Leonardo Da Vinci’s Inventions


Leonardo da Vinci’s inventions are not very well known. While he is very well known as being one of the greatest painters of all time, in fact, he’s generally found to be in the top 3 and often number 1, his inventiveness has been largely forgotten. He has received virtually no recognition for many inventions that other people have subsequently been accredited for.

Below are two drawings, one showing his original drawing for the Ball Bearing and the other showing my 3d rendering of his design. This one invention alone essentially allows our modern civilisation to function. Ball bearings can be found in your PC, laptop,cars,airplanes, electricity generators and many many more besides.

Leonardo da vinci inventions2

Leonardo da vinci inventions2

Leonardo da vinci inventions

Leonardo da vinci inventions

He invented things that were so far ahead of their time, that they would not be reinvented for up to 400 and sometimes almost 500 years later -

  • He had rudimentary designs for a Tank in the late 1400s – nothing similar would be seen again until the battlefields of World War 1 in the early 1900s.
  • His drawing for the Helicopter is said to have inspired Igor Sigorsky to invent the modern Helicopter.
  • He invented the ball bearing, roller bearing and needle bearing, 3 miniature machines upon which our modern machines and in turn, our society operates.
  • He drew the first exploded view of a machine – this is crucial to modern engineering practices as it would be almost impossible to visualize a modern machine without such practices.
  • He sketched Scuba Diving gear which, when recently tested, was proven to work. (Jacques Cousteau invented modern scuba gear in 1943)
  • He developed autonomous robots for his wealthy patrons. One such machine could be classed as the first mechanically powered vehicle as well as being the first remotely operated vehicle.

He invented many other things too, in fact, too many to mention on this one page. On this website my aim is to highlight Leonardo da Vinci’s Inventions and put him up on another┬ápedestal he deserves – to be ranked among the greatest Inventors & Scientists of all time, a title which he rightly deserves for a lifetime of obsessive study, work and observation.

Unfortunately there is a sad twist to this tale – Leonardo da Vinci never published his inventions, nor any of his Scientific observations. When he died in France in 1519 he left his notes to his loyal student Francesco Melzi. Melzi looked after the notes for quite a while but soon found he could make some handsome money by selling the old masters note and notebooks, this decision would have dire consequences for human civilization as a whole.

On those notebooks were anatomical discoveries that could have saved millions of lives -

  • Leonardo had discovered arteriosclerosis (plaque deposits on the walls of veins). This would be rediscovered in the 1900s
  • He had the first full anatomic drawing of a human, from the vascular system to the muscular system and the nervous system. Although some of the conclusions he came to were wrong about the human body, his mastery of artwork meant that his drawings would remain to be the most accurate anatomical drawings for more than 200 years.

Click one of these links to learn more about Leonardo da Vinci’s Inventions or simply use the top navigation bar -

Inventions for War

Inventions for Flight

Mechanical Inventions