Additive Manufacturing Strategies

14-Year-Old’s 3D Printed Marble Machine Does Rube Goldberg Proud

ST Medical Devices

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marble1If you don’t know who Rube Goldberg is, you should find out immediately.

Don’t worry, I’ll wait.

Goldberg has inspired generations of individuals to make complex (and complicated) machinery that performs simple tasks. For the iconic tinkerer, his point wasn’t to simply and create efficiencies, but rather to explore the fun of making.

Well, you don’t need to take time out of 3D printing in order to enjoy all of the wacky fun that Goldberg (and many others) have integrated into their creations – and I can only imagine what he could have done with 3D printing if he had lived to see it! Instructables user, Jazzmyn (of engineeringwithjazz.com fame) was inspired to create her own series of loop-de-loops and to share the plans freely with all whose youth at heart might enjoy it. Her own enthusiasm is immediately apparent as she introduces the project:FFEGLEGIB4APVXV.MEDIUM

“Get the ball rolling with the newest maker design toy: your own custom marble machine. I created a set of 3D printed parts that allow you to build the marble machine(s) of your dreams as big or small you want. With crossovers, loops, switches, and curves, it’s a bottle of Instant Roller Coaster Engineer! (Warning, side-effects may include: Increased success in the future and swelling of awesomeness in areas of STEM).”

The files for printing are available from thingiverse.com and can be printed in as many copies as needed in order to create the marble-adventure of your dreams (given the current laws of physics, of course). The basic components are a funnel into which you can drop the spheres, a series of tracks curved, straight, and semi-circular, switches and splitters to direct the path, and the connectors to hold the whole contraption together. Jazzmyn recommends using filaments from 3dxtech.com as those are the ones she used with success.

F0URE8PIB4AQ1FG.LARGEOnly a few of the elements aren’t directly from printer to product and those include the marble itself and some miscellaneous supplies such as dowel rods, super glue, and zip ties. And we all know that it’s not really a DIY project unless there’s super glue, right?!?

The final creation displayed by Jazzmyn has all of the bells and whistles and is printed in ultra chic red, white, and black. The real surprise comes when you realize that all of this was done by a 14-year-old. Not only is her project impressive, but the writing, photography, and character all indicate that this is someone to keep an eye on as an up and comer on the making scene.  What do you think of this unique creation?  Discuss in the 3D Printed Marble Machine forum thread on 3DPB.com.

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