Wednesday, 2 March 2016

Weights and measures relating to Bessler's wheel; what to use and what to leave.

It is a curious fact that many people seem bent on designing and building their Bessler-wheels whilst labouring under the misapprehension that picking weights and measures relating to any one or more of the wheels, from a variety of sources without applying simple logic to the process, is sure to result in success.

Some insist that there were eight weights or eight mechanisms.  This figure arose from the report by Fischer von Erlac to J.T. Desaguliers, Sir isaac Newton's curator of experiments.  Doubtless the writer recorded accurately what he thought he heard and perhaps he was correct, but these figures applied to the mighty Kassel wheel, one that was able to turn in either direction. The problem as I see it is that this was a far more complicated wheel to build, as Bessler himself admitted. 

Why would anyone hoping to repeat Bessler's success begin with the most complex wheel ever built?  The logical starting point would be to try to copy his first wheel, or even the second one.  Each of these started spontaneously and only turned one way.

A lot of people have suggested that perhaps Bessler preloaded the wheel to make it start spontaneously as soon as the brake was released.  This is an example of picking and choosing what to believe and what to discard when considering Bessler's claims or the reports about his wheel and its performance.  If you believe Bessler's wheels were genuine, and you accept many of the things he said or were reported about the wheel, why would you then reject other parts of the record, simply because you don't believe it or you think it was a trick designed to impress a gullible audience.

Take his first wheel for example.  4.6 feet in diameter; thickness about 4 inches, speed unloaded 50 RPM.  Always began to rotate as soon as its brake was released.

Second wheel; 9.3 feet in diameter. thickness 6 inches; speed umloaded more than 50 RPM.  This one was mounted on a six inch axle.

Utterly different sizes yet output speed about the same.  The same speed might indicate a more powerful lift in the second one, but we don't know.  What we do know is that the third and fourth wheels were bi-directional and needed a gentle push to get them rotating, from which start they steadily accelerated.

It seems obvious to me at least that there must have been major differences between the two versions.  Not in the basic concept that enabled them to take advantage of gravity, but in their individual configurations, in which case it simply does not make sense to use the information about second type of wheel to make the earlier version.

I have suggested that the first thing that might have occurred to Bessler to prove that his wheels weren't clockwork driven, was to make them able to turn in either direction.  To me the logical first step would be to see what would happen if he mounted two wheels on the same axle, each designed to turn the opposite way.  I'm sure this is what he did.  I carried out a similar experiement myself but with two Savonius windmills mounted on the same vertical axle and the result was exactly similar to Bessler's experience.  The Savonius windmills spun im different directions when detached from each other, beginning to spin as soon as the wind from the fan hit them.  But when they were linked, they remained stationary; they needed a slight push and then they began to spin in which ever direction the push came from, but they were unable to achieve much more than half the speed they spun when separated.

So why try to build a dual direction wheel within one wheel when two opposing ones were used by Bessler.  Obviously this is just my opinion but I believe that this is correct.  The Kassel wheel rotated at 26 RPM, less than half the speed of the first two wheels, just as my Savonius windmills did.  But there is a fly in the ointment; the Merseberg wheel, his third one, was also dual directional but it achieved a speed of 40 RPM.  This demonstrates again that you cannot make any assumptions about the size and number of weights, even though we have Christian Wolff's estimate of four pounds for one weight, we have no idea how many there were.  We simply do know what differences formed part of each wheel.  

So keep it simple, try to build a one way wheel capable of turning up to 50 RPM, which starts to turn spontaneously as soon as it's brake is released.  Forget the number of weights which Fischer von Erlach is supposed to have heard, that was a different wheel with potentially a reversing set of weights making additional sounds. Recently I have seen ideas suggested which involved using eight weights to represent the eight planets supposed to have been known about in Bessler's time; it doesn't matter how many planets there are or were; it has nothing to do with Bessler's wheel.

We know that cross-bars, weights and pulleys were used in the wheels, because Bessler said so.  The presence of pulleys suggests rope or some other flexible material was present too.  He implied that there were springs although he didn't say so definitely, which to me says that some kind of spring was present but there are several different ways of using springs as well as many different kinds.

Finally, my own research suggests that Karl, the Landgrave who examined the interior of the Kassel wheel, was overly optimistic when he said that the interior was so simple a carpenter's boy could copy it if allowed a short time to study it. 

JC






78 comments:

  1. John can I ask how many weights, or mechanisms does your current system that's being looked at have?

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  2. Well, I am very convinced from my study of Bessler's writings and my own knowledge of mechanics, that his one direction wheels all used 8 weighted levers and these were suspended by springs and interconnected with each other with simple ropes. I also don't believe that his two directional wheels were that complicated. He simply housed two one-directional wheels in a single drum and then came up with an ingenious gravity activated latching system that would always disable whatever wheel was forced to undergo retrograde rotation when the drum was given a push in either direction. I have the details of his latching system and it is very simple although it requires precise adjustment to make it work reliably. That system, once activated, would always latch the weights at the ends of the levers of the retrograde turning wheel against their rim stops. When that happened, the center of mass of that wheel's weights and levers was quickly drawn up into the center of the axle and no longer contributed to the torque from the other wheel which then drove the drum and the disabled wheel next to it. When one wanted to stop the drum of a two directional wheel and again have it stationary, it was necessary to stop it and then partially counter rotate it. This action would then lock up some of the driving wheel's levers while releasing some of the locked up wheel's levers. Eventually, one would find a position for the drum that placed the center of mass of all of its unlocked weights and levers directly under the axle at the "punctum quietus" or equilibrium point. The real solution to the mystery of Bessler's wheels lies in finding the correct parameters for the weights, levers, springs, and ropes that he used. I believe that I now have all of those parameters, but have not yet completed the testing of my latest wm2d model wheels to confirm it. That confirmation will, hopefully, soon be completed.

