Beautiful south-pointing chariot kit

Indie makers RLT Industries of New Braunfels, TX, sell this lovely wooden model kit of the classic “south-pointing chariot” mechanism: Set the chariot down with the vane pointing in an arbitrary direction–south, north, whatever–and a geared differential connected to the wheels will keep it pointing the same direction regardless of which way the chariot turns. Their version went through eight prototypes to get the gearing just right and seems like a helladeal at $59.

Lego south pointing chariot

2 thoughts on “Beautiful south-pointing chariot kit

  1. But an error in the description: “…the Chinese invented one nearly three centuries ago…”
    It was probably developed in the third century, or about 18 centures ago.
    Ah, it seems like only yesterday.

Comments are closed.


I am descended from 5,000 generations of tool-using primates. Also, I went to college and stuff. I am a long-time contributor to MAKE magazine and My work has also appeared in ReadyMade, c't – Magazin für Computertechnik, and The Wall Street Journal.

View more articles by Sean Michael Ragan