This is because the larger lever arm "x" makes the left hand weight "m" have more influence than the identical weight "m" on the right hand side.
Do you feel that these facts are just too simple for anyone to really bother with? Well, they form the basis of devices which can provide real power to do real work, with no need for electronics or batteries.
The following suggestions for practical systems are put forward for you to consider, and if you are interested enough test out. However, if you decide to attempt to build anything shown here, please understand that you do so entirely at your own risk. In simple terms, if you drop a heavy weight on your toe, while other people may well be sympathetic, nobody else is liable or responsible for your injury - you need to be more careful in the future ! Let me stress it again, this document is for information purposes only.
The Dale Simpson Gravity Wheel. The design of gravity-operated machines is an area which has been of considerable interest to a number of people for quite some time now. The design shown here comes from Dale Simpson of the USA. It should be stressed that the following information is published as open-source, gifted to the world and so it cannot be patented by any individual or organisation. Dale's prototype wheel has a diameter of about five feet, utilising weights of a substantial value. The overall strategy is to create excess torque by having the weights slide along metal rods radiating from a central hub somewhat like the spokes of a cart wheel. The objective is to create an asymmetrical situation where the weights are closer to the hub when rising, than they are when falling.
The difficulty with designing a system of this type is to devise a successful and practical mechanism for moving the weights in towards the hub when they are near the lowest point in their elliptical path of movement. Dale's design uses a spring and a latch to assist control the movement of each weight. The key to any mechanical system of this type is the careful choice of components and the precise adjustment of the final mechanism to ensure that operation is exactly as intended. This is a common problem with many free-energy devices as careless replication attempts frequently result in failure, not because the design is at fault, but because the necessary level of skill and care in construction were not met by the person attempting the replication.
Here is a sketch of Dale's design:
Here is a sketch of Dale's design:
The wheel has an outer rim shown in blue and a central hub shown in grey. Metal spokes shown in black run out radially from the hub to the rim. Eight spokes are shown in this diagram as that number allows greater clarity, but a larger number would probably be beneficial when constructing a wheel of this type.
The wheel as shown, rotates in a counter-clockwise direction. Each weight, shown in dark grey, has a pair of low-friction roller bearings attached to it. There is also a spring, shown in red, between the weight and the hub. When a weight reaches the 8-o'clock position, the roller bearings contact a spring compression ramp, shown in purple. This ramp is formed of two parts, one on each side of the spokes, providing a rolling ramp for each of the two roller bearings. The ramp is formed in a curve which has a constant rate of approach towards the hub of the wheel.
The ramp is positioned so that the spring is fully compressed when the weight has just passed the lowest point in its travel. When the spring is fully compressed, a latch holds it in that position. This holds the weight in close to the hub during its upward movement. The springs are not particularly powerful, and should be just strong enough to be able to push the weight back towards the rim of the wheel when the spoke is at forty five degrees above the horizontal. The "centrifugal force" caused by the rotation assists the spring move the weight outwards at this point. The push from the spring is initiated by the latch being tripped open by the latch release component shown in pink.
The weights have an inward motion towards the hub when they are pushed by the wheel's turning motion which forces the roller bearings upwards along the spring-compression ramp. They have an outward motion along the spokes when the catch holding the spring compressed is released at about the 11-o'clock position. The latch and the release mechanism are both mechanical - no electronics or electrical power supply is needed in this design.
These details are shown in the diagram below:
The question, of course is, will there be enough excess power to make the wheel rotate properly? The quality of construction is definitely a factor as things like the friction between the weights and their spokes needs to be very low. Let us consider the forces involved here:
Take any one weight for this calculation. Any excess rotational energy will be created by the difference between the forces attempting to turn the wheel in a clockwise direction and those forces trying to turn the wheel in a counter-clockwise direction. For the purpose of this discussion, let us assume that we have built the wheel so that the compressed-spring position is one third of the spring-uncompressed position.
As the weights are all of the same value "W", the see-saw turning effect in a clockwise direction is the weight ("W") multiplied by it's distance from the centre of the axle ("L"). That is, W x L.
The turning effect in the counter clockwise direction is the weight ("W") multiplied by it's distance from the centre of the axle ("3W"). That is, W x 3 x L.
So, with WL pushing it clockwise, and 3WL pushing it counter-clockwise, there is a net force of (3WL - WL), i.e. a net force of 2WL driving the wheel in a counter-clockwise direction. If that force is able to push the weight in towards the hub, compressing the spring and operating the spring latch, then the wheel will be fully operational. There is actually, some additional turning power provided by the weights on the left hand side of the diagram, both above and below the horizontal, as they are a good deal further out from the axle than those with fully compressed and latched springs.
