Modular Marble Machine - Christmas 2012

  • Advertise with us
Project by NY_Rocking_Chairs posted 12-22-2012 01:53 PM 3527 views 8 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is my boys’ Christmas present for 2012. Woodgears’ Modular Marble Machine. Started it Thanksgiving weekend (US), so it took about a month, I would say at least 70-80 hours in the shop. Wrapped up the last 3 blocks this morning.

Being an engineer myself I was impressed by the simplicity and creativity of the marble machine that actually moves the marbles. Being a Canadian engineer’s design the plans are all in metric so I converted all the numbers as I went. Really doesn’t matter so long as everything is kept in the same scale.

I have about 100 marbles and just realized this morning this is woe-fully inadequate for building up a huge machine. So after Christmas will have to brave the stores again for more marbles, or just order some. The machine is very sensitive to marble size.

All the blocks fit inside the machine for portability and the top is help on by rare earth magnets with guide pins to keep them in place.

Thanks for looking and Happy Holidays!

Yes, that last pic is of the current weather, what you don’t see is the 20+MPH winds blowing that snow around…

-- Rich, anybody want a peanut?

9 comments so far

View MShort's profile


1791 posts in 3564 days

#1 posted 12-22-2012 02:14 PM

That is going to be an AWESOME gift for your sons. They should have many hours of imagination and fun with this. Merry Christmas.

-- Mike, Missouri --- “A positive life can not happen with a negative mind.” ---

View workerinwood's profile


2717 posts in 3213 days

#2 posted 12-22-2012 03:00 PM

Nice work!! Would like to see it assembled and working – post a video. Grew up in Buffalo, now live in the sunny southwest.

-- Jack, Albuquerque

View a1Jim's profile


117234 posts in 3722 days

#3 posted 12-22-2012 06:16 PM

this is a crazy cool project. your boys will love it.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Mip's profile


453 posts in 2223 days

#4 posted 12-22-2012 10:54 PM

I’ll have to make two of these; one to give away to my nephews, and one for me! Merry Christmas.

View ElmoSr's profile


241 posts in 3172 days

#5 posted 12-22-2012 11:45 PM

i must be slow,,i do not understand how it works,,,could you show a pic after it is put together?

-- ElmoSr,Ga. Life is Hard by the Yard,,,But a Cinch by the Inch

View NY_Rocking_Chairs's profile


515 posts in 3743 days

#6 posted 12-23-2012 12:05 AM

ElmoSr: All those holes are for marbles. Marbles interlock all the building blocks together. So basically you use the 95 modular components to build up a marble machine in almost any configuration you want. There is a crank handle on the side of the base unit that “pumps” marbles to the top of that tower and then they flow down through the “machine” to the feed ramp to go back into the tower.

Check out for a video of the machine in operation. I will definitely work on a video and pictures from Christmas day once it is setup and running.

The reindeer is just for show :)

-- Rich, anybody want a peanut?

View hunter71's profile


3251 posts in 3332 days

#7 posted 12-23-2012 01:15 AM

WOW, is that neat. Someday I will build one.

-- A childs smile is payment enough.

View Doe's profile


1415 posts in 2975 days

#8 posted 12-23-2012 11:27 AM

Cool, I want one. Your boys are lucky to have a Dad like you! Merry Christmas!

-- Mother Nature talks, I try to listen

View crowie's profile


2615 posts in 2096 days

#9 posted 02-02-2013 11:52 PM

G’Day Rich, Yes one can see the many hours of quality workmanship put into the toy, well done.
Cheers crowie….

PS – I’m very glad we don’t have that sort of snow & cold winters downunder were I live, keep warm.

-- Lifes good, Enjoy each new day...... Cheers from "On Top DownUnder" Crowie

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics