Mar.17, 2013 | By Eelke van den Bos

Kinetic art and 3D printing have proven to be a solid combination. It’s a form of art that enables the artist to extend the users perspective of the artwork by adding time as extra dimension. Inspired by Arthur Ganson’s “Machine with Concrete”, Thingiverse user Jeshua (aka 3DTOPO) created a replica of the moving sculpture and named it “Printed Machine with Concrete”. The replica was created with 3D printing technology and in contrast with the title of the sculpture, contains little concrete.

A set of gears printed with 3D technology

The original sculpture is a gear train with twelve pairs of worms and gears powered by a 200 rpm motor. Each pair reduces the rotational velocity by 1/50. The flip side of this reduction in velocity is the increase in torque. The final gear has an immense amount of torque and a rotational velocity that allows the gear to make a complete turn in well over two trillion years. The punchline of this piece of art, is that the final gear is embedded in a block of solid concrete. Which raises the interesting question: How long until it sticks?

The original “Machine with Concrete” in action.

While the original build contained metal gears, the replica “Printed Machine with Concrete” used 3D printed gears of PLA. This is an interesting choice because PLA isn’t regarded a very durable type of plastic with a glass-transition-temperature of around 60 degrees centigrade. After assembly, the final gear was cast in concrete like the original. Leaving another interesting question: Will the last gear be able to make a significant amount of rotation before turning to dust?

Jeshua’s reward was notable, as he emailed his source of inspiration Arthur Ganson a link to the project he replied enthusiastically “looks FANTASTIC!”. A fine piece of 3D printed art.

The replica “Printed Machine with Concrete” spinning round and round.






Posted in 3D Printing Applications

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