    Update: I did, however, have some time to think about how I want to present "the" solution if I'm finally lucky enough to solve this thing. I want to do a book on it that gives a complete schematic of one of Bessler's 12 foot diameter one directional wheels and also of his small 3 foot diameter tabletop prototype. The problem is that I need to show both the ascending and descending sides of a clockwise rotating wheel and will have to split the diagram into two pieces with the left and right sides shown on the left and right pages of an open book. Another problem is that my current one-directional wheel design contains a total of 48 ropes arranged into 5 layers inside of the drum. The ropes are divided into sets and each layer contains one set. To prevent the illustration of a single one-directional wheel from becoming too cluttered, I will have to show the left and right sides of each layer on a separate pair of opened pages. And, these are just the illustrations for the wheel. I will also have to illustrate other important features such as the brass bearing pieces in the upright supports that held the axle pivots, the unique method Bessler used to attach the ropes to the levers, and, of course, the details of the levers themselves which are not just flat pieces of wood. It's a tremendous undertaking, but I'm willing to do it because of the importance seeing this mystery finally solved has for so many pm chasers in our generation. An even further complication is that I want to give as complete a summary as possible of the many clues in the two DT portraits which led to the design I have found. I don't want anyone to think I'm just making up parameter values, but to see how I found them in the portraits themselves. I want people to realize that this is not my invention, but rather Bessler's.

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  3. John, maybe you know or quess answer to next:
    How quicly Bessler answers to question: "Can He (Bessler) build multidirectional wheel?"
    (Answer was made from Bessler: Right away, after some days ...months!?)
    As I understand from now, answer was some kind of "yes", but how quicly it was given out from Bessler?!

    Eastlander

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    1. Bessler was demonstrating a one-directional wheel in his home in Draschwitz in January of 1714 and was supposed to display his first two-direction wheel at an Easter Fair in Leipzig in April of 1715 but could not because of illness. I'm not sure, but I think he slipped on the ice and hit his head on the ground in February and got a concussion that kept in bed for a month before he was fully recovered. I don't know when he destroyed the Draschwitz wheel and moved to Merseberg, but it was probably during the spring of 1714. If he fell on the ice in February of 1715, then he had, say, from June of 1714 through January of 1715 to construct the two-directional Merseberg wheel. That's about 8 months or so. His first two-directional wheel was the most difficult he had constructed due to his need to come up with a reliable mechanism that would alternately disable either of the retrograde rotating one-directional wheels contained in its enlarged drum. Just a guess, but if it took him 4 months to construct the one-directional Draschwitz wheel, it probably took the whole 8 months to construct the Merseberg wheel and get the bugs out of its delicate gravity activated latching system. He became obsessed with the idea that people would not believe he had an actual pm wheel, but, rather, just an oversized clock movement powered wheel unless he could show that it could run in both directions. This really wasn't proof because, as Wagner proved with his own fake wheel, it is possible to construct a clock movement powered wheel that can run in either direction. Since Bessler, a clockmaker, had never seen such a movement, he apparently was unaware it existed. His two-directional wheels had their advantage and disadvantage. The disadvantage is that they needed almost twice as long to reach their terminal speeds. The advantage is that, once at that speed, they had almost twice the angular momentum and could then do some very impressive hoisting of loads of bricks.

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  4. John,
    I hope your operation went well, and that you'll soon be up and about.

    With regards to weights, with my simple three weight beam it's easy to work out the values.
    1, Have a weight to raise, and work out the spring tension to lift it.

    2, Once the tensions been found, find the right value weight to pull back on the spring so as to latch it back.

    3, Find the correct weight that will over-balance the beam with the first weight retracted, and also be under-balanced when the first weight's extended.

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  5. Opposing Savonius wind turbines would cancel one another. Your test had to of been faulty or rigged to achieve the result and conclusion you desired.

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    1. When the Savonius windmills are linked and stationary, they are indeed balanced and stationary. This because the convex and concave surfaces each receive the same wind force.

      Once they are connected to each other and then pushed in one direction, the concave surfaces which will now react to the wind will turn, whereas the other windmill on the same axle is made to rotate backwards, thus presenting the concave surfaces AGAINST the wind. The windmill which turns with wind suffers minimal resistance from the concave surfaces, simply finding the path of least resistance.

      The convex surfaces of the windmilll, which also turn AGAINST the wind are less resistant to the wind but do offer some resistance. Adding both side's figures produces a near gain on the 'pushed side.

      JC

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    2. I'm not sure there wasn't a difference in friction one being affected by windflow from the other. In either case, is a difference between wind and gravity. Two similar wheels positioned back to back will experience the same force of gravity and will nullify each other. Period, end of discussion.

