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MMD > Archives > August 2001 > 2001.08.06 > 01Prev  Next

Seek Plans to Build a Musical Marotte
By Michael Hollies

-- forwarded message, please reply to sender and MMD --

Philippe Rouille suggested that you might help me.  Do you know
where plans or diagrams are available for making a marotte with
a music box inside?

An image at Philippe's "Musica mecanica" web site gives an idea
of what I am looking for:

A similar 'jester's head on a stick' appearance is shown at

A friend has a marotte that was made for her by an old friend.  It
consists of a hollow wooden ball 3 to 3-1/2 inches in diameter that
contains the music machinery.  It has a fabric jester's hat and
collar attached to the top and bottom and it is mounted on a wooden
rod about a foot long.  When you twirl the wand, the head spins and
creates the music, as it is spun.  Unlike the Victorian marottes I've
seen on the web, it has no body underneath the head.

I estimate this marotte was made in the early 1980's.  My friend
thinks that the plans may have been published a few decades ago in
"Popular Mechanics" magazine but I have not been able to locate that
issue.  I located music box mechanisms that would function that way
but were not sturdy enough for prolonged use.

The information I am looking for concerns the gearing mechanism that
drives the music box and where compact reliable music box machinery
can be found. If any of your readers has embarked on a similar
project or has related information, it would be helpful.

Yours truly

Michael Hollies
Newmarket, Ontario, Canada

 [ Joyce Brite checked Oxford English Dictionary (OED), which indicates
 [ the word is borrowed from French:  marotte: 1. A fool's bauble;
 [ 2. A pet notion, craze.  -- Robbie

(Message sent Sun 29 Jul 2001, 19:44:21 GMT, from time zone GMT-0400.)

Key Words in Subject:  Build, Marotte, Musical, Plans, Seek

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