Wheel: easy. Use magnetic switches on the static portion (part that doesn't move). You can buy these switches at Radio Shack (house alarm switches).
Then just rig up a simple SCR-based circuit. Since the switches are momentary (i.e. they only remain open while the magnet passes by), you will need
to use the SCR's to do the actual switching of the circuit. The alarm switches are just used to keep from causing any physical drag, but you will
want to find the smallest ones possible so you don't have alot of magnetic attraction to cause drag.
Self powering Magnet motors are not considered 'perpetual', apparently because magnets have a certain lifespan and need replacing or some crap like
that (which would actually make PMM's nonexistent since EVERYTHING has a limited lifespan, be it ten years or a couple thousand trillion years).
Oh, and a solar panel would definitly kill the PMM, as it would be considered (I think) an external power source. If there is no light, it woun't
start, right? BUT, I think if you have a rechargable battery that started it, remained in the system, and was recharged by the motion (converted
static electricity?), then you would be OK. I have an idea for a true PMM that is purely mechanical... and if my calcs are correct, it will self
start... I just gotta wait until my boss goes on vacation before I fire up the Gerber table router and make it
BTW, you can buy almost any type of cog, gear, pully, or whatnot that you need... just look online or go talk to a local machine shop and they can
order you what you need. If you need parts made, talk to an 'all-around' sign shop, such as the one I work for. Some shops do injection molding,
die-cutting, and have CNC machines (most likely some kind of CNC Table router such as the Gerber Dimension 200), and should be able to help you out
with some of the parts.
Not sure about the AutoCad crap, myself... I can draw up perfectly good plans in Illustrator. AutoCad is a nightmare for ANYONE to work with, and
mainly caters to plotter output. We get architectural drawings that are in AutoCad and we can't do a damned thing with them except convert them to a
solid BMP or TIFF image and retrace them in Illustrator (sorry, engineers... I have alot of engineer friends who feel the same way as I do...
including my boss.. it's just a fact... AutoCad sucks unless you are swapping files with other AutoCad users or outputting to a plotter).
*EDIT: Doh! Sry, XL5... we are talking about the same idea for the most part, lol... I think that using the mag-switches as an actuator and using the
SCR's to actually do the switching (takes much less current to activate an SCR than a relay).
[edit on 7-7-2004 by Earthscum]