Friday, 12 July 2013

Bessler's Codes - what do they mean?

This blog is sub-titled, "A blog about Johann Bessler and the Orffyreus Code and my efforts to decipher it", so it should come as no surprise if I occasionally actually discuss the codes I've been working on.  It has always puzzled me that few people discuss my efforts at decoding Bessler's works, other than an occasional mention in passing.  I assume that it is either because the codes reveal little of interest other than continual references to pentagons and the number 5 - or the argument I put forward in explaining the codes does not convince.

Despite the lack of anything of substance being revealed, obviously Bessler thought that anyone interested enough to find just the clues I've decoded, would seek to use the information to look for the real information so clearly hidden in all of his books.  Just because I have failed so far does not mean that someone else might not succeed and I hope that there are those out there working at the puzzle in an attempt to tease out what it was Bessler wanted us to know.

On my chief decoding site at I have provided brief but logical descriptions of the codes I've fathomed, and they are only the ones where the proof of their existence is irrefutable. There are others which are more speculative and I am reluctant to detail them because of that very fact; they are hard to prove.

But the real question that absorbs me is what do these many references to fives and pentagons signify? I always believed that he meant that there were five mechanisms needed, but my own experiments and his comments about having just one crossbar hardly made the wheel turn at all, implies that five is not necessary although it could be the optimum number.

Considering my findings about chapter 55 in his Apologia Poetica,  which you can read at you can see that this part obviously contains a coded message, and the reinforcements of this message, 55 verses  etc, confirm this.  The only drawing in Apologia Poetica, the Apologia wheel as it has become known, contains a pentagram above the words, 'do you still not understand?'  Surely this book but not this drawing is the place to start looking for an answer?  

What of Das Triumphirende?  There do not appear to be any mysterious Xs, nor blanks in place of certain words - but there are drawings full of mystery and intrigue.  And even his Maschinen Tractate contains at least pentagram... where,,,why number 55 of course!  Also MT137 an apparently random drawing thrown in to confuse has as its basis, not just the pentagram, but the 'circle of fifth's, well-known in musical instruction but not so well, outside the profession.  I speculated that it was the 'circle of fifths', because that particular invention is attributed to Johann David Heinichen, who coincidentally lived in the same village as Bessler did, at the same time, when he (Heinichen) was an aspiring musician, composer and teacher, and Bessler was making church organs for the same people.  The circle of fifths is built up from a simple circle within a square and the resulting points are connected at every fifth point producing the dodecagram familar to both MT readers and musicians.

So here are all the firmly decoded clues available for all since at least 2009 and yet barely a single comment about any of it.  What puzzles me further is that  there are people still trying to build wheels based on the Apologia wheel which I've demonstrated is no such thing but merely a pointer to a pentagram.  

Others ask questions which they could easily find the answer to, if they only look, or they make  assumptions  based on inaccurate information which lead to utterly erroneous conclusions because they did not take the trouble to study the information both here and on the besslerwheel forums.


Meanwhile my wheel building continues and I hope to finish it before I take a break in about three weeks.




  1. John,..Please allow me to respectfully disagree with you.
    The apologia wheel is a vital clue to the format of the wheel.
    Here's what happens.
    Unless you know something I don't?

    1. Yes,..Here's what happens!
      The power period is from 3 o'clock to 6.
      At 6 o'clock the weights rise to the center where the wheel is balanced.
      They then fall to the side,(hence the bang),to start the cycle all over again.
      My two cents worth!

    2. Trevor, how about those images you said you would take for us? Or does the fourth dimension denier need more time for this as well? ;-)

    3. Yes I will ED,just let me prove the runner and I will even if it means a video shot.

  2. Same here. Of all the mysterious clues, the Apologia wheel is the one I like best. I'm not saying I am right about this - and I don't think anybody should be claiming a deeper understanding than everybody else unless they can back up their claims with a running wheel... Sorry, John!

  3. Guys,
    I don't know if you checked David C. Roy's Zylo sculpture, but when I saw the first three blocks tumble, I immediately thought of the Apologia Wheel, now link the last block to the first, via the wheel's sides, could we have runner ?

    1. Just seen the flaw in my plan, the blocks are stepped, so the last one would have no leverage over the first.
      Oh well, I thought a nice simple answer was too good to be true! :-)

  4. Hey guys, disagree by all means, it's just my opinion - but just keep commenting!


  5. I'm only ignoring potential codes out of practicality - without being fluent in German and / or Latin i don't believe i'd stand much chance. Besides, i've far from exhausted all the other, more practical lines of enquiry, thus far. Every potential new lead has more springing off of it - there's just no time to invest mulling over possible codes...

