Gear and Crank together in perfect harmony. The gear works to reduce the crank speed to just a smidge over a third speed. Use this Essential Mechanism as the starting point for your own character based automata or as an exercise in pure mechanism.
Paid subscribers can download the parts file for free at the link – thanks for your support! Non-members can join in the fun for £2.50 or your currency equivalent.
Print the parts onto thin card (230gsm / 67lb) I used coloured card for a colourful model. Score along the dotted and dashed lines and cut out the holes before carefully cutting out the pieces.
Make up the gears by folding over and glueing down the parts to make double thickness card.
Same with the push rod ends.
Roll up and glue the axle tubes lining up the ends as carefully as possible.
Prepare the mechanism stand by folding back the tabs and glueing them down.
Prepare the end piece by glueing the triangle tubes.
Prepare the top and base in the same way.
Notice that the side piece has two types of triangle tubes.
Assemble the two crank pieces.
Take the smaller of the two crank pieces, Fit it into the large gear so that the side with the glue area is touching the gear. Glue it into place.
Fit the shortest axle piece into place.
Assemble the push rod with the two push rod ends and the axle with the four triangle arrows. The axle must be free to turn.
Glue the gear, pushrod assemble and remaining crank together as shown.
Glue the pinion into place using the grey line for alignment.
Fit the square axle tube into the Mechanism Support, thread and glue the two axle tubes into place lining up the grey line with the edge of the box. Make sure that the axle can turn.
Thread the large gear into position. No glue!
Glue the pinion to the axle tube.
Assemble the handle as shown.
Glue the handle to the other end of the axle
Glue on the top and the base as shown.
Glue on the box side.
Glue on the box end.
Finish off the model by glueing down the various flaps. Great!
Now time to design a character for the top of the box. What moves slowly? A snail, a tortoise? Perhaps a sloth? Have fun and share your pictures!