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· THE WHEEL AT GERA ( 1712 )
Collection of Clues about Bessler Wheel
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          Millions of people often dream perpetual motion but only one in million may actually try to invent it; and out of those who try, only one in thousands succeeds, that is also only after a life long struggle.  If one succeeds, he would be amazed to see that perpetual motion is indeed very simple.  The ‘very simplicity’ of machine is also cause of trouble to inventor because once seen, it can be easily duplicated. Ramanada said: : "A perpetual motion machine  is not to be considered complete until you have constructed  it so simple and clear that you can explain it to the first child whom you meet on the street." Here this clearness and simplicity of construction is insisted on for a perpetual motion machine, because what is clear, easily constructed and comprehended attracts us, the complicated repels us.


So far perpetual motion problem has been difficult in order to entice us, yet not completely inaccessible, lest it mock at our efforts. Orffyreus’ wheel has served as a guide post on the mazy paths to hidden truths and it is ultimately a reminder of our pleasure in the successful solution of the problem. Though few perpetual motion inventors have been accustomed to devote themselves to the solution of perpetual motion with passionate zeal, many really don’t know how to begin.


In brief, here is one simple method to this hoary headed problem- how to begin?


First, fabricate a simple wheel of suitable size carrying axle and support for mounting.  After arranging levers in a clever manner across the diameter line of the wheel, the only required thing is to balance weights against each other as we often do in weighing articles on a balance.  The next step is to provide weights the freedom of movement, vertically and horizontally to enable them roll across the diameter line of the wheel. When it is done, you will observe finally that when weights move away from center, they cause sudden imbalance, which in turn produce great torque.  You will be delighted to see that torque produced in every cycle is enough to keep whole assembly running forever and in addition generating usable power out of nothing!


 Constructed more or less in this manner, Orffyreus’ perpetual motion machine was indeed simple. 


Orffyreus himself remarked: "It is so well designed that it is not necessary to stop it to carry out repairs or servicing."1  Count Karl had also admitted that machine was simple arraignment of levers that even a carpenter boy could construct. He was surprised that no one had ever discovered the secret before.


                    But a survey of attempts to construct perpetual motion shows that inventors have striven and strayed much; and produced complicated designs in vain. Moreover, many others have speculated fantastically on the possible working principle of the machine without doing any real work.  Weird theories have been propounded to account for the production of power by Orffyreus machine. Based on Orffyreus -Wheel, there are many similar designs and experiments with different concepts.  Mostly these machines are based on shifting weights, overturn of weights at pendulums or complex constructions with rods and lever arms.  None of these machines are told to run continuously by itself. Some flaw is always there.


The Mechanism: How Did Orffyreus Wheel Move?


         Let us first examine speculations of man who were close to Orffyreus and involved with his machine. I mean contemporaries of Orffyreus who took part in examinations, demonstrations and negotiations of his wheel for sale.  When Teubers’ letter gave sensational news to Leibniz about Orffyreus’ amazing   invention, he could not believe the fact that anyone could invent a true perpetual motion; instead he suspected that ‘compressed gas’ might be the source of motive power.

On  21st February, 1714, Leibniz replied Teuber with the following remarks:


“…I cannot believe that someone has invented perpetual motion. In my opinion, it is contrary to nature’s laws. I suspect that what you saw in the wheel was the action of highly compressed air. However, it would need to be recompressed after a short time. If the machine were able to show continuous movement for 24 hours whilst under lock and seal; or in the presence of witnesses could remain in motion for 24 hours without any additional input of energy, and if it could still apply great force, for example lifting heavy stamps, it might be very interesting. But even then the motion might not be purely mechanical, but rather, physical [i.e. non-mechanical]…"


Professor Wolff also erroneously suspected that some mysterious fluid in the form of invisible matter was responsible for the movements of weights and machine.  On 3rd July, 1722, in order to settle the negotiations, he sent a report to his Majesty the Czar. Report described professor Wolff’s speculations on Orffyreus’ machine.

  He stated:   


“"Since it is impossible, according to by its own force, some matter from outside must contribute to its motion. That matter cannot be perceived by any of the senses but could be made use of by people who know nature better. I suggest, therefore, that the weights on the wheel’s periphery are attached by rods in such a way that when at rest on the lighter side of the wheel, they can be lifted, but when they start to fall, after the wheel has turned, they deliver a force on impact, acquired during the fall, onto a piece of wood which is fixed to the periphery. In this way, the wheel is put into rotation by the impact of the weights, which can be heard. But the force which drives the weights, does not come from the machine itself, rather it comes from some fluid, invisible matter by which the movement of the falling weights becomes faster and faster. Orffyreus’ whole invention consists of an artful arrangement of weights, in such a way that they are lifted when at rest and acquire force during their fall, and in my opinion it is this that he keeps secret. This is also consistent with what Orffyreus says, that anyone could easily understand his invention, as soon as he is allowed to look into the wheel.