    Just for example, take the Apologia wheel... My first impression was that perhaps it's a rotary scissorjack, wherein each of the three lobes is a scissor-cell, connected to a co-axial shaft.

    So i built one, just to investigate: you can see, nothing particularly useful in this interpretation, the only notable points probably being:

    If you invert one cell (such that the leading and trailing edges of one cell swap sides, front vs back) then its action is reversed relative to the other two - ie. when they're extended, it's retracted, and vice-versa. This DOES cause an OB moment, but it doesn't automatically synchronise (so some additional mechanism would be needed to regulate the phase relative to the angle of rotation), and also it'd be limited to two power pulses per cycle, rather than three, since the third one in any cycle will be inverted, providing anti-torque.. in a "3 steps forward, 1 step back" pattern.

    Perhaps more usefully, but unrelated to our quest, if it was covered in a stretched skin, it forms a variable propeller or dynamic impeller, where the blade aspect is dynamically adjustable, and also the pitch (by varying the gap between the two axle-wheels).

    Handy for a wind turbine, perhaps, but less so for our requirements...

    Other minor points that piqued my interest about the AP wheel:

    "Greed is an evil root" could be interpreted as "Clover is an evil plant" - a reference to three lobes, perhaps?

    As i show in the Meccano rig, a co-axle arrangement can be used to connect the lobes to opposite sides of the wheel. The squares in the AP image terminate behind the axle's center - and of course, if we could somehow apply weight loads to the opposite side of a wheel, they'd lift themselves! Perhaps the AP wheel was a hint on how to accomplish this seemingly-impossible feat (or at least sufficiently effectively so to get a gain).

    - various other minor checkboxes, ie. peacocks tails, abnormal rims etc. etc.

    So with very little imagination, i've barely scratched the surface of possibly-interesting AP wheel mechanisms... and give me a practical problem over an abstract one any day...

    On the abstract side, i start from 1st principle physical questions, pref. ones with objective answers but not exclusively so... so things like over-balancing physics, ie. shift-energy vs RKE - a fascinating question to try and generalise. Or if such a system is thermodynamically open, what's it open to? Does it violate Lorentzian symmetries? Does it violate mass-equivalency? Of course the biggest abstract question is simply the nature of the symmetry break - how to actually achieve an input vs output force/distance integral asymmetry in the first place.

    These are the kind of abstract issues i can get a handle on. Code-cracking Olde German cyphers is beyond my current abilities, and the recurrence of 5's or pentagrams (the latter seeming to me especially incidental, if even real) is too far removed from any fundamental principles of physics or mechanics to hold much promise. I'm looking for some kind of power law or differential or conflict of unit dimensions and subsequent non-linearities... that kind of abstract problem.

    To me, a compelling argument in favour of the significance of say pentagrams would invoke some physical property exclusive to that geometry. I'm not dismissive of such a possibility, but have yet to see or find any such suggestion...

    1. @ Vibrator,
      did you get the youtube address right ?
      All I'm getting is stuff about Essex, as I'm from there originally, I know about the place, innit ?

    2. Strange, works for me but i'm pretty clueless with these things..

      How about this link?

      Failing that, it's the latest upload on my channel; 'Apologia Rotary Scissorjack':

      Cheers ears..

    3. @ Vibrator,
      unless you're Mr. Olympia living in Tosa Del Mar nada.


    4. Crumbs, dunno - i just copied'n'pasted the link from the addybar.. maybe that's the problem.. (i notice it's https for some reason)

      Hmm maybe i need to get the link from the 'share' button..? Try this:

      Didn't realise that before, duh, apologies...

  6. Also, FWIW, i ended up drawing MT137 before i'd even seen it, while searching for a 'pulley & chord' geometry whereby a weight falling vertically drags a similar weight horizontally (the cylinders and rails config i was playing with back in April).

    It was just one pattern i hit upon while wrestling with the issue of radial translations - purely radial paths (those aligned centrally) exert torque in the 'wrong' direction, but conversely, off-radial paths (not centrally aligned) open up under-balancing gaps in the circumferential distance between weights - hence cancelling any torque that would otherwise have resulted in the 'right' direction.

    It's a frustrating problem i've yet to fully understand. If some kind of compromise were possible then trading vertical for horizontal translations would be an easy win...

    The 'circle of fifths' relationship is one that i'd missed, despite some musical experience. Mathematically it's a 2nd order recursive subdivision by two of a given fundamental, per classical Pythagorean derivation of the series (ie. pin an elastic band to the table by its ends, note the frequency, then pin it again halfway along its length. Now add two more pins likewise equidistantly-spaced, and then remove two pins from one end, leaving just one at the other. The relationship of this frequency to the initial fundamental is 3:2. More simply, all upper and lower factors of 3 of a given fundamental are likewise 'perfect fifths', falling within the same pitch class owing to octave (ie. factor of two) equivalence.

