Hammer A Nail
Online Division I - Ages 11 - 14 (Middle School)
What we're studying:
Principles of physics and engineering.Our Team Leader's favorite quote:
To invent, you need a good imagination and a pile of junk.
-Thomas EdisonWhy we think we should win:
We spent a lot of time experimenting, trying, failing, disagreeing, problem solving and learning from our mistakes. Even though we didn't get a completely clean machine run, we learned a lot and will be ready for next year. We feel like we accomplished a lot considering we could really only meet once a week to work on the machine. Plus we have a mechanical hamster named Snowflake who sails in a boat. Check out the bonus footage on our machine run. Snowflake nearly drowned!Suggestion for next year's challenge:
Turn a light off.Favorite Rube Goldberg video:
Our Step List
1. Someone needs a hammer, causing another team member to open the door to go and find one, unwittingly setting off the machine.
2. Fishing line on the door handle causes binder dominoes to fall.
3. The binder dominoes knock a golf ball down through a tube that is angled on the wall.
4. The ball bounces once on the floor, setting off more binder dominoes.
5. The last binder domino on the table hits a tape roll, setting off real dominoes.
6. Last domino knocks golf ball through a tube into a wooden ramp toy.
7. The golf ball goes down four ramps in the toy and comes out the bottom.
8. Ball drops into cup which is attached to a pulley hung from the ceiling.
9. The extra weight of the ball forces one cup down, which pulls the other cup up.
10. That cup is attached by string to a tab that is holding a golf ball up.
11. When the cup goes up, the string pulls the tab out dropping the golf ball into the tube.
12. Golf ball goes through the tube, hitting a button to turn on the surge protector.
13. The surge protector has a fan plugged into it, so the fan comes on.
14. The fan blows air into the sail, sending Captain Snowflake the mechanical hamster sailing across the sink.
15. The front of Snowflake’s sailing vessel hits the wooden block, setting off the wood block dominoes.
16. The last wood block hits a roll of duct tape, which falls off the counter, pulling another weight off behind it.
17. That weight pulls yet another roll of duct tape off the window sill, forcing the handle of the pump down.
18. Air flows from the pump through PVC pipe, filling the balloon slightly.
19. The balloon inflates just enough to send a golf ball down a series of tubes and ramps.
20. The golf ball strikes a carefully balanced PVC pipe battering ram that is suspended from the ceiling and balanced on two stands.
21. The battering ram swings into the cardboard box, scooting the box across the floor.
22. There is a string tied to a tab holding a golf ball in place at the bottom of a series of ramps and levers.
23. The first golf ball rolls down the ramp, striking the lever, releasing the next golf ball. This repeats until the last ball at the top is released.
24. The last golf ball rolls down the ramp and strikes a baseball positioned on a platform at the end of the ramp.
25. The baseball falls through the tube to strike a nail at the bottom, nailing it into the board.
26. The first baseball is linked by string to a second baseball. After the first ball strikes the nail and rolls off, it pulls the second ball down the tube behind it.
27. The second baseball strikes the nail just for good measure.
28. The student who went to get the hammer returns but, alas, he is too late because the machine has hammered the nail.
Our Close-ups: Photos
Our Close-ups: Favorite Step
Our Close-ups: Task Completion
Our Machine Explaination and Walkthrough
Our Machine Run Videos