Introduction: K'NEX Motor & Gear Guide

Picture of K'NEX Motor & Gear Guide

This instructable will be about the use of K'NEX Motors and gears. The last part will focus on a the K'NEX cyber system.

Summary of steps:

  1. Gear characteristics
  2. Some gear connections
  3. Motor characteristics
  4. Cyber K'NEX explained - Intro
  5. The Processor
  6. The Motors & Battery Packs
  7. The IR-Controller

I hope you will learn something about the different k'nex motors there are or see new gear connections.

Step 1: Gear Characteristics

Picture of Gear Characteristics

Step 2: Useful Gear Connections

Picture of Useful Gear Connections

The pictures speak for themselves, hopefully.

These are just examples I made up to show what is possible. Each type of gear connection in a model, requires a different approach, so it's hard to make it standard.

Click here for the link to the K'NEX differential

A differential makes sure a car can make turns without the wheels making alot of friction with the ground.

It is also used to combine the power of two motors together. It is then called an "adder". This is sometimes used in (toy) tanks.

Step 3: Motor Characteristics

Picture of Motor Characteristics

All indicated motors can be bought here.

Step 4: Cyber K'NEX Explained - Intro

Picture of Cyber K'NEX Explained - Intro

Cyber K'NEX was a part of K'NEX building line that let you make robot models that would either move on their own and react on their surroundings, or were controlled by the cyber K'NEX remote.

The sets were sold from around 2002 until 2007 (not 100% sure) and came in 4 sets:

  1. Hyper Wheels
  2. Cybots
  3. Ultra Set
  4. Cyber Swarm

In the next steps I will show how to set up the system.

Link for Front Loader video

Link for Fork Lift video

Link for Armoured Vehicle video

Step 5: The Processor

Picture of The Processor

The processor is the "brain" of the Cyber K'NEX system.

It has 6 cables coming from it:

  1. The processor's ON-switch
  2. The Cyber Port
  3. Black Connector (for motor pack 1)
  4. Blue Connector (for motor pack 2, motors 2 & 3)
  5. 2 seperate LED lights

Step 6: The Motors & Battery Packs

Picture of The Motors & Battery Packs

As seen in the last picture, there are several ways to connect the battery packs and motors to your model. I've found that this is actually a nice system, and I make it a sport to put them so that they are as invisible and compact as possible.

Step 7: The IR-Controller

Picture of The IR-Controller

The IR-controller lets you control all models from the Ultra Set, plus the programmable key.

Personally I like the Sarge Cyber key the best, because I make alot of steered vehicles with wheels and this key offers a steering mechanism.

Next to that, the programmable key doesn't make so many noises and childish sounds.

I hope you've found this instructable informative and learnful. It would be great if you can use some tips in your next K'NEX model.

! If you like it, please vote for it in the K'NEX contest !

Thanks alot!


Ethan1023 (author)2017-05-09

I've made a contraption that spins at 1/5.68 RPM.

GWorks (author)Ethan10232017-05-10

I guess it uses at least one of those big gears :) hope the gear calculator works

Ethan1023 (author)GWorks2017-05-10

It utilizes 3 14-tooth gears, each driving an 84-tooth gear.

GWorks (author)Ethan10232017-05-12

And which motor are you using? and for what application? Sounds pretty slow haha

Ethan1023 (author)GWorks2017-05-12

34 RPM, Standard Green motor. I actually added another gear, lowering it to 1/40 RPM. I have another large gear around my house somewhere, I just have to find it.

GWorks (author)Ethan10232017-05-13

Haha, lol that's pretty slow

hunter999 (author)2015-05-25

Like I commented on Akshats 'Ible, you're missing a motor. The ultimate big air ball tower orange one that lifts the balls with air. Technically that is a motor :p it uses C batteries I believe.

sonic broom (author)2015-05-13

Nice guide! will you add information for the new robotics set when it come out?

GWorks (author)sonic broom2015-05-14

I do not know of any new robotics sets coming out. Could you please provide me some information where you found this? I checked the K'NEX website, and there's just the K-Force stuff on as "new" sets...

Thanks :) and I await your reply

sonic broom (author)GWorks2015-05-14

Here is the video.

GWorks (author)sonic broom2015-05-14

Thanks for the video. The new robotics system sure looks promising and more advanced than the Cyber K'nex from 2000; more something like LEGO's NXT or EV3 sets.

As far as I can see it has a main controller, and several sets attached to this units
I can spot -what I think is- a touch sensor,
Then a colour sensor in it's mouth,
Maybe a ultrasonic sensor
Then I think there's 2 motors, since the screen tells always 2 functions.

