today.

    I write much about what I consider to be the "right track" version that I am working on and I'm sure many may think it quite simple based on my overall description of the mechanism. Yes, I'm sure I make it sound simple, and it is on one level. That is, anyone briefly inspecting the mechanism of a one direction Bessler wheel like Karl would certainly describe it so. However, this apparent simplicity obscures the fact that in order of the design to work, it must have carefully designed levers that are interconnected by a rather complex network of cords of precise lenghts that are attached to specific points on the levers. Then ALL of the 8 weighted levers must be carefully counter balanced by springs all so having precise parameters. ONLY when this is done will the wheel keep the CoM of its 8 weights on its descending side during rotation. Any deviation from the precise set of parameters involved in the wheel's internal parts will prevent the offset CoM from being maintained.

    This is why Bessler's design, although described by Karl as "So simple, a carpenter's boy could build it..." has not been replicated in almost 300 years. How many mobilists even use springs in their designs? How many, without the aid of sim programs, would be capable of calculating of the varous leverage factors that would exist between an array of 8 weighted levers and then using this data to design levers for the optimum transfer of energy / mass between sets of interconnected levers? So far there has only been ONE person who did this successfully. This is why we are devoting so much time to him now and not some other mobilist.

    BTW, has anybody else located the spring symbols in the 1st and 2nd portraits yet? Oh, you say you've been over those portraits a hundred times and they contain no springs?! Maybe you better check them again! LOL!

  27. @ John Worton

    It's a typo, John. It should read 1716 and 1717. Apologia was produced during part of 1716 and 1717. I have suggested that because there is a blank between the two numbers, similar to the other blanks in Apologia that there could be a missing 'und' in there, meaning 'and'. 17+16+17+17 equals 67. Add in the 'u' which he used for the number 5, and the 'd' for 500, add them together and you get 572. 5 for the five mechanisms or a pentagram and 72 for the angles of a pentagram.


  28. @ John Collins

    I agree with you that the dashes between 1716 and 1717 are a clue, however I am unsure about your assumption of an implied ‘und’ and the maths that is possible if the numerical values of these letters are applied.

    As you know I believe the basic self-moving element of the gravity wheel is the overbalancing beam. I think that the two dashes in this clue; 1716. - - 1717 visually represent this. I think that the numbers 16 and 17 are possibly expressing the ratios 1:6 and 1:7 and I am completely certain that 17 degrees is a significant angle in the structure of the wheel. It is a vital part of the ‘shotgun-sickle’ element enabling its compact folding-in together with the bow and flail elements of each of the threshers arms. This is “Exactly what we want” as Andre La Pierre said of my design for that part of the machine that transports the little weights to and from the axle-periphery causing the overbalancing of everything else.

    I also think that the dot after 1716 is a clue too.


  29. Mr. Worton, I don't know if you've been able to read my previous post(s) addressing you personally, but I'd like to express my thanks again for your amazing armature design, which I think is very significant. I have been tinkering with it for a while, using springs, making it easier for the armature to "snap" in and out of extension. Adding a pendulum lever at certain points also allows for (much) smaller M1 (shifter) weights - as this was one of my concerns in the V2.1 variation I came up with (the version with the sliding shifting weights).

    My question to you is: do you see, in your analysis of Bessler's clues and/or other documentation, any justification (maybe evidence is a better word here) for the use of springs in the armature and/or the M1 shifter weights? As mentioned, I found the (positive) effect to be profound.

  30. Most likely, that - - between the years 1716 and 1717 just indicates that the work was written over the course of 1716 and 1717. Nowadays we would just use the 1717 by itself to indicated the year that a literary work was completed because, generally, no one cares how long it took to complete.

    This is yet another example of how the slightest oddity is seized upon in the hope that it will shed light on the secret of Bessler's wheels. Of more significance is the year 1717 which via numerological reduction is equal to 17 + 17 = 34 = 3 + 4 = 7.

    7, of course, is a lucky number in most numerological systems betcause there are 7 planets visible to the unaided eye and this number is therefore associated with the heavens and the various gods assumed to inhabit that realm. Perhaps Bessler completed AP in this year purposely so that the number 7 would be attached to it and thereby bring him good luck in his future efforts to sell the invention. I don't seriously think that this has anything to do with his wheels internal mechanics.