                  Perpetual motion is undoubtedly an amazing phenomenon as it creates usable power from nothing without expenditure of energy, thus violating law of conservation of energy. But, without actually seeing a working model of perpetual motion machine, one cannot believe and thus have clear conception of perpetual motion.  Confusion prevails because inventors continue to guard the secret and scientists are poor guys to have no access to a true perpetual motion device. For this reason, they have failed to understand basic concept of perpetual motion and misinterpreted Orffyreus wonderful machine also in the light of their putative laws of thermodynamics. 


   For instance, mathematician, Jean Bernoulli wrote:

        “...any motion which exists in nature can be used to support a perpetual motion. In these instances such machines cannot be regarded as purely artificial perpetual motion, but rather as a combined perpetual motion because their motion is assisted by nature. I am convinced that Bessler's Wheel is of this type."



          To a large extent, Orffyreus himself was responsible for this state of affair that led majority to doubt his invention. To safeguard his invention, he deliberately tried to create confusion among people by hiding the secret, by producing obscure drawings and by writing in parables. We are intrigued to see that Orffyreus has gone great lengths in producing his 142 wood engravings without revealing the secret. Everywhere in landscape of drawings, we see elements that make no sense to us: ropes curling around axle, exuberance of levers, wheels within wheels, pendulum oscillating here and there - all creating confusion to readers who desire to understand his invention.


       Orffyreus simply does not want anyone to invent perpetual motion overnight, which today's perpetual motionist would like to do without much perspiration.  He was aware that most of the people would like to grab his   secret without doing any sort of hard work on perpetual motion machine.  Orffyreus is a perfect counselor; he is not going to provide a ready-made solution to the problem.  He is only acting as a guide, one has to solve problem by one’s own effort, he has to realize his abilities before he is going to tackle the problem.

In my opinion, his engravings largely show us various stages of development of his perpetual motion machine. Step by step, Orffyreus takes us through various stages of his plan that finally leads to construction of perpetual motion machine..     


Orffyreus himself remarked:


             If anyone wants to guess about the truth of my invention, he needs to carefully ponder upon the loosely-depicted symbolically-rich drama of words that I now cause to rain down upon him from above (with each rain drop from heaven representing a portion of the total picture of the shower). .  I have written my little book riddle so that only with a mature or complete understanding of how my invention actually works, can one fully understand or appreciate why I have chosen the symbols that I have chosen.  With proper understanding, many portions of my little book can be viewed according to many levels symbolically.”


           At present, we have a large number of Orffyreus enthusiasts.  The people involved want Orffyreus’ secret to be rediscovered, tested, and shared as a working model. These people also want information to be freely shared so that the Orffyreus’ principles can be duplicated for use around the world. To that end, few talented people are decoding the clues for study.  They also want anyone interested or who may want to offer advice or insights into the operation of the device. This is all good but at the same time I am amused to see that most  of them erroneously think that even at the beginning of 1717, Orffyreus had all access to some great technology, which is even not known to modern technology today.  They have tried to force interpretation of parables in light of knowledge, which comes from weird theories of over unity devices claimed by inventors today.  Largely, relying on the knowledge of over unity devices, they are in error as Orffyreus machine is entirely a  different case from what they speculates.  Moreover, their explanations are not consistent with the eyewitness accounts of Orffyreus machine and what Orffyreus himself tells about his invention i.e. simplicity of his machine.


In attempt to decode his parables, seekers have digressed very much.  Their speculations consist of many weird schemes and some strangest technologies, which are not even possessed by the modern science and which even cannot be conceived by best inventive talents of the world today.  If Orffyreus were alive today, he would certainly laugh to see people making blunders in their speculations. At the same time, he would also regret to see how they are misinterpreting his simple machine.  He must forgive them.


                  Seekers are tempted to find secret of Orffyreus perpetual motion machine in every place, in his every act, in each of his drawings and in its every bit.  No one knows whether such a practice will take the seekers to paradise or drive them insane.  One must exercise utmost patience in reading Orffyreus drawings; he must not rush to conclusions.  If you only casually look at his drawings, you will not see very much.  However, when one begins to study the details and find a clue or code he discovers a trail of clues.  One must avoid   reading too much into the documents, without overlooking the valuable evidence contained in records of witnesses.


Orffyreus machine was genuine.  It was simple but contained artful arrangement of levers and weights inside the wheel.  Contrary to it, authors, researchers, readers, friends, as well as enemies of perpetual motion have different opinions, suggestions, speculations, and explanations on Orffyreus wonderful wheel.


Following points illustrate the height of ignorance and delusion into which many have fallen.  There is little hope that they would ever be able to find any solution to Orffyreus’ riddle. 


1.The machine was driven by a hidden, external means.

2. There was a man in the wheel. Orffyreus was a magician.

3. The wheel was wound up. Orffyreus was an expert clock maker.

4. Bessler stored energy in the wheel using some other, newly discovered means. For example, Leibniz suggested compressed air.

5. Many other suggest that Orffyreus had an access to some advanced technology. They have speculated on yet undetected property of mass, gravity, magnetism, or a previously unknown principle that refutes the axiom on which the Laws of Thermodynamics are based.


