Gearing the Pyramids | Prater’s Theory

Prater’s Theory utilises unconventional gearing, providing simple technology, giving harmony to moving heavy stone blocks and a pyramid mystery.

Spool resting on a frame, at the the rear a frame with bricks attached to a rope

This unorthodox, practical application would bring joy to any man faced with building the pyramids. Testing the gadget, the weight of three bricks, lifted 0.5 tonnes putting a delightful end to a pyramid conundrum, completing more than the brief.

  1. Gearing with a difference
    1. Bedroom model -Test using lattice rig
      1. One spool
      2. Two spools
  2. The Garden Model Tests – Real
    1. Ropes used in the tests

    Gearing with a difference

    This page should display what can be done by using 2 and 7.5-degree ramps, and two spools connected together, to construct the pyramids.
    It should also show that using spools for moving millions of stone blocks, with various set up’s creates all possibilities. To me, the following tests really demonstrate that it might not have been that difficult as we think back in the pre-Egyptian days to construct the pyramids, or any other large, ancient structure.

    Just in case you were wondering, I did say pre-Egyptian. This is because I believe the Egyptians we know did not build the pyramids. More of that, in the book.

    The following method does not use conventional gearing. Conventional gearing generally has a fixed axle, held within a bearing mechanism. A spool with a small circumference that rotates towards the load, makes it far superior than a wheel with gears, this technique allows for more weight to be lifted or hauled up a ramp. A wheel with gearing and a stationary axle can not do this.

    Bedroom model -Test using lattice rig

    The tests, went above and beyond my brief and implied that moving 300 tonnes could be easier than moving 100 tonnes.

    One spool

    By dropping a theoretical weight, of half a tonne, a theoretical weight of 13 tonnes was drawn up a 7.5-degree slope, using one large model spool and its small circumference.

    Two spools

    Testing the model rig, dropping a theoretical weight of 1.25 tonnes moved a theoretical weight of 70.6 tonnes up the 7.5-degree slope. This was by connecting the ropes from two spools together.

    Two granite stones, sat on a dolly, on a 7.5-degree slope, with two spools and relevant text explaining

    If the theoretical weight were 1.25-tonnes, that would equate to 12 men pulling on a rope for 70 tonnes. Double it, treble it, would it matter? This is for a 70-tonne block on a 7.5-degree slope.

    It was hard saying 12 men for 70 tonnes and not really knowing, so I replicated this test model theory, using the resources I had from previous tests.

    Not having 70 tonnes available and not wanting to set the 7.5-degree ramp up again, I decided to use a large spool with a small spool and lift half a tonne up vertically. I concluded that if half a tonne can be lifted vertically, with little effort, this would give a good indication of what it would be like, moving a large block on a 7.5-degree slope.

    The Garden Model Tests – Real

    This simple device shows how easy it could be to build the pyramids.

    Rig set-up, to lift blocks vertically
    • The ropes on the smaller circumferences of the first spool connect to the second spool’s larger circumference.
    • The ropes from the second spool’s smaller circumference wrap around a log, which rests on a frame set on a 7.5-degree gradient.
    • In between the frame, ropes pass underneath the blocks, forming a cradle.
    • Ropes on either side are attached to the cradle, which wrap around the log above.
    • Guide ropes wrap around the log from underneath.
    • When the two spools engage, winding up the ropes, it rotates the log, resting on the frame, and intern lifts the blocks from the floor.

    The set-up used could be more efficient by using larger spools or even more spools connected by rope.

    A person turning a large spool on a frame with rope conected to another spool
    Turning the spool from the rear

    Starting the tests, 0.5-tonnes was lifted vertically by one man, fairly easily, and is the equivalent of the weight of the car engine getting lifted vertically.

    There was some pressure on the equipment and a bit of effort in turning the spool from the side. The activity of turning the spool wasn’t too demanding, but it was awkward rotating the spool from the side, close to the body.

