Machine Contests
2015 Rube Goldberg Machine Contest

The Rube Goldberg Machine Contest (RGMC) is an annual international competition that challenges teams of students from middle school to college age to compete in building the most elaborate and hilarious Rube Goldberg Machine.

A Rube Goldberg Machine is an overly complex contraption, designed with humor and a narrative, to accomplish a simple task.

The 2015 Task is: ERASE A CHALKBOARD. Team Registration is open now!

The RGMC is STEM and STEAM friendly, and Teams and their machines are judged on a range of criteria from absurd complexity, reliability, team chemistry, creativity, humor and story-telling -- along with the successful achievement of the task at hand.

Download the ALL NEW CONTEST 2015 Rule Book.

Click here to find out How To Register


Dating back over 60 years, the contest’s namesake is the late American Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist, humorist and inventor, Reuben Lucius Goldberg, who specialized in drawing whimsical machines with every-day objects that performed a seemingly simple task.

Goldberg’s legacy lives on through the contests -- as students nationwide build crazy machines that complete the annual task, all in the spirit of Rube’s illustrations.

View the International Online Contest page for middle school students.

View the High School and College Contest schedule for dates and to find a contest near you.

No contest near you? Sign up to become a Host. Hosting is a great way to:

 - Create an exciting, annual, on-campus event that sparks the imagination of media and spectators;

 - Connect students from all disciplines -- Engineering to Theater, Physics to Art, and Chemistry to Computer Science -- in a creative, competitive, and fun atmosphere fueled by learning and humor;

 - Engage your students and teachers with an audience and community of creative and abstract thinkers, including prospective students;

 - Help your students become the problem-solvers of tomorrow by participating in a Rube Goldberg Machine Contest today!


2014 College Nationals

RGMC College Nationals were held on April 12 at COSI, Columbus, Ohio. The crowd pleasing machines thrilled the judges - as tough decisions were made:

1st place: Purdue, West Lafayette, IN -  "A Simple Way to get Ready for Work"


2nd place: Washington University, St Louis, MO - "Going Green"

3rd place: University of Arizona, Tuscon, AZ - "Wacky Woodland Wanderings"

4th place: Penn State, University Park, PA - Engineering Leadersip Society -  "A Day in the Life of a Child"

Additional Awards:
Legacy Award - Purdue
Peoples Choice - Washington University
Best Single Step - Washington University

Check out the Contest!

2014 High School Nationals

New Auburn HS from New Auburn, Wisconsin, won 1st place at the High School Nationals, as they showed the judges how to "Zip A Zipper" - Rube Goldberg style!

Seventeen teams from around the US competed on April 5th at Waukesha County Technical College, Wisconsin, in the Rube Goldberg Machine Contest hosted by STEM Forward.

Minooka Community High School from Minooka, Ill., placed second in the competition and McDonogh High School in Owings Mills, Md., placed third.

Additional Awards presented at High School Nationals:
Safety Award – St. Catherine’s High School, Racine, WI
Most Rube-Like Machine – Columbia Christian HS, Magnolia, AR
Best Design – Minooka Community High School, Minooka, Ill.
Risk Award – St. Agnes High School, Houston, TX
Best Presentation – Pius XI High School, Milwaukee, WI
Best Construction – New Auburn High School, New Auburn, WI
Peer Award - McDonogh High School, Owings Mills, Md

RGI congratulates all the teams that participate in our RGMC!

Registration Fees

Division I Online - Middle School - Ages 11-14 : $150.00 per team

High School and College: Check the Contest Schedule to see the fee. Each venue is different because some Hosts subsudize.

Please see the Rule Book for more information.

Free Parts Kit

igus® is proud to offer complimentary products for registered teams of the 2015 Rube Goldberg Machine Contest.

1. Register your team.
2. Click below to get a free parts kit.

Kits are available only to Registered US Rube Goldberg teams. 


COSI HS Regionals

First Place: Columbia Central

Second Place: Centennial 

Third Place: Homestead HS

Argonne Labs HS Regional

First Place: Reavis High

Great Mill HS Regional

First Place: Great Mills, Hornet Team 3

Second Place: McDonogh Eagles

Third Place: Great Mills, Hornet Team 2

St Agnes Academy Regional

First Place: St Agnes, Toy Story

Penn State College Regional

First Place: Engineering Leadership Society

University of Connecticut HS Regionals

First Place: Trinity Catholic, Stamford, CT

Purdue College Regionals

First Place: PSPE Purdue

Lower Hudson Valley Engineering Expo HS Regionals

First Place: Putnam North Westchester BOCES 

Second Place: Ulster BOCES 

Minnesota State HS Regionals

First Place: Southland HS, Winter Wake Up

 Second Place: Southland HS, Happy Campers

Third Place: Mankato West HS, The Leftovers

JAC CEN DEL HS Regionals

First Place: Southeastern Career Center