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    3. @Anonymous: All one would have to do is figure out a way to weaken the pull of gravity on one side of a vertical wheel. That would make the unaffected side heavier and the wheel would continuously turn. Eventually, this may be possible as we develop our science of gravity physics. One could also try mounting a strong magnet above the ascending side of an iron wheel in order to lower its weight. The problem with that is that the magnet will also be pulling the top of the wheel and trying to make it back rotate toward the ascending side so that no motion takes place. Again, the solution is to somehow weaken the magnetic attraction of the magnet for the iron at the top of the wheel. That might be possible if one used some sort of high permeability material to distort the magnet's field so that little of it reached the top of the iron wheel. In other words, this approach might work if one could have a magnet that produced an asymmetric field about itself.

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  6. A questo link potete vedere un mio esperimento.
    Giuseppe Pelotti
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ukUkWh4vh_M

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    1. Very nice construction. But, it's not keeping its center of mass on the descending side of the wheel. Interesting use of springs to act as shock absorbers when the weights flip over at the top of the wheel.

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  7. Replies
    1. See one of my websites at www.theorffyreuscode.com

      Look down left side for two links to my take on MT 137

      JC

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    2. The purpose of MT 137? Simple. It's twelve points represent a clock dial. Bessler used the symbolism of the clock dial to describe the motion of his wheels' weights in the two DT portraits. Note that MT 137's twelve points are composed of just 8 straight lines. The eight lines represent the levers found in one of his one-directional wheels. MT 137 is yet another clue that can help one interpret the many DT portrait clues.

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  8. Thank you John. Just one more question: some people claimed that Bessler's wheel made a scratching noise much like two pieces of metal rubbing against each other. Is this a possible clue?

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    1. I really couldn't say Perpetualman. It's something to take into consideration.

      JC

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    2. I think those "scratching noises" made people think Bessler used a trained cat inside the drum's of his wheels to make them move and the scratching indicated the cat wanted to get out of the drum. Most likely, however, the scratching was just poorly fitted wooden parts rubbing together as the weighted wood levers moved too close to the various wooden structural components of the drum. The drum's casing of wooden slats on his first two publicly exhibited wheels then acted like giant speakers to amplify the scratching sounds. Production of unwanted sounds from any type from an OU device represents a waste of energy and is to be avoided. Such sounds might also have given away construction secrets to the various reverse engineers in a crowd that were hoping to find out how his wheels worked without having to pay to do so. Seems like every century has its "moochers".

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  9. Hi John!
    hope you're feeling OK.
    I had another good day today, I've decided to make a quality 2 ft. model because,

    1, It suits my fishing weights.

    2, I won't have to make a stand, I can simply clamp a 5/16 rod in my workbench vice.

    3, None of the scraps of decent wood I have are over 2 ft. long! :-D

    I've made the swinging arm already, complete with homemade plain bearings and integral pulley, finally found the correct spring tension, and found that it takes five times the weight to pull it back than is being lifted.
    So I hope the number five is a good omen.

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    1. I'm good but a bit sore, Stevo, thanks.

      When I'm able to build, that's usually the way I work, making the wheel large enough to suit the size of materiel I have available. Good luck.

      JC

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    2. Glad to read that you are recovering, John. If my current testing is successful and results in a book, you can be assured you will receive one of the first copies gratis.

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  10. Update: Still dragging my feet when it comes to the "dead stop start" testing of my wm2d models #1462 and #1464. Been distracted by the Presidential campaign coverage and having begun to work on some of the illustrations for what I hope will be the ultimate book on Bessler; the one in which "the" secret is finally and at long last revealed in enough detail for a skilled craftsman to duplicate one of his wheels (either the 3 foot diameter tabletop one or a 12 foot monster! So far, I've completed a full page illustration that shows the most probable drum construction he used for both the Merseberg and Kassel wheels. The figure shows where the lever pivots and attachment points for the suspension springs were located. It represents the wooden drum before the weighted levers, various coordinating ropes, and springs were installed. Next to it on each side are views of what the cloth coverings looked like on both sides of a drum. One side which the public was allowed to see is made from two 6 foot wide pieces of dyed and oiled fabric and contains only a single slit near the axle for the doubters at public exhibitions to insert a hand to confirm to the crowd that there were no ropes wrapped around a wheel's axle. The other side that was out of view of the public shows the two pieces of cloth with openings cut into them at various critical locations. These openings were covered over with patches of cloth that were merely pinned into place and could be quickly removed so that Bessler could service his wheel's 8 "perpetual motion structures" which were just the 8 weighted levers and the various ropes and springs connected to them.

    Tonight, I'm planning on doing a very detailed outline for the book that will list all of its chapters as well as the illustrations that must be done for each chapter. It will act like a map and guide me to the finished book. Unlike my previous works, this time I intend to do all of the illustrations first and then write the book around them. I will also be placing all of the illustrations for a particular chapter at the end of each chapter instead, as I've previously done, dropping them in as I proceed through a chapter. Considering the large number of detailed illustrations this volume will contain, I think this approach will make it easier and faster to complete.

    One might ask at this point, why I am doing all of this preliminary work when I have yet to confirm that my two wm2d models mentioned above are, in fact, the one's Bessler used? The answer is that I'm now close to 100% certain that they are "it" because they incorporate some very recently found and somewhat surprising clues in the DT portraits related to the masses of the weights and levers he used. For the moment, I'm just enjoying viewing the motor assisted models running and dreaming of what it will be like when I finally test them to see if they start and run while unassisted sometime next week. I also want to keep my mind clear for the moment so that I can get that chapter by chapter outline completed. Even in the unlikely event (yes, I'm confident enough this time to say that!) that I still don't have "it", it's still important to have the outline ready when I finally do. But, if the models fail, that will put the halt on doing any further illustrations for the book until I know for sure I have "it". Stay tuned for future breaking news!














