The Cosmic Collider Ferris Wheel

For my 17th new Meccano model of 2023 I returned to one of my favourites from back in February, Arcturus, and thought about re-imagining it once again.

I had kept it at home not wanting to dismantle the hunched-over-sewing-machine look of the design which I was really keen on, but even this model was re-imagined from an earlier model, The Paradox, which I had built in February of the previous year. As such the model has sat with me for almost two years which is longer than I keep most models.

Long gone were the twin rotating arms from the Paradox version, replaced with the current Ferris Wheel theme of the Arcturus, but now I wondered if I could do something where both of those worlds collide?

I knew I still wasn’t ready to part with the bent over spine of the model which I really love, but I looked at the big rotating wheel feature and imagined it as a star instead, or as a planet in solar orbit, and then I thought of adding a second much larger one behind so they looked almost as if they were about to collide.

The new idea meant having to build a lot of modifications, unsure of if it was possible, to secure a very heavy second motor to the main tower which wasn’t designed to cope with it in the first place.

As well as the extra weight, the increase in the model dimensions meant that the width of the base had to be increased for the rotating worlds to sit over.

Once those challenges were met, I started with the building of the new second much larger wheel, acting as the world with the gravitational force that was sucking the smaller celestial body in.

A second heavy axle that was fitted in an extension of the existing tower had to be rather tilted to compensate for the weight of the new wheel, and then with the expected sag, sat in the proper horizontal position.

That alone wasn’t enough and the tower needed to be reinforced as the new wheel in position kept slightly tilting to one side, so the axle was repositioned to correct that. The forces needed to drive such cosmic worlds were perhaps something I had still underestimated.

One new motor for the 2nd wheel was not operating properly (or the transformer was not powerful enough) and this meant that I had to change the motor. On top of that its mount position in between the two wheels was small and problematic and access to it was really inhibited by the addition of the second wheel.

To cut a long story short, I will have to leave out describing the amount of extra work that re-imagining this model gave me, and even after all of that I am not totally satisfied with how the motors and transformer are coping with the extra workload. New interactions between us I’m sure are still coming.

However I am delighted with the end result visually, and the keeping of the main spine of the model once more, even though its body has now gone through three different identities, but it is in these DNA Meccano ways that different worlds and ideas collide, each time with an explosion of energy that helps creates a new one.

The Cosmic Collider — When two worlds collide, only a new one survives!

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