LEGO Ideas

Time Machine and Gear Experimentation Set

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I built this set because I love the world of gears and the versatility and ease of the Lego building system. I also wanted a time machine that really works. I must confess, it does work! It transported me back to 1978 when I first became excited about Legos. I got to relive that childhood excitement and now I have come back to the present to share it with you. 
The professor has built a time machine. The time traveler enters the chamber and the reactor starts spinning, the traveler turns around and around.  He is sent back to medieval times and brings back a real live knight! Where will he go next?
 This time machine has 17 working gears controlled through one drive gear.
This set is educational and fun. You can experiment with gear ratios and create different types of gear trains (two or more gears engaged with each other). In mechanical engineering, a gear ratio is a direct measure of the ratio of the rotational speeds of two or more interlocking gears. If the drive gear (the one directly receiving rotational force from the motor or your hand) is bigger than the driven gear, the latter will turn more quickly, and vice versa.
To get the gear ratio first count the number of teeth on your Lego gears, then divide the driven gear teeth by the drive gear teeth.  For example, dividing 30 teeth of a driven gear by the 20 teeth of a drive gear gets us 30/20 = 1.5. What this gear ratio means is that the smaller driver gear must turn one and a half times to get the larger driven gear to make one complete turn. 
Set up a gear train with large gears driving small gears with the same axis as another large gear driving another small gear, and so on. You can get the last gear in the train really spinning fast!  Do you want to see how it works? Buy the set, build it and find out.


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