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    1. Unusually large space after my last post above. Something must have gone awry while I was posting it.

      Update: I've completed the detailed outline for my planned future book on Bessler and his wheels in which I will reveal the details of "it", which is the secret imbalanced pm wheel mechanics which my research has led me to believe he used. The material will be technically detailed enough to allow a skilled builder to reproduce one of Bessler's wheels. The book will contain an introduction, ten chapters, an epilogue, and 28 illustrations and, possibly, a few more. I now have 5 of those illustrations. As soon as my testing confirms that my two wm2d models are "runners" I will immediately begin working on the volume and put the other title I was just beginning on hold until the Bessler book is done. Bessler must come first and my other research can wait!

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  11. When Bessler was describing the inner workings of his gravity wheel, could it be possible that he was taking excerpts from different pages of a book or books and combining them together to make it sound as if he was describing just one wheel in particular?

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    1. I doubt it. He basically had one mechanism that worked, but added a few embellishments to it such as his gravity activated latching system that allowed two one-directional wheels in a single drum to be able to turn the drum in either of two directions.

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  12. I've just finished making the second part of my mechanism, and when I tried it, the spring is not pulled back as far as I would like, however there is still enough tension in it to raise the weighted arm, so now it's a question of making an extended catch/release mechanism.
    Time will tell.

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    1. Catch / release mechanisms can be a real headache to perfect. It took me dozens of models before I came up with one that would completely lockup the 8 levers of one of Bessler's one-direction wheels when it was forced to rotate opposite to its designed direction of motion. But, once you find it, you have it and the problem is solved even though it may require very precise adjustment to make it reliable and regular maintenance to keep it that way.

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  13. In my opinion, he was describing the core principle...which none of us is yet to comprehend...we are greatly misunderstood...and, not ready to accept the same...the core principle is just like the piston and cylinder function in a combustion engine though the vehicle models differ...the core principle is so much vital and without this we are simply talking of so many other things here...this core principle cannot be achieved through computer simulation...8 weights and levers are a must...and their proper arrangement and design is the most vital thing...they coordinate in such a way to create the most simple and interesting movement present nowhere incessantly...Suresh

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    1. The "core principle", imo, is actually very simple: weights on the ascending side swing in toward the axle and lose some gravitational potential energy. That energy is stored in springs attached to their levers. The stretched springs attached to the levers past the 9 o'clock position then release their energy and slowly pull the weights closer to their stops on the inside of the drum's outer rim. That action then keeps the center of mass of all of the weights and levers on the descending side of the drum as it rotates and that provides a constant torque to the axle. So, imo, the core principle is simple, but finding the precise components necessary to demonstrate this principle is definitely not simple. It took Bessler a decade and hundreds of attempts to find it.

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  14. Of course, the scratching noises heard shouldn't be taken lightly...a great clue indeed!!!...In order to ascertain that one has successfully designed the wheel these clues come handy and not the other way around...the clues are meant for comparison and verification after the complete build...Suresh

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    1. I consider the scratching sounds as evidence of sloppy construction that allowed close by parts to rub against each other. But, the sounds are evidence that wooden lever arms were moving relative to stationary parts of the drum's wooden frame. These sounds only issued from his earlier wheels when he was still getting used to building something larger than his 3 foot tabletop model. By the time he is constructing the Merseberg and Kassel wheels, there is no more mention of scratching sounds although there were other sounds associated with the latching system needed to achieve two-directional drum motion. I think it was always Bessler's intention to minimize any sounds coming from the drums of his wheels because they might be used by reverse engineers to gain information about their internal mechanics.

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    2. Agreed Suresh. One possibility is the sound was from a roller moving along a track as part of the mechanism stretched out. Sloppy construction I doubt.

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  15. Update: I've managed to complete a sort of template for the left ascending side of Bessler's 3 foot diameter prototype wheel. It really came out nice and looks like it was professionally done. Tomorrow I will work on the template for the right descending side. If my latest wm2d model for Bessler's 3 foot diameter wheel proves, upon additional testing, to be a "runner", then I will use these two templates to make the illustrations in my book about Bessler wherein I, finally, reveal the secret imbalanced pm wheel mechanics he used. The problem, as I mentioned above, is that the coordinating ropes in his wheels were arranged into 5 individual layers and each layer must be separately illustrated in the book. It's a bit of a headache, but it must be done if a skilled craftsman out there is going to be able to replicate his first working wheel. I'm using a new updated version of MS Paint to make the illustrations and I'm not used to using it because it's a bit different from the earlier version I used for the diagrams in my other books. But, as they say, "Practice makes perfect". I still haven't gotten around to testing my two wm2d "it" models, #'s 1462 and 1462 yet, but will try to get that done before the end of this week. So far, my motor assisted models which shift so smoothly are only completing a 45 degree segment of a full wheel rotation and then looping to give the illusion of a complete rotation. The sims for this can be produced rather quickly. Yesterday, I decided to see what would happen if I ran a motor assisted test looping after a full 360 degrees of drum rotation. This mode used all 48 ropes in the design and took much longer to simulate. The good news is that all of the levers were shifting, in turn, just as smoothly as for the shorter test. This attests to how precisely my parts and rope attachments are positioned in the design. Now if the model will just self start and accelerate spontaneously when the motor is disconnected. If it does, then that will be close to ultimate verification that this is "it". Well, time will tell. Stay tuned.

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  16. I just don't agree with Ken...springs are not used for storing energy...this has been clarified by bessler himself...springs are used to aid the movement by tugging at the levers at their tipping point...Suresh

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    1. Springs don't store energy?! You must be joking with a statement like that. One has to expend energy to stretch a spring. Where do you think that energy goes?

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  17. Hi Suresh,
    Can I ask do you believe the wheel started spontaneously.

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  18. I made a little catch for my mechanism today, it can't fail to latch as it is a simple flag against a stop, I cannot fit the release until everything is in place on the beam.
    I'm in two minds as to whether I should have just one beam, or to make a cross and just put weights at the end of the other two arms for mass.
    If anyone is interested, I'm trying to make a completely mechanical version of the device at :-

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jdSU4H9RbEQ

    It's a simple concept that I think has a good chance of working.

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    1. Interesting design, but they need a battery powered motor to swing that weight on the ascending side over and out to the end of the arm on the descending side. In other words, they are adding some energy to the system to keep it running. If you could accomplish the same thing without using a motor, then that would be a breakthrough, of course. But, it's probably safe to assume that they already tried that approach without success and that was what motivated them to add the motor. Perhaps they think that the device is still OU and any energy expended by the batteries will be more than replaced by a small generator attached to the device so that the batteries will never fully discharge and there will be some energy left over to do external work. Many have come up with designs intended to operate this way, but none have been proven successful. I assume that in place of the assisting motor, you are using a spring to give the weight arm a boost as its pivot passes over the top of the main axle. Good luck with it and do keep us up to date on the results.

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  19. Ken...you didn't seem to get what I meant...in this case, springs weren't used by bessler for storing energy...

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    1. All Bessler says about springs is that he did not use them in the way his detractors thought he used them. By this he meant that he was not using large spiral mainsprings that had to be manually wound up in order to operate a clockwork movement powered wheel. However, my research has convinced me that he managed to continuously raise the center of mass of the wheel on its descending side, and thus keep it located there, by using the energy that had been previously temporarily stored in suspension springs attached to the levers. That energy was put into those springs on the wheel's ascending side where they were stretched by the weighted levers as they swung inward toward the axle.

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    2. The swinging of the weights and the special interior design of the wheel ensure the centre of mass remain always in the descending side and the springs' role here is not very major...they are just minor aids...the detractors thought otherwise..

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    3. After many attempts, I learned the hard way that it is not possible to make a wheel that will automatically keep its center of mass on its descending side and also be able to run unless one uses spring tension to help keep the weights and their levers in the necessary configuration. I have, however, seen a few designs by others that did have their centers of mass on their descending side all of the time, but they then had to use all of their outputted energy to keep that center in place. They thus had no excess energy that could be outputted to the environment. All of those wheels would be in balance no matter what orientation they were rotated into. With Bessler's wheels, however, the situation was quite different. They kept their center of mass on the descending side, but did not have to use any of their outputted energy to keep it there so they were then able to output some energy to the environment.

      I think the springs Bessler used actually served two purposes. They both stored the energy lost by the ascending side levers for later use in raising the center of mass of all of the weights and levers as the wheel rotated and they also served to suspend the weighted levers in an off centered asymmetrical configuration that could be not maintained otherwise.

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    4. This was an admirable attempt to use springs in a Bessler wheel type design. But, the parts are not right and there is no coordination between the weighted levers. One can not just attach springs to weighted levers and then give it a whirl to get it running. The parts must be very carefully shaped and suspended with springs of a particular constant and also interconnected with ropes of a particular length. Any deviation from the design Bessler finally found that works, and one gets results as in this video:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uolz18oSseE

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  20. Uneqk..yes, the initial wheels built by bessler did start spontaneously....they had to be restrained when not in use...

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  21. Yes Suresh that is exactly right!

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  22. The eight weight wheel is more likely to start on it's own compared to a four weight wheel.

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    1. I agree that the more weighted levers in a wheel, the better. However, and the number of levers goes up so does the gross weight of the wheel and the number of coordinating ropes required. I think that Bessler settled on using eight weighted levers per one directional wheel as a compromise. That number smoothly kept the center of mass on the descending side, yet did not make the wheel too heavy. If the two one direction wheels in the Merseberg wheel each used 8 weights, that's a total of 16 weights for the entire wheel. At 4 lbs per lead weight, the total mass of the weights was 64 pounds. Not really that heavy at that point. In the Kassel wheel, the mass of the weights may have been doubled and that brought it up to 128 pounds and required a 1/3 increase in axle radius to bear the extra weight. One wonders what the axle and bearings looked like in the perpetual motion wheel described in Edward Somerset's 1663 book titled "Century of Names and Scantlings of Such Inventions as at Present I Can Call to Mind Have Tried and Perfected" which is usually just referred to as "A Century of Inventions". This 14 foot diameter wheel had 40 cannon ball weights of 50 pounds each in it. That's a total weight mass of 2,000 pounds or one ton. The wheel that carried these weights and the chains attached to them probably added another 500 pounds to the gross weight of the wheel. Below is a link to an illustration of what this monster wheel looked like:

      http://areeweb.polito.it/strutture/cemed/SUST_didattica.bk/2003/2003_Storia%20della%20tecnologia/WEB%20Materials%20&%20Sources/Steam_Library/dircks/images/454.gif

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    2. Hi. Does this wheel that Ken has a link to work? Because to me it should work! If it doesn't, please someone explain why not. There are 20 weights on the right side pulling (or leaning against) the outer rim, and there are 20 weights pulling (or leaning against) the inner rim on the left side. So there is all that extra torque on the right side (a weight farther from the pivot point of the wheel, the center, will have more torque, won't it?). So if the weights on the right side all have more torque than the left side, the wheel should necessarily be impelled to rotate clockwise. Has anyone tried duplicating this with a simulator? Because I just don't see why it wouldn't work.

