Corn Gears

Buy at Copyright (c) 2014, M. Oskar van Deventer. Corn Gear is a gear-design exercise. The teeth of the gears are wound in a helix around a cylinder at a 13:5 angle. Two mirror-image corn gears can roll over each other at 0 degrees, like normal gears, but at 90 degrees as well. The corn gears can also roll over a flat gear bed. Frequently Asked Question: />Buy mass-produced Oskar puzzles at (USA, CA) and (EU) Buy exclusive 3D-printed Oskar puzzles at

I don't know about this one..... Looks a little corny...
Narwhal Bacon
You had me at corn.
You could use them to move a 3D printer tray
Maybe as the drive system for some sort of sex toy?
William Herron
If you put them perpendicular, like you did in the last example, then you could assemble a thing like a 3D printer uses, where two motors move two beams back and forth over each other, except the motors would move with the beams. This would be really neat in 3D printing, and could be used in tandem with simple robotics kits to make a cheap and much easier-to-build 3D printer.
Felix Modellbusse
It would be great for 3D printers or plotter.
Kai Hammond
Cover the floor with the green gears, then wear corn gear shoes. hours of fun!
How about a shredder? Would that work?
Andrew Cleary
It could possibly have an application in CNC equipment.
It´s like a rack and pinion in both directions at once. So I guess the application could be something where you want to convert movement to torque and torque to movement. If you use 2 of those crossings in series you could make something that shifts both movement and rotation sideways. Does "coolness" count as an application, or does it have to serve a purpose?
This can be used for two-stepper X-Y plotters. Currently a X-Y plotter requires three stepper motors and two of them should be in perfect sync (two X steppers in respective beams kept in sync hauling the Y stepper beam) Currently there is no perfect way to keep the two X steppers in sync - one can replace the two steppers with two screw rods belted together to one stepper motor but the belts' elasticity will cause the two rods be out of sync. This kind of mechanism can be used to construct a two-stepper X-Y plotter without the need of synchronizing anything.
Hook each gear up to a stepper motor, put them on axes that allow them to slide back and forth, then use them to control a flat surface... perhaps the working table of a CNC machine or a 3D printer.
Jonathan Weber
There is a very specific usage that I am currently looking up right now. I saw them while working as an engineer in the manufacturing field. Basically, using two motors, you can make very precise movements on 2 axes to move platforms around. The advantage is that you can have dozens of platforms moving on the same surface, which is great for manufacturing. I'll try to find you a video.
Tristan Frodelius
You could have called it a cob. Because it's so close to cog.
Ben Van Den Broeck
Y & X axis platform movement on a 3D printer is my first guess at functionality. Kinda impractical though with no obvious benefit.
Worm Driver
a force feedback 3d mouse
Luc K.
To move something around in a box? Perhaps a laser, so you can cut things out of a metal plate?
Sonne und Mond
Hi, i'm Oskar van Deventer... 🌾✌️👴🏼🌺
John Fraser
Adjustable X and Y axis for a milling machine or other CNC type device.
Dan R. Hansen
You could eliminate the belt on cheaper CNC styled machines. Like a 3D printer.
Hey Oskar, it just kinda dawned on me. You're an engineer and making puzzles and curious objects is your hobby but this is pretty straight forward inventing that you're doing here, isn't it? I don't see a purpose of corn gears but there's gotta be one, and I dunno if these are practical but they're at least something. At the end of the day, this video could be history in the making, where Oskar van Deventer invented the cylindrical gear. People could look back and wonder why its called the "Corn gear" in engineering parlance and never know the story (other then the obvious explanation).   My point with all of this is just to point out how novel it is for you to be working on your hobby like this, and us to be watching you. Good job, Oskar, I guess for doing something so interesting with your free time. 
Vikkie Lolo
It could be used to control a 3d printer or a CNC machine.
perhaps some kind of intertwined siamese cubes, so if you turn ones up layer the other's M layer will turn as well.
Double Dare Fan
This has to be the corniest thing. Corn Gears. LOL! Let's see where these may be used... I know! A corn harvesting machine! Oh, how 'bout a corn grinder! Corn meal for all! Now, I'm thinking of Matthias "Woodgears" Wandel. I wonder what he wood use these for, if he made his own out of wood?