To answer your question then:
I'm not yet sure when detailed info will be available, since the sets will take some time until they're released. I'll try to include new info of course, but I don't think I will purchase the set in the first place, since it's 400$.

sonic broom (author)GWorks2015-05-14

The new robotics set does look like good move for KNEX but a price decrees would be good. But they seem to be focusing on the education market. It would be great for you to include information. And after the set comes out then maybe the price will decline.

GWorks (author)sonic broom2015-05-14

I've got good contact with a seller from the UK that sells new pieces that he gets directly from K'NEX. Perhaps he sells the individual electronic parts too ;)
The closing day of the competition is coming closer, I'm wondering who will win...

GWorks (author)GWorks2015-05-14

and several sensors* attached to this unit*

GWorks (author)2015-05-07

Thanks alot for all those favourites people! 100 now :O
Don't forget to vote in the K'NEX contest!

Knex2thelimit (author)2015-05-04

So, is the robot World Series part of cyber knex? I have a few of those parts, but they're kind of useless cause' I don't have the controller. Would you know?

Nice guide, by the way.

GWorks (author)Knex2thelimit2015-05-04

To answer your question: No it's not part of Cyber K'nex (no logo)

I never heard of the system before, so I looked some sets up and found indeed one with 2 motors and a controller. I don't think they were ever brought out in Europe. (I must say it's amazing that they're transformers, right? At least 2 sets I saw were)

Thank you kindly, and hopefully this answers it :)

Knex2thelimit (author)GWorks2015-05-05

Ok, thank you! I was just wondering because it seemed to have similar motors. I have a head, 2 mottos, and this large controller box. But as I said, I have no remote controller, so on,y the head lights up.

GWorks (author)Knex2thelimit2015-05-06
Knex2thelimit (author)GWorks2015-05-06

Thank you! But, got some bad news: the bid just ended, so I think someone already bought it. Unless he puts it up there again...

GWorks (author)Knex2thelimit2015-05-06

No, it had jsut a super short bidding-time when I saw it. 3 hours were left :/ The price was 9 dollars... so not that expensive. Maybe you can contact the seller?

GWorks (author)Knex2thelimit2015-05-05

You're welcome man.
Maybe you're lucky to find a controller that is on it's own :)
I found one for the Cyber K'nex set too.

hunter999 (author)2015-05-05

Wow, some thorough documentation showed here, good luck in the contest!! :-)

akshat21045 (author)2015-05-02

Looks like you got featured too! Congrats!

GWorks (author)akshat210452015-05-03


sandroknexmaster (author)2015-05-02


akshat21045 (author)2015-05-02

Hehe nice guide! I've been working on one for a month now (it's a large guide on only motors and details about them) I was planning to post it a few days ago but school got with me so I plan to post it within 2 days! Be sure to see it when I do!

GWorks (author)akshat210452015-05-02

Currently I'm finishing the Cyber part with a load of photo's.
I don't know if you own some of those yourself, but otherwise you could use my part (if you tell where you got it ;)

I guess it will be taking part in the contest? :/ I thought I had a chance to win with this... But my guide misses motor and load characteristics (graphics) and all.

akshat21045 (author)GWorks2015-05-02

Yeah I can see the progress! My i'ble is up and running! Check it out

I'm waiting for you to complete soon! Please vote for me if you liked it!!!

tomatoskins (author)2015-05-01

It would be awesome if you could include more info on what Cyber K'NEX are. They look so interesting and you gave such a thorugh explanation of everything else.

GWorks (author)tomatoskins2015-05-02

In the meantime I've added 4 chapters of Cyber K'NEX stuff :D

And thanks for your nice comment :)

GWorks (author)tomatoskins2015-05-02

Yes, I'm sorry... I was planning to do this, but it was late yesterday and wanted to publish it! So I'll add more text now. Come back in a few hours please!

Sorunome (author)2015-05-02

Uh, nice instructable, but the big green gears have two teeth fewer than the big yellow gears, though that difference is barely notable.

GWorks (author)Sorunome2015-05-02

Do they? I thought I counted them correctly. I'll update it, thanks for notifying me!

Sorunome (author)GWorks2015-05-02

Well, it's that way with all my big yellow gears except one that has the same amount as teeth as the green ones, it is weird.

didexo (author)2015-05-01

Thanks for the gear ratios!

GWorks (author)didexo2015-05-02

You're welcome :D
I figured no-one did that before :P

About This Instructable




Bio: Hello! I am mechatronics graduate and have always had a passion for making things. This started at an early age with LEGO and K'NEX ... More »
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