    What the relationship could've meant to Bessler is anybody's guess, but if he was really interested in frequency ratios then maybe something significant occurred 3x or 1.5x per cycle? Again, this is too abstract for me... not much of a lead imho...

  7. It gets stuffy here in the warm afternoons so i chipped down the park and finished reading "PM: An Ancient Mystery Solved?"

    Excellent scholarship throughout.. until the last chapters - all the wrangling about what constitutes true PM can be reduced to a much simpler question of basic thermodynamics:

    - there's closed thermodynamic systems, and there's open ones.

    - and that's the lot, in terms of objective realities.

    - further to this however, are systems that are expected to be open, but are in fact closed (such as failed PM machines), and conversely, those that are expected to be closed, yet however surprisingly are found to be open (such as a successful PM machine)

    In other words, an unexpectedly open thermodynamic system is still nothing more or less - rather than evidence of energy from nowhere, it is evidence of an unanticipated, and usually unseen source.

    The form of the excess energy must be described (can only meaningfully be described) as gravitational force acting over some distance; We need both force and distance to define energy - implicating only force falls foul of the psuedoskeptics' favourite bait of confusing force and energy.

    Finally, it is rash to declare any such energy as 'free' with no evidence to the contrary - we can't prove that it's free, but we can eliminate potential sources (or not).

    All forces, including gravity, appear to be mediated by energy transactions carried out by sub-atomic particle exchanges. So forces really are, in fact, energy interactions. Usually however they're equitable - we input some energy to the field, and it outputs the same amount, minus any losses.

    In an asymmetric interaction though, the field outputs more, or less, than we've input (in terms of force times distance).

    Hence, more, or less work has been performed by either ourselves, or the field (depending on a loss or gain scenario).

    So Bessler's wheel was driven by real energy exchanges of real force-mediating particles (elementary bosons).

    JC then gives two counter-examples - does a windfarm reduce the available wind or atmospheric energy? And similarly, does a solar panel place a load upon the sun?

    The answer to the first is a definite yes - windfarms could in fact cause significant global warming, allowing hotspots to form by limiting wider airflow. This has only recently been confirmed academically, though it's something that's bothered me for years...

    As for the solar example, by converting some of its radiated energy into work, we've likewise reduced the net solar energy radiated out into the environment. This doesn't place a load on the sun, but still reduces the net heat of the solar system / cosmos... at least until the energy so extracted is converted back to heat, via expenditure as work.

    And therein lies the rub - if every step in Bessler's mechanism is entirely dependent upon conservation of energy, then it is a strident verification of that principle, not evidence of its negation. The net system must also comply.

    The real bottom line then comes down to whether the vacuum's activity (which is the ultimate arbiter of the elementary forces) is an active, or passive component.

    In a nutshell - does the net thermodynamic energy of the universe include the vacuum energy, or not? Normally we disregard it, if only because it's not thought to interact to any significant extent with the thermodynamic energy (the energy that the universe was born with, and which will all have been converted to work at its heat death) - and also because the vacuum energy is thought to be many, many orders of magnitude greater than this total thermodynamic energy (which can be described as the net sum of force/distance integrals of all forces and matter in the universe - it's total classical potential energy).

    1. Still, even if the vacuum is, effectively, 'powered' by some other, perhaps extra-dimensional field/s (not unlike M-theory might suggest) - we'd still face the issue of upsetting the equilibrium rate of exchange with it. This 'homeostasis' might be every bit as critical to overall stability as a limited vacuum energy reservoir.

      In summary, we cannot assume OU is environmentally safe nor sound, until some kind of unification effort can validate that hypothesis. Because if any of the fundamental values we depend on start to drift, (like gravity or the EM constant) then we might find ourselves right up the creek and paddle-less, with no way of coaxing the 'free-energy' genie back in the bottle.. it's unpoliceable!

      Bessler's idea was to launch an academic initiative off the back of his success. If for slightly different reasons, i think that remains as much a responsibility for any successors today.. perhaps a big cash prize for confirming of refuting its long-term safety, or some similar encouragement..

  8. Lastly, veering back on-topic, the final entry in the book is the Apologia poem, in english and the original transcript.. the latter having 8 mysterious X's next to some lines...

    What with all this scissorjack guff, i can't help note that these x's might be referencing sciccorjack sections..!?

    How might these phrases be linked together?

    Auch ziemlich auf die Pfoten kloppen. X
    Zimbelgewicht, Wind und Uhrfeder. X
    Es prahlet wie ein Pfauenschwanz. X
    Auch bald ein Ding verfließen muß. X
    Zu jedem Kriege willig sein. X
    Durch Dãrm’ und Mark und Beine fãhret; X
    Zum õftern durch verschloss’ne Tűren. X
    Den Mantel werfen von dem Rad. X

    From GoogleTranslate:

    Also fairly bashing on the paws. X
    Zimbelgewicht, wind and clock spring. X
    It prahlet like a peacock's tail. X
    Soon must elapse a thing. X
    Be any war willingly. X
    Fahret by intestinal 'and Mark and legs; X
    For oftern by verschloss'ne doors. X
    Throw the mantle of the wheel X

    And JC's translation (very tentatively):

    and is rewarded with a pat on his paws (by the stiff fops who watch him...(?)). X
    without weights, wind or springs. X
    it is as glorious as a peacock’s tail. X
    all things will come to a standstill X
    are ready to join in any battle. X
    for it spreads itself through every limb and sinue of our bodies. X
    Poltergeists wander freely through locked doors. X
    cast aside the mantle that conceals my wheel. X

    Given that most of my German was learnt from reading Victor! comic as a kid, and the limitations of GoogleTranslate, this is hardly compelling stuff, and i'm not-at-all sure i quoted the right translated words. Still, what might these X's indicate if not clues?

    Also lots of X's in the original MT images. I'd initially assumed these meant the same strike-out symbol as today (i'd independently adopted a similar tick/cross convention in my blue-sky doodlings).. is there however some kind of consensus on their implications?

    Is there any connection between these X's and the scissorjack glyphs? Eight X's, eight sections to the MT138 scissorjack, type stuff..?

  9. PS. if anyone, anywhere (Cough_Ed_cough) could throw together a 1-down, n-up scissorjack in WM2D (where n is like from 1 to 6 or 8 or something), with a corresponding force plot, that'd be so totally awesome?

    Hell i'd rather pay the cash for such a utility, than waste more on a messy and potentially inconclusive experiment. I searched through all the previous work on the subject (basically, Ed's), and found his WM2D models, but it's a steep curve for a total noob.. someone fluent could knock one up in a fraction of the time it'd take me... does the weight that can be lifted decrease as n increases, even if the jack's own weight is negated or counter-balanced?

    A conclusive answer here would be useful if only for shutting me up...

    1. @ Vibrator,
      a little while ago, I saw a woodcut picture of a large pendulum operated wood saw,
      I cannot find it again, however, the large pendulum was connected to the screw part of a scissor jack, the screw being half lh thread, half rh thread.
      The pendulum's swing opening and closing the jack producing an up and down movement on the attached blade, maybe something to think about?
      Also, a good while back I posted a wheel design, that incorporated the most outstanding clues, X's and -'s, the wheel of fifths , scissor jacks, rims and a sideways crab movement (it is designed thus), extended F's and S's, but as I said it got a lukewarm reception.
      Finally - "Greed is the root of all evil." Why greed not money ?
      Greed is the third Cardinal Sin.
      What is significant about being third?
      The Earth is the third planet from the Sun.
      What is greedy about the Earth?
      Gravity! it grabs everything and pulls it in.

    2. That's a fascinating insight - and of course the Earth is also evil, the devil's domain in xtian lore.. so a confirmation of a gravitational, rather than say inertial, exploit (if further confirmation were necessary)?

      As for pendulums - interesting actuator, however i'm committed to going along with Bessler when he says "everything must, of necessity, go around together - in a true PM there can be nothing stationary on the axle". I'm not 100% clear on why any sinusoid shouldn't do, whether rotational or oscillating, although i have some tentative ideas there.. and i suppose a pendulum COULD both swing and rotate with the mechanism at the same time... Still, like your earlier design you describe above, now it's getting complicated. As others have said, it seems doubtful Bessler used a real, complete scissorjack (or more than one, even) - rather, there's something the jack does that can be reduced to a simpler mechanism, is my guess...

      Anyhoos, interesting food for thought, cheers...

    3. @ Vibrator,
      I was thinking more of using the scissor jack and screw in reverse, like a whirligig, (the disc toy pumped around by twisted string).The ends of the jacks having weights on, that move out with centrifugal force, and then when the external cam lifted stampers are engaged, the slight stalling effect causes the weights to retract,
      the "ice skater action" speeds up the weights rotation, to start it over again.

    4. @STEVO

      You said:
      "Greed is the third Cardinal Sin. What is significant about being third? The Earth is the third planet from the Sun. What is greedy about the Earth? Gravity! it grabs everything and pulls it in."

      I like the logic. Acceleration of the pendulum pivot point (due to CF) in a two stage oscillator interferes with the normal swing of the pendulum, dampening the swing, resulting in a loss of height. So I have often thought that "acceleration" within gravity (also an acceleration field) is the greed.

