Hand-Operated Wooden Worm Gear Model

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Project by DaleMaley posted 430 days ago 2753 views 10 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I have made a lot of hand-operated wood models. The book Building Wooden Machines by Bridgewater & Bridgewater has a neat pattern for a worm gear model.

To add some color to the model, I used padauk for the 2 bearings and purple heartwood for the crank. I also dyed the pegs on the bearings. The base is maple and the gear red oak.

The book called for whittling out the worm gear with a sharp knife. Instead, I used the Dremel with 2 different sizes of sanding drums to cut the worm gear. I much prefer the Dremel method safety wise compared to the sharp knife!

I made a YouTube video of the model in operation.

If you want to read more about my trials and tribulations of building this model, see my web site.

-- Dale, Illinois,

13 comments so far

View ChrisK's profile


920 posts in 1580 days

#1 posted 429 days ago

Pretty Cool. What is the ratio? I cold see that in a candy dispenser and a marble machine.

-- Chris K

View joein10asee's profile


2756 posts in 506 days

#2 posted 429 days ago

First thing I thought of too Chris. A candy machine!
Great job Dale, you build some cool toys!

-- Perform A Random Act Of Kindness Today ... Pay It Forward

View helluvawreck's profile


14571 posts in 1365 days

#3 posted 429 days ago

This is a real nice conversation piece. Nicely done.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View nitewalker41's profile


362 posts in 1191 days

#4 posted 429 days ago


-- "older I get, the more fun I have"

View Ken90712's profile


14500 posts in 1688 days

#5 posted 429 days ago

This is so cool. way to go I will be buying the book always fun to make stuff like this. I dont have a lathe so seeing that you accomplished this without one is even better. Thx for sharing and nice web site you have as well.

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View DaleMaley's profile


91 posts in 735 days

#6 posted 429 days ago

The gear ratio is 32:1.

There are 32 teeth on the spur gear.

-- Dale, Illinois,

View RichCMD's profile


110 posts in 440 days

#7 posted 429 days ago

Very nice. I like it a lot.

-- Men admire the man who can organize their wishes and thoughts in stone and wood and steel and brass. Ralph Waldo Emerson

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


14397 posts in 2175 days

#8 posted 429 days ago

Nice work. Looks like a good idea to incorporate into a marble machine drive ;-)

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Ted78's profile


156 posts in 499 days

#9 posted 429 days ago

Nicely done. I have that same book, “Making More Mechanical Models” but for the life of me I can’t locate the book I assume was written prior to this one.

-- Ted

View Fishinbo's profile


11162 posts in 675 days

#10 posted 427 days ago

Really enjoy your wooden machines, fun to have and need great talent and skills to create one.


View mcoyfrog's profile


2477 posts in 2093 days

#11 posted 51 days ago

I dig your cup in all your photos

-- Wood and Glass they kick (well you know) Have a great day - Dug

View DaleMaley's profile


91 posts in 735 days

#12 posted 51 days ago

I think the first woodworking project I did, I emailed photos of the finished project to friends. One of my buddies complained he could not tell the scale of the item. So, I added the coffee cup to all my finished projects.

Then I forgot once….....and sure enough the same buddy gave me a hard time for forgetting the coffee cup :)

-- Dale, Illinois,

View mcoyfrog's profile


2477 posts in 2093 days

#13 posted 50 days ago

LOL funny. Thats what tells you that your friends care. hee hee Me and my buds harass each other all the time.

-- Wood and Glass they kick (well you know) Have a great day - Dug

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