Thursday, 20 February 2014

Da Vinci - articulated wing

Years ago, I stumbled across a sketch by Da Vinci of an articulated wing - where the power provided through a simple circular motion such as turning a pedal was converted into a complex motion - akin to flapping a wing.

The drawing is in the Codex Atlanticus:

I knew that this would not be a pretty creature to build - even Da Vinci only bothered to draw one of the wings.  So before I committed to the build, I tried a simple version - just to see how it might work in action.

To my surprise - the motion was amazing and so I set about constructing a full size version out of local wood.

Until almost the very final stage of building the wings, I was at a loss to visualize how it would look in final form.

Here it is in final form at the Bungendore Show.

One of the more ugly bits of work I have engaged in.  The wings work like the fingers of a hand...  the only way it would fly is by pulling itself through the air :)  Perhaps something for Qantas to consider as part of its cost cutting.

Peter Quinton
February 2014

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