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Building a Marble Machine

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Has anyone ever tried to build something like this? 

Or this


Obviously the latter is extremely complicated and I dont think I could ever accomplish something so technologically and musically complex, but you get the idea. 

One of my friends has 3 kids under the age of 5 now and Ive been trying to get him and his kinds into marbles. I thought investing tons of time building something like this in my basement with him (since he's an engineer) would be a great way to get his kids and others into marbles and just into stuff other than phones and the internet. When I was a kid in the late 90s and early 2000s I built n-scale model railroads and went birding (atypical even then) while everyone else was playing X-box and N-64. I think to get kids interested in marbles and just other things is to show them how awesome something tactile could be and not just digital. I see little kids and even adults light up when they see the N-scale Western PA model railroad at Kennywood theme park every Christmas here in Pittsburgh. So building a large scale marble machine might get others interested in marbles and particularly the very young generations today. 

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We've have a few marble run designers spend some time at the forum.  We started this subforum for them: 

Marble Runs & Marble Games - Marble Connection


Possibly the most intricate -- definitely the most famous -- was Jelle Bakker.  Some of his Youtube videos went viral.   They took off when he had a very professional sounding announcer do play-by-play for some of his marble races.   But his videos have disappeared from the two threads that I peeked at just now.   That's odd.   He still has a Youtube channel.  With over a million subscribers.

Jelle's Marble Runs - YouTube


This young man's father has shared some of what he and his boy have done together:


So both of those feature races, rather than highly technical machines, but Jelle has a wide variety of runs.   I just don't have a good link right now for his more technical ones.  

I'm definitely being unfair to just single those two out.   I need to revisit some of our other marble run makers' threads.

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Watched them all so far, lotta fun. Starting checking them out earlier this year, especially the Sand Rally seasons. I sat over at my brother in law's and started from the very first season. Without knowing the outcome of any race or the season itself, we would each choose a marble and stick with that marble until the season finale. I chose Cool Moody and he had Red #3. The wager varied according to where "our" marble finished. :confused-smileys-327:

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