Leonardo’s Machines

Military machines


Although Leonardo considers the war a “beastly madness“, the governors of the time consider it an integral part of the exercise of power. At their service, Leonardo is dedicated to the design of new machines such as the machine gun,easy to carry consisting of mouths of fire, called“crackles“. He also designed the tank,a large covered tank, protected by a conical shield. Equipped with a central turret and cannons along the perimeter, it could move across the battlefield with four cogwheels activated by eight men.

It is also dedicated to perfecting existing machines such as crossbows, catapults, bombs and cannons. It also designs a revolving bridge that is easily built with logs and ties and allows for fast and unexpected troop movements. Its unique parabolic span structure is supported by two side winches and a lich that allows 90 degrees rotation.

Leonardo and the study of flight

In Milan he is dedicated to observing the flight of birds and designs the air screw, in which a prototype helicopter is recognized. Most flying machines, however, are equipped with wings inspired by those of bats, as in the design of theornithopter,the oldest attempt to design a flying object.

The bicycle project

Leonardo is also credited with the bicycleproject, most likely realized by his student Gian Giacomo Caprotti,who relied on the studies of the master. Designed entirely in wood, the bicycle was designed with a horizontal frame that connects two equal-sized wheels with hubs and rays. It is equipped with a transmission chain to connect the pedals to the rear wheel.

Engineer in Italy and France

During his lifetime Leonardo worked as a court engineer in both Italy and France.

His first experience was in Milan, called by Ludwig the Moro and later in Romagna in the service of Cesare Borgia during his military campaigns.

In 1517, wanted by King Francis I,Leonardo moved to France where he spent the last years of his life, until his death in Cloux at the age of 67.

Models of Machines to Be Built

In our 3D Book Leonardo finds 12 models to cut, fold and paste. To create perfect models of Leonardo da Vinci’s Machines you can follow our tips.

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