marbles

Posts tagged
with marbles



Design Music

Wintergatan Declares the Conveyor Belt Complete on its Epic Marble Machine X

April 30, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

A new video released by the ambitious Wintergatan band of folktronica musicians/inventors (previously) shows the latest developments in their ongoing Marble Machine project. The video above documents the successful completion of the Marble Conveyor Belt, which uses ratchets and pistons to move dozens of marbles around and through the Marble Machine. Martin Molin, who is a member of the band and the inventor of the Marble Machine, demonstrates how the movement of marbles is in time to—and can even create—beats and rhythms in Wintergatan’s music. We’ll leave the technical details to the professionals, but imagine a pinball machine meets an oversized music box.

In-depth notations on the band’s YouTube channel explain the specifications of the conveyor belt’s functionality. Wintergatan’s loyal following on YouTube and Patreon, which follows these intricacies at every turn, has helped support the complex and long-running invention process. Once the full Marble Machine X is complete, Wintergatan will embark on a world tour performing music with the finished musical machine.

You can find free scores as well as records and merch in the Wintergatan online store. Stay up to date with the Marble Machine’s progress on Instagram.

 

 



Amazing Animation Music

A Kinetic Block & Marble Track Perfectly Synchronized with Tchaikovsky’s “Waltz of the Flowers”

January 10, 2018

Christopher Jobson

Kinetic artist Mark Robbins of DoodleChaos made waves across the internet a few months ago when he perfectly synced a custom course from the Line Rider game to Edvard Grieg’s Hall of the Mountain King. As astounding as it was to watch the digital game and audio sync up, Robbins took things a step further by making a series of IRL Rube Goldberg-like contraptions with marbles, blocks, and magnets that plays perfectly with Tchaikovsky’s Waltz of the Flowers. The feat required listening to the waltz hundreds of times which he says resulted in him “going a bit crazy.” If you liked this, also check out YouTube user Kaplamino.

 

 



Amazing Design

Ingenious Rube Goldberg Machines Built from Magnets and Marbles

May 9, 2016

Christopher Jobson

YouTube user Kaplamino has a channel where he shares inventive chain reactions or tricks using Kapla blocks and found objects. His latest video involves a series of Rube Goldberg machines that rely on marbles, magnets, and a bit of gravity to create some astounding little sequences. I can’t even imagine how he came up with some of these. (via Reddit)

rube-1

rube-2

 

 



Amazing Design Music

This Ludicrous New Instrument Makes Music with 2,000 Marbles

March 2, 2016

Christopher Jobson

Swedish musician Martin Molin has long had experience with esoteric instruments like the glockenspiel, traktofon, or Theremin, but he may have topped his musical prowess with the invention of his own new instrument: the Wintergatan Marble Machine, a hand-cranked music box loaded with instruments including a circuit of 2,000 cascading steel marbles. As the devices cycles it activates a vibraphone, bass, kick drum, cymbal and other instruments that play a score programmed into a 32 bar loop comprised of LEGO technic parts. The marbles are moved internally through the machine using funnels, pulleys, and tubes.

Molin began work on the marble machine in August 2014 and hoped to spend about two months on the project. Its complexity soon spiraled out of control as all 3,000 internal parts had to be designed and fabricated by hand, a time-consuming process that eventually took 14 months. An early version was designed using 3D software, but it was easier for Molin to create parts on the fly leading to it’s Frankenstein appearance. The musician shared much of his progress in regular video updates that he shared on YouTube.

Despite the extreme interest an oddity like the Wintergatan Marble Machine is bound to generate—especially on the internet—don’t expect to see it on tour anytime soon, as the contraption has to be completely disassembled to move it. Molin hopes to build additional music devices, some smaller, or perhaps more suited for transport. You can read a bit more about it on Wired UK.

winter-1

winter-2

winter-3

winter-4

winter-5

winter-6

winter-7

winter-8

winter-9

winter-10

winter-11

 

 



Art Design

Bruce Shapiro’s Mesmerizing Kinetic Sand Drawing Machines

June 3, 2015

Christopher Jobson

In a 21st century take on the traditional Zen sand garden, artist Bruce Shapiro invented the Sisyphus Machine, an elaborate kinetic drawing machine that uses magnets to drag rolling steel marbles through a thin layer of sand to create complicated mandala-like patterns. Shapiro, who was once a practicing physician, has spent the better part of 25 years experimenting with computerized motion control and many of his Sisyphus Machines have been installed in locations around the world including a large device in Switzerland back in 2003 and at Questacon in Canberra, Australia in 2013. It appears the artist is currently working on a tabletop consumer version and if you’re interested you can sign up for his mailing list here. (via Core77, Fast Company)

drawing-1

sys-1

sys-2

drawing-2

sys-3

sys-4

 

 



Art Design

Seven Incredible Marble Machines by Paul Grundbacher

March 18, 2013

Christopher Jobson

marble-1

Swiss designer and artist Paul Grundbacher makes incredible hand-cranked marble machines that he wrote about and filmed for Matthias Wandel’s Woodgears just this weekend. Grundbacher told Woodgears that he works mostly with firewood from a local factory and that he rarely sketches anything beforehand but has the ability to fashion each piece and try it as opposed to carefully measuring things out through any sort of blueprint. All the work here spans 2009-2012 and each piece is a mixture of his own ideas and tricks learned from watching videos of other artists creating similar wooden devices. You can read more about his inspiration and methodology behind each piece right here. (via mefi)

 

 



Design

Marbelous, a wooden table with built-in marble tracks

July 20, 2011

Christopher Jobson

Marbelous is a novel table embedded with a network tracks for steel marbles to traverse, moving from the table’s surface down through the legs. The table was designed and built by Dutch designers Nathan Wierink and Tineke Beunders who go by the name Ontwerpduo. (via laughing squid)

 

 

A Colossal

Highlight

Artist Cat Enamel Pins