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Since lots of people like this lift, I decided I would make an Instructable of it. This is the first Knex spiral lift that has two spirals instead of one. This allows twice as many balls to be lifted up into the tower than the original spiral lift. It's also the first to use tubing for the spiral, which makes it perfectly round.

This lift is a copy of the one I used in Wipe Out, except it's shorter, it uses a battery-powered motor instead of an electric one, and the tracks going in and out of the tower are different. It can be built with only one spiral, but the bottom where the balls come in might have to be changed. A cool thing about this lift is that the platform and shaft can be on any side of the tower because the double helix is in the center. It's also easy to modify.
This is my first Instructable, and it took me a long time to make because the pictures took a very long time to upload.

Here's all the pieces you'll need to build the double helix lift:

Rods:
Green-104
White-54
Blue-43
Yellow-39
Red-56
Tan (rigid)-1
Gray-10
Total rods:307

Connectors:
Dark Gray-54
Light Gray-0
Orange-18
Red-21
Green-8
Yellow-23
White-26
Blue 3D-41
Purple 3D-71
Total connectors:262

Other:
RC Tubing- 2 pieces, each 3 feet, 5 1/2 inches long
Battery-Powered Motor-1
Black Y Clip-17
Tan Clip-10
Blue Spacer-40
Silver Spacer-28
Small Tan (or Blue) Gear-4
Red Gear-1
Large Yellow Gear-1
RC Tubing Splicer-2
Total other:106

Grand Total: 675 pieces

If you have all these pieces, let's get building!
I hope you like it!

Here's a video of the lift in action:



Click here to view the original double helix lift, used in Wipe Out:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p4Y1k7d9vPk

Step 1: The Double Helix, Part 1

To start out, let's build the core of the double helix. The red rods that help make it sturdy are in a repeating pattern all the way up. The tubing will go on it in the next step.

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<p>Awesome lift! Wish I had that tubing...</p>
<p>Thanks! If you want, you could try to build it with flexi-rods, others without tubing have done that.</p>
<p>I will also look into purchasing some tubing.</p>
<p>Great idea! I will have to try that.</p>
<p>I quadrupled the height for my ball machine, but the motor keeps stripping. Is there anything I can do? Please help</p>
<p>Do you mean the motor isn't powerful enough to lift balls up? You could try gearing it down if it has trouble.</p>
<p>thank you so much. What I meant was to put the motor directly on the helix. but I now realize that that would make it worse. I am going to gear it down as you suggested. I could also put a second motor. That could help. Would using one of the wind-up motors help?</p>
<p>Putting a second motor could help, but the windup motors won't do it much good. Just be sure the motors aren't on the same rod, as they most likely won't be the same speed.</p>
<p>I geared it down twice and it now works! thank you so much for your help. Also, do you know of any lifts that are smaller and take up very few pieces? I just need to life the balls about 10 inches.</p>
<p>and my final problem is that the helix bows out in the middle. I plan on putting a guide opposite the track where the ball goes up to keep the helix stable. Does this sound like a good idea?</p>
<p>You could try a guide, if that doesn't work you could try strengthening the helix like this one built by Tornado96:</p>
<p>Cool! As for small lifts, you could try a small wheel lift like the one here. You could also use a small chainsaw lift, as those also don't use much pieces.</p>
<p>For some reason those links lead to this page... here are the urls.</p><p>http://www.instructables.com/id/Knex-small-wheel-lift/</p><p><a href="http://www.instructables.com/id/The-Official-Guide-to-Knex-Ball-Machine-Lifts/step6/Chainsaw-Lift/" rel="nofollow">http://www.instructables.com/id/The-Official-Guide...</a></p>
<p>Also, I love your Kne'x creations.</p>
<p>also the helix won't even spin,but it is not caught on anything. I am just gogin to gear it down.</p>
<p>It might just be too tall, my inverted helix lift would be better at such heights. I never tested making the double helix lift taller than I made it in these instructions.</p>
<p>Thanks :-)</p>
<p>I am thinking of just putting one of the newer green motors on the space directly under the big hyellow wheel. </p>
<p>That would make it harder to turn the helix, so I think you should do the opposite and add another set of gears to make it turn slower.</p>
Where can you get the big yellow gears these days?
Try eBay.
Thanks knex dosnt sell them any more soo..... yaehhhhhh...........
try knex user group ,they sell everything
<p>That's where i get my parts too</p>
REALLY KNEX SELLS ALL PARTS!!!!!
They don't sell them anymore.<br>
Knex .com
this lift is by far the best of any helix lifts that I have built... Great design, and look for it in one of my future machines....
Thank you! I'm glad to hear that it works well. Looking forward to your next machine. :-)
<p>In my build, I replaced the dark gray connectors holding the purple RR rail with orange rail connectors.. the balls roll up the lift much smother..</p>
i`am going to build this soon :D
works this lift with the newer balls?
I think so.
Can you use the other type of motor, not the pack?
Yes, but the speed will be different.
Cool, it works realy good!
Thanks, glad it works well. :-)
Shadowman could you make this really tall like 8 red boxes or so? Also please check me out on youtube @ Youtube.com/user/Gnmar2723.
It probably wouldn't work if you made it that tall, since the helix wouldn't be strong enough. And I've seen your Youtube channel before, you have some good ball machines. :-)
Ok i decided to build the inverted helix instead because its stronger. Thanks a lot i was totally inspired from cataclysm and wipe out! :D
Cool! I'm glad you like them :-)
can i use big air ball tower balls
I never tested those types of balls, but they will probably work.
it works i test it and i build this lif it is an cool lift
Cool, thanks!
Would build this if i had the Large Yellow Gear :-(
You don't have a large yellow gear. Ihave six of them.
Thankyou for that. (Sarcasm)
You could try to hook up the motor to the axle of the double helix, without using any gears. But the helix will spin around much faster.
Ok

About This Instructable

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Bio: On my page you'll find lots of different Knex projects, from ball machine lifts to useful (and useless) items. I hope you enjoy!  _______________________ ... More »
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