    To see if a few men could move a 70-tonne block, I needed some form of measurement and the reason I went to the trouble of setting all the equipment up. The next test, I dropped a few bricks at the rear of the spool, to find out if my initial calculations were right and was happy they worked out.

    Inserting a 100 mm spool within a vertical frame, held by guide ropes at the top, three clay bricks were dropped, which rotated the 1st spool, moving it along the horizontal frame and intern the 2nd spool and the log, lifting the blocks. The bricks were dropped at a distance of around 1.5 meters, raising the blocks only slightly. There is a lot of distance lost with the tiny 100 mm spool travailing downwards.

    Utilising this set-up for moving large blocks for the pyramids would not require the small spool at the rear. Men would be in place of the spool, pulling ropes.

    Three clay bricks, dangling from a rope. touching the floor

    Three heavy, old clay bricks, not bad for half a tonne vertically.

    Say if 9-bricks are equal to one man pulling the rope. That would be equal to 1.5-tonnes lifted vertically.

    In a previous 7.5-degree ramp test, using the large circumference, moving 272 kg up the slope took one man. Or should I say, one man for 272 kg. And one man could pull a lot more than 544 kg by utilising the spool’s small circumference, so I know by this, one man would move 3-tonnes up a 7.5-degree incline, using two spools, and 5 to 6-tonnes for one man with modifying the equipment.

    Large block on rollers with men at either side pulling ropes

    If it were a 2-degree ramp, like you would be using for moving blocks of 70-tonne, you’d be looking at one man pulling at least 6 tonnes based on the garden model figures, equalling 12 men.

    The fact is, I lifted 0.5 tonnes vertically from the side of the spool. Two and a half bricks lifted the blocks, but I have to say three because that is what I filmed. A 2.5-tonne block on a 2-degree slope would be like pulling pieces of candy, and I know that without a calculator. To be sure that 12 men would do it, think of 4 large spools based on the garden model test. If four 3.5-metre spools were used, think how much would be drawn up a 2-degree incline then.

    After testing dropping bricks from the rear of the spool, I tested the spool to see how it would rotate downwards, which was easier than turning it in a horizontal direction along the frame. Then I rotated the spool vertically upwards. This was easier than I had ever imagined. The spool rotated up its guide ropes without effort.

    When I was doing this, I was thinking about all the massive spools in the theory that could be utilised, like the one on the next page and at the top of the image below. The blocks that make up the wall of the pyramid take the pressure, and the downward movement of the large spool, helps move the load.

    Half built pyramid, scaffold and rollers fixed to it, lots of cows attached to ropes from the spools

    If the wall spool had a small circumference, then it would be able to move extreme weight, and what sort of weight would you be looking at if cows were the ones to be, pulling the spool downwards? Cows, could also be utilised on a two or a 7.5-degree ramp, but you wouldn’t need them.

    Imagine back in ancient times, having the resources available to build the pyramids and the ramps. Moving blocks of stone on a 2-degree ramp, would be pretty easy with a few others using this type of equipment. It does take time and a lot of rope to move a load, using two or more spools, but where you lose in rope and time, you gain in weight, so basically, the more rope you are prepared to lose, the more weight you can pull with fewer men.

    Ropes used in the tests

    These are the lengths of ropes used in the tests.

    3D model of equipment with text showing the length of the ropes and images of the rope

    The length of rope used can lift the blocks more than one meter off the ground.

    Four ropes, coiled up, hanging from a piece of timber

    Anyway, for me, my brief is completed. I have used a massive chunk of my life to show that it could have been easier than we think to build the pyramids back in pre-Egyptian times.

    The hardest part for me and took most of my time was writing a book, displaying findings in other formats such as this website and videos, all new learning for me. But if you have taken the time to read this, then it has all been worth it. Thanks, Mike.

    Incomparable engineering systems, together with original strategies for building the pyramids of Egypt.