 It is true that Orffyreus machine used gravity to keep it running by shifting the weights. However, many erroneously suggest that anything that has a difference of potential can be tapped to do work. They consider “gravity as a force, which has a gradient”. “As you move higher above the earth, gravity is less. In space, gravity is essentially gone.” They argue further, “Anything that has a gradient has a difference of potential between the layers that produce the gradient.  Anything that has a difference of potential can be tapped to do work.”


Many suggest that quantum, or particle theories of gravity can one day shed light on how the Bessler Wheel worked. They are hopeful that if Orffyreus’ secret is known, current understanding of the universe will go through another paradigm shift as radical as that of Newtonian Physics or General Relativity.


              In Orffyreus’ times, his enemies as well as many others, regarded the whole story as a gigantic fraud. But, in present time also, there is no end to disbelievers and their strange doubts.  Vague and false evaluations of Orffyreus’ remarkable work still go on without shame. There are plots and attempts to discredit the inventor.


We have large number of books, websites, and articles that either undermine great discovery of Orffyreus or carry miserable misinterpretations of his invention. Web is also littered with many articles about the same.   For paucity of space and time, it would not possible to go into details and quote every work that is in grave error. To show how Orffyreus devotees have indulged in grotesque interpretation of his wheel and everything he did in his lifetime, here, I will only select and comment on the works of few the authors namely, Ord-Hume, J. Collins, Elden E. Park. Alfred Evert, and Jain Rutowsky. 


1 See p. 205 of Collins' book- Perpetual Motion : An Ancient Mystery Solved ?

Arthur W.J.G. Ord-Hume


Arthur W.J.G. Ord-Hume's book “Perpetual Motion : The History of an Obsession is first of its kind exclusively devoted to the study of perpetual motion in recent times. He is a qualified mechanical engineer, designer of civil and military jets and small planes, author of technical papers and books on aircraft instruction, and also an authority on mechanical musical instruments.


Ord-Hume’s book presents a lively, engrossing history of the perpetual motion search but it does no justice to Orffyreus. Even a cursory reading of the book itself will allow most to realize that Ord Hume’s negative and sloppy attitude towards Orffyreus’ perpetual motion   fails to reflect accurately the book's intent, content, and audience. Though evidence presented by Gravesande and Baron Fisher is plenty, W.J.G. Hume has judged Orffyreus’ invention incorrectly in the light of prevailing beliefs in science. It is unfortunate, he treats his invention as a fraud, He has failed to judge it impartially as he has been guided by prejudice rather than the sound evidence presented by Gravesande and Baron Fisher.


               Like the rest of the scientist, Ord-Hume also considers perpetual motion as something impossible contrary to laws of science. Based on a cursory inspection of some of the document on perpetual motion, his judgment on perpetual motion is erroneous.  Clearly, he lacks necessary insight and background to understand perpetual motion, no wonder he has sided with scientist and in doing so utterly failed to understand Orffyreus and his remarkable work.  Without some faith in perpetual motion, it could not have been possible for him to write a 250 pages book on perpetual motion but he lacks necessary courage to break away from tradition and recognize perpetual motion.  For him, to accept the fact that ‘perpetual motion is possible’ - is too revolutionary because it departs too far from reigning theories and cannot be fitted into the current body of knowledge. Hume is a poor guy who loves perpetual motion but has no courage to accept it openly and boldly. Excuse me! He is like a coward who sincerely loves a controversial woman in character but for fear of being criticized, ridiculed and losing status in the society, he has no courage to court her.  Some readers of the book have complained that the whole tenor of this book is negative—discouraging to folks who might wish to pursue the holy grail of perpetual motion.

In his book, Ord Hume devotes greater time to explain perpetual lamps than correctly researching the Orffyreus case.  Kevin T. Kilty ( comments:

“Ord-Hume spends several pages examining ways to explain the observation of perpetual lamps.  This is giving too much serious attention to a fantasy.  It is likely that no one ever observed any such lamp.  They belong to the realm of myth like the unicorns and half-man beasts.”


             I believe, observations and comments from learned investigators on Orffyreus perpetual motion machine are as valuable as running account of the phenomena.  Among them, the presence of the Gravesande, a leading physicist of his time increases the authenticity of the report.  His letter to Newton, extolling the virtue of the machine stands as a monument to Gravesande's intellectual integrity and shows his love for the truth without being biased.  Fortunately, Gravesande was not a layperson but a reputed man of science.  Nevertheless, many might have believed the testimony to be doubtful because it is the tradition to believe that testimony of lay persons or academics in the humanities is less reliable than that of a prominent scientist, though such a prejudice is remarkably stubborn.  We need no further proof of perpetual motion machine, as investigations of Gravesande constitute a valuable body of evidence.  Thanks to Gravesande, he was level headed and scrupulous in writing his report even after Orffyreus turned crazy on account of his impertinent curiosity, which eventually led to a tragic end to the whole story.  We can forgive him; it was all due to his curiosity!!       