    For those that think there might have been complex arms extending and retracting over large distances inside one of Bessler's drums (or oversized pendula swinging around inside there!), don't forget that those drums would have needed CROSS bracing pieces that would have stretched across from one side's radial supports to the nearby parallel supports of the other side. These cross bracing pieces were necesssary in order to make the drum rigid enough to keep the top half from buckling and collapsing from its own weight. These cross pieces located along the lengths of the radial supports would have placed severe constraints upon how large a "free" volume of interior drum space an extending arm could swing through.

    When doing simulations of wheels one usually forgets all about these cross bracing pieces since they are not necessary for the rigidity of a sim wheel. But, they would definitely have been present in a real drum holding weighted levers. An internal mechanism utilizing a network of interconnecting cords to shift SHORT, one piece weighted levers solves this problem nicely. (By "short" I mean with a weight to lever pivot distance equal to about 1/5 of the drum's radius.)

    The cross bracing pieces between the parallel sets of radial support members are located so that they do not touch cords which are taut and in the process of interconnecting two shifting weights during drum rotation (this minimizes any rubbing between the cords and wooden cross bracing pieces). When cords are slack, the cross bracing members serve the function of preventing entanglement between the cords and the backs of the levers near the bottom of a drum.

  31. @ Andre La Pierre

    I’m sorry to say I did not see your previous posts addressing me personally.

    Regarding your question: from my analysis of Bessler’s clues I do not see any evidence for the use of springs, and I do not believe they form any part of the mechanism.

    I do see that the use of springs is a reasonable and logical idea, and that their qualities will be appealing to many people. However the name of this game is ‘Creating Extra’ and springs do not do that. As Bessler says in his notes accompanying MT37 “these springs should be considered a question rather than a fact”

    I’m glad you think my armature design is “very significant” because IT IS one half of the gravity wheel mechanism.


  32. @ John Worton

    No evidence for the use of springs?! Didn't Bessler ADMIT that he used springs IN his wheels?

    As far as MT 37 is concerned, however, I do not see any springs in it. It looks like it uses the shifting of the weighted levers to cause opposing sets of scissor jacks to expand and contract so as to shift the CoM of an interconnecting metal bar passing through the axle onto the wheel's descending side. Thus, this design is intended to offset the CoM's of both an array of weights and a collection of metal bars.

    Perhaps the idea was to use the increasing torque provided by the shifted axle bars to compensate for the reduction in torque of the lever weights during a portion of the wheels rotation. In other words, maybe Bessler thought that combining TWO unworkable designs with their varying torques "out of phase" would result in a workable design.

  33. To Arktos,

    Thanks for the reply, Arktos. I had no idea that Silux was developed that extensively. It looked like the program was abandoned about 10 years ago. I do have the three free .pdf files you speak of, and still have more to go through in them. Funds are tight in winter, but I'll email them to buy the manuals in about 6 - 8 weeks. Even though the interface is tedious, I do like using Silux, as the accuracy achieved through attributes and parameters is FAR beyond anything necessary by anyone building a mechanical wheel such as what we are pursuing. Thanks again.

    To Technoguy,

    Thanks for the reply, TG. I agree with everything you say. Even though I look at the wheel from a science and engineering perspective, intuition plays just as large a role. I also believe in simplicity, and have found so far in my pursuits that the science is very fundamental, but the engineering is a pain right in the a**!(lol) Hopefully one of us soon will come up with the solution, so we can all put an end to this madness.

    Thanks again, guys, and best of luck to everyone here working on the wheel.


  34. @ Technoguy

    It was not without a little trepidation that I posted my reply to Andre’s question yesterday. I thought to myself Oh Dear Oh Dear Technoguy is really going to kick-off when he reads this: blatantly contradicting his cherished theory (and advice to others!). To be fair though you didn’t. Did something cause you to have a moments doubt? Was it perhaps my observation that although springs could be useful for moving mass around they don’t actually create any?

    As for Bessler admitting to using springs in his wheel, yes I think you are right he does say that once somewhere (from memory, I can’t be bothered to go look up the quote right now) he also says in other places that he does not use springs. For example in the all-important APXLVI clue passage he clearly states, “It revolves, but without other wheels inside or outside, and without weights, wind, or springs” If we are all going to take this statement at face value as you appear to want to do, then we all ‘know’ that there are definitely no weights as well as no springs in the gravity wheel so we can all stop using weights in our designs?
    This quote from Bessler would also appear to blow your sub-wheel theory out of the water too!

