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Rube Goldberg Reflection

The ball moves down the ramp. It makes a swirling sound as it moves through the funnel.  The dominoes tumble over each other in an orderly fashion. The last one pushes the car. The car spins through the scale. The pin rolls over... and BOOM!! The balloon pops. What causes this chain reaction? It's called a Rube Goldberg Machine, or in simpler words, a series of events that provoke something even bigger; like the example we just had, the ramp, the funnel, the dominoes,.. they all worked together to make the ballon pop. These series of events are called simple machines, which are several working manuevers (in this case 6) each assigned to complete a different simple task. The impact of one is not great, but together, they can cause an expolsion.

Here are the six simple machines:

Wheel/Axle: Used to carry around heavy mass with less effort

Pulley: Uses wheel and rope to raise, move, raise, and lower a load

Lever: A rod balanced on a fixed point that can move more wheight effortlessly

Inclined Plane (Ramp): Slope that makes it easier to titlt or transport something

Wedge: Made out of two inclined planes and used to piush objects apart.

Screw: An inclined plane wrapped in a spiral

Using these six machines, you can easily create a Rube Goldberg machine by putting them all together in a sequence. In STEAM class we recently finished our own Rube Goldbergs programmed to pop a balloon. My project was tough to work with at times. It required much focus and attention. I spent a lot of well spent time trying to problem solve and work out the flaws in my system. I personally would have prefered even more time to fix every flaw and perfect the machine, but overall,  I think it worked out well.

Making your own Rube Golberg is easy! Just follow the sets of rules that each simple machine follws, and create your own masterpiece! :)



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 wedge_rev     lever_drawing

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