           However, still there are those who doubt even the integrity of the learned professor and his letter.  In his book,Ord-Hume’s fails to make a right appraisal of professor’s talents, integrity and Orffyreus’ wheel. It is disappointingly evident from his remarks.

 Ord Humes writes:


         “ The professor certainly appears to have had some measure of faith in the wheel and the demonstration of its ability to turn without external force.  We ought not to forget, though, that it may have proved easy to dupe an honest old man whose confidence in humanity was probably unbounded…  There seems little doubt that Orffyreus wheel was a fraud being driven by some mechanism in the very large diameter axle, its builder was at one time a clock maker and even as early as this, clocks could be made to run for a lengthy time without rewinding, forty days, then was not a lengthy time.  Properly balanced, the momentum of a wheel of this size would certainly allow an impressive show of work at intervals, particularly if the drive was taken from the axle!”


       Despite the irrefutable evidence, like Ord Hume most of the readers will have objections and difficulties in accepting Gravesande’s report containing his observation and conclusions about the invention. This is only because conclusions cannot be a reconciled with present knowledge of physical world- a strange prejudice!


Through out his life, Gravesande remain well convinced of integrity of Orffyreus in spite of the fact that he himself took risk to lose his reputation.  He was grieved to see that Orffyreus was caught in a conspiracy. Whenever occasion arrived, he defended Orffyreus case in strong terms:


 "I know well that Orffyreus is a crackpot, but I don't believe he is a fraud. I have never decided that his machine is fraud, but I know one thing for sure: if the maid said this, she is a liar."*


It was hard for Gravesande to believe in possibility of mechanical perpetual motion machine but Orffyreus case forced him to change his opinion.  He already believed in chemical perpetual motion..

* (translated from Michal, p.111)


J. Collins Work


           However, it is matter of big satisfaction that there are few good works and opinions to support Orffyreus work and his cause. Many scholars have worked hard to understand Orffyreus work. They consider that the inventor should have been rewarded for what he deserved.


One of the best books on the life of Orffyreus is “Perpetual Motion: An Ancient mystery solved?  - By John Collins


John Collins, an engineer and native of England learnt about Orffyreus at tender age of just 15.  He says that he became an admirer of Orffyreus when at his young age he intuitively learnt that Orffyreus was a genuine inventor, however he noted glaring errors and several inconsistencies in the descriptions of Orffyreus and his invention in the previous works of various authors.  A desire to produce authentic work on the life of Orffyreus led him to make a through investigation into his invention.  Collins went to archives in UK, Germany, and Russia to get every possible evidence and information about the Orffyreus.  His long researches and findings on Orffyreus finally took form of the book entitled as "Perpetual Motion: An ancient mystery solved?" He had to self publish the book because no publisher dared to associate him with perpetual motion, which according to science is ridiculous and not worthy of any attention.


His book is out and away the best work on the life of the Orffyreus.  His arguments for the acceptance of the proposition that ‘Orffyreus was a genuine inventor’ are reasonable, and documented with good evidence.  His researches on the life and works of Orffyreus holds the ground very well and an eye opener to disbelivers.


As far as explanation of working mechanism of Orffyreus wheel is concerned his biographer has also missed the correct answer. Collin is under a dilemma at his point.  He tries hard to establish that Orffyreus machine was genuine, at the same time he wish to convince the scientific community that such a machine does not violate conservation principle!  It is like bringing different poles of a magnet together; evidently, he attempts to reconcile two contradictory things, which is futile. And he does so not to offend the scientific community.


I am surprised to see that authors like Collins and many other Orffyreus’ enthusiasts who have devoted their precious time to the studies of perpetual motion for the benefit of the people, even lack courage to reject law of conservation of energy. They fail to understand the simple fact that law of conservation of energy and perpetual motion are incompatible with each other.  Law of conservation of energy is outcome of false speculations of the Greek philosophers who proclaimed, “You cannot get something out of nothing”; moreover, Greek philosophers themselves never performed any experiment, as they hated the manual labor. 


Obsessed with conservation principle of energy or lacking courage to go against this doctrine, J. Collins also seems to be confused on the vital point whether perpetual motion violates law of conservation of energy or not.  He is grossly in error when he says Orffyreus’ wheel does not violate first law of the thermodynamics.  How can it be possible?  By definition, there can be no perpetual motion without violation of the first law of thermodynamics.  In fact, science defines perpetual motion as any device which violates the first law of thermodynamics ( i.e. law of conservation of energy ), in other words  perpetual motion of the first kind.  Collins makes a futile attempt to reconcile Orffyreus machine and first law of thermodynamics in his new theory on perpetual motion.  He claims to propose a theory, which according to him accounts for Bessemer’s success without overturning any scientific law.  He has set out to prove that Orffyreus machine did not contradict nor debase current scientific theory and practice which is false.


In my opinion, Orffyreus was a first law violator and his machine created energy out of nothing and did all types of useful work without diminishing an equivalent amount of energy from anywhere. Therefore, without violating the first law of thermodynamics there can be no theory of perpetual motion and thus any explanation for the Orffyreus wheel.


