Intro: K'nex Pinwheel
The Ultimate of K'nex wheels. Due to its genius design it can carry a ball though more than 180 degrees of rotation. An earlier version of this can be found on my YouTube page. This version now comes with side loading, shorter re-set period and more rotation.
Step 1: Frame First
Pictures 1, 2 and 3 show the frame that I used as a model. This shape is not necessary but does show the clearance needed and the relative height of the loading/unloading platforms. Picture 1 shows the frame with the wheel in place.
ITEM A: Loading platform
ITEM B: Unloading platform
Step 2: Crucial Carriage
In this step we have the carriage. The blue rod on the far end is part of the mechanism that makes the wheel wondrous. This carriage is not the only shape but is the most successful. The carriage can be made wider or narrower to fit the inside of the wheel.
Step 3: Half a Wheel
Picture 7 shows one half of the wheel. The carriage made in the previous step fits into the fluorescent red connector. If you don't have any golden connectors they can be replaced with anything else you want.
Step 4: Another Half a Wheel
Picture 6 shows the second half of the wheel. This part is by far the most complicated. The base frame is the same as that in step 3. The orange rods are specifically placed but could be replaced with any rod of the same length. The various attachments are crucial to the design and fit neatly into the blue connectors and black clamps.
ITEM C: Counterweight - slides over the lowest of the orange rods
(NOTE: the weight can be constructed of any materials, provided it is heavier than the weight of the carriage and the ball it carries.)
Step 5: Half + Half = Wheel
Assemble the wheel attaching the orange rods to their corresponding connectors so that the fluorescent red connectors are aligned. Place the carriage between the red connectors and adjust it's size so that it swings easily.
Step 6: Assembly and Assessment
Slide the wheel into place by adding a rod through the center as an axle and you're done. I estimate that the wheel will reset itself every 15seconds.
(NOTE: This version is for K'nex brand balls only. For different balls ask for help)
(NOTE: Coloration makes no difference to the operation of this component)
(NOTE: The wheel ought to rotate clockwise. If it turns the other way add a light weight on the right of the wheel to solve this)
Do not hesitate to ask for any help on any difficulty you may encounter.