Energy Transfer Machine – Lights Out

Neil M. , Timber Creek High School, 9th grade


Building Process & Challenges

  • 1. the laptop closes
    2. the pulley lifts the pen cartridge
    3. the ping-pong ball rolls down the inclined plane
    4. the ball gets blown back up the track
    5.the ball falls and hits the weight.
    6. the Weight falls and releases the carrier
    7. the carrier hits the marble
    8. the marble rolls down 2 inclined planes and into the funnel
    9. the marble exits the funnel and hits a weight
    10. the weight falls and removes a domino under the train
    11. the train makes contact with the track and starts moving
    12. the train hits the Play-Doh tub
    13. the Play-Doh rolls and hits a weight
    14. the weight removes a zipline blocker
    15 the carrier moves down and hits the contact zone on the toy
    16. the contact zone is pushed back releasing the marble
    17. the marble hits two planks and fall on a track
    18. the marble hits a lever
    19. the lever hits a second marble
    20. the second marble falls onto a track
    21. the marble hits a lock off
    22. the lock removes a stopper from the front of a car
    23. the car rolls down the inclined plane and uses a ramp to jump off
    24. the car hit a domino
    25. the domino triggers the bead chain and lats a ball rolls down an inclined plane
    26. while the bead chain is going the ball rolls and hits a lock
    27. the lock pulls out two stoppers keeping the tracks up and allows the tracks to fall into place the lock also pulls down a second lock which pulls out the last track stopper
    28. the bead chain finishes and releases a black ball down the fallen tracks
    29. the ball hits a lock that pulls down a zipline carrier stopper
    30. the carrier goes down the zipline and hits a domino
    31. the domino falls and pulls out a stopper allowing a car to go down a track
    32. the car hits the light switch, turning the lights off

Introduction Video Link

Lights Out intro – YouTube

Something I should have mentioned in this introduction is that the battery in the train converts stored chemical energy into to electrical energy and that electrical energy gets converted into mechanical energy.

Final Run Video Link

Lights Out Run (

Quick Shot of Track Alignment Step

Lights Out Track Clip (


4 thoughts on “Energy Transfer Machine – Lights Out

  • When I started scanning the pages to leave comments, I scrolled through this one. I saw the beads in the metal can! I KNOW THIS MACHINE! The run was amazing. The webpage is amazing. I absolutely love the video where you explain the science behind it. You are truly an incredibly talented human who is doing wonderful things now and will do even more wonderful things in the future. Well done! I am so happy to see your project on here!

  • This was so impressive! There were so many different elements that were integrated so perfectly. I also liked how the explanations of the different transfers included diagrams. This was the first time I ever saw a track dropping into place before the marble could do its run – very clever!

  • Excellent descriptions of each transfer and super creative machine! Fantastic job overall!

  • Love the motivation , write up and description. Cool contraption from a budding inventor using everyday stuff


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