    5. @ Zoelra,
      I did come up with yet another idea that used a Milkovic two stage oscillator, and the falling of one of eight weights to give the first stage pendulum a regenerating knock.
      But, a lukewarm response again, if I knew how to show my sketches, maybe someone could discredit/develop them.

      @ Vibrator,
      I did design an axle with a fixed centre and a rotating outer to use with the two stage oscillator so it would be stationary at the middle of the wheel, and not turn with it, yet being able to rock of course.

    6. Posting drawings is the one feature this site lacks. You might consider joining . At least go to the site and look around in the General Discussion section. You may also be able to search the forum but I'm not sure about that. It's no big deal to join. JC has his own forum there as well.

    7. @Stevo - i'm totally with you on that one - it's strongly reminiscent of MT138, too, fantastic idea.

      I'd considered that maybe the belt/chain thingy on the toys page was some kind of rip chord, alluedd to by the whistling top.

      So putting 2 and 2 together then, and trying to get 5 - perhaps this cumulative acceleration property of the leading tip of an expanding scissorjack is some kind of ultimate rip chord from hell, or something? Basically an overunity one, at any rate?

      Grimer's fairly au fait with derivatives of motion, his thoughts here would be interesting. Am i right in characterising it that way - each successive scissor section inherits a cumulative linear acceleration; and this is analogous to recursive rates of change..?

      Wherein would the non-linearity arise then? Perhaps tapering or otherwise irregular jacks are "the correct artistic application", to quote MT41, with its longitudinally-symmetrical jacks..? However i briefly considered this earlier in light of my findings this evening and couldn't see any immediate reason why the force/distance differentials would stray from perfect linearity, regardless of any tapering. That would seem to eliminate any inherent energy gain from 'anomolous speed or acceleration', too, no?

      And yet there must be something here - or else Bessler's given us deliberate bum steer!

    8. @zoelra - lol tbh i don't mind where i vent off; when i'm feeling Bessler-ish i type the B-word into Google and this is the fist link that comes up.. and it's The Source, too, so to speak... rather than getting stuck into a 'proper' forum (which can easily become an end in itself), i like to hit and run here while beavering away on my own investigations. And then there's always the hope of some new snippet from the fount here that might prove that final vital link..!

      If i'm just adding clutter then i apologise... i do have an account on but i wouldn't bother starting a thread there unless i thought i had something more promising to kick about...

    9. @ Vibrator,
      I couldn't answer one of those questions, all I do is try to come up with a simple mechanical version of what is known to work, i.e. rubber band heat engine, with scissor jacks replacing the bands, the Colombia Wheel of Death, with hammers replacing the stomping acrobats, the Milkovic oscillator was a muse on the one beam idea, and of course the whirligig idea.
      I have another idea involving a pendulum fitted with a vee gate magnet and a pick-up device for the bar magnet, but that's totally un-Bessler!
      One advantage of a scissor jack is the fact that for say, 4in. of movement, you can get 4 or 5 + times the distance lift.
      That action may overcome the problem I had with my rocking beam device.
      Worth investigating.

    10. @ Vibrator,
      just remembered, I once asked John if the links were a side on view of the scissor jack, but he replied that the narrow links were a half twist of the full links.
      It puzzled me, but I don't have all the info available.

    11. Hmmm the single links might be 90° twists? that's something i'll have to mull over..

      And quite incidentally, i did find a mechanism by which the v-gate could work (well, Steorn did anyway)..

      But the power ratio conversion does seem to be the scissorjack's only redeeming property. Yet this could be done with gear wheels, a chain & sprocket set, pulleys and tackle, etc. etc.... it's not an exclusive property of the scissorjack.

      In that case, perhaps it's just a metaphor for power conversion per se - perhaps the energy asymmetry arises due to a dodgy power transmission, somehow..? (only asking rhetorically)

      I'll have to give this more thought, still, on the face of it, the suggestion then would be that there's a situation in which a transfer of energy is either too fast or slow for perfect efficiency, perhaps resulting in nature stepping in to provide a momentary free force.

      A time rate of change difference is precisely the place to look for an energy discontinuity (this i learnt from Steorn). A delayed change in force relative to a moving part subject to that force would be the key. Perhaps something can artificially / mechanically outpace a 'natural' rate of change in force, leaving nature picking up the difference. That's a very abstract and vague description, but it's the general dynamic we're looking for...

      So perhaps, somehow, such an opportunity arises during an power conversion process..!

    12. @ Vibrator,
      thinking on the simple top analogy, the top itself is quite happy to spin furiously while the handle is being pushed back, by a spring, ready for another plunge.
      Is that nature taking up the difference?
      Time to do some sketches.

