This is my last Rube Goldberg post. Overall, I really enjoyed this project! The two things that I liked the most were testing out our machine and making the final video. I thought that testing out our machine was really fun because it was cool to watch it at work and to try to figure out what changes to make to failed attempts which would then lead to a successful one. Making the video was also fun because we got to experiment with a bunch of different features. Nick and I chose a very cool piece of music that we wanted and used the fading in and out feature which Mr. Casal taught us how to use in WeVideo last year.
I learned a lot from this project. One thing I learned were the different ways different objects react to something hitting them. Sometimes objects reacted in a way that I didn’t expect. For example, at first I didn’t expect a domino to knock down a cassette, but I realized that it was because the domino hit it at the top. If that domino hit the cassette at the bottom, it wouldn’t have knocked it down. Another thing I learned is that making small changes to the machine can make a huge difference. Maybe the most important thing I learned is that you have to be very patient to make a Rube Goldberg because it can take you A LOT of attempts to make it be successful. And trust me, sometimes you’ll get REALLY FRUSTRATED. Especially when you’re building a row of dominoes and then, all of a sudden, one of them falls, which causes ALL the rest to fall too. I suggest you test out the machine by parts. That’s what Nick and I did and it helped us out a lot. I think it was the reason the machine was successful on the second try. If you test out every part and change it until it’s perfect, then when you test your entire machine it’ll probably work in one of the first few attempts.
Here is an “Instagram Post” that I made in Adobe Spark about my Rube Goldberg video on Mrs. Robert’s YouTube channel…
On Sunday, Nick and I finished building and recording our entire machine. It has 17 steps. We got a successful run on our SECOND try! It was awesome. When we just started working that day we replaced some steps. For example, we replaced the marble and cardboard tubes with a labyrinth and wooden maze that the marble goes through because we realized that taping the cardboard tubes to the wall wouldn’t work because the tape wouldn’t be strong enough to keep the tubes on the wall. We also took out the soda can and the two cars and swinging bar step. We replaced that because we realized that the swinging bar that gets pushed by the first car wasn’t strong enough to give the second car a good push. Also, we decided to replace the car hitting the books because every time it did, the book would fall backwards because the car was hitting it on the bottom. A final step we replaced was the books at the end that push the soccer ball into the goal. We replaced that because we wanted to get to put in a cool domino part with one domino going on a loop-the-loop and other dominoes on this little thing that has like a wave shape. We really like the dominoes falling.
We also made an important change to the phone step. When the phone received the call from the computer, the word “Mami” appeared on the screen (which is mom in Spanish), so we thought it would be funny to change the name of the caller to “Rube Goldberg”. My dad was there filming and had the idea of putting voiceover when the computer calls so that the people watching our video will hear what’s on the phone’s screen.
When we finished building our machine, my heart was racing. I was so excited and at the same time nervous. Would we get it to work? How many tries would it take? It didn’t work on the first try, but it got pretty far. Nick and I were SUPER frustrated because it was two steps away from working all the way! The step that failed were the mini dominoes hitting the bigger ones. The mini dominoes weren’t strong enough to knock down the bigger dominoes so we figured we had to replace them with the bigger ones. We made that change and… IT WORKED. We couldn’t believe it worked on the SECOND attempt. Nick and I were celebrating like crazy!
This is my 5th Rube Goldberg post. Nick and I have started building our machine this week. We tested some parts and found that it’s very challenging to get things to work. We have been working very hard and have had a lot of failures. Sometimes when we were setting up the dominoes, one domino would accidentally fall and knock down ALL the rest which was REALLY frustrating! Other times, the dominoes would be too close to each other, so when we started the machine they wouldn’t fall the way we want them to and that attempt would fail. We realized the dominoes have to be placed about 3/4 of an inch apart from each other to fall the right way. We also think we might need to replace the cardboard tubes that go taped to the wall with something more stable, or replace that step for something else.
Next time we meet, on Saturday, we will continue working on the step with the computer calling the phone and try to finish the design and start filming the entire machine at work. Last time we tried the phone step, the ramp was either too steep or not steep enough. The phone either would get stuck and not move down when called or slide down right away when we put it on the ramp. I hope we get a successful run this weekend. We really want to finish it!
Here are a few videos…