What are the reasons?  Why does Collins try hard to reconcile two contradictory things, which stand like two opposite poles of a magnet?  Why does he seem to obsess very much with current laws of science?    Let us see first how John Collins treats a perpetual motion machine in light of prevailing law of energy conservation.


To quote him –

“ does not acknowledge the possibility of designing a machine which will acquire sufficient energy of itself, to drive other machines, without accessing that energy from outside itself - and never do I..”


                 It is evident that Collin has no wish to go against the well-established law which has suppressed the zeal of the perpetual motionist for hundred of the years.  In fact, it requires an extraordinary courage to go against the established law and without a working machine in hand, no one in present time can venture to go against the law of conservation of the energy.  Collin is doing a balancing role.  He applauds Orffyreus work, at the same time he does not want to go against tradition and offend the scientist.   He misconceives a world where scientific laws are not violated but perpetual motion exists!


He wishes to justify perpetual motion but at the same time, he clings to conservation principle.  So where does Collins really stand?  I think he stands nowhere. He is like a lover who is sincerely in love with a woman of controversial character but has no courage to court her for fear of being ridiculed and criticized by the world!!  Perpetual motion demands a greater commitment to court her!!


Perpetual motion needs commitment and hard work. We must recall here what Orffyreus himself said:


“...My deeds will not be revealed prematurely.  Should anyone wish to speculate about the truth...?”


And it is my conviction that whosoever is conditioned and biased in his mind under the hypnotic influence of conservation principle, will never be able to rediscover the truth of perpetual motion.  Collins approach to yield before conservation principle is regrettable.  Could Orffyreus himself have embarked on perpetual motion without challenging the opinion of all his contemporaries who were advocating conservation of vis-viva in his time?  They were like hundreds of parrot on a tree twittering in unison only because others were twittering!  The main difference between Orffyreus thinking and thinking of other scientist in his age seems to have been that Orffyreus intuitively hungered harder for the fundamental of the things, for the larger view, the broader perspective, the simpler hypothesis with simple experiment.  So deeply did he yearn for basic truth, in fact, that he resisted the corrosion of prejudice more successfully than anyone else and overcame the strong human temptation to take things for granted; to assume something true because every body "knows" it to be true.  There is no need for Collins to totter in the end after writing and producing such a nice work on perpetual motion.


Collins has also miserably failed in guessing the real working mechanism of Orffyreus wheel, which was nothing more than an artful arrangement of levers and weights. Collins' speculative yin-yang2 water compartments device (based both on the oldest versions of the yin-yang symbol with a wavy version connection and on the culturally-diverse ancient swastika symbol of prosperity and good fortune, when two such yin-yang machines are joined at 90 degrees out of phase) has nothing to do with Orffyreus machine.


  Collins has worked hard to bring the truth but many have failed to understand his work.  A web site as the name itself suggests, evaluates Collins work to be useless, and puts it under category cranky, which is very unfortunate.  Perpetual motionists need to unite all over the world to rebuke the agnostics.

2 See pp. 222-223 of Collins' book for the yin-yang discussion.


Alden E. Park and His Speculations on Orffyreus’ Wheel


           In his article “Some Thoughts on a Simple Explanation of Bessler’s Wheel: Bessler’s Wheel Uncovered with an Interpretation of Bessler’s Little Book- A Delayed Gift to the World”, Alden E. Park speculates that the coding of letters from "Bessler" to "Orffyre" using a circle (p. 181 of Collins' book) with the 26 letters of the alphabet around the edge of the circle and one translating by going directly across through the middle of the circle might represent the energy going directly across the circle from the dual pointed heavy weight to the torque governor wheel.  It might also represent the energy suddenly being sent from the torque governor wheel.

Alden E. Park also commits error when he talks about Orffyreus wheel and level of friction in it. He says:


            I was really grabbing at straws. Bessler pretty much avoided the large static coefficients of friction.  As far as how the coefficient of friction varies with speed for the moving situations, this is not obvious to me.  I might guess that the coefficient of friction decreases with increasing speed until it gets to some speed.  Just where this point is, is not obvious to me and we should properly leave the situation to experimentation anyway.”


Alden E. Park suggests that the Ranque effect or some Ranque-like effect might be responsible for the power production in a Bessler wheel (with hot air molecules on the inside of the Bessler wheel but near the outer wheel edge with the weights designed to capture some of the energy).

His paper also refers to other potential modern methods for power extraction and materials processing.  Various hybrid technologies are suggested, such as combining the Orffyrean roller bearing technology with either some electromagnetic (EM) over-unity engines or Collins' speculative yin-yang device. His paper also contains a speculative suggestion, based on reasonable evidence, that the sun may produce energy primarily from gravity instead of from hot fusion.


Alden E. Park’s speculation does not end here. In an attempt to decode Orffyreus ‘ chastic riddles’, he invents entirely a new physics. He talks about “Internal Rotational States”.  He raises the question:


         Is there a relationship between the Bessler pendulum and the notion of rotating nuclear ground states?  Aside from the common ideas of internal angular velocities and changes of states, the idea of internally rotating nuclear-ground-states has potential for being used in the explanation of why the Bessler pendulum works" 


Park observes various similarities between the Bessler wheel and the cold fusion/nuclear reaction in his paper. He believes that except for the quantum nature of the graviton at the subatomic level for the Bessler wheel problem, primarily both appear to require the careful study of states of essentially-unquantized internal-angular-momenta.


He advocates utility of cold fusion also:


 “Though the restoration of the Orffyrean pendulum or the Orffyrean roller bearing may potentially increase the need for gold (and silver), the interaction of rotating nuclear-ground-states may eventually be able to increase the supply of gold.  Scientists as a whole ought not to mistreat cold fusion.”


He suggests further:


 We must share the knowledge!. a rigorous research in following areas is required to know Orffyreus pendulum” He outlines the areas too: “Progress may move forward simultaneously on several fronts:  (1) mathematical studies of the Orffyrean technology, (2) theoretical studies of Bessler's pendulum assuming the sub-problem solutions are available, and (3) the sub-problems.  The sub-problems include such things as the Orffyrean roller bearing, the angle sensors, the torque governor wheel stopping (and releasing) mechanism, graviton interaction with translationally/rotationally altered nuclei, and the power extraction plan.”


Bessler Wheel’ by Alfred Avert

Another speculative work is from Alfred Avert. Visit:  "


On his web site ‘Bessler Wheel’, author and inventor Alfred Avert presents an analysis of Bessler-wheel on the basis of little material he has access to. Since it is not adequate, he also requests others to supply him better pictures, descriptions or interpretations to historic maschine.

In the opening paragraph, he writes:

“Following chapter Bessler - Wheel will try to deduce (probably) real concept of Bessler-maschine, based at control by this pendulum m The historical evidence in favour of Besslers wheel is well stacked in favour of the wheel being genuine. The main question is if Besslers wheel was genuine what provided the energy input required to cause its rotation.”

Then, author provides two suggestions. In his own words: 


“1.The Kinetic energy of the earth could have been the energy input for his machine. During slingshot, accelerations in speed are experienced, sling shot requires that an object falls into a gravity well where it is described as having negative potential energy, it accumulates energy from the rotation of the source of the gravity well and uses this energy win to break free of the gravity pull at a now increased speed.


2. If Besslers wheel was powered by gravitational force, then this force can no longer be classified as a force anymore as forces are unable to do useful work. In this instance we must suggest that the gravitational wave or graviton that causes gravitational attraction is an energy transferring exchange particle, but for this to occur there needs to be a source of energy to go into the creation of that graviton in the first place, my suggestion is that Gravitation is a product of matters interaction with the zero point field.”


               Alfred Evert then makes serious attempt to explain working of Orffyreus machine Orffyreus based on inertia and gravity interaction.  He states:

“As this wheel was said to have worked indeed, here also an attempt will be made to solve this problem. At first will be investigated, how in principle inertia in combination with gravity will work at wheels. Based on this, some general solutions are suggested, which could be realized technically in divers manner. At following chapters, some of these suggestions will be discussed in detail.”

           His speculation does not stop here. His drawing shows Vektors of inertia and gravity. He meticulously explains friction, suspending rotor axis, and beam Scale. He also speculates about usable power. To describe the machinery of his wheel, Alfred Evert has coined a large number of terms to describe the mechanism. For example, “Wheel within Wheel, two wheels within a wheel, Ring within wheel with fix supporting wheel, Ring within wheel with pendulum-supporting-wheel, Wheel next wheel and supporting wheel, Centrifugal-Gravity-Motor, Bessler - Rod –Wheel and  Internal rod system Sections of pendulum swinging. His technical jargon also includes principles, points and curves. All carrying specific terms:  Bessler-rod-design Bessler-principles, Pendulum-mechanism, Rotor-Technology Track-curves,Backrunning from outmost track-point, Fore-running at upside track-section, Null-Line diagonal, Less swinging, Rotor single or double Bessler-construction, Weights and turning momentum, and Ether and Inertia.  He explains everything by technical  words and some simple pictures. Alfred Evert also claims that his  effecting principles may be applied in diverse īfieldī of physics.

Alfred Avert’s reproduction of Orffyreus’ wheel is very lengthy and complex. Readers can visit his web site to see complex drawings of reproductions of Orffyreus’ wheel.  To save the space, here I will quote only few excerpts from his article.

This complex concept by sure will not be simples realisation of principles talked about. It might also well be possible, inner mechanism of Bessler-wheel was constructed quit other kind. Next chapter, for example, I did try to design a technology using no wheels but exclusivly rods, called Bessler-Rod-Wheel.

The gravitational slingshot is like an elastic collision in which the objects never actually touch each other.


Many believe that the earth's kinetic energy is the most likely source of the Wheel's energy, since it would not require an entirely new conception of gravity. I'm not so sure. For one thing, our current conception of gravity is fairly primitive.