  10. The scissor jack arrangement is an elaborate linear lever. Add the lengths of the squares under the up weight. Add the lengths of the square above the down weight. The result is the leverage ratio. Easy. 4:1, 7:1, etc.

    1. Obviously i agree that it's a fairly simple lever, however as for adding the lengths of the squares, i'm unsure - you mean when they're set as square, 90° corners, ie. perfect diamonds? Or i guess whatever degree of extension, as long as they're all at equal angles..?

      I could plot it out on paper - if all the beam lengths are equal, and pivoted dead-center, then each scissor section has the same rotational moment, as well as an accumulated linear movement - the first cell has a linear speed of zero, the second has a linear speed equal to the turning radius and speed of rotation of the fist section, the third has twice that linear speed, the fourth has 3x that linear speed, and so on.

      I'm shaky on the maths but isn't that n factorial, where n is the accumulated acceleration of the number of linkages in the sequence?

      (incidentally, it seems this would be an interesting way to nudge up to lightspeed, if only on paper - i wonder how many cells of what beam length this would take?)

      Regardless, as you can see it looks like the rotational speed is equal for all cells, but the linear acceleration is cumulative for n subsequent cells.

      When it comes to forces though i get hung up on the fact that all the linkages are 1:1 levers... I appreciate that doubling the lift height should halve the weight that can be lifted to full extension, but i just need to check this. After all, we have Bessler's 'assurance' that there's something special behind them, and also that there's a "correct application" of them, so i just need to eliminate the obvious...

      Last night i stayed up late, playing with WM2D. I managed to build a jack, anchored 1-down, 2-up. It's a little rough around the edges but tonight i plan to do a neater version.

      Once i've got a perfectly bilaterally-symmetrical 1-down 3-up rig i can test it, then cut'n'paste another 3-up for a total of 1-down 6-up, which should halve the output force. At that point i'll quietly apologise for my excess verbiage and skulk off, tail between legs, until the next manic confusion takes me....

    2. @Johan - yep, you're absolutely correct; however i was beguiled by the mechanism, and had to disprove the possibility no matter how mad, just as a first step in identifying what the 'special' property might be, whether literal, symbolic or what.

      Obviously, the jack is superfluous to the energy balance between interacting masses. I mean OF COURSE it is. But i just had to check... i know you understand.. ;)

      Still, what about its acceleration properties.. any thoughts there..?

  11. Ookie dokes, did the thing this eve after work, result is perfect symmetry.

    What a surprise.

    Who'd've thunk it (apart from Ed and everyone else)?

    Still, i found out exactly what i wanted to know, and the force/distance differential is perfectly linear:

    - a 1-down/3-up distance ratio produces a 1:3 input/output force ratio

    - likewise a 1:6 distance ratio produces a 1:6 I/O force ratio

    And what becomes clear is that the jack itself is almost an illusory artifice in this issue - it can be entirely removed from the scenario and the force/distance I/O ratios resolved purely from 1st principles using nothing more than the SI system.

    The scissorjack's lever efficiency is exactly analogous to that a balance scale.

    Ergo, this is probably not the significant property Bessler found so enthralling....

    Yet there is one, at least according to him.

    So what could it be - perhaps this cumulative acceleration property? How might that lead to a symmetry break, and how could we test for it?

  12. Bessler didn't say the storks bill was special, he said there was something special behind the storks bill.

    One thing that is unique with the storks bill is the acceleration differential that can be created using a one to many link configuration. So could that differential in movement be the "special" thing.

  13. Guys,
    I've just realized that what I described above is a horizontal pump top spinning top, powered by a steam engine speed regulator, so the mechanics are easy to build.
    The stampers may not be necessary, with the weights fully extended by centrifugal force, the pumping stops, this causes the top (wheel) to slow, the "ice skater effect" kicks in, and speeds the weights up, hopefully ad infinitum.

    1. Sorry, that's vertical not horizontal, duh!

  14. @Zoelra - yep, the power curve might be interesting, except that it's perfectly linear; i'm not sure a tapering jack produces a non-linearity either so if there is one, it's not intrinsic to the jack itself, at least as i've considered it here.

    Of course another obvious power curve is that of the wheel's own radius. Perhaps there's room for some kind of asymmetric interplay between this natural power curve, vs some internal mechanical one...

    @stevo - i like where you're going; a governor mechanism gives us another power differential to bounce off. To take it further, the energy gain should be readily apparent just on paper so maybe it'd be worth running some loose calcs..? I'm not great at this sort of thing but can usually struggle through with the help of online applets for the formulas... So if you think you might be onto something, plot it up - or gis' an imageshack link to a sketch and i'll have a go..

