23 Jan 2023

My Challenge to Make a Marble Run Machine - Completed the Ball-Lifting Function at Last

I found a failure on my marble run machine and struggled with the design. The angle of the entrance for the balls is very subtle.

If I made the wrong-angled entrance, the balls don't move to the next gear. After some days' struggling, I somehow managed to make it.

It works well, but the function doesn't work so good if I rotate the handle fast. However, I didn't think people would play the marble run machine so quickly. Things have a way of the best moving that is suited. Most people know that and don't rotate the handle very fast.
In this sense, children who don't know how to make allowances should be careful. That is why almost all automata creators display their creations in glass boxes connected to a motor to avoid using a handle.

I played with the machine a lot of time last night. I was happy to see the machine was working. Then, there was one issue that occurred.

I was planning to rotate the machine, both the handle and the motor. Therefore, I bought a pulley belt last week that was delivered yesterday. The part that set up the belt has been prepared already. I hooked the belt to the part to see how it was. I found that I bought a too thin belt. It wasn't strong enough to rotate the machine. I made a mistake again. Well, never mind.

The next step I will do is make the rail at the starting point at the bottom of the machine. The balls on the rail roll into a hole in the gears, carrying them up to the top of the machine. Firstly, I will make a simplified rail and see how it goes.

After all the work that had been done so far, I felt relieved a little bit.
It will still take a long time to complete, but creating the ball-lifting function was really hard work. Hopefully, the work ahead will be easier than before.

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