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    3. See http://mathapps.net/wheel/aaaindex.htm for various applets and Mathcad files that all show the wheel won't work. Not surprising, since it was specifically drawn in the first place (almost certainly by Henry Dircks) to show that "it may easily be demonstrated that the conditions stated [i.e. the written description of the Marquis of Worcester's wheel] may be mechanically produced without any resulting motion."

      The written description of the Marquis of Worcester's wheel is the only information we now have on it. No drawings of it from the time it was constructed survive, if any were ever made.

      A couple of years ago I posted on this at http://perpetualmotion21.blogspot.com/2014/04/the-marquis-of-worcesters-wheel.html

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    4. That's all well and good (although those apps are no longer available). In fact I was going to write a similar question on your blog. On the bottom of that page you have almost the exact same setup (titled "Another interpretation") and you state "which obviously would work". But why should your Another interpretation work, whereas the original doesn't work? They both have 20 weights on the right side hanging farther out then the 20 weights on the left side. You haven't answered the question of why. And also has anyone tried this? A bunch of mathematics proving it doesn't work doesn't convince me (it might if I was more mathematically inclined). The people who came up with those equations were convinced it didn't work because they KNOW that perpetual motion is impossible. But that is hardly a position to start out with, if you are trying to solve Bessler's wheel.

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    5. Mine would obviously work because energy is being added, by some hypothetical method which I admitted I don't know, to raise each weight against gravity whenever it passes the vertical centerline. That energy will then become available from the wheel.

      In the other "original" case, no energy is being added. Also, I think it a waste of time to analyse a wheel that was specifically drawn as a non-working one!

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    6. @QS: Unfortunately, Somerset's wheel does not work even though one would swear from visual inspection that it should. If you count the weights closer to the axle on the left ascending side, you will find that there are 20 of them. On the right descending side there are only 18 weights that are farther from the axle. (Ignore the two weights on the vertical line passing through the axle.) That discrepancy causes the center of mass of all of the weights to be right under the axle at the "punctum quietus" or equilibrium point and, as a result, there is no torque to make this wheel turn. I even went to the trouble, years ago on another free energy site, of making a wm2d model of the wheel because I still could not believe what others were telling me about it not working. Well, they were right and my model did not work either. I think that when one views this wheel, the large number of weights tends to obscure the fact that there are more weights on one side than the other and it is, ultimately, that which prevents it from being a runner.

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    7. Ken, I was just about to submit a long reply saying your explanation is no good. But right before publishing my reply, I thought I would humour you and try counting the weights on the left and the right. And you are right! Thank you thank you thank you! That is the explanation I was looking for! Why I didn't think of counting before, I don't know. 20 on the left on the inner rim. 18 on the right on the outer rim. And the 2 extra weights on the left causes it to balance the 18 weights on the outer rim on the right.

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    8. @QS: Glad I could help you understand what the problem is with Somerset's wheel.

      Of course, I've often wondered what would happen if one could find a modification of this design that always had the same number of weights on each side of the axle? Something to think about...

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    9. I just made a quick wm2d model of a Somerset wheel that had eight weights, four on each side. When the weights were allowed to swing into position, the wheel still had four weights on each side and began to rotate. Then, it reached an equilibrium position at which time it had 5 weights on the left ascending side and 3 on the right descending side. At that point it stopped working. Apparently, Somerset's wheel is a non-runner regardless of the number of weights it carries. I used an even number of weights. Wonder what would happen with an odd number of weights?

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    10. Hi ken,
      I read on the net somewhere that before bessler spun the wheel, he push down on a spring that made aloud noise.

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    11. @Uneqk: Yes, that incident happened during the official testing of the Merseburg wheel. He and an assistant, in order to allay suspicions that there was some sort of hidden drive mechanism in the wheel's vertical axle supports, had just moved the wheel to another set of uprights and was beginning to reinstall its 4 lb weights. He worked from the back side of the wheel and out of complete view of the examiners. He had placed large holes in the fabric on this side through which he could access the drum's interior by removing cloth patches that were pinned over the holes.

      One witness reported that Bessler seemed to be pressing down on a "flexible or movable" lever near the rim of the wheel. Suddenly, there was a loud crack and a sound like a spring vibrating. This sound was so loud and unexpected that it, literally, startled those present. The wm2d model wheels I work with can be used to satisfactorily explain what happened. Bessler was probably pulling down on a wooden lever connected to a spring. This lever would have been located over his head at the time. He had not yet attached the weight to its end and as he pulled the lever down to do so, he stretched its attached spring. Then, perhaps because he did not have a good grip or his hands were slippery from having gotten some of the bearing lubricant on them, the lever slipped out of his hands and flew up suddenly until it hit a wooden stop attached to the drum's radial pieces. That explains the cracking noise and the spring noise that followed was due to the spring being made to vibrate by its sudden contraction. What's important about this clue is that it shows that the levers in Bessler's wheels were under constant spring tension. It also indicates that the levers were located fairly close to the wheel's outer rim. Once we have reverse engineered his wheels, we will be able to duplicate this incident and that should be very interesting, indeed. We will be able hear the exact same thing that was heard by Bessler and those present in Merseburg about three centuries ago!