The only way of determining if this design will work correctly is to build one and test it. It would, of course, be possible to have several of these wheels mounted on a single axle shaft to increase the excess output power available from the drive shaft. This design idea has probably the lowest excess power level of all those in this document. The following designs are higher powered and not particularly difficult to construct.
The Veljko Milkovic Pendulum / Lever system. The concept that it is not possible to have excess power from a purely mechanical device is clearly wrong as has recently been shown by Veljko Milkovic at http://www.velikomilkovic.com/OscilacijeEng.html where his two-stage pendulum/lever system shows a COP = 12 output of excess energy. COP stands for "Coefficient Of Performance" which is a quantity calculated by diving the output power by the input power which the operator has to provide to make the system work. Please note that we are talking about power levels and not efficiency. It is not possible to have a system efficiency greater than 100% and it is almost impossible to achieve that 100% level.
Here is Veljko's diagram of his very successful lever / pendulum system:
Here, the beam 2 is very much heavier than the pendulum weight 4. But, when the pendulum is set swinging by a slight push, the beam 2 pounds down on anvil 1 with considerable force, certainly much greater force than was needed to make the pendulum swing.
As there is excess energy, there appears to be no reason why it should not be made self-sustaining by feeding back some of the excess energy to maintain the movement. A very simple modification to do this could be:
Here, the main beam A, is exactly balanced when weight B is hanging motionless in it's "at-rest" position. When weight B is set swinging, it causes beam A to oscillate, providing much greater power at point C due to the much greater mass of beam A. If an additional, lightweight beam D is provided and counterbalanced by weight E, so that it has a very light upward pressure on its movement stop F, then the operation should be self-sustaining.
For this, the positions are adjusted so that when point C moves to its lowest point, it just nudges beam D slightly downwards. At this moment in time, weight B is at its closest to point C and about to start swinging away to the left again. Beam D being nudged downwards causes its tip to push weight B just enough to maintain its swinging. If weight B has a mass of "W" then point C of beam A has a downward thrust of 12W on Veljko's working model. As the energy required to move beam D slightly is quite small, the majority of the 12W thrust remains for doing additional useful work such as operating a pump.
The Dale Simpson Hinged-Plate System. Again, this is an open-source design gifted by Dale to the world and so cannot be patented by any person, organisation or other legal entity. This design is based on the increased lever arm of the weights on the falling side compared to the lesser lever arm on the rising side:
This design uses heavy metal plates which are carried on two drive belts shown in blue in the diagram above. These plates are hinged so that they stand out horizontally on the falling side, resting on a pair of lugs welded to the chain link and hang down vertically on the rising side as they are narrower than the gap between the belts.
This difference in position alters the effective distance of their weights from the pivot point, which in this case is the axle of wheel "C". This is exactly the position described above with the see-saw with equal weights placed at different distances from the pivot. Here again, the distance "x" is much greater than the distance "d" and this causes a continuous turning force on the left hand side which produces a continuous force turning the drive shaft of wheel "C" in a counter-clockwise direction as seen in the diagram.
A key point in this design are the robust hinges which anchor the heavy metal plates to the belt. These are designed so that the plates can hang down and lie flat on the rising side (point "B") but when the plate passes over the upper wheel to reach point "A", and the plate flips over, the hinge construction prevents the plate from moving past the horizontal. The upper wheel at point "A" is offset towards the falling side so as to help reduce the length "d" and improve the output power of the device. The chain detail below, shows the inside view of one of the right-hand chain plates. The metal plate swings clear of the chain and the sprocket wheels which the chain runs over.
It should be noted that the movement of the lowest edge of the plates as they turn over when moving past the upper wheel at point "A", is much faster than anywhere else, and so putting a protective housing around it would definitely be advisable as you don't want anybody getting hit by one of these heavy plates.
It is, of course, possible to make this device to a much smaller scale to demonstrate it's operation or test different chain designs. The plates could be made from chipboard which is fairly heavy for its size and relatively cheap.
The Murilo Luciano Gravity Chain. Murilo Luciano of Brazil, has devised a very clever, gravity-operated power device which he has named the "Avalanche-drive". Again, this design cannot be patented as Murilo has gifted it to the world as a royalty-free design which anybody can make. This device continuously places more weights on one side of a drive shaft to give an unbalanced arrangement. This is done by placing expandable links between the weights. The links operate in a scissors-like mode which open up when the weights are rising, and contract when the weights are falling:
In the arrangement shown here, the weights are shown as steel bars. The design is scaleable in both height, width and the mass and number of weights. In the rough sketch above, the practical details of controlling the position of the bars and co-ordinating the rotation of the two support shafts are not shown in order to clarify the movement. In practice, the two shafts are linked with a pair of toothed sprockets and a chain. Two sets of vertical guides are also needed to control the position of the bars when they are in-between the four sprockets which connect them to the drive shafts, and as they go around the sprocket wheels.
