Perpetual motion machines are in pseudoscience?

I’ll have you know I spent a couple of months meticulously designing a perpetual motion machine just last year. Does it work? No, it does not. Can it ever work? Also no. But do I now understand why it won’t work? That I do! Science!

Ideas for perpetual motion machines have been around for hundreds of years so coming up with a totally new one would be pretty hard.

Did you design one from scratch or investigate one that’s been proposed?

Doesn’t it always come down to friction?

I “designed one” to figure out why it wouldn’t work. I used CAD software to draw it up. I’m a very visual person and I had to see it to understand. I did already know it wasn’t possible. But I do hold onto this notion I just can’t shake that gravity is one-way energy.

And no, it wasn’t friction. The idea I was looking at was weighted balls which rolled freely along rails attached to a spinning wheel. The further from the center the ball is, the more downward force it exerts. So I examined a system with rails attached to a central spinning wheel at an angle so that the rails were essentially level when at the top of the wheel and after that point the ball would roll down to the end of the rail, exerting more downward force. I had to design the whole thing graphically before I realized that the problem was circumference. There were at best 3 balls exerting some downward force at any given time, and only one of those was exerting any real force, but the mechanism would have to lift six weights with varying amounts of force required on the other side, closer to the center. I don’t remember the specifics any more. I tend to go all-in on something until I figure it out and then forget about it completely after that.

But suffice it to say if you have a dozen weights on a wheel which you can move in and out from the center then as they move out the circumference of your circle is much bigger, meaning that the weights fill a much larger area than the weights near the center, effectively reducing the number of weights you have in the given area. This results in a maximum of 3 weights exerting any downward force at varying degrees of force while on the other side, where the weights are near the center, those 3 extended weights are lifting twice as many retracted weights.

It was in no way witty or intelligent or new. It was just what I had to do to understand the problem.

Ya, I’ve seen photos of that sort of thing. They have weights that are further from the center on ‘down’ side of the wheel and closer to the center on the ‘up’ side. The longer leverage of the few ‘down’ side weights is supposed to overcome the weight of the more numerous but shorter leverage ‘up’ side weights.

I never knew the system was a failure of perpetual motion due to the distribution of weight. I always thought it was theoretically possible but only failed due to friction and imperfect components (hub bearings, air resistance, not perfectly round weights, etc.)

 

I’m pretty sure physics says that you simply can’t ever lift weight A with weight B and then lift weight B with weight A and repeat.