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    12. Because everything is very vague is it possible that on the one directional wheel, he pushed down on a spring which loaded the wheel before he released the brake.

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    13. Don't forget that the incident above was with the Merseburg wheel which was two directional and had cloth covering its sides. He could not have done that with the one direction wheels because their sides were covered over with small boards that were nailed into place. He would have to have torn the boards off of them in order to manipulate any of their internal parts. There is no record of him ever doing that. When people showed up to see those early one direction wheels, Bessler simply took them into the room where the wheel was and then he untied the rope that tethered them to the floor whereupon they immediately started accelerating in only one direction.

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    15. @qs, it doesn't matter if one side of the wheel has more weight...the heavier side would only come down and become stand still... What is actually required here is the right mechanism that would ensure proper coordination and create the swinging and other movements which is vital for the wheels circular motion continuation and Unfortunately, no one has figured this out and some are simply in vain pursuit...it won't matter if they write a book or even keep trying any number of time, for that matter...and there is no use trying to advise them for they will never listen at all... I repeat, first we should try to figure out that wonderful artful arrangement seen by Karl.

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    16. @SK: Well, I do believe that I have the precise mechanism Bessler used to coordinate the motions of the levers inside of his wheels and I do intend to write a book on it to share the design with others. Once the design is turned into a working physical wheel, there will no doubt that Bessler was not a liar and that he really did construct a working imbalanced pm wheel which some refer to as the "Holy Grail of Mechanics".

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  23. Here's an interesting approach to an overbalanced wheel that uses springs to help shift the weights. The wheel was intended to rotate counterclockwise. The cylindrical weights can slide along those curved rails and, as they approach the top of the wheel, the springs expand and try to push them over to the left descending side. As the weights approach the bottom of the wheel, the springs then contract and try to pull them closer to the axle. His wheel did not work, but the principle is, imo, very impressive. I wonder if a change in weight mass or spring constant might have made a big difference in its performance?


    http://www.art-m-artisti.hu/Perpetu%20stabile%203%20kv.jpg

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  24. Springs can wear off or loose their tension soon and this shouldn't be ignored by us...the two months test conducted by bessler would have failed if he had relied on springs the way Ken insists...Come on, we are discussing the the most eluding construction of bessler wheel which is supposed to perform non stop under very difficult conditions lifting heavy weights...

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    1. Actually, helical springs can be very reliable just so long as they are not stretched beyond their elastic limit which, usually is about 1/2 of their unstretched lengths. Bessler, a clockmaker, would have been aware of this problem with springs and selected ones for his wheels that would have had unstretched lengths at least twice the maximum length that they would be stretched on a wheel's ascending side.

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  25. Update: I've completed another 7 illustrations for my planned "ultimate" book on Bessler this morning. I shall start with a complete structural analysis of his 3 foot diameter prototype wheel because that is the one I think anyone trying to replicate his wheels needs to construct first before moving on to "bigger" things. The illustrations will show this wheel, first, with all of its 48 coordinating ropes (more like strings!) in place, each of which is either tight and actively shifting levers or loose and inactive. This illustration, no doubt, will appear to be a bit overwhelming at first glance. Then, for the sake of clarity, an additional illustration will show only the particular subset of ropes that were tight during each 45 degree segment of drum rotation and which were responsible for all of the lever shifting going on during that segment. Finally, a complete set of double page figures will be given for each of the 5 layers that contained the 48 ropes used in his one direction prototype wheel showing their subset of tight and loose ropes. It's a difficult undertaking to produce all of these illustrations, but I don't want anybody obtaining this book having any confusion as to how Bessler's secret imbalanced pm mechanics worked. The book will be intended as a guide for the serious Bessler wheel reverse engineers out there. But, that's not all. I will also give the structural details of both of his 12 foot diameter wheels as well which will include the gravity activated latching system he used to produce a two directional wheel. The most difficult part of this undertaking will be the illustrations of the DT portrait clues because my book will not have color printing in it, but, rather, just be black and white to keep costs down. I'm still working on the details of how I will present this important information.

    Well, I've got some very ambitious plans here, indeed. Especially considering that I have yet to do the "dead stop start" testing of the two wm2d models I recently made which I am convinced are "it"! Well, that will be done before the end of this week. Needless to say, if they are just another pair of keels, I will be very disappointed...

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  26. Why was the axial of Bessler's last wheel so wide? Could the actual secret lie within the middle of the wheel? Lots if PM seekers concentrate on using weights on the outer rim of their wheels. I think something was going on in the middle of Bessler's wheel. Any comments?

