Typically, most of the gears we use in our life are made of plastic or metal. However, wood gears can do just fine in some simple roles, and they’re utterly pleasant to make, as this video from [botto bie] demonstrates.
With steady hands, it’s easy to make basic gears by hand with basic tools and a printer. You just need the help of a spur gear generator to produce the required outlines for you to follow. [botto bie] uses the online tool from Evolvent Design which will spit out DXF or SVG files as you desire.
Basic woodworking techniques are used to produce the gears, and they prove simple and effective. A rack is produced by first applying a involute tooth template with paper to a rectangular piece of wood. A series of circular and table jigsaw operations are then used to cut out the required material to produce the rack. A variety of toothed gears are produced in a similar fashion.
If you’re lacking a CNC machine or a 3D printer, this can be a great way to experiment. Bonus points if you use your wooden geartrain as part of some kind of exciting mechanism, like an automated marble run or musical contraption. Video after the break.