    1. @ Zoelra,
      had an overnight think and the stampers maybe necessary to provide a regular pulse/pump.
      Also it may not be the ice skater effect that works the spiral, but the contraction/collapse of the governor that pulls it instead.
      Now the $64,ooo question, how on earth do those tops work ?


    2. Sorry, that's @ Vibrator, yawn! just woke up!

  15. Bessler stated springs were used. Can they give 'A time rate of change difference' ?

  16. jon, when asked if there were springs in his machine, Bessler replied, 'not in the way you mean,' which leaves the possibility that he used them, but not in any way that was vital to the machine's action.


    1. Mulling over the springs, along with scissorjacks as a glyph for power distribution, over another long stare at the toys page and some ciders, i think i might have stumbled across a gain cycle...

      Suppose we replace our familiar main reference force of gravity with centrifugal force instead. So we could be on a 'ring-world' or a spinning toroidal ship, experiencing 1G.

      Now suppose we fly near to a dense object with strong gravity well.

      We now have a net anisotropic field, and can lift a load when it's light (when the two vectors are opposing) and drop it when it's heavy (when the vectors are aligned).

      The power curve comes in to the equation when you consider that the weight may perform work on the way down - the fall against the combined vectors can be used to perform work upon the axle - accelerating it, and also compressing the spring. This inbound (in: towards the combined vectors, AWAY from the axle) would normally slow the RPM, per conservation of angular momentum, however by performing RKE work during descent the wheel can be accelerated instead - a gain. Of course this acceleration likewise boost CF (a feedback loop). When retracted while the vectors are opposing, the spring can return much of its work, offsetting (at least partially) the rise in CF as the RPM increases, per the pirouetting skater effect.

      With this rise in RKE and CF the cycle can repeat...

      The amount of gain per cycle (for a single cycle per revolution) is a function of the overlap excursions between the two vectors, G & CF - the latter being a function of speed and radius of course. The bigger your wheel, that longer it can accelerate per cycle.. IOW excess work is a function of radius.

      OK shoot me down guys..!?

  17. Edit: or maybe the power thing's incidental - if we can lift something when it's light and drop it when it's heavy, we're OU, innit? The rest is just engineering.

    So we need a direct drive mechanism that rotates along with everything else. Why, i'm not sure, but that's what the man said. Normally a direct transmission would be static relative to the axle.. like Wagner's spit mechanism. So what mechanism can provide torque? It's OB or direct drive innit.. perhaps it's just a matter of taste?

    1. When Bessler used the word "rotate", I wonder if he meant continual 360 degree rotation like a tire, or back and forth "pendulum like" rotation.

    2. He clarified the point using the phrase "everything must go around together" or words to that effect, so yep, rotation - however oscillation would also work; any cyclical motion will do, as far as i can see.

      The key point is simply that the centrifugal displacement performs output work when CF is aligned with the G-vector (the lower 180° arc), and we perform our input work retracting it when these two forces are opposingly-aligned (through the upper 180° arc).

    3. Lol so nobody understood what i've described..? No worries, i expected an underwhelmed response - it's my fault for not explaining it properly. Or being too long-winded, probably.. :)

      OK let's try again:

      - We have a vertically spinning wheel (we've input some energy to spin it up)

      - the wheel has a single spoke connecting the axle to the rim

      - a single cylindrical weight slides up and down this single spoke

      - because the wheel's turning, this sliding weight is subject to centrifugal force

      - this force pulls it from close to the axle, out towards the rim

      - if we just let it slide out freely, then the wheel decelerates when the weight is out by the rim because the increased radius likewise increases the inertial force it is subject to - and because energy / work is a function of force times distance, and also because energy is conserved, the wheel must thus slow down. Hence the total energy of the system remains constant.

      - indeed, the total energy of the system (assuming no losses) remains constant whether the weight is up by the axle with the wheel spinning quickly, or down by the rim with the wheel spinning slowly. It's the input energy we've given the system, no more and no less.

      - now however, suppose we change that situation slightly - we let the weight be dragged out towards the rim by centrifugal force, however we only let it slide out slowly, and moreover, what's constraining its freedom is the fact that it has a transmission system attached between it and the axle - such as a worm gear for instance. The ripchord on a spinning top does a similar job; converting a linear pulling force into higher-power torque.

