Tuesday, May 27, 2008

A Wonderful Motor


An Electro-Magnetic Machine That Fooled a Number of Investors.

About 20 years ago a Mr. Paine had an electro-magnetic engine in Newark, in which many persons whose names are not unknown to fame, and who certainly ought to have known better, "took much stock" in the literal as well as figurative sense. Being in Newark on some other business, I was waited upon by Mr. Paine and invited to see the machine. I accepted the invitation and went with him. The apparatus was shown off with great success, starting with full velocity the moment a connection was made with a little battery of four cells, driving lathes, sawing wood, etc., in a way that demonstrated several horsepower at least. I need hardly say that I was not convinced that perpetual motion had been discovered, but only looked out for the trick.

Nothing, however, could be demonstrated without taking the ponderous machinery to pieces. Near the end of my visit, however, in connection with a pseudo explanation of some point, Mr. Paine once more connected the battery, whereupon the machine, in place of starting promptly as before, made a few turns and stopped. This was of course accounted for by the inventor as caused by sonic derangement of parts, but as, a few minutes later, I went down stairs, I looked at my watch and found that it was five minutes after 6 o'clock. The building at large contained a steam engine, and power was confessedly used in all other parts except those occupied by Mr. Paine. This remarkable failure to start at just about 6 o'clock, therefore, revealed the actual source of energy. The little battery without doubt operated either a belt shafter in a room below or signaled a confederate similarly located for a like purpose.

Not long after Mr. Paine and his electric engine were unsuccessfully sought for by some of his stockholders, and all that was found was a portion of an iron frame of the machine, showing an interior passage for a belt to act on its axle from the room below. The connection between the arrival of 6 o'clock and the stoppage of the motor which I had noticed in my visit, and had, of course, referred to its true cause, was thus demonstrated. — Cassier's Magazine.

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