« Optical Fiber Interferometer Detects Dynamical 3-Space Turbulence | Main | The Quantum Dynamics of Life »

PrintPrinter-friendly version

Overbalancing Gravity Motor - Johannes Bessler Rehabilitated?

Great controversy marks the history of attempts to harness the force of gravity. Somewhat condescendingly termed perpetual motion, such gravity-harnessing designs have received little more than smug comments about the state of sanity of their inventors, and in the absence of any technological implementation actually in use, their feasibility was easily denied by the denizens of scientific orthodoxy. Detractors say such a self-running device would be in violation of the law of conservation of energy. Many disagree, as gravity is a real force that can be tapped if only we have the right technology.


The history of overbalancing wheels is spotty, to say the least, with most barely able to turn and unable to overcome the restraining forces of friction. But there was at least one notable exceptions, the Bessler Wheel which not only could overcome the friction and do continuous work. One of Bessler's wheels was verified by such a public figure of his time as the Landgraf of Hessen/Kassel, who was shown the normally concealed mechanism by Johannes Bessler, the inventer. Apparently the mechanism was very simple and effective, but the discovery was lost because the inventor could not find a buyer and the Landgraf kept his vow of secrecy.

Although there are good sites about Bessler's invention on the net, none of the researchers have so far been able to replicate the technology.

But things seem to be changing now. There are two modern-day implementations of the overbalancing wheel tech that seem to work just fine, and we can see them on video.

- - -

Scott Hall has designed an overbalancing gravity wheel that actually does what it's supposed to do - keep turning by making use of the force of gravity. PES Wiki has a page on this invention, which is open to public editing and contribution by anyone interested.

This video shows the wheel make a few turns.

To show this is not a fluke, there is another, different design that also seems to work, which Scott replicated. The report about the replication with a link to videos of both the original and the replication is here:


So perhaps Bessler can finally be rehabilitated. At least his memory of being one of the first to present a working gravity motor might be cleansed of the tinge of insanity his detractors were happy to attach in order to save the sacred cow of one of the "immutable laws of physics".

Update 14 August: A word of caution:

Sterling Allan has asked a friend and engineer to duplicate the Gravity Wheel built by Scott F. Hall, a replica of a unit designed by YouTube user paddyboytube.
http://peswiki.com/index.php/OS:Scott_F._Hall:Gravity_Motor_B to possibly present at the Gnomedex conference.

"He used his lathe to build the two wheels. He programmed a CNC machine to precision-drill the three holes in the wheels. He also lathed the dowels and weighed them. The perpendicular dowels pivot with very little friction.

It is about as precise a build as is possible given today's technology.

He will be sending me an MPEG video of it shortly.

So, does it work? Does it propel itself across a flat surface via the static power of gravity?

No. It rolls along and decelerates as the mass and friction would predict by standard laws of physics. He removed the perpendicular dowels and rolled it, and it performed the same way.

No joy.

I'm still curious about the design that Scott came up with, however, based on the results Doug produced, I'm inclined to believe that Scott's floor has enough of an incline for his two demos to roll along down that incline. Most garage floors are slightly sloped to allow water to run out and not pool."

Update 22 August: Maybe we aren't at the stage of validation just yet. Scott Hall apparently got tired over all the challenging comments he received and burned his prototypes. He said he'd be back when he has unassailable proof...

See also this article about the Bob Kostoff Gravity Machine
This Canadian invented an overbalanced 'wheel', actually a beam rotating on a horizontal axis, which uses part of the energy generated by gravity to send the weights to the right end of the beam where they can do the most work and will create the least opposition to the turning. Once started it will accelerate on its own until breaks are applied. It has a useful energy output, depending on size.

Another machine of this kind, but this one ready to deliver power, was invented by an Armenian engineer. It was recently featured on PESWiki.