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    1. I think that he had to increase the axle diameter to 8 inches for the Kassel wheel because he used heavier weights and levers in it than he did in the Merseburg wheel. There is some evidence that there was nothing going on near or on the portion of the axle inside of the drum. Apparently, there was a slit in the fabric on one side of the Merseburg wheel and, during public demonstrations, he would invite skeptics, who thought he had a weight connected to a rope around the axle inside of the drum to power the wheel, to come up and insert their hand into the drum to feel the axle. When they did that all they felt was the axle and perhaps some of the drum's radial spars that were attached to it. That skeptic, quickly turned into a believer, would then turn to the others and announce that, indeed, there was nothing on or near the axle. The slit was probably just long enough to allow a hand and arm to be inserted into it and as near the axle as possible. That would have put it over the skeptics head and, even if he managed to see into the drum's interior through it, he would not have been able to see much since the interior of the drum would have been dark.

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  27. RATS!!!!!
    I thought I was getting somewhere with that question! Oh well, back to the thought process🤓

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    1. Sounds like you were convinced that there was something attached to the axles inside of the drums of Bessler's wheels. But, keep in mind his quotes from AP:

      "by making the true claim - that no weights hang from the axle of my wheel." - pg 281

      "Ask any of those who have groped inside my Wheel and grasped its axle" - "Rather, it has many compartments, and is pierced all over with various holes." - pg 336 (Note that the "compartments" mentioned here refers to the eight sectors of the drum formed by its radial spars within each of which a single weighted lever would swing away from the rim toward the axle and then back again to the rim during each complete wheel rotation. The "various holes" refers to the holes he cut in one of the dyed and oiled linen cloth coverings on the open faces of the drums. These holes were covered over with similarly dyed and oiled cloth patch held on by pins.)

      "In a true Perpetuum Mobile everything must, necessarily, go round together. There can be nothing involved in it which remains stationary on the axle." - pg 361

      And from DT:

      "They (the weighted levers) are enclosed in a structure or framework, and coordinated in such a way that not only are they prevented from attaining their desired equilibrium or 'point of rest', but they must for ever seek it, thereby developing an impressive velocity which is proportional to their mass and to the dimensions of their housing." - pg 191

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    2. And here I thought I had one of those "Ah hah!!" Moments. One thing that I've found out is, whenever I come up with an idea, I'll draw it and place the weights exactly where I think they should be on the actual wheel. Then, I'll build it, thinking that it's going to over balance when in reality, it just stays in the same position as my drawing. Is this a valid approach to solving this mystery? What approach would you take? I don't have a sims program to do a computer sims.

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    3. I had the same exact problem you now have. I'd come up with an idea that, on paper, looked like it had to work. Then I'd build it and find out that it did not behave exactly as I imagined it would and, of course, was just another time wasting non-runner. The problem was always that it was I who was making a false assumption about how objects in a dynamic situation would behave whereas the computer was strictly basing its predictions on the real laws of mechanics. After banging one's head against a stone wall using this approach for decades, he finally realizes that a new approach is needed. That's where simulation software comes in. One can "build" his design on a monitor in a matter of an hour or less and test it immediately to see if it looks promising. Even so, I racked up almost 1500 models before, only very recently, I think I'm finally where I want to be. I can only urge you and anybody else out there in free energy land to make the move to using simulation software. I use wm2d exclusively now, but there are other free programs available that have been mentioned in recent blogs that you might want to consider using. They take a little bit of practice to become proficient with, but, then again, what does not nowadays? It took me only a few hours of poking around with wm2d before I was able to begin making and testing rather complex mechanisms with it. I only briefly looked through the simple tutorial that came with it and I did not have (until recently) the more detailed instruction manual for it. Why waste weeks or months or even years with some design that, in the end, will only turn into a colossal and disappointing waste of time when you can, in the same time period, complete and test dozens or even hundreds of designs and greatly improve your chance of success? It's like the difference between betting on one combination in every lottery drawing as opposed to betting on a thousand in every drawing. Obviously, the latter scenario will greatly improve one's chance of hitting the jackpot although, of course, not guarantee it.

      Anyway, don't let some initial failures discourage you. It took Bessler a decade of torturous effort and hundreds of attempts before he had his "Ah hah" moment. That single moment changed his and many other people's lives forever and, without it, most likely none of us would be here now discussing it all. Compared to Herr Bessler, we actually have it easy. Imagine what he might have achieved if he had had access to simulation software like we do? The mind boggles at the possibilities...

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  28. I don't agree with Ken on his explanation about the axle of bessler's last wheel being wide...the secret internal wheel structure is such that for the proper coordination of the levers carrying the weights the axle's size has to have a required dimension...the smaller sized wheels had smaller dimension axles and the larger ones vice versa...we shouldn't be so cooly misguided on such a mysterical subject like this, should we?...

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  30. The size of the axle is directly proportional the wheel's diameter..

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    1. Wrong! The Merseburg and Kassel wheels had the same drum diameter of 12 feet, but the Merseburg wheel's axle was about 6 inches in diameter and the Kassel wheel's was about 8 inches in diameter. Thus, the Kassel wheel's axle was 33% larger than that of the Merseburg wheel. The difference in axle diameter was due to the Kassel wheel having heavier weights and levers in it as compared to the Merseburg wheel.

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  31. Does the would be solver of the long sought after gravity wheel have to use weights in his/her design? Does it have to be exactly like Bessler's wheel? What if it's the same shape and diameter of Bessler's wheel but with a totally different overbalncing mechanisim? In fact, does the person who solves or think they've solved this mystery have anything to worry about?

    Just curious.

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Johann Bessler’s Legacies.

Bessler’s wheel is one obvious legacy and although there are some who believe that it’s potential power output is too limited to be of pract...