    As far as MT 37 is concerned, I completely agree with you, I don’t see any springs in it either. Bingo! Perfect! You fell into my trap exactly as I intended! Now ask yourself this question; if there are no springs in MT 37, then why does Bessler say they “should be considered a question rather than a fact”?

    Are you sure you are looking at these clues properly?


  35. Okay John Worton,..I have to differ there!Yes springs do not create but they can be used to delay an action without loss for a convenient phase of the wheel.Bessler's remark about springs has been misunderstood out of context.He meant that he did not use weights or springs to wind up the wheel as Gartner implied.
    Besides I see no disadvantage in using springs.They are the most amazing friction less temporary storage devices.

  36. John W wrote;
    "Are you sure you are looking at these clues properly?"

    Question is John, are YOU looking at the clues properly? Really? You are? What is your basis for comparision? No where does Bessler say he does not use springs, except in that poem translation. So if you think that is an admission then you had better not be using weights either. In fact Bessler said he did use springs, not not like how his detractors said, ei; ass a wind up mechanism. PERIOD!

  37. @ John Worton

    I "cherish" the "right track" approach I promote to Bessler's wheels because it is the ONLY one I've ever come upon that agrees with all of the clues and looks to me like it might actually work! I should mention that I have far more details about this approach than I've released here to date and, someday, when those details are released I am VERY confident that there will be NO doubts remaining about this being THE correct design approach to use.

    As far as AP Chapter 55 is concered, I have never been that impressed by it because one derives next to zero useful information from it concerning the interior mechanics of Bessler's wheels. I find myself in agreement with Trevor that the references in it to no springs or wheels being used was really an attempt by Bessler to again emphasize that his wheels were NOT driven by the type of clock movements that those reading AP would have been familiar with. These did use "wheels" or rather gears and either a wound mainspring or falling weight to provide the motion that would then propel the hands around the dial with the rate controlled by some sort of "escapement" mechanism, of course.

    As I've said previously, the short weighed levers within Bessler's one directional wheels (or within the active "sub wheel" of a two directional wheel) would, for a CW turning wheel, swing down and toward the axle from 6:00 to 9:00. From 9:00 to 12:00 this shifting motion would be reversed and the weighted levers would begin swinging back so that their end weights would then draw nearer to their rim stops. This type of weight path will keep the CoM of all 8 weights on the wheel's descending side during drum rotation.

    So, if one wants to solve the mystery of Bessler's wheels, he wil need to focus his attention onto what is going on a wheel's ascending side. He will have to ask himself what kind of interconnecting cord scheme and lever configuration will be required in order for the weights sinking away from their rim stops there to raise the weights moving back toward their rim stops there. While this might not sound like that difficult of a problem, I can assure you that it is probably one of the most complex engineering problems that you will ever encounter because the entire process must not only occur with precision once for a single 45° of drum rotation, but must then reapeat itself over and over again using ALL of the 8 weight levers during every complete drum rotation.

    After you have given up trying to produce this motion with just cords and weights in some counter balancing configuration using carefully designed levers (or "magic levers" as I like to say), you will realize that something MORE is needed. That is where the use of spring tension enters the picture. Bessler found a way to make this motion work using springs that were attached to the levers in some way (it was the sudden contraction of one of these attached springs that caused the loud snapping sound during the Merseburg wheel demonstration).

    At some point in the ascent of a weighted lever on a wheel's ascending side, spring tension played a role in lightening it up just enough so that the wheel's other sinking weights could more easily lift it. I am now convinced that these springs are CRITICAL to making an OB wheel work and if one is not including them in ALL of his designs he might as well not even bother trying to solve the Bessler mystery!

    Again, sorry to sound so dogmatic, but I'm telling it like I see it in an effort to get as many mobilists on the "right track" as possible so that maybe, just maybe THIS anniversary of Bessler's first 1712 demonstration will not be like all of the prior ones with no real progress being made and even more mobilists losing interest in the man and his inventions.

  38. Springs can also be used to return something to its original position.


The Legend of Bessler’s Perpetual Motion Machine

On 6th June, 1712, in Germany, Johann Bessler (also known by his pseudonym, Orffyreus) announced that after many years of failure, h...