Ferris Wheel Lift, a Knex Ball Machine Lift




About: Hey! I'm Sandroknexmaster. I like building with knex, especially ball machines. I live in Belgium. I speak Dutch, but also English and French. I hope you like my stuff, and like always comment, rate &...


Here are the instructions for the first new lift used in my knex ball machine Elysium.

The Ferris Wheel Lift is quite a big lift. It works good, and a gate was added so balls enter one by one.

It is able to carry multiple balls at once, the motor is strong enough for that.

If you're going to build this lift, please read every image note, they are very useful!

When you encounter a problem or have a question, you can always send me a message.

Thanks for watching / building!



Step 1: Piece Count

If you want you can count the pieces before you start building.

Here is a list with all pieces included in this lift, named by their original colour:


Green: 80

White: 91

Blue: 384

Yellow: 178

Red: 166

Grey: 71

*Black: 1

Total rods: 971


Dark-grey: 73

Light-grey: 4

Orange: 71

Red: 24

Green: 24

Yellow: 238

White: 27

Purple: 176

Blue: 18

Total connectors: 655


Blue spacer: 67

Silver spacer: 94

Tan clip: 11

Blue clip: 16

Y-clip: 9

Blue hinge: 3

Black hinge: 3

**Small blue gear: 6

Big yellow gear: 3

Small hub: 16

Small tire: 16

Medium hub: 1

Medium tire: 1

Motor: 1

Total other: 247

Grand Total: 1873

*It's recommended to use a black rod for the axle, a grey rod might bend too much.

**In the 6th step, the axle, there are 4 small brown-gold gears. This is not their original colour, but they are included in the piece count under 'small blue gear'. Further explanation can be found in the 6th step.

Step 2: Entrance

This is the entrance, here the balls wait to enter the lift.

Step 3: Gate

The gate keeps the balls on the entrance track, and lets them enter the lift one by one.

Step 4: Support Tower

This is a support tower. Yes, a support tower.

Step 5: Gears

This step covers the gears. They transfer the power from the motor to the axle.

Step 6: Axle

The axle is the center of the wheel. It is the most difficult part to build in this lift, so pay close attention to the pictures.

Step 7: Exit

Where the balls exit the arms.

Step 8: Arms

This are the arms, they carry the balls all the way up.

Step 9: Motor

Final step! Adding the motor.

Step 10: Finished!

You just finished the Ferris Wheel Lift!

Always slide the switch of the motor to the right.

Thanks for watching / building!


3 People Made This Project!


  • Woodworking Contest

    Woodworking Contest
  • IoT Challenge

    IoT Challenge
  • Party Challenge

    Party Challenge

51 Discussions


Question 1 year ago

I built this lift, but it seems like there's way too much tension on this part. The tan piece to the left of the blue gear snaps(and flies away!) when I turn the motor on. Can you please help me figure out what's wrong? I even took all of the "arms" off to see if anything was catching.

1 answer

Answer 7 months ago

If it still happened after taking the arms off, then it probably gets stuck somewhere. The weight shouldn't be a problem. Doublecheck for jams anywhere near the axle, and if it still doesn't work then, try to rebuild the axle and gear section.


1 year ago

This lift is awesome :D I am using it in my new ball machine along with your sliding arm lift. It would be awesome if you check it out!

2 replies

2 years ago

Hi! I LOVE YOUR LIFT (I didn't make it though). I was wondering if there is anything I could do to replace some of the little wheels because I only have like 11 or 12. Thanks!

4 replies

Reply 1 year ago

Never mind, I bought some more and I'm alomost done with it! : )

Thibault Art

3 years ago on Introduction

Nice lift! It's really cool to look at. Can the green motor handle it when there are 4 balls on it at th e same time?

1 reply


Yes it can, the arms are quite heavy so the weight of the balls doesn't affect it so much that the motor can't handle it.


3 years ago on Introduction

Looking nice!

Why do you have the yellow gear reverse turning directions, though? Only to strengthen the axle connection?

3 replies


Yes, and also because it was difficult to reach the yellow gear attached to the wheel with a small blue gear. The red rods covering the teeth prevented this, and those rods were really necassary to make the axle strong enough. So using small gears at the side of the yellow gear was the best solution I could come up with.


3 years ago

It's big!!!!


3 years ago

It's big!!!!