Introduction: Convolution - K'nex Ball Machine

About: Hi, I'm Nick. On most sites (like YouTube and SSCoasters) I'm known as koolcoasterkid. I mainly build K'nex ball machines(the kind that go around the room). I've been building k'nex since I got my first set …

This is Convolution, my latest ball machine! It's been a long building process, enjoy!

Some stats:

-6 lifts

-6 motors

-15 balls

-24 tracks

-30 834 pieces

There are many new elements in this machine, such as the inverted top-hat, the giant helix and the quintuple interlocking loops.

Construction lasted from July 2013 to August 2014.

If you've always wondered how a room machine is built, here in the next few steps, I show never before seen pictures of the planning and construction of the machine.

Step 1: Make a Plan

I always make some plans before I start my new machines. First, I plan it out roughly in my head, then jot down some sketches, and sometimes make a digital blueprint (both seen above). These plans serve purpose to where I want to place my furniture, as well as the main support beams of the machine. The plans may change slightly over the course of the construction of the machine as well. The second picture is closer to the final product than the first one, but both were useful in the planning of the machine.

Step 2: Do Some Testing

Before I started this machine, I did some testing to see what beam would serve best for the supports of the machine. I took the 2 best designs and placed the same amount of weight on them, with equal spans until one broke. Here you can see the initial testing results. The beam that did not fail was indeed the beam design I used in the machine.

Step 3: Begin the Frame

These are images from the first day of construction of the machine. I always make the main structural supports first, to get a feel for the machine, then begin to make the tracks from there.

Step 4: Begin to Make Elements and Lifts

Once the supports are done, its time to get creative. From this point on, its just a matter of making the paths and connecting all of the lifts to each other. This is the most time intensive but fun part of making the machine. I've included a few pictures of my construction process, just to spark a few ideas. Now you know how I make my machine, go ahead and make one for yourself!

Hope you like my creation I've worked so hard on, and thanks for viewing!

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