This unusual toy is based on a strange version of a marble labyrinth that I found online. Instead of knobs to control the labyrinth, it utilizes 4 strings to pull on and makes the maze tilt, hence its name. Unless you have 4 arms, which I unfortunately do not possess, you'll have to work with 2-4 people to control this strange contraption.
The materials are easy to get, and the result is fun to play with
Buckle up, because we're about to make a hard toy even harder.
What you need to own in order to make this:
-Cardboard (I used the "Double Wall" kind. Google it!).
- An X-acto knife.
- Wooden bamboo skewers, preferably around the thickness of 1/4 an inch.
- A drill.
- Craft sticks, the small kind.
- A means of cutting the skewers and craft sticks (I used a scroll saw).
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Step 1: Square
Cut out a 7x7 inch square out of cardboard. This will be the base for our maze.
Step 2: Draw a Grid
This step is basically planning your maze by drawing directly on the square. I'm a horrible artist, so I made a 7x7 grid and designed my maze from there with a simple system shown in the next step...
Step 3: Grid
To make the grid into a maze, mark one start square and one finish square. For walls, mark the lines that will be walls with a scribble. To make the maze harder, mark holes which we'll drill out later. You can copy my maze above easy enough, or you can make your own if you'd like!
Step 4: Erase
Erase the extra lines on the grid, preferably with a normal sized eraser and not a huge blue one. Remember to only erase the lines with no scribbles on them!
Step 5: Holes
If you have holes in your maze, drill them out. It won't look very pretty at first, but a bit of ripping and sanding should do the trick. Make sure your marble fits through the holes, or it won't fall through.
Step 6: Outer Walls
Make 4 7x1/2 inch strips and glue them to the perimeter of the maze. Marbles are known to be hyperactive, so make sure the walls are tall enough to keep them from escaping!
Step 7: More Walls!
Remember those squiggly lines? Well, now we'll need them. To make walls, get your craft sticks and cut them into 3 sizes: 3 inch, 2 inch and 1 inch. If you're making a replica of my maze, you'll need two 3 inch walls, eleven 2 inch walls and eleven 1 inch walls. Glue them down on your maze so they cover up the lines. This is a good time to test your maze!
Step 8: Sawing and Drilling
Cut the skewers into four 8 inch long pieces. Drill a small hole 1 inch near the top of each stick. You should be able to thread the thread (Ted threaded the red thread readily through the red ted's bed. I could do this all day...) through the hole easily.
Step 9: Pillars (Columns?)
Cut out an 8x8 inch square. Glue the 4 sticks, holes at the top of the structure, on the corners of the square. To add stability, I wrapped cardboard around the base of each stick. (IMPORTANT! The holes should be pointing into the center of the square!)
Step 10: Pushpins
For this step, grab the 4 pushpins and the maze. Glue the 4 pushpins to the corners of the maze. We're going to use these as "anchors" for the string mechanism.
Step 11: Some Strings Attached
Cut out 4 foot long pieces of thread. Tie the ends to the pushpins we glued to the maze.
Step 12: Thread Thread
Pull the thread from the pushpins through the holes in the sticks. Each stick should have one string. You can test if you did it right by tugging on the strings. If you've followed my instructions carefully, you should be able to tilt the maze!
Step 13: Frame
To stabilize the frame, cut four 7.5 inch long skewers and glue them between the columns, 2 inches up from the base. Cut four 2 inch pieces, and glue them under each 7.5 skewer so they keep the maze in the playing area.
Step 14: Fin!
CONTROLS: Tug the string!
You're finished! The outcome of this project? A very ridiculously hard maze, because I put so many holes in it, it looks like a piece of Swiss cheese. Oh well, at least I won't get tired of it anytime soon! :D
Thanks for reading this instructable. It took me a while to put this together!
Keep on making!
Participated in the
Cardboard Speed Challenge