Tuesday, April 30, 2019

GBC Observer 👁 Week 19, 2019

Welcome to the GBC Observer for week 19, of 2019.

First up Dunes shows us his mod, of Ryk's mod of the BW2018 ball pump.  Ryk made it larger so it could be used as more of a reservoir, and now Dunes has added the Turntable Mod I created and put even more of his own work into it!

Mindstork has created a Donkey Kong themed module which looks great!  My favourite thing is the minecraft micromob face used for Mario.

Maico has shared one of his latest layouts, lots of modules from different designers in this loop!

Have a great week everyone!

Monday, April 29, 2019

The Better Ball Bin

Not content with my smaller 30 ball bin, I went back to the drawing board and came up with something that is much more then just a ball bin.  I present to you the Better Ball Bin.

  • Holds 95 Balls Securely.
  • Double Hinged Lid stays out of the way when opened.
  • Easy Pour Slot provides a controlled flow of balls when emptying the bin.
  • Flip up 10 brick tall measure for GBC Standard I/O compliance testing.
  • Extra Parts and Tool Storage (25L Unjammer included).
Instructions can be found here on github, or linked from my instructions page.

Friday, April 26, 2019

Getting Ready for BrickCan 2019

It's almost time for another Lego Con and that means another collaborative GBC layout!  I will be heading to BrickCan 2019 in nearby Richmond, BC May 2nd-May 5th.

Event Website Here: http://www.brickcan.com/

River Rock Event Page: https://riverrock.com/event/brickcan-2019/

BrickCan is a smaller con with AFOL attendance capped around 250.  This will be my 3rd year there and I plan on bringing around 20 modules.  In order to support that I've upgraded and updated my infrastructure now with 8 Train Controllers, more power extensions, a large amount of fencing, and new promotional material.  As well I have a new large bypass, and have rebuilt/repaired many modules over the last year.

BrickCan 2019 Loadout
Please introduce yourself even if I look busy, I'm always happy to meet other people who enjoy Lego GBC!

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Turntable Top for Ball Pump

I've just released some instructions for the turntable top I built for the BW2018 Ball Pump.  This should also work with any other ball pump.  I have not included an output ramp, but there is a Technic pinhole that is available to connect something.

With this top you can adjust which direction you want your output to face, as well there is several accessible technic pins, pin holes and the main gear rack so you can modify this to do whatever you can imagine.  (Maybe even motorizing the main gear rack to spin the output).

Instructions can be found on the instructions page or you can jump directly to the PDF on github here https://github.com/greatballpit/LegoGBC/blob/master/Instructions/turntable-top.pdf

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

GBC Observer 👁 Week 18, 2019

Welcome to week 18 of the GBC Observer for 2019.

There was quite a few new GBC videos that appeared on YouTube over the last week and here are three of my favourites.

Ethan one of our discord community chat members has created a new module which looks like it was inspired by my Whirligig module.  This module called Bananagig uses the banana gears as a nice smooth ramp for the balls to be pushed up and over.  Instructions are available and are linked in the video description.

Akiyuki shows us a module that uses the newer coaster track. The way the driving arms change angle before connecting to the coaster carts is really well done!

BVB is back, and it looks like he has finished his reboot of the Akiyuki ball factory. I really like that this new version does not sit on a baseplate, and looks quite rigid.

That's it for now, have a great week everyone!

Sunday, April 21, 2019

New Boutique items available for purchase.

I'm happy to announce the availability of some new GBC gear featuring 3 original designs by the Great Ball Pit.  All of the shirts have a single clean logo on the front, and are available in a variety of colours.  Please visit the Boutique over on Teespring to see more!

All purchases directly support the Great Ball Pit, and if you are a member of the Discord Community Chat you will be granted the Supporter tag.

Saturday, April 20, 2019

"Powered Up" now available at Lego Shop @ Home

So I just looked on Lego Shop@Home (here in Canada) and quite a few Powered Up components are now available for sale.  (Note all prices quoted in this article are in Canadian Dollars)

Intersting things:
  • They are now calling the "Boost Hub" the "Move Hub".
  • Both Medium motors have different prices, with the "simple" one costing $14.50 more. 🤔
  • The Powered Up LED lights are no longer showing up for sale.

GBC Cost Analysis:

  • Power Functions Battery Box + PF M-Motor = $18.48
  • Powered Up Hub + PU M-Motor = $89.98
Disappointingly, even at $90 the powered up components would still require a "Smart Device" or the $30 remote control to even turn on the motor.  Let's hope that some adapter cables will appear that allow us to power the newer PU motors from older PF power sources.

GBC is already quite an expensive theme to build and these new components are really going to push the price up.  I would recommend that everyone continue to stockpile Power Functions components over the rest of 2019, and get a good quantity of the 9v Train Controllers as well.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

GBC Observer 👁 Week 17, 2019

It's week 17, and here are some interesting GBC videos I've discovered on YouTube over the last week.

First up is a narrated walk through of a "simple" train module from a member of BayLUG.

Lasse has returned to work on one of his older GBC modules.  The tilting dump mechanism is fun to watch.

This last video is a stepper, what caught my eye was the ball bin that looked like Swiss cheese.

Have a great week everyone!

Monday, April 15, 2019

Quick Look - GBB-8C (Version 2)

Here's a quick look at the second version of my GBB-8C module.  The first one failed hard at BrickCan 2018, so I wanted to quickly fix it for BrickCan 2019 which is coming up in a few weeks on the May the 4th weekend.

The new version uses the rock solid BrickWorld 2018 Ball Pump designed by Brian Alano.  Instructions for the BW2018 ball pump can be found here: http://www.greatballcontraption.com/wiki/File:2018_Brickworld_Ball_Pump.pdf

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Spring into GBC 2019 Contest

Looking for a reason to build GBC this weekend?

A few of the builders over on the GreatBallPit Community GBC Chat are hosting a "Spring into GBC 2019" module building contest**.  Build a GBC module up to 48x48 in size, prizes include official Lego GBC balls and some other great stuff.  Detailed rules and prize information can be found here: Spring into GBC 2019 Contest

The official Discord server for the contest can be located here: https://discord.gg/E8fRkUG

I'm looking forward to seeing what is created for this contest!

**This is not an official greatballpit.com challenge so please direct any questions about this contest to the associated discord server.

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

GBC Observer 👁 Week 16, 2019

Welcome to the GBC Observer for the Week 16, 2019.

First up let's take a look at this video from "Antons