IHC Sky Wheel #5112 - Construction Log

In the photo above, the two short orange plastic bars are supposed to be used to connect the four orange gears in pairs. However, I decided to replace these bars with steel rods - with the intention that these would result in smoother and quieter running.

Again, I replaced a long plastic rod (that connects the main drive gear to the motor) with a steel rod.

I didn't have any IHC motors, so I had to improvise. I studied a YouTube video of a real Sky Wheel and found that it made one complete revolution in about 15 seconds. To get the same speed, the drive shaft needs to rotate 5 times in 15 seconds. I ended up connecting a 40-toothed gear to the drive shaft and attaching a 10-toothed gear to a Mclennan Geared DC Motor #399-9919 which rotates at about 90rpm @ 9vDC.

I used some wire mesh to cover the gap where the IHC motor should have gone.

Here's how the mechanism works:

The orange horizontal bar is glued to the two main supports and therefore doesn't rotate.
The large silver gear on the left is glued to the horizontal bar, so that doesn't rotate either.
The large silver gear on the right is glued to the main silver frame of the Sky Wheel. The frame is free to rotate around the main axis.

The drive shaft turns the (just visible) orange gear at the top of the right-hand support. This causes the large silver gear and the main frame to rotate. As the Sky Wheel frame rotates, the static silver gear on the left causes the orange gears on the left to turn, this then forces the orange gears that they are connected to also turn. The teeth of these gears engage with the teeth on the side of each ferris wheel, and so the ferris wheels rotate.


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