Turn Off The Light

iBuild Academy, Inc. Orange City, FL
Megan K. Gr 5; Natalie P. Gr 4; Taylor J, Gr 5; River S. Gr 2; Ella S. Gr 2

thumbnail image

Design Documentation

This is the last step before the lights turn off.

Wheel and Axle
Pulley System

Energy Transfers

  • Zipline energy transfers to marble
  • Marble rolls and transfers energy to weight
  • Weight drops and makes the pully lift the sand
  • Sand bumps large marble rolls through a tube
  • knocks into a few dominoes which moves the large cardboard tube
  • Cardboard tubes roll to the lever
  • The lever pulls the string and releases the wheel and axle
  • Wheel and axel roll down the track knocking into the golf ball
  • The golf ball falls down and pulls the chain
  • chain turns and releases the car
  • Car rolls into the dominoes
  • Dominoes fall up the stairs and across the table to knock a small marble into the funnel
  • Marble spins in the funnel, down the short tube, and transfers the energy to the weight block
  • The weight block falls off of the seat, activates the pully and turns off the light, and flips the light switch

We used the electricity to turn off the light. Our final step is to drop the weight to activate the pully and turn off the light.

Machine Performance

Introduction Video

Machine Run

Challenges Encountered

  • Keeping the dominos upright until we were ready to test.
  • When the front door opened the dominoes would fall because of the draft.
  • When we would test part of the track something was not set right and it would not work.
  • One part worked great and then another part would not work. Many times it was different parts of the machine and hardly the same breakdown.
  • We also had vibrations from the floor which triggered some transfers early.


  • Rube Goldberg Site https://www.rubegoldberg.org/
  • Ok Go This to Shall Pass https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qybUFnY7Y8w
  • Six Rube Goldberg Machines https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dFWHbRApS3c

We feel the complexity of our machine is the dominoes going uphill and the use of the lever to transition to the wheel and axle.

7 thoughts on “Turn Off The Light

  • This is incredible work and very impressive!

  • What an amazing job they did!! I love the ideas the kids come up with and then they built it!

  • Very interesting energy transfer machine! I really like the variety of transfers and machine parts. Plus you did a great job on your web page.

  • Great job making this Rube Goldberg machine. Great use of energy transfer and you do a great job describing the process. These machines take so much time and effort but your effort was worth it!

  • Great use of peg board and duplo block domino stairs! Very creative!

  • Very cool! I don’t think I’ve seen dominoes goes up steps before, nice idea. That looks like it was a lot of work to make everything work together. Good job documenting the challenges you encountered.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *