The archetypal Renaissance Man, Leonardo da Vinci was not only an extraordinary artist, but also was a pioneering designer and engineer. The extent of his unceasing ingenuity and passion for knowledge has only really been grasped over the course of the last 150 years or so, and we can now be sure that he was truly one of the most fascinating and fiercely passionate minds in human history, advancing the understanding of the body, establishing painting techniques and, above all, conceptualizing many inventions such as the helicopter, the armored car, and even solar power, all hundreds of years ahead of his time.
Frontline Hobbies is proud to present its intriguing collection of da Vinci models from Academy and Italeri. With them, you are able to re-imagine some of these astounding inventions yourself, by building them and then watching how the mechanism would have worked, bringing to life some of da Vinci’s most awe-inspiring theoretical designs, straight from Leonardo’s sketchbook in Renaissance Italy to your home.
Academy Plastic Model Da Vinci's Machines
Some of the most famous of Leonardo da Vinci’s revolutionary creations can be better understood with Academy’s replica models. See Renaissance period war machines in action with the catapult or the armored car models. Or even take da Vinci’s notorious helicopter for a spin. Sketches of this design for a helicopter date back to 1493, a staggering 450 years before an actual helicopter would take to the skies! Though it was never made in his time, Academy’s plastic model replica helps translate those concepts conceived by da Vinci centuries ago into the physical world.
As well as flying machines, there are also some beautifully simple and yet unbelievably advanced designs from da Vinci which have been faithfully replicated by Academy, such as his design for a clock more accurate than there had ever been before in his time, and a self-supporting arched bridge.
Italeri Plastic Model Da Vinci's Machines
As well as also offering the classic designs such as the catapult and helicopter, Frontline Hobbies’ collection of Italeri da Vinci models contains some different options like the mechanical lion. This model replicates as closely as possible the design that in 1515 was built and presented to Francois I, then King of France, as a means of entertainment and diplomacy during a banquet hosted by Florentine merchants and Giuliano de' Medici in Lyon. There is an air of mystery however as to how exactly the automated animal worked, with da Vinci seemingly so far ahead of the expected mechanical capabilities of his age.
Italeri also offers a model of Leonardo da Vinci’s Multi-Cannon Gunship, designs for which were noted down in Leonardo’s Codex Atlanticus. When the sketches were assessed, it was revealed that this was a naval war machine, circular in shape and containing 18 bombards.
All Italeri products in the da Vinci machine model range come with a booklet with fascinating historical and scientific details of the specific original machine design on which the model is based, and also with 3D drawings of those mechanisms, so that you can learn the story behind the design and then see it in action once assembled.
Clock is based on the escapement sketched by Leonardo da Vinci
Uses the pendulums weight as its power source
Power is harnessed from a horizontal rotary pendulum design
Clock speed is controlled by adjusting the weight and balance
Assemble as either a wall mounted or standing configuration
No glue or paint required
■ Adopted power equipment unit designed by Leonardo da Vinci
■ Paddle wheels operated by mechanical spring
■ The first design of a car in human history drawn by Leonardo Da Vinci
■ Spring powered car
No Paint or Glue Required
The ornithopter is a machine designed to fly by the flapping of its wings in imitation of birds.In 1485, Leonardo da Vinci began to study the flight of birds. He grasped that humans are too heavy, and not strong enough, to fly using wings simply attached to the arms. Therefore he sketched a device in which the aviator lies down on a plank and works two large, membranous wings using hand levers, foot pedals, and a system of pulleys.
No Glue or Paint Required
Sheets 90/v and 91/r of the Madrid Code include drawings of “strange� mechanisms that are not linked to the treatise on mechanics and often have no explanatory text.
Analysing them led to the reconstruction of mechanisms enabling a mysterious animal, a mechanical lion, to move robotically.
The lion, a gift from Pope Leone X and the town of Florence, was taken to Lyon, in France; on July 12 1515, at the end of a surprising, magical walk before the King of France, Francis I, it stopped knocking some lilies over.
It can be considered one of the first animal-like robots ever built.
No Paint or Glue Required
That genius of Leonardo Da Vinci doesn’t need any presentation. All his inventions and ideas written by him in the Atlantic Code were in many senses forefront. Many of these, that today we take for granted, are based on its thoughts and visions. Regarding the clock, Leonardo da Vinci wasn’t the inventor, he only improved it. The clock has two separated mechanisms: one for the hours and the other for the minutes, everything made by an elaborated connection between weights, gears and ropes.