The Aviation
Tanks, CNC, 3D printing, Robots
Small gears could be used in joints of future robots to control very slight angles where a range of motion is required. Printers of all kinds could use that motion to reduce side to side backwards to forward motion and cut down the time it takes to print images and complex shapes in 3D printers. If you made the back of that flat plan into a semi circle with teach like the corn gear you could probably achieve a perfect elbow joint with a similar range to the human elbow or knee if you could find a way to prevent the gears from slipping out of place under weight and it would require motors and actuators and a tension band or spring to prevent the elbow from collapsing under it. Crescent, gear, an array of corn gears stacked on each other and a flat plane with motors going into the corn gears like a drive shaft, this would change the relative position of forearm to the upper arm. There might be a more efficient way to do this but it is certainly doable, If it's 3d printable and the tension rod/band is built into the inside of the elbow you might have an easy 3D printable elbow joint for an amputee that can hold weight, the tension rod/spring could also be hooked up to make the fingers grip more tightly the more it bows. If you can make one that can connect at a 45 degree angle there might be more applications as precision alignment goes.
Scott Taylor
Application would be for xy positioner with stepper motors on each corncob.
That's a great Idea for navigating a 3D printer! go patent it before somebody uses it as his own invention.
A 2D numerical lock. Instead of a normal 1D numerical lock, where you set 3 cylinders with numbers in the right number, you have 3 spheres that you have to rotate in the right position.
Could you make a no-slip high-traction railroad system with this idea?
Put some under a building so when an earthquake happens, the building will slide on the gears and less stress is put on the building itself.
Earthquake proof building stabilization for smart structures.
Game Toy
i don't get the point is it a puzzle or for fun
Jason Zoldos
drive train for belts or tank treads / snow mobiles.  
I would say that 3d printers could be an option for such a gearing system. Since they require moving on a pair of axis, x and y
Rapid high load variable surface height Cartesian coordinate movements if the corn gears had flex.
John Perkin
Would they work as a roots style compressor/supercharger?
It's for machines
I really could see this being used as an x/y positioning system in a plotter of some sort.
Blake Bradley
CNC machining. That would increase reliability by minimizing points of electrical failure
Hose Clamp
Would be extremely useful on conveyor belts.
I wonder if there'd be a shape that could "bite" into the field, so the corn could roll along a wall without falling out.  Or a rubbery one that you stick in with some force. In that case, an application: A playful wall calendar with a grid painted on the field (or made with interlocking coloured pieces), and the day indicated with a spherical version of the corn. Kids could roll the sphere to the next date every morning, with bubble-wrap-like satisfaction.
Mad Joe Mak
A good use: gears that can't slip off each other so they always stay together
it's be good for cnc milling for the X and Y axial movement
@OskarPuzzle A perfect use for this would be an entirely 3d printed x-y table for 3d printers
Olaf Gaspricki
combinate X and Y axis for a selfmade 3d Printer? But think you need 2 corn gears for every axis like a # would look beautiful i think :)
makes me think of a 3D printer. These corn gears could be the entire rod of a 3D printer axis and they could move in two different axis'.
Nino Blumer
3D Printer axis !
You could find use of it in CNC machinery. You got good 2 axis movement here.
Константин Дьяченко
3D Printer! Use it for 3D Printer. Or also for 3D Scanner may be?
Matt Kletke
flat pattern CNC machines perhaps
Over 100mil views and no content
If precise; flipped over, a 3D printing bed.
Idea - 3D printer platform movement
I think of a dynamic conveyor belt..hmm
Matthew McKellar
This would make a fairly fantastic way to move an XY table
Dillon Holmes
could use this in the foundation of houses to move with the quake and not break.
Alejandro Cuevas
Would a spherical gear over the surface be able to move in both axis? It can be rotated using electro-magnetic fields and move with a great grip and precision.
Deus Vult
You could use them to translate an x and y value to a rotational value, and vice versa. Like an etch-a-sketch
Grinding people.
