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Computer Starting Handle

starting handle for your computer
  (+10, -3)
(+10, -3)
  [vote for,

Cars used to have starting handles. For those who don't remember, they were shaped like an elongated brace and bit drill, with a sort of prong on one end that engaged with a divided nut on the end of the cam pulley wheel, at the front of the car's engine.

To use the starting handle, you inserted it via a hole just above the front bumper, engaged it against the cam and cranked it, using a vigorous jerking motion. There was a knack to it, as you had to pull the handle towards you after each jerk, otherwise you risked a mangled arm once the engine kicked over.

My idea is to be able to start up your computer using the same method. Naturally you would need to fit a little device to the computer, that engaged with the hard drive, but this could have its own car-like features to add to the theme.

Now, first thing in the morning, when you want to boot up your stubborn PC (macs only have this as a novelty), you open up your little tool box, take out the starting handle, insert it under the fake bumper fitted to the side or front, and begin cranking.... cursing and puffing to your fellow workers "she's always like this on a Monday" as they do likewise.

After a judicious amount of jerking and heaving, your PC splutters and farts into life, its little pretend exhaust emitting a harmless puff of fake smoke, and its engine sound effect roaring away until you push in the choke, reducing it to its usual monotonous, electronic hum.

xenzag, Jan 04 2007

Archived copy of the above-linked 2CV page http://web.archive....starter_handle.html
[notexactly, Apr 26 2019]

Baked in 2012 https://www.laptopm...or-an-hour-of-power
Africa got hand crank version, N. American kids got a power source plug [Sgt Teacup, Apr 26 2019]

Hand PC Cooling by [Secession], who has posted nothing else. Another computorial example of //satisfaction to be acheived in the act of hand cranking// [notexactly, Apr 26 2019]

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       [+] I will try to keep this in mind for whenever I get around to building a computer, though it probably won't go in the first one I build. It could go well with a steampunk or dieselpunk case mod.   

       I don't actually see any warnings at the linked page relating to the use of the starting handle.   

       What I don't get is why the receptacle for the starting handle on old cars didn't have an axial cam, sort of like those one-way-drivable security screws, that would safely eject the starting handle once the engine started.
notexactly, Apr 26 2019

       They do. The slots in the dog-clutch that the handle tip engages are curved; when the victim cranks the engine, the rod is pulled further into the receptacle, but if the engine starts that same curve pushes the crank handle out of engagement.   


       While hand-cranking is practical for small and medium-sized (up to 2.5l ) petrol engines, trying to crank start a cold diesel tractor engine against 27:1 compression is a singularly unrewarding endeavour.   

       It should be borne in mind that, as with aircraft, hand-starting bites if you get it wrong.
8th of 7, Apr 26 2019

       It would be a perfect compliment to change the default beep sound on the computer to one of those old squeeze bulb horns.
Size_Mick, Apr 26 2019

       For a computer case concept I'm thinking about, I've just realized it would be convenient to have a carrying handle on top that can be detached and stowed when the computer isn't being carried. I'm now trying to imagine how that handle could be designed such that it could double as a starting handle once the computer is set down and the handle is detached from its carrying position.
notexactly, Apr 26 2019

       Long ago, back in the 1990's, I regularly had to crank-start my car as the starter motor had an intermittent fault. Also there was a problem with the petrol pump which would mean that it would sometimes stop running. If both faults occurred at the same time I'd have to jump out, while stationary in traffic, and crank-start the car, to the amusement of other motorists...
hippo, Apr 26 2019

       Figures ... we've always had you marked down as a crank ...
8th of 7, Apr 26 2019

       There is a great amount of satisfaction to be acheived in the act of hand cranking.
xenzag, Apr 26 2019

       Agreed, I try to hand crank as often as I can!
Size_Mick, May 01 2019

       Fnaar fnaar!
hippo, May 01 2019


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