      - now, in order to be able to acquiesce to the centrifugal force and slide outwards, the weight has to torque the axle - accelerating the wheel and likewise boosting that centrifugal force - hence a positive feedback loop is formed, and a surge of power accelerates the wheel

      - hence in this latter state, the wheel now has more energy than we've given it initially - the gain is that of the additional work performed by the displaced weight

      - so now you're wondering how we retract the weight again, back towards the rim, against this boosted centrifugal force we've created... and this is the really cool part:

      - forces add together - it doesn't matter what field the forces emanate from - force is force. And the centrifugal force is always oriented outwards, uniformly. However the gravitational force is always oriented uniformly downwards. So in the rotating reference frame, the combined forces act to make the weight heavier in the lower 180° semicircular arc, but lighter in the corresponding upper arc..

      - for example, suppose the centrifugal force is equal to 1G. Because gravity is of course also 1G, the axle-to-rim force at 6 o'clock is a net 2G. But the net rim-to-axle force (or vice versa, for that matter) at 12 o'clock is zero.. the two forces cancel each other out in the upper arc, but double-up and cooperate in the lower arc.

      - hence if we 'drop' our weights during the lower part of their swing, when they're under the combined pull of gravity and centrifugal force, and use that "output" work to accelerate the wheel (as mentioned earlier), we can then retract them against a massively reduced force, thus requiring much less "input" work to do so..!

      - finally, retracting the weight - even for free, as described above - also accelerates the wheel, the so-called "ice-skater effect".

      This is a complete cycle with a huge gain..!

    4. In summary, if we had a horizontally spinning wheel with no losses, and a weight that could slide from near the axle to out by the wheel's edge, then the wheel will slow down when the weight's out by the rim, and speed up when it's bought back closer to the center of rotation. We could send it to-and-fro all day; the wheel will vary in speed, but the system's net energy will remain constant.

      However if we mount the wheel vertically, we can convert the aligned and summed gravitational and centrifugal force into torque in one half of the cycle, and the opposing and cancelled-out forces allow us to reset for peanuts! The wheel accelerates both when the weight's extended AND when it's subsequently retracted! We're using gravity both to boost the CF in one half of a rotation, and also to mitigate or cancel the CF in the other half of the rotation. Drop 'em when they're heavy, lift 'em when they're light.

      The gain per cycle is equal to the mass times gravity times radial distance that the weight travels from axle to rim (eg. 1kg moving 1 meter is equal to 1 Joule).

      Evidently i need to do a sim... but is anyone feeling me here..? Have i said a mad thing, or do i win £5..?

    5. @ Vibrator,
      I think that's what I meant when I said the stampers slow the wheel,
      the weights on the governor will collapse slightly because of the reduced speed.

    6. I believe a 1m radius wheel turning at 30RPM has CF (at the periphery) equal to the acceleration of gravity. That will be your upper speed limit for the wheel when the weight is at the outer position. Anything faster and you will have to fight CF (at the 12pm position) to pull the weight back towards the axle.

    7. @Z. Yep precisely. I guess you'd limit the sizes of weights (of a given mass density) as a function of optimal diameter and speed.

      Incidentally, i've figured another way of converting CF to torque, in a step-wise (ie. not instantaneous) action:

      Suppose you're on a spinning roundabout, holding a chord, attached to a flywheel positioned in the exact center of the ride's rotation. The flywheel is attached via a simple cluth mechanism. With the clutch open, you allow yourself to be flung outwards radially, pulling the chord as you go, and so accelerating the flywheel.

      As you depart the edge of the wheel, the chord wound around the flywheel runs out, and trips the clutch closed as it winds off its spool. Hence the flywheel engages the roundabout, accelerating it.

      This is a fascinating mechanism - i mean it;s not-at-all practical, probably, but its thermodynamic properties are really interesting:

      - you've left the system with out removing your own inherent energy - part of the net system's KE was your own mass and angular velocity. If you approach the edge and step off, you slow the wheel and then leave it with that lower speed as you exit the system - hence you've taken your share of the energy with you.

      But using the chord, clutch and flywheel mechanism, we can convert CF to torque, and radial work to RKE! So now suppose we don't leave the system, but just move from the center to the edge.

      If we do this without pulling the chord, the roundabout slows but the system's net energy remains constant.

      But if we yank the chord as we go, when we get to the edge, the system's net energy has increased! Yes we've done work on the system, but the cool thing is we did it from within the inertial reference frame!

      This counter-intuitive contrivance satisfies me that the exploit i'm suggesting is valid. If the extension occurs during the lower 180° arc, and retraction in the upper, force-attenuated 180° arc, then even using the simple five-scissorjack principle i mentioned above, each extension provides a torque, and each retraction a counter-torque. However the gravity-damped counter-torque is lower than the gravity-boosted torque, hence we come out of the cycle ahead with a nice gain. Five of them, in fact... :)

  18. John,..if I may butt in here,Bessler did use springs,which were vital to the resonant mechanism but what he meant was,he did not use springs to wind up and power the wheel like a clock just as his critics had implied.


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