Introduction: Knex Skeeball Machine

Hello everyone! After over a year, it's finally finished: my Knex skeeball machine! This machine is full-size, coin-operated (takes quarters), turns itself off automatically, and counts points using a mechanical counter. And, all of it is mechanical, using only normal motors to power it (no CyberKnex motors). There are six motors used in the machine; four of them are used for just the counter. The only non-Knex parts used are a few rubber bands and the paper for the counter.

The video below shows the machine in action!

This game is a lot of fun to play, for me and my family (my dad has the highest score, over 400 points). I've only scored in the 1000 point hole 2 times, and I haven't seen anyone else score that one, so it's very hard to get the ball there. Playing time for one game is about 1:30, plus how long it takes to throw eight balls. 

Note that my camera lens makes things look curved, for example the ramp in picture 7. Insides of the machine start at picture 17.

Fun fact: If one were to buy enough new Knex pieces to build this, the cost would be around $4,391. The piece category that costs the most money are the yellow connectors, which would cost $835.

I will not be making instructions of this whole machine, but I have made other models that use mechanisms from this machine. These smaller models do have instructions, so you can still build some of the mechanisms used in the skeeball machine.
  • Leave Me Alone Box uses the same motor mechanism (the one in the box is more compact than the ones used in skeeball). 
  • Coin Sorter V2 uses the same coin sorting method found in the skeeball machine.

Started building: May 24, 2011
Finished building: July 26, 2012
Width: 26 & 3/8 inches (67 cm)
Length: 85 inches (216 cm)
Height: 57 & 1/4 inches (146 cm)
Pieces: 28,396


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Direct video link

Comments

author
siamesederp made it!(author)2017-03-23

AMAZING! This is so cool, I would build it if I had the money :( 30,000 pieces is a lot, probably around $10,000 worth of knex!

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2017-03-24

Haha, thanks! And the price would be around $4391 if buying from Knex.com, though that was back in 2012.

author
siamesederp made it!(author)2017-03-31

yeah, but back in 2001 a screamin serpent was $80 ish but now it is $150 to $300 and a son of serpent is $1,000

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2017-04-01

Indeed, I'm pretty sure that Screamin Serpent was their most popular larger set.

author
nflpanthersfan made it!(author)2017-03-17

And imagine if someone destroyed it

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2017-03-17

That would indeed be bad, haha.

author
nflpanthersfan made it!(author)2017-03-17

WOAH! HOW MANY PIECES DID YOU USE?

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2017-03-17

It used 28,396 pieces.

author
Proassault made it!(author)2016-10-09

How does the yellow and orange section (the board) is retained?? It cannot be just one rod..

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2016-10-09

The yellows are attached to red rods, and the red rods are connected with orange connectors. Here's a picture of underneath:

IMG_0095_1.jpg
author
Proassault made it!(author)2016-10-11

Ho cool thanks ;)

Also .. where do you live? I want to try this machine x)

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2016-10-11

I took it apart 4 years ago, haha.

author
Proassault made it!(author)2016-10-11

Ho :(

author
GuppehsWorld made it!(author)2016-08-13

Omg, this is the coolest thing ever.

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2016-08-14

Haha, thanks!

author
Knex+extreme made it!(author)2016-08-21

is it possible for you to do instructions for the coin mechernisum I want to build something but I need help for a coin mechernisum

author
Knex+extreme made it!(author)2016-08-21

is it possible for you to do instructions for the coin mechernisum on this bad boy

author
The+Knex+Inventor made it!(author)2016-06-04

Wow, this is amazing! This must be a world record! How do you come up with these things?

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2016-06-27

Thanks! I guess it all starts as an idea, and then thinking of how to make it work.

author
The+Knex+Inventor made it!(author)2016-07-18

You're welcome! :-)

author
Proassault made it!(author)2016-07-07

What appening if you throw the balls really fast ... the counter is precise?

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2016-07-07

The motor switches for the counter actually reset pretty fast, so the only problem it would have is two balls going into the same scorepoint at the same time, which never really happened as everyone who played it threw them in one at a time.

author
Proassault made it!(author)2016-07-07

This. Is. Amazing!

You are so awesome ....

I cannot speak

The number of pieces x)))
Great job

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2016-07-07

Haha, thanks!

author
Ethan1023 made it!(author)2016-05-11

This is just epic. I like how you utilized other builds of yours into this one (or vice versa).