Here is a video about it

Here is a historical example of a wheel that reportedly worked, using gravity to do work. Built in 1909, it was used for a while but fell in disuse when the inventor died. Someone acquired the wheel, and polished it up, but the details of its operation seem to be still shrouded in mystery.

BuzzSaw Gravity Wheel of 1909

PrintPrintable Version



Pull this up for a continuously running machine:


His first name is Milkovic, and has a gravity driven machine, mis-dubbed perpetual motion.

I am in the process of building one, even though there seems to be no way (for the moment,anyway) of upscaling this to do anything useful. I expect to get just a little more than I need (maybe 15 watts) to keep it running, but it's certainly a rather interesting invention. He has it patented.

Jim Wright

wow - what faith. It looks to me like nearly a thousand years of failed over balanced wheels should be enough to conclude they don't work - that and the laws of physics.
The pathetic history of free energy claims is full of stories of someone who said to have had it . . . . oh and then it got lost. hey, how would you lose the greatest invention in the history of mankind? - but we are told it has been lost many many times by many people. The more simple explanation is these people are con men.
But, hey show me a real one and I will gladly lose face.

Eric Krieg

If these devices worked at all, he would demonstrate it by turning them around and letting them roll the opposite direction accros the same "supposedly" level surface.

M. R. Franks comments by email:


It seems to me the Bessler gravity motor is fallacious. Imagine for a moment that each weight on the wheel weighs exactly one pound, and the distance from the lowest point of the weight's journey up to the highest point is exactly one foot. One foot-pound of kinetic energy must therefore be expended to lift the weight from its lowest point to its highest point. Upon reaching the highest point, the weight now represents one foot-pound of potential energy, which is given back in its descent back to the lowest point. One foot-pound to lift the weight one foot, and one foot pound given back when its falls back down that one foot. Zero sum.

If the contraption appears to roll freely, it does so by inertia. A plain wheel of equal size and weight (but with no moving parts) would roll just as freely and just as far (perhaps farther because of lack of internal friction). But a plain wheel rolling freely across the gymnasium floor to the farthest wall surprises no one. The Bessler wheel, chugging along and making lots of noise as it goes, gives the false impression that it is moving spontaneously under internal power. Both wheels will eventually come to rest.


M. R. Franks

My reply:

The Bessler gravity motor is a historical fact. It was quite well documented as a working apparatus, that kept working for several weeks in a closed and sealed off room, and was still working when the room was opened later. No fraud was discovered. Bessler never did reveal the secret of his invention, he had asked a sum of money for that which no one was willing to pay. The mechanism was revealed to his sponsor and patron, the count of Hessen Kassel, who said that the mechanism was workable and indeed was so simple that anyone with manual skills could make one of those wheels if told how to do it.

This present implementation of the principle (we don't know if it is the same mechanism) is better documented, as we can see both the mechanism and a clip of it working in videos.

On this page ( http://peswiki.com/index.php/OS:Scott_F._Hall:Gravity_Motor_B ) about two thirds down the page, there are two videos linked showing one of the rolling gravity wheels going first from one side of the table to the other, and then in the reverse direction.

Wonderful, how all these 'gravity'devices (along with over-unity homopolar generators and Wimshurst machines) turn out to be still-born after long gestations in the womb-minds of their creators. There is not a single working exemplar of any of them in the public domain and there never has been. Only their inventors can make them function:none are reproducible in the real world of science or industry. The whole history of such devices is besmirched with quasi-mystical crankiness, conspiracy theory and downright fraud. To suggest that the people who have evolved technology to its present degree of sophistication lack the insight to successfully back-engineer the 'simple' mechanisms of an 18th Century inventor is patently absurd. Conclusion? It can't be done.

It is exemplary to note that Bessler died in poverty, despite the fact that he could have sold his secrets for enough money to keep him in comfort. And, oh yes,he burned all his papers in time-honoured fashion. There are lots of smashed machines and piles of ash out there in Perpetual Motion Land. But none of those wondrous devices doing useful work to help us in our everyday lives.

