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Saturday, April 27, 2013

The Modular Marble Machine

If you've been following the blog, the Modular Marble Machine is finally finished. If you remember from the last blog entry, all I really had left was to apply a finish.
That, because of all the small parts, was quite an undertaking in itself.
I wasn't sure what to use for a finish. I was concerned about the tight tolerances of the block pieces causing issues with finish getting in the holes. In the end, I decided on a polyurethane rub. It is just a mixture of Minwax polyurethane and boiled linseed oil. The base unit got three coats. The block pieces however, because of my concerns, only got a single light sealing coat.
That left us with a finished project. I wanted to show the front of the base unit in this photo because I love the look of this piece of wood I wound up using on it.
All of the block pieces are inside the base unit. It makes it handy to be able to store them all in there if you wish to put it away. It is a puzzle in itself though fitting them all in there.
You can see what I mean here. They have to be arranged just so if you want to place the base plates in where they belong.
After unloading all the pieces though, you put the elevator column in place, replace the feed chute and base plates, and then you can start having fun building marble runs.
You can build single track.
You can use the flipflop pieces and build double tracks.
I made videos. The problem is that I have a lot more patience and skill with wood work than I do with computer and video software. After six hours of messing with Windows Movie Maker and coming up very unsuccessful in putting the four video sections I'd made together into on short video, I gave up and uploaded them to YouTube in four parts. So please excuse me for the way I had to do it and watch all four videos below.


  1. This is fabulous work..I love using woodworking machinery..It does awesome work..

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