Subduction-A Knex Ball Machine

About: I love building. A mechanical engineering student, most of my instructables involve modeling projects, K'nex ball machines, and Lego creations. I am also a model railroader, and I enjoy science (astronomy is...

So I made my first ball machine...Subduction! (Subduction-a process dealing with tectonic plates sliding under each other) It has four paths. Anyway, it's not so great perhaps because my elements (those I had) aren't so original. But I did invent my own version of the wheel lift, and I designed a new pathing type I haven't seen yet. So, here goes...

Step 1: The Lift

This is the wheel lift...or is it an arm lift? At any rate, the balls come in through the bottom track, are whisked upward by the wheel, and deposited at the top. I made a "gate" of sorts to control ball flow, but it didn't work as well as hoped. And for those of you wondering, I have no Knex motors, so I have to make do with a crank. (If you build this, feel free to add a motor)

Step 2: Path 1

This path starts with some of the Red Stairs, flips through one of floris2burn's U-turn elements, crosses a chain, and then goes through a tiny spinner to return to the lift.

Step 3: Path 2

This path consists of nothing but a simple blue tower spiral path.

Step 4: Path 3

This path has a classic spiral and my new path type: the Green Flex Path. It looks very clean-cut and is nice and sturdy. The Green Flex Path also can be twisted into almost any desired curve or inversion, up and down or side to side (or from level to sideways!) The path then empties through the spinner on path one.

Step 5: Path 4

The final path has Mr. Muggle's dumper element and a "curtain".

Step 6: That's All, Folks!

Thanks for looking at my machine! Hope you like it. I will soon have my second machine posted, but until then this is...Subduction!



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    16 Discussions


    1 reply

    My next ball machine is taller, but as to bigger....I don't have millions of pieces like lots of people, so I pretty much use everything in each machine. But never fear, I added some more complicated elements to round 2.

    Sorry, I don't have access to a video camera. :( But on my next ball machine, I may try a stop-motion animation. (Also I already broke it down awhile back. But I'm glad you like it!

    Cool that's a good idea! I even think that nobody ever tried before to make a stopmotion of a ball machine...
    And I like it because it's good, sure if you don't have many pieces. :)


    6 years ago on Introduction

    This is cool! Even though it's not the biggest I like the different paths. 4.5* (.5 off for no video ;)