End of life for one thing can often be the beginning of life for another.
Among the Infernal Device crew, this has been an intentional thought in both design and execution. We are pleased to have been able to find many ways to put this in action.
In addition to the main structural beams, which I talked about in the Story of the Beams, there are many other stories built into the device.
The weight of the drum and the shaft is carried by a bearing at the bottom of the device. This bearing surfaced out of a farmer’s little red drawer of spare parts, once a bearing from the unload auger of a Combine. The Belt that drives the main gears and keeps the whole device turning came from the floor of an auto mechanic’s shop- destined for a trash can, but rescued and given a second life here. Some of the wood in the main drum was plywood that was left over and cast off from the set of “Thirty Minutes or Less”, a movie shot right here in Grand Rapids Michigan. The iron bars in the safety railing around the device were found dusty and abandoned in the back corner of an antique shop,we cleaned them up and gave them a new purpose. The Main shaft was a treasure located by one of our team mates in a metal scrapyard, discarded from unknown sources but impossible tucked into a minivan and driven back to the build site with great excitement. The Pulleys in the drive train were constructed from wood scraps saved in the Cogbots shop and repurposed here. The Scraps were created during the creation and cutting of gears for The Gear Lab, which will be visiting the Infernal Device site this weekend.
Of course, we dream of the device having a long life in a place where people can meet and gather around it for years to come- but we know that all good things will eventually come to an end. Just as important as the source of our parts, we know that most of the parts in the device will eventually move on to other lives and uses. The batteries and controller in the accumulator will be essential to the power system in a friend’s house. The demo Solar Panels on loan from Four Elements Energy will be used in future projects. The simplicity of the parts used to build the device means that it could be dis-assembled and the parts used to build other things- either purely functional, or functionally aesthetic like the device is today.