Look here, saw the video again, who donloaded it.

In the assembly, there is a little difference from the tested one.

The scott is a bit openned, the up central pin must be larger.
Scott modified the braces, changing the equilibrium.

Is really perfectly circular? The original probably was not circular, but a bit oval.

Side view of two circular patterns that is a bit triangular, forms a 6 point star that reach equilibrium as the two under points reach the ground, making a completion of the movement where it needs fulfill.
If the braces of the device has wood fibers that slow down the movement in one direction, is another why this could be working.
-Try lift one piece to see that if it last to reach the equilibrium, the device will work!

5 No one burns a working prototipe!
This was caused by some Threat.

No one that is true free energy worry about PHD status or so.

Cmon! Did yore really can´t see that this was again supressed?

Get back yours shelves now!

Make a damn working replication!

I've always believed that Bessler did, in fact, have a working overbalanced wheels. To say he didn't is to suggest he hoaxed all of the tests and demonstrations he gave of them and that it is impossible to build a mechanical system of weights within a wheel whose center of gravity will always remain on the wheel's descending side as it rotates.

One can not confidently assert that such a mechanism is, in fact, physically impossible until and unless one can try every possible mechanical system which I certainly don't think has happened yet despite all of the inventors who have worked on this problem over the centuries.

While it is true that it has been almost 300 years since Bessler demonstrated his first gravity wheel and no one else has duplicated his inventions, I continue to have faith that, eventually, if enough people try to replicate his achievement, one very lucky person will someday find the secret mechanism that allow his amazing wheels to run perpetually.

It is not luck which has unlocked Bessler design..if you want to know the truth...I'd Like to see Donald Simanek and Eric Krieg unveil it...this not as retaliation of any type, but rather to bring both there integrity and anylytical acumen to the ...declaration...We have the Bessler Wheel

Whatever you decide, Richard.

I'd be happy to have the information here for my readers, whenever you're ready to publish.

Greetings Earthlings,
A friend of mine recently told me about some P.M. machine that he was building. As with most people searching for the elusive holy grail of energy, I was unable to convince him to surrender and spend his time and money on fun things in life, or at least help someone less fortunate.

After he told me about his machine I decided to research the notion fully. I did so already aware of one fact that most everyone’s mother fooling with said machines failed to teach them. After math, after physics, after spending 800 plus years……looking…in vain….


Bessler was also a fraud but in the 1700’s it would have been far easier to be a fraudster.

There should be a special room to lock all of you loony birds into that is full of gears, weights, wheels, erector sets and tinker toy sets. So you could play happily together in a dream land with like child minds that you all have. THE STUFF DON’T WORK. Never has, never ever will…so have fun with that in mind.

Bessler's demonstrations were and are still unbelievable, but they were real and true. I find it hard to believe that with the kind of demonstrations and tests by influential scientific figures such as Wilhem Gravesande, Bessler's wheel was a hoax. Bessler claimed to have created the system that could attain perpetual motion. A look at some of his writings indicate that he acknowledged that his system was scientifically proven. This is a quote from 'Das Triumphirende Perpetuum Mobile Orffyreanum', Johann Bessler, Kassel, 1719, pp. 16-23. provided by Al Bacon, translation by Ted of Chicago:

" The internal structure of this drum( or wheel) consisits of weights arranged according to several a proiri, that is, scientifically demonstrable, laws of mechanical perpetual motion."

I believe in a way he was trying to show that his invention was not going against the laws of known science. It seems he discovered a way of achieving perpetual motion using known science. I have always held the belief that it is possible to attain perpetual motion and have also been working on it for quite some time. For anyone who may be interested,I have placed some information on this on my blog at


I think demonstrated results should override theory. What happens if person demonstrates working wheel now? Will it be accepted?

Leave a comment


Receive updates

Email updates for new articles

Enter your Email