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2016-06-27

Thanks! That would be vice versa, I decided to make those instructions so there would at least be instructions of some of the skeeball machine's mechanisms.

author
JL26 made it!(author)2015-12-12

not fair you can only see the instructions if you are pro that is not fair

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2016-06-27

Don't worry, that's just a pdf file of the above pictures, haha.

author
Monkeys11 made it!(author)2015-10-09

This is the coolest thing I have ever seen. You should totally make instructions. Have your fans motivate you. If u made directions I would totally try and make it, if I got enough money to get all the pieces. Please make instructions

author
Gold+Chucky made it!(author)2015-04-24

I have heard that you stopped building with K'nex. Is that true? You kind of made history... And if you are, what are you doing with all of your K'nex?

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2015-04-24

That's sort of true, I still have Citadel up but haven't built anything in a while, just haven't had enough motivation I guess.

author
Linkin_J_Knex made it!(author)2015-09-06

why don't you try to see how someone's k'nex Instructable could become a ball machine element? Just an idea:)

author
ThijsL1 made it!(author)2015-08-29

have you mayby instructions of THE coin meganisme?

author
Mickeyriffe made it!(author)2015-05-05

you have too much time and money.....

author
Monkeys11 made it!(author)2015-04-09

When are the instructions coming out

author
Lucas+The+Boss made it!(author)2015-03-01

First off I can't think of a word great/powerful enough to describe this, secondly why have I not seen this until now, and thirdly please please please tell me your pursuing a career in engineering. If you can build something this complex with Knex imagine what you could do with custom pieces.

Astonishing,
astounding,
surprising,
stunning,
staggering,
shocking,
startling,
stupefying,
breathtaking,
awesome
sensational,
spectacular,
stupenduous,
phenomenal,
extraordinary,
incredible

None of the above can describe how freakin amazing this thing is.

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2015-03-29

Haha, thanks! I tried mechanical engineering but I didn't really like it that much, so I switched to computer science.

author
knexfun101 made it!(author)2015-01-19

I wish I had enough knex to build it. It is really amazing though! : )

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2015-01-22

Thanks!

author
Gold+Chucky made it!(author)2014-12-29

That is so cool! I have always been a fan of your creations, and this just makes me go what the heck! Your creations make mine look lame :(

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2014-12-29

Ha, thanks! Also, welcome to Instructables!

author
Monkeys11 made it!(author)2014-09-26

Can you please make directions. My mom loves skeeball and every time I see this I would think that it would be the best birthday gift ever . It is the coolest knex creation I have ever seen. You are a genesis. It would definitely be a lot of fun building for me and the best thing I have ever made! You should think about! I hope you do make instructions! Thanks so much!

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2014-12-06

I actually am thinking of making instructions now, but I'd want to redo lots of the machine to make things work better (for example, making a counter that uses one motor instead of four). But, that will probably take a while, as I have other projects that are keeping me busy at the moment.

author
Monkeys11 made it!(author)2014-12-06

That's amazing. I'd love to see it when you're done with making it. Keep me updated on the instructions. I hope I can make it cause that's the coolest thing I've ever seen.

author
knexinventions+49 made it!(author)2014-04-16

Where did you get the green gears? Knex User Group?

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2014-04-16

No, I called the Knex company and ordered over the phone.

author
akshat21045 made it!(author)2014-04-17

Well, you should try K'nex User Group. They sell pieces at a really cheap price.

author
knex+akbar made it!(author)2014-07-29

They don't sell large yellow gears, newer sized knex balls, purple rollercoastertubing,purple connectors, dark blue 3d connectors and dark blue rods, that's why I buy my knex second-hand.

author
Shadowman39 made it!(author)2014-04-17

I actually don't like that site so much, because for most pieces they just redirect to the Knex.com site (I use the US/Canada site). But, I am happy with the plugin motor that I got from there.

author
akshat21045 made it!(author)2014-04-17

Oh yeah, I forgot. I used the international button coz I am in India currently, and I bought around 1100 pieces for 60 pounds. Otherwise, on K'nex.com, I would have got less parts (around 900) for 120 Dollars. That totally sucks.

Of course Ebay is the cheapest source other than garage sales (JonnyBGood bought 5000 pieces for 20 bucks), but I ain't gonna trust them.

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