Amazing Hummingbird Automaton!

Hey folks,

I stumbled across this on my woodworking forum. It’s literally one of the most beautiful and amazing things I’ve seen since the rotopult/octopult captured my imagination years ago. Just thought I’d share. He says he has 700 hours into it and I believe it.

Extremely comprehensive and well written plans are $99 on his website:


Oh man. That is pretty great…

Dare I try? …maybe

Coool if I had a 1000mm machine I would probably attempt it.

Just make one half size.

And I thought tuning the X-Carve was difficult. It would take me two years just to adjust all the linkages.


Wow, so tempting…

After seeing Colibri posted on a woodworking forum, I read a lot on Derrick’s website. Curiosity got the best of me and I ordered one of his plans: Contrivance. This is it:


I have been looking at the same design. Are the PDF instructions importable into Vcarve (ie. do that contain vectors or bitmaps)?

EDIT – I just saw that the plans also include DXF format files. I assume those will import perfectly into Vcarve.

Also do you have an estimate yet for what the material costs will be? There are lots and lots of metal components. I was about to start looking them up, but if you have already looked it would save me some time.

No, I haven’t run a BOM cost yet - just looked up a few parts on McMaster. Some of the stainless steel parts are a little pricey and some come in a bag of 50 when only 4 are needed. I know brass is softer but it would be easy to get lengths and cut what is needed.

The dxf files import perfectly into VCarve. The plan I bought uses 1/8", 1/4", 3/8" and 1/2" plywood. I found it easier to set up the imports by moving the files into seperate folder for the four sizes of ply.

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If you like kinetic sculptures, head over to Clayton Boyer Woodworking Designs

Do so at your own risk! Don’t say I didn’t warn you!


Ha! I’ve already got the plans for the Simplicity clock! BTW, Clayton was extremely generous and gave me permission to use one of his gears in a tutorial on how to build his clock. Maybe I should ping Derek…

Me and my kids built his Vortex clock years ago, before I had a CNC router. It was cutting out all those parts on the scroll saw that made me start wanting a CNC!

Also check out Brian Laws wooden clocks available at .

I recently finished one of his clocks (clock 22), which I enjoyed making so much I’ve bought plans for a second clock from him. No idea where I’ll be able to a second one…

I built that before I had a cnc… (the humming bird) Did all the gears with a scroll saw. Its my favorite piece. The instructions were great. It was a challenge, but very doable.

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