To me there are some obstacles to the gravitational slingshot effect explanation,

- how can the slingshot effect be harnessed in a small, localized space above the earth? It seems to require that the smaller object move completely around the larger object.


- assuming that the above problem were solved, it seems that the Wheel would have only worked on the side of the earth that is moving forward in space (based on what we know about how the slingshot effect works). Thus the Wheel's performance would have varied over time as the earth revolved (and been completely inoperative for 12 hours a day).???”


Unfortunately, Alfred Avert complex technical description has no relevance to Orffyreus wheel, which was indeed simple. Avert  has wasted great time and energy.  However, he makes an interesting fruitful observation. In his own words:

“Bessler wheels are told to turn once a second, by a diameter of 3.6 m this seems to point at well known figure of 9.81. Itīs also talked about Bessler wheels to start very fast, after some turns already would show maximum speed. But the wheels didnīt accelerate above a certain speed and even more interesting, didnīt slow down when these maschines had to lift weights.”

Therefore, experiments with Orffyreus wheel can be a good exercise for the kids to find value of g in school laboratory.

Gravity Wheel by Jan Rutkowski

Jan Rutkowski’s website 3  first gives summary of story of Orffyreus wheel then, he attempts to construct his wheel. However, his drawings do not match simplicity of Orffyreus wheel. Even a little difference would lead to a failure.   He also does not tell whether he has succeeded or not in his endeavor.  However, Jan Rutkowski is somewhat closer in the understanding of the mechanism of the wheel and finding   solution to the problem.  He writes:

“A playground and children on a seesaw (equilibrium ).How many of us can associate a see-saw with the push-bike wheel, or draw the circumference around equilibrium ? So far not many. But this is the answer to ORFFYREUS wheel. Imagine two children (same weight) on a see-saw. They are in perfect balance and neither can touch the ground. All we have to do is to place one child closer to axle, and the other child becomes heavier and touch the ground. That is a fact.  Now place one child on one arm of equilibrium about three meters long. On the other arm about 30 cm. from centre we place a very heavy person. Is the child's weight able to raise the heavy person up

From this little exercise we learn that any object gains in weight the further it is place from the center”

The Museum Of Unworkable Devices

          The web site “ The museum of unworkable devices”4 has good stuff on history of perpetual motion but it has miserably failed to understand Orffyreus machine. Under the sub title “Pioneers of perpetual motion- The movers and Shakers” professor Donald E. Simanek examines Orffyreus perpetual motion machine and erroneously concludes that Orffyreus was a fraud. He considers Orffyreus as an expert magician.   Needless to say, website makes very erroneous evaluation of Orffyreus wheel. It crosses all limits of skepticism.  To show the extreme  skepticism, I would like to quote the paragraphs completely.

First, it is complained that Orffyreus wheel required a push to start it!

·               “The wheel was not self-starting; it needed a push to get it moving.”

·               Bessler claimed it did not derive its power from wound springs or falling weights, as was common with automata and clockwork devices.

·               It had many moving weights inside, arranged with the purpose of keeping the wheel continually unbalanced.

 “Naturally, Bessler was suspected of fraud in this matter. Unsubstantiated stories circulated that a servant had signed an oath that in an adjoining room she had turned crank to keep the wheel in motion. This raises the obvious question of why other observers had not checked the adjoining room, for it might have had more than just an a hand crank—mechanisms that might not have been noticed or understood by a housemaid, but might have meant a lot to 's Gravensande, had he seen them. Such allegations caused Bessler to construct his most impressive machine in the center of a room, well removed from walls, to allay any suspicions. It's difficult, if not impossible, to judge the credibility of the details of such charges this long after the fact. There's no good reason to doubt that deception was involved in all his demonstrations, but exactly how it was accomplished in each case can be no more than speculation. Remember also that these devices were made in at least four different sizes and were demonstrated in different places and under different circumstances. Deception may well have taken different forms as circumstances changed.

It's not difficult to postulate many ways that the public wheel demonstrations could have been accomplished, for they were of short duration and did not require large energy output. In these cases the wheel was observed in motion throughout the brief demonstrations, then it was braked to a stop.

The most widely documented and discussed demonstration was that in which the running wheel was placed in a castle room, the room completely sealed, and opened after 43 days, to find the wheel still running. The room was closed again, and opened after nearly two months, when the wheel was again found running. During the times all doors and windows to the room where closed and sealed. No one had any way to verify that the wheel was actually turning. The wheel might have been caused to stop after the room was sealed, and started again just before the room was opened. Rather than being a convincing experiment, this reveals that Bessler was engaging in deception of the kind used by stage magicians. The magic occurs out of sight, to hide the secret. And there's no rational reason for anyting to happen out of sight in this case.

·               The sealing of the room must have been complete, so that no one could see inside to verify that the wheel was running. Otherwise there'd be no need to open the room after 10 days to check whether the wheel was running. Why wasn't a small window left open to admit light, so that anyone at any time could look inside and see that it was running? We have every reason to be suspicious that during the closed intervals, the wheel was not turning.

