Shadow Separator, a knex ball machine path separator

Picture of Shadow Separator, a knex ball machine path separator
Hello knexers!

Here are the instructions for the Shadow Separator, first seen in my knex ball machine Paradox.
This is the last part from Paradox, now the instructions for all the new elements/lifts/separators are online.

The Shadow Separator is a complex, piece consuming separator with a self-resetting mechanism.
If you don't want to spend too many pieces to a separator, I suggest that you just watch and don't build (It would still be nice if you did so :D), if you have some pieces left and don't mind using them in a separator, this is the perfect instructable for you!

About the name... I'm sure you're wondering why this is called the Shadow Separator.
I did not invent the self-resetting mechanism myself, it is Shadowman39's invention (You can find the original instructions here).
So a lot of credit goes to him, without his mechanism this separator wouldn't exist.
And to give even more credit (and because it sounds awesome :D), I called it the Shadow Separator.

I hope you like this separator, tell me what you think about it in the comments.

If you build this separator, please read every image note. They will help you a lot!
A problem? Questions? Feel free to comment or PM me.

Thanks for watching / building!



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Step 1: Piece Count

Picture of Piece Count
If you want you can count the pieces before you start building.
Here is a list with all pieces included in this separator, named by their original color:


Green: 138
White: 82
Blue: 129
Yellow: 35
Red: 23
Grey: 1

Total rods: 408


Dark-grey: 40
Light-grey: 18
Orange: 26
Red: 69
Green: 11
Yellow: 84
White: 7
Purple: 102
Blue: 14

Total connectors: 371


Blue spacer: 41
Silver spacer: 38
Y-clip: 39
Tan clip: 8
Blue clip: 3
Blue hinge: 3
Black hinge: 3
Small hub: 1
Small tire: 1
Small blue gear: 1
Medium yellow gear: 1
Motor: 1

Total other: 140

Grand Total: 919

Step 2: Self-resetting Mechanism Part 1

The first part of the self-resetting mechanism, there are 3 parts in total.

Step 3: Self-resetting Mechanism Part 2

The second part of the self-resetting mechanism.
knexfun10118 days ago

Can I use this in my own ball machine?

sandroknexmaster (author)  knexfun10118 days ago


Gooppoop10 months ago
Woah really cool
sandroknexmaster (author)  Gooppoop10 months ago

Thanks! :)

Gargamel-Knex10 months ago

WOW, It's Great! Unfortunately I'm not so good at building balmachines ... I can't wait for you next instructable :) (sorry for bad English)

sandroknexmaster (author)  Gargamel-Knex10 months ago

Thanks! And that's no problem ;)

hunter99910 months ago

How did I miss this!?!?! A very cool seperator Sandro, I like how it resets itself. A neat mechanism.

sandroknexmaster (author)  hunter99910 months ago

Thanks! :D

cooljupjup10 months ago

Wow!, This is a really cool separator!

sandroknexmaster (author)  cooljupjup10 months ago

Thanks! :)


sandroknexmaster (author)  TheAwesomestDude10 months ago


ryry201110 months ago

Looks Great.

sandroknexmaster (author)  ryry201110 months ago

Thanks! :)

Even thought I am not really sure how the last part resets the tracks
sandroknexmaster (author)  ryry201110 months ago

It works with Shadowmans self-resetting mechanism, but you will understand it best when you build it ;)

JonnyBGood10 months ago

Simply brilliant! You ball machinist make some of the prettiest mechanisms...

sandroknexmaster (author)  JonnyBGood10 months ago

Thanks! Don't forget the self-resetting mechanism is not invented by me ;)

LordThawk10 months ago
sandroknexmaster (author)  LordThawk10 months ago


Looks really good bro! I don't know much about ball machines (indeed, why are they called ball machines?), but this looks excellent. =D

Haha thanks :D

You are welcome!

dickheijboer10 months ago

This is sweeet!

sandroknexmaster (author)  dickheijboer10 months ago

Thanks! :)

Sorunome10 months ago

Nice seperator, I like it! :D

sandroknexmaster (author)  Sorunome10 months ago


knex akbar10 months ago

919 pieces for a path seperator... seems fair,

i will definatelly use this in my upcoming ball machine thanks for the instructions man

sandroknexmaster (author)  knex akbar10 months ago

Thanks a lot!

Let me know when you have finished your ball machine, I would like to see it ;)


sandroknexmaster (author)  Zombiekiller-9310 months ago


Shadowman3910 months ago

Nice separator! I like that at the end the motor lifts the ball up, a good way to conserve height. Thanks for the credit. :-)

sandroknexmaster (author)  Shadowman3910 months ago

Thanks and no problem! :D