Spent some time cutting wooden gears for my current project. What you see are the cut gears and the mess that cutting 135 teeth can make in your shop. I actually find it sort of relaxing, it gives me a chance to tune out for a bit, put some music on, and just cut away. You still do have to pay attention of course. I still do get asked a lot about making wooden gears, like "Why don't you laser cut them? " or "Why not 3D print them in plastic?", or "Why not use metal ones?"
Well silly or not here is why. One of the best ah-ha moments when people see my work is when they notice the gears are made from wood. It surprises them I guess. Folks likely think of metal or plastic as more expected materials for gears. Next they usually ask where I get them. When I tell them I make them myself on a scroll saw they are taken aback. They think I'm crazy! They expect there must be an easier way and usually that starts a long discussion about other ways of making gears. In the end there is a bit of awe when they think about it. And that is the moment I enjoy when someone sees part of my work as awesome. It has sparked a fleeting moment of joy, or delight, and we are just talking gears here. There are many things awesome about making an automata and collectively they make it fascinating to many.
I am not a production shop. I tend not to hurry but make things that I see as unique. To me building automata in wood adds to the novelty, quirkiness and uniqueness. So every time I sit to cut wooden gears I don't mind spending a little time to create a little awesome!
Now if you excuse me I need to get the vacuum out.
Automata is a creative blend of my life interests , engineering, art and woodworking.