·               During demonstrations of all of Bessler's wheels observers remarked that the wheel was noisy. The clatter of the weights inside was clearly heard, and some reported "scratching noises" (like those of a tightly coiled spring?). Could these noises not be heard even outside the sealed room? If these sounds could be heard during the entire 53 days surely someone would have cited this as strong evidence in favor of Bessler. If the sounds stopped after the room was sealed, surely someone would have cited this as evidence of fraud. But no one even mentions the sound. Again, why was the room sealed so tightly that no sound at all could be heard through one of the sealed doors? Allowing some sound to be heard the entire 53 days would have been a simple way to make the demonstration more convincing.

Clearly Bessler had contrived the conditions of this demonstration to hide his methods of deception. Had he been totally honest, he'd have provided a continuous method for seeing the wheel in motion and hearing its sound at all times, still without allowing any outside influences on the wheel. The fact that he did not provide for these simple tests speaks eloquently to the fact that he was engaged in fraud.

What is really amazing is how many people today still think Bessler's machines may actually have been honest and that they actually exhibited perpetual motion. Many words have been devoted to Bessler apologetics, often exhibiting ingenuity at rationalization every bit as inventive as Bessler himself.”

Needless to say, the site makes miserably poor evaluation of Orffyreus’ remarkable achievements.   

Let us recall again what Orffyreus said:

“...My deeds will not be revealed prematurely.  Should anyone wish to speculate about the truth...?”

                 Orffyreus talks in a clever manner.  He does not want unworthy people to know his secrets. His drawings do not give a clear view. Too many details tend to distort the overall picture. 

As far as working mechanism of the machine is concerned, Orffyreus discusses vital points in very brief, on the other hand, he   intentionally confuse the reader with unnecessary details of mechanism.  ‘Besseler pendulum’ is one such device invented and much told in his writings and drawings to confuse the readers. As I have already mentioned, his 141 engravings or drawings are nothing but a sequence of those innumerable mechanism he must have experimented before he finally produced his perpetual motion. But to many, these drawings are also riddles that need to be decoded. Delineation of real design of perpetual motion does not require help of 141 drawings.  Perpetual motion is just simple; it can be simply depicted by a single drawing. 


Besseler artfully refers to this mysterious pendulum in details, which, I think, is source of all trouble as it has persuaded his lovers to speculate in wrong directions. Orffyreus him self is not interested to tell the readers what the device actually is. He himself is not sure whether his machine is really a wheel or pendulum or some modified form of pendulum. His whole intention is to confuse the unworthy man and prevent him to have any easy direct access to his grand secret.  He speaks in parables. So where is the way to find right clues?  One way is to avoid the details and to   jot down the simple facts, plainly spoken by him and pointed out by eyewitnesses. Just contemplate, wait, and see if something meaningful comes out. But contrary to it, his fans have indulged into the riddles and lost into the details.


Anyone who has carefully studied eyewitness accounts of his invention delineating plain facts about it, which Orffyreus also tells us in brief, is sure to realize that riddles and 141 drawings into which many enthusiast have indulged, cannot provide any easy solution to the problem.  Lost into his mysterious pendulum parables and minor details of his drawings, they have gone too far afield, they have digressed far from reality. Hopefully, an intelligent perpetual motionist will just ignore such unnecessary details and concentrate only on his brief statements as they provide more fruitful clues for solution than his riddles. Perpetual motion is a big riddle in itself and many more riddles created by drawings and parables have in fact misguided many to speculate in their own way, which is far from truth. Their speculations do not lead anywhere.  I think their efforts have been wasted. I hope that readers will ponder on Orffyreus’s machine according to the valuable evidence contained in his certificates and will not waste their time much in decoding riddles contained in Apologia Poetica, riddle of riddles.  Orffyreus has assigned a good homework to his fans. If they indulge too much in it, they will fail to solve original riddle of perpetual motion. Perhaps, intentionally done, this is another diplomatic move from Orffyreus to keep unworthy people away from the secret of his invention!

And one important thing: why does Orffyreus mention pendulum at such a great length in his work? What is the logic behind assigning pendulum as a principal part of his machine?  Has pendulum anything to do with a perpetual motion machine? What is the relation of pendulum with a perpetual motion machine?


Recall Galileo here. What drove him to conclude that perpetual motion machine is impossible?  Did he conduct any experiment to disprove possibility of perpetual motion machine?

It was nothing but his experiment with pendulum. When Galileo observed that pendulum did not rise higher than the position wherefrom it took its descent, he erroneously came to conclude that perpetual motion was impossible. Orffyreus was probably aware of Galileo’s work.  Any inventor would always like to repeat the experiment or build up his theory on what great men have said before.  So did Orffyreus.  But contrary to Galileo, Orffyreus pendulum achieved perpetual motion and refuted Galileo’s work.


                                      Copyright Đ 2005 Dr. Ramesh Menaria all rights reserved.