Most useless machine upgrade — now with a button!

There’s a soft spot in our hearts for pointless projects, as long as they’re well executed. [Bertho] really hit the mark with his take on the most useless machine. We’ve seen several renditions of this concept, most of them hinging on a box that will turn a mechanical switch off whenever you turn it on. But this take uses a push button to activate a switch flipping mechanism on another part of the machine.

You can see the drive gears in the image above. The final gear has a small bar which flips a switch to one side or the other. The circuit does this without the need of a microcontroller. A 7400 series NAND gate chip, some passive components, and two mechanical relays are all it takes. At each push of the button, the logic chip trips one of the relays to trigger the appropriate motor direction based on the current state of that switch. You can press the button during movement, but all that will do is delay theĀ inevitableĀ flip of the switch.

10 thoughts on “Most useless machine upgrade — now with a button!

  1. I have all the electronics ready for my upgrade on the most useless machine, just have to get the mechanics done.
    also, i think the traffic busted his website.

    1. The site is not busted, just heavily loaded. Moved one video to another server and recoded the images to lesser quality. Still serving pages though, albeit slowly.

  2. FINALLY im TIRED of always hitting toggle switches … i dont have time any more! now all my problems are solved!

    any one else think these things were originally made my aprature laboratories?

  3. O-M-G!

    Finally – a hack that isn’t brain-dead simple, or has a freeking microcontroller!!! Or both.

    (It’s merely useless)

  4. does anyone know where I can find that similar gear assembly? i need to find a gearbox with at least a 50:1 gear reduction and capable of handling heavy torque from a brushless motor.

  5. when I was like 10 years old, I didn’t know what a relay was, let alone a latching relay, so I made something like this :)

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