Ani Niow’s Steampunk Steel and Brass Vibrator Is Steam Powered

Back in 2008 or 2009, Ani Niow had an idea. She started with blocks of stainless steel and brass, and ended up with a steam powered dildo.

This wasn’t meant to be a useful item, you’d have to carry around a steam source, or at least a source of compressed air to operate it. However, as a piece of art, I think it is fantastic.  You can find a little bit more info and pictures on her flickr page.

the steampunk vibrator runs!

from the video description

this is taken after completing the machining of version 2.0 of the engine housing (basically made the same kind, but only one slot for the input holes and not like 9) and experimenting with different weights.

best to listen with speakers that have at least a bit of bass, like probably not laptop speakers. you can hear it vibrating against the table.

this is at full pressure, I can run it off of lower pressure and it still runs pretty fast. one thing I’ve discovered while machining different weights is that they weigh the engine down A LOT. the Tesla is a very high rpm, low torque engine and even a small weight reduces the speed quite a bit. that said it vibrates noticeably without the weight, probably due to the unintentional offset discs inside, but not as forceful.

the vibration doesn’t transmit through the rest of the unit very well, probably because it weighs 2.5 lbs and is made out of solid stainless steel but who knows. maybe version 2.0 of this style of vibe will have a gear reduction and a lot less weight attached. 😉

one more thing, I finally got a chance to bend it upwards. yay for having access to a hydraulic press.

Ani’s project got some press at Laughing Squid (post is gone) and Hackaday back when it was new. She chimed in to shed some light on the project.

Hihi, woke up this morning and noticed my Flickr was getting a lot of hits from Hack-a-Day and Laughing Squid and was wondering where they were coming from, haha.

To address some of the questions/concerns about it…

I decided on the Tesla turbine because I could build one in the shop and it was more of a universal engine, could potentially run it off of anything that’s pressurised enough. The engine isn’t optimised and currently it takes far too much pressure to run it then it really should and I’ll be doing some experimenting with other designs soon.

This is more of a proof-of-concept/prototype/art piece than truly practical, anything that would work as a a power source is going to be too big and too loud to be sexy, I knew this when going into it.

As for heat, maybe version 2.0 will have one though I’ve not run it off of steam long enough to see how much the heat transfers. When I was machining it I discovered that if I was machining the engine section, it would become really hot but the shaft would only be warm and the head was cool to the touch, and vice-versa. Once I have a more optimised engine I’ll experiment with steam more.

Again, thanks for the comments and feel free to ask if you have any more questions. 🙂

-Ani