The site is devoted to the reconstruction of some of Leonardo da Vinci’s most innovative mechanical designs, I say reconstruction but there is no actual evidence that any of these designs were ever constructed in Leonardo’s time, but the designs have been recorded in his journals have been preserved in the Codices held in libraries across Europe and America.
He was a brilliant man described as an Artist-Engineer and Inventor, his interests were tremendously varied ranging from Medicine, Anatomy and through to Geology, so the area that this site concentrates on, is his mechanical designs that he proposed in his journals and collected together under the Codex Atlanticus. This Codex contains many fine examples of his inventive mind, the quality and detail contained in the drawings helps those following his ideas to bring them to reality.
If you are interested in the broader span of Leonardo’s life and works the you should have a look at this wiki page http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leonardo_da_Vinci
From my studies of the drawings and of his life, his current day equivalent would be a freelance designer, having said that I can’t imagine that there are many, if any pepole around today that can encompass the scope of work that he undertook. He had an unquenshable curiosity that he persued with vigour, but to support himself he had to find work where he could, and in that way he was the same as a freelance designer of modern day. The drawings in his journals represent his pitch to potential employers or sponsors, and so contained innovative ideas and problem solutions in sufficient detail to excite the interest of the potential sponsor. The problem is that you can never use just that sketch to actually build the devices, for that the mechanics and machinists of the day need more detail drawings showing the components required to realise the design. It is this step that is missing from the record, and it is this step that I hope to offer to you on this web site.
My approach to this is to analyse the designs presented in the Codex and look at them in relation to the technology and devices that were around at the time, so that we can see where Leonardo drew his ideas and his inspiration.
Each design will be displayed on the site as a series of rendered illustrations similar to this one shown to the right, along with a couple of drawing sheets to illustrate how the design could be built. If you want to try building the model for yourself I offer a full set of scale plans of the Spingarde and the Odometer as well as offering the CAD files in 3D and 2D formats.
I shall be starting with one of Leonardo’s war machines, it is a cannon designed around 1482 and represents a typical design approach used by Leonardo to take elements of current technology and then combine them in an innovative way to produce a new and novel design.
The web site will grow as more designs are added over the coming months so do come back again to see these new additions. I hope you find your visit to the site rewarding and if you have any comments or suggestions please contact me.
Welcome to Brian Law’s Leonardo Da Vinci Models