Willo-Hill Christian
Willoughby, OH,

Online Contest:
Inflate A Balloon and Pop It!
Online Division I - Ages 11 - 14 (Middle School)
Team Leader: Mrs. D
Team Members: 9
Invitations: 0

What we're studying:
General sciences and basic physics principles.

Our Team Leader's favorite quote:
"Make observations!!! ...that is where science begins!" -and- "Choose Joy!"

Why we think we should win:
We put in a lot of effort and tried to think outside of the box. We tried to be creative with our limited resources and incorporate the balloon theme. We learned the valuable lesson of patience when working with and on our machine. We drove our poor maintenance staff right out of their basement and we would love to thank them with a win!

Suggestion for next year's challenge:
Make a smoothie, type something on a computer screen, tune in a radio station on a radio

Favorite Rube Goldberg video:

The students worked so hard putting this together and our staff was so supportive. Win or lose, we learned a lot about science principles, working as a team and how you can accomplish anything if you put your all behind it!
Thank you so much for checking out our page --- we hope you enjoy our circus themed machine, Under the Big Top!

Our Step List

The 2012 WHCS Rube Goldberg - Inflate a Balloon and Pop It!
WHCS Patriots – Under the Big Top

Our machine starts on the basement steps:
• A phone is called and vibrates into a marble which rolls down a plastic race car track.
• The marble travels into a tunnel and through a tube and lands on a cash register button.
• The cash register button opens the cash register drawer. (*Note: We have a power strip here for power. This is our 1 outside power source that enters into the machine. We have the cash register and an extension cord plugged into this power strip. The fan in our machine is powered by a strip that is attached to the extension cord, not an additional power source.)
• The drawer has a pointer finger attached to it which pushes over a block.
• The block falls and lands on a ledge on another block which pulls it down backwards.
• The backwards falling block has a string which pulls a release from in front of a golf ball.
• With the release pulled away from in front of the golf ball, the golf ball rolls through a tube.
• The ball is launched through a curved tube and knocks into a series of 4 blocks which fall over in a domino effect.
• The final block knocked over has a string attached to it. The string pulls on a K’nex ferris wheel and spins the wheel.
• The wheel spins sending a needle into a water balloon popping the water balloon.
• The water falls down through a sequence of four tubes finally ending in a bucket.
• The bucket weighs down and from a string attached through a pulley lifts the back of another bucket.
• The back of the second bucket is lifted and causes marbles inside to fall forward from the bucket and onto a ramp.
• The marbles fall down the ramp crashing into a duct tape roll shield which knocks into a domino chain.
• The domino chain ends by hitting into two blocks which knock down a finger pointer supporting a picture frame.
• The finger pointer falls from under the frame causing the frame to tip to the side.
• The golf ball resting on the top of the frame rolls downhill and into a second finger pointer.
• The second finger pointer falls from under the frame causing the frame to tip to the side.
• The second golf ball resting on the top of the second frame rolls downhill and into a third finger pointer.
• The third finger pointer falls from under the third frame causing the frame to tip to the side.
• Two golf balls resting on the top of the third frame roll downhill and through a tube and into a bucket.
• The weight of the balls weighs down the bucket which is attached over a pulley to a 4th finger pointer.
• The 4th finger pointer pulls back on a tube/lever which pushes a girl off of her Velcro attachment and sends her down a "tightrope string".
• The girl knocks away a string attached to a ball.
• The ball rolls down an incline and into a stack of duct tape rolls which are supporting a clown boot.
• With the support knocked down, the boot falls and “kicks” into a water jug.
• The water jug rolls down a ramp and into a small 4 wheeled cart.
• The cart has a string attached to it so that when it travels forward it pulls away a shim supporting a tennis ball.
• The tennis ball when released travels down a “cup ramp” through a tube onto another cup ramp and through a 2nd tube.
• The ball then travels onto an incline hitting into a roll of duct tape.
• The weighted duct tape rolls up the incline and into another roll which falls off the incline edge and into a block
• The block falls onto a switch turning it on which turns on a fan.
• The fan blows a boat across a "pond" and the boat pushes into small balloon filled with a weighted tennis ball.
• The tennis ball falls down a small ramp and into a block supporting a flower pot.
• The flower pot falls.
• A string attached to the pot pull on a board on a hinge which holds two bottles containing a heated vinegar mix.
• When the board falls over, the mix in the bottles pours into balloons which hold baking soda.
• The resulting chemical reaction between the baking soda and vinegar produces gas which fills the balloons with air.
• The air fills the balloons until they inflate enough to pop on a pin-board.
• The End! :)

Our Close-ups: Photos

Our Close-ups: Favorite Step

Our Close-ups: Task Completion

Our Machine Explaination and Walkthrough

Our Machine Run Videos