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Galileo's Pendulum Clock

by ZombieCat, published

Galileo's Pendulum Clock by ZombieCat Sep 29, 2012

Description

This is a functional model of the pendulum clock said to have been designed by Galileo. This is designed to be used as a historical teaching model for hands-on student interaction but I make no claims of its historical accuracy. I simply made it based on his drawings. Students learn about gears and gearing, stored energy (through the rubber band), the escapement mechanism, and the properties of the pendulum. The pendulum in this clock is designed to enable students to explore how weight and length impact period by making it easy for students to move washers or large nuts along notches on the pendulum (full length and half-way up).

Recent Comments

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Small gear doesn't look that good up close. Just tried this http://woodgears.ca/gear/index... seems good.
theres a workaround on youtube how to get rid of the wobly thing in the program.

I used Inkscape to make the gears. I did need to go in and clean up the vectors though for the smaller gears... Wood gears are always challenging.

The wood I now swear by is 1/4" Purebond from Home Depot that I purchase in 4x8 sheets and cut down to my laser cutter. I have a 50W Epilog and cut it at 12/95/1300 and I get a nice amber cut with no burn residue on the edges (clean hands!) http://www.homedepot.com/p/1-4...

What software did you use? I'm having trouble finding good software that will handle gears.

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Instructions

More detailed assembly instructions will be posted shortly. This is designed to be cut from 1/4" (5mm) plywood (I've found that Home Depot's new Purebond plywood works great). It is designed to work with 1/4" dowels but be warned the holes for the gears are very snug (on purpose). The frame is designed to use nylon washers to reduce friction with a 1/4" ID and a 3/8" OD.
I've included new pictures to help with the assembly. Look at the washer spacing for the pendulum and escapement mechanism. Also note that the escapement requires a piece to be glued to it above to enable it to work. It is the small rectangle in the plans.
Finally, I recommend playing a little with the exact placement of the two catches on the pendulum. This model is designed to fit very snugly around the 1/4" dowel and I would adjust it manually until I got it to work correctly and then I'd use a spot of super glue to hold it in place once it is working.

Comments

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MrBuilder on May 20, 2013 said:

What software did you use? I'm having trouble finding good software that will handle gears.

ZombieCat on May 20, 2013 said:

I used Inkscape to make the gears. I did need to go in and clean up the vectors though for the smaller gears... Wood gears are always challenging.

The wood I now swear by is 1/4" Purebond from Home Depot that I purchase in 4x8 sheets and cut down to my laser cutter. I have a 50W Epilog and cut it at 12/95/1300 and I get a nice amber cut with no burn residue on the edges (clean hands!) http://www.homedepot.com/p/1-4...

MrBuilder on May 20, 2013 said:

What software did you use? I'm having trouble finding decent software that does gears.

crob09 on May 18, 2013 said:

The DXF is tiny!

eatabean on Feb 15, 2013 said:

I love this project but cannot get the dxf to open... anyone else have this problem?

galileo on Dec 18, 2012 said:

Hi.
We are students of Politecnico in Milan and we are writing you to ask you some informations about Galileo Pendulum's because we are doing a project for PLM course; so can you give us the shares and measures of each part of the pendulum?  

Thank You  for your attention.

ZombieCat on Jan 2, 2013 said:

I've uploaded more pictures that should help. If you'd prefer any other file formats I can try uploading those as well.

EwanP on Dec 12, 2012 said:

Great project. Ive cut all the pieces but like the others Im not quite sure how to put it together. Do the cogs on the escapement wheel stick out both sides? There appears to be a pawl on either side of this wheel. A video of the movement would be useful. Ive made a Pro Desktop version to check movements if anyone is interested in having it.

ZombieCat on Dec 13, 2012 said:

I'll upload some more pictures of the completed build and try to post instructions this weekend.  Thanks for your patience

hikaruaida1 on Nov 29, 2012 said:

I just cut out all the pieces! But I have no idea how to put all the pieces together. ZombieCat, can you help me? Can anyone help?

Walton on Nov 14, 2012 said:

Sajna a CDR.file tényleg üres! 

feroze17 on Oct 30, 2012 said:

This is awesome, I got the dwg file and I plan on laser cutting it soon. Can you provide more detailed assembly instructions? It would help along with the picture of the drawing you posted. I imagine other than the laser cut parts you would need some strings and some kind of weights. Thanks so much very cool clock, cant wait to build. 

souriceaux06 on Sep 30, 2012 said:

 Great achievement, but I can not open the file. Cdr

ZombieCat on Sep 30, 2012 said:

I've uploaded a PDF and dxf version... let me know how if they work.

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