A LEGO Contraption That Sets Planets and Moons in Motion

Andrew LaSane

In the LEGO building community, a GBC (great ball contraption) is a machine that passes tiny plastic balls from one module to another using robotic components and perfectly timed designs. Going for big, complicated designs is a surefire way to get noticed and break records, but one builder named Akiyuki has shown that big ideas can be executed on a smaller scale to equally impressive effect.

Laughing Squid recently shared a video of Akiyuki's latest creation, which simulates the orbit of tiny satellites (in the form of mini basketballs and soccer balls) around planets borrowed from LEGO Star Wars sets. As demonstrated in the video above, the balls are manually dropped into a bin at one end of the system, then lifted and deposited one-by-one into rotating holders that are attached to each planet, passed along the line as they go, and dropped into another holding bin at the end.

The entire system is powered by a LEGO Power Functions L-Motor, which anyone can buy directly from the toy company to start planning their own GBC. This might not be an accurate representation of the solar system, but it's still a totally clever way to render the movement of the cosmos.

[h/t Laughing Squid]

Images: YouTube