Bo Huggabee
robotics…these would be used for multilateral movements.
robot position control- 3D printing or palletizing
andrás rőczei
3D PRINTER GUYS 3D PRINTER! edit: to clarify i ment it coul'd be used IN 3d printers
Good concept, doesn't appear to have any practical applications as anything I can think of that it could be used for, there are much better and more efficient alternatives already in place to solve the problem. Cool design, though.
Tobias Thulin
earthquake suspension for buildings?
Adam Gausmann
It can be used to form a linear actuator in two dimensions. Like +William Herron said, it could be used for the plate or the head on a 3D printer.
From the very start I was asking myself "practical uses?" I really like some of the ideas in the comments. Great invention/proof of concept!
Peter Corteen
To generate positional movement in a circle
Brandon Fedorick
Maybe for CNC mills/routers if they can be made with little enough backlash
Hello, and thanks for sharing the amazing work you do! Could these geers be used as an unconventional alternative to cranks?
Hello, and thanks for sharing the amazing work you do! Could these geers be used as an unconventional alternative to cranks?
Reid Cagle
CNC machines or 3D printers come to mind....
Abhiram R
for accurate positioning in a plane... might work for 3d printing, etc, to position the nozzle..
Ein Frosch~
3D Printer or CNC in general.
Flip Acre
think* sorry, typo. I think you could make a puzzle using weights, neomagnetic timing and gear spinners to make a masterful puzzle.
Laughter On Water
Application: grain grinder
Hunter W
Claw machines as you can get precise movement and fine tuning of where you want to go
This could be used for devices like 3d printers, or anything that moves on 2 axis 90 degrees to each other.
Build a 3D printer
World Theory
I think this could have some advantages where you need a lot of traction in a limited space, and also need the gears to perform other tasks uniquely suited to corn gears. I think there may be some disadvantages too, like difficulty in fabrication, and difficulty in cleaning. As for practical uses, I'm picturing placing a length measuring ruler on the ends of each gear, and use that to tell you an x and y coordinate that would correspond to a crosshair on a drafting table or something of that nature. Imagine attaching various simple machines to the gears in various ways, and look at how it moves. Now look for those movements in other machines or day to day life. What will you get when you attach a screw thread to the end of the gear? If you are running out of ideas, study a new/different field of engineering, and look for cross-applications.
Can you make the gears conic instead of cilindrical? If you can do that, you can make it, it can be a good idea for a CVT.
if you added another rack gear you could use the 2 corn gears to position the rack gear
Wood 'n' Stuff w/ Steve French
a practical application would be to use the gears to move the XYZ axis of a cnc machine or 3d printer
Its cool but why would you buy it for £74.07? Its not going to have much use
Space Marketeer Kelly
Have them replace the moving mechanism swinging the hook in a claw machine. Doing so might have them operate much more smoothly, and also more visually appealing to the target child consumer.
Jon T
if they were actuated like a CNC machine, they could be used as a base for a 3D printer, the kind that uses liquid resin
Marcel wando
that could be used to set xy position on a machine, like CNC
Flip Acre
In answer to your question: A full stroke auto-violin's bow carrier and driver. Usually a small fast oscillating brush is used. Brush or bow, the dual corn gear would work well for changing the position and give better sound given that it can move laterally during the action. Given the sound of a real violinist.
Benjamin Kelley
A good application would be 3D printing on multiple axes without a bulky setup for the extrusion assembly.
Piotr Loj
This is brilliant! :) The first thing that came into my mind is to use it in microscale to create wheels that can move also i.e. park car by moving just left or right.
richard minnamon
movable platform...platform can be moved sideways forward diagonally
Any type of conveyor system. coal plants, snow mobiles, if you have a belt, you could potentially apply this type of system.
It is a great way to transform a circular movement from an engine to a horizontal movement.
Adam Hill
XY table for a CNC machine?
3d Printer, no belts but gears all the way
Jose Quintero
They could work at the aiming system of a war ship. But probably not because now everything is computarized.
Henk Henksen
Cool idee :D
Cas Van gruijthuijsen
IT coups de Just in a CNC machine
Comrade Kim
these might be good for food production machines