In the sketch, there are 79 bar weights. This arrangement controls these so that there are always 21 on the rising side and 56 on the falling side (two being dead-centre). The resulting weight imbalance is substantial. If we take the situation where each of the linking bars weighs one tenth as much as one of the bar weights, then if we call the weight of one link "W", the rising side has 252 of these "W" units trying to turn the sprockets in a clockwise direction while 588 of the "W" units are trying to turn the sprockets in an counterclockwise direction. This is a continuous imbalance of 336 of the "W" units in the counter-clockwise direction, and that is a substantial amount. If an arrangement can be implemented where the links open up fully, then the imbalance would be 558 of the "W" units (a 66% improvement) and the level arm difference would be substantial.
There is one other feature, which has not been taken into account in this calculation, and that is the lever arm at which these weights operate. On the falling side, the centre of the weights is further out from the axis of the drive shafts because the link arms are nearly horizontal. On the rising side, the links are spread out over a lesser horizontal distance, so their centre is not as far out from their supporting sprocket. This difference in distance, increases the turning power of the output shafts. In the sketch above, an electrical generator is shown attached directly to one output shaft. That is to make the diagram easier to understand, as in practice, the generator link is likely to be a geared one so that the generator shaft spins much faster than the output shaft rotates. This is not certain as Murilo envisages that this device will operate so rapidly that some form of braking may be needed. The generator will provide braking, especially when supplying a heavy electrical load.
This diagram shows how the two side of the device have the unbalanced loading which causes a counterclockwise rotation:
The diagrams shown above are intended to show the principles of how this device operates and so for clarity, the practical control mechanisms have not been shown. There are of course, many different ways of controlling the operation and ensuring that it works as required. One of the easiest building methods is to link the two shafts together using a chain and sprocket wheels. It is essential to have the same number of bar weights passing over the upper sprocket wheels as pass under the lower sprocket wheels. On the upper sprocket wheels, the bars are spread out, say, three times as far apart than they are on the lower sprocket wheels, so the upper sprockets need to rotate three times as fast as the lower ones. This is arranged by using a lower drive-chain sprocket wheel which has three times the diameter of the upper one.
The driving force provided by the weight imbalance of the two columns of rod weights needs to be applied to the lower sprocket wheels at point "A" in the diagram above. For this to happen, there has to be a mechanical connection between the stack of bar weights and the sprocket wheel. This can be done in different ways. In the above concept diagrams, this link has been shown as a sprocket tooth or alternatively, a simple pin projection from the sprocket wheel. This is not a good choice as it involves a considerable amount of machining and there would need to be some method to prevent the bar rotating slightly and getting out of alignment with the sprocket wheel. A much better option is to put spacers between the bar weights and have the sprocket teeth insert between the bars so that no bar slots are needed and accurate bar positioning is no longer essential. This arrangement is shown below:
The description up to here has not mentioned the most important practical aspects of the design. It is now time to consider the rising side of the device. To control the expanded section of the chain, and to ensure that it feeds correctly on to the upper sprocket wheels, the gap between successive bar weights must be controlled.
In the example shown here, which is of course, just one option out of hundreds of different implementations, the bars on the rising side are three times as far apart as those on the falling side. This means that on the upper sprocket wheels, only every third tooth will connect with a bar weight. This is shown in the following diagram. However, if the linked weights were left to their own devices, then the rising side bars would hang down in one straight line. While that would be optimum for drive power, Murilo does not envisage that as a practical option, presumably due to the movement of the links as the bar weights move over their highest point. In my opinion, that arrangement is quite possible to implement reliably provided that the length of the links is selected to match the sprocket distance exactly, however, Murilo's method is shown here.
Murilo's method is to use additional restraining links between the weights. The objective here is to make sure that when the weights spread out on their upward journey, that they take up positions exactly three bar widths apart, and so feed correctly on to the teeth of the upper sprocket wheel. These links need to close up on the falling side and open up on the rising side. They could be fabricated from short lengths of chain or from slotted metal strips with a pin sliding along the slot.
Whichever method is chosen, it is important that the links stay clear of the bars and do not prevent the bars stacking closely together on the falling side as that would prevent them seating correctly on the teeth of the lower sprocket wheels. The easiest precision option for the home constructor is using chain, where two bar weights are positioned on the upper sprocket wheel to give the exact spacing, and the tensioned chain is welded in position, as shown below. Placing the chain inside a plastic tube causes it to take up an "A" shape standing outwards from the links when they move into their closed position. This keeps the chains from getting between the link bars. In addition, the chains are staggered from one pair of link bars to the next, as shown below, as an additional measure to keep the operation both reliable and quiet..
In the diagram below, only a few of these restraining links are shown in order to keep the diagram as simple as possible. It is not a good choice to make the upper bar sprocket wheels three times larger than the lower sprocket wheels as this would force both the rising and falling sections of chain out of the vertical, which in turn introduces friction against the guides. The central 1:3 gearing is needed to make sure that the chains on the rising side are fully stretched and the spacing of the bar weights matches the upper sprocket spacing exactly.
The diagrams have not shown the supporting framework which holds the axles in place and maintains the unit in a vertical position, as this framing is not specialised in any way, and there are many acceptable variations. A sensible precaution is to enclose the device in an upright box cabinet to make sure that there is no chance of anything getting caught in the rapidly moving mechanism. This is an impressive design of Murilo's, who recommends that in the implementation shown above, that the links shown in blue are made 5% longer than those shown in yellow, as this improves the weight distribution and drive of the lower sprocket wheel..
A washing machine has a maximum power requirement of 2.25 kW and in the UK a suitable 3.5 kW alternator costs £225 and needs to be spun at 3,000 rpm for full output.
While the above description covers Murilo's main design, it is possible to advance the design further, raising its efficiency in the process as well as reducing the construction effort needed to build it. For this version, the main components remain the same, with the upper axle geared to the lower axle as before and the upper axle rotating faster than the lower one. The main difference is that on the rising side, the chain opens up completely. This does away with the need for the chain links, moves the rising weights much closer in and reduces the number of rising weights:
With a reduced number of weights in the diagram above, the weight imbalance is a very substantial 40:11 ratio with the massive advantage of a substantially reduced lever arm "d" which is much smaller than the lever arm "x" of the falling weights. This is a major imbalance, giving 40x pulling the axle in a counterclockwise direction and only 11d opposing that movement.
In the description so far, it has been assumed that all components will be made of metal. This is not necessarily the best choice. Firstly, metal moving against metal does make a noise, so guides made robustly of thick plastic or other similar material would be a good choice for the guides for the weights.
The weights themselves could equally well be made from strong plastic piping filled with sand, lead pellets, concrete or any other convenient heavy material. The pipes would then have strong end caps capable of holding the pivots for the links. The sprocket wheels themselves could well be made from thick plastic material which would give a quieter operation and which could be bolted to the power take-off shaft with a bolt placed right through the axle.
Most of the dimensions are not critical. Increasing the diameter of the lower sprocket wheel will increase the power of the output axle but will lower its speed. Adding more weights will increase both the output power and to a lesser degree, the speed, but will increase the overall size of the unit and its overall weight and cost. Making each weight heavier will raise the output power, or reduce the overall size if the weight is contained in fewer weights. Increasing the length of the links means fewer weights on the rising side but will require larger sprocket wheels.
It is not necessary to have all the links the same size. If the lengths are chosen carefully and the indentations in the upper sprocket wheel cover the entire circumference, then every second link can be one indentation shorter which tips the weights into a more compact and effective column on the falling side:
With this arrangement, the outer weights, shown here on the left, press down very firmly on the inside column of weights, making a compact group. If using plastic pipes with concrete then the hinge arrangement for the rods can be very simple, with a bolt set in the concrete as shown below.
The rods, washers and bolt can be supported on a thin, rigid strip placed across the top of the pipe. When the concrete has gone solid, the strip is removed and the gap produced by its removal then allows free movement of the rods. If this technique is used, then the bar weights are cast in two steps, with a tightly fitting disc pushed part way up inside the pipe so that one end can be filled while the other end remains open and ready for the completion of the other end.
One advantage of using plastic pipes is that if the sprocket wheels are made from a tough high-density plastic material, such as is used for food chopping boards, and the weight guides are also made from tough plastic, then there should be no metal-upon-metal noise produced during operation, if the bolt holes in the connecting rods are a good fit for the bolts used.
The concrete or mortar used as a filling can be made wet and pliable, since mechanical strength is not an issue here, and a filling with no voids in it is desirable. Even low quality concrete (caused by more water than absolutely necessary) would be more than adequate for this purpose.
The arrangement at the ends of a concrete-filled plastic pipe bar weight could be constructed like this:
There is a very strong inclination when building a device to make it operate smoothly. Where excess energy is being drawn from the gravity field, the reverse is necessary, with a jerky operation being the optimum. Remember that the extra energy only occurs during the duration of the impulses causing the jerks. It follows then, that in an ideal situation, any device of this type should be driven by a rapid series of strong impulses. In practice, using a heavy flywheel or any similar component which has a high inertial mass, although a rapid series of sharp pulses is being applied to the component and jerky operation is not visible to the human eye, excess energy is still being "led-out" and made available to do useful work.
One other observation which may be of interest, and that it the feedback from builders of gravity wheels which says that the power output from a gravity wheel is greater if the axle is horizontal and the rotating wheel is aligned exactly with magnetic East-West.
A Practical Guide to Free-Energy Devices Author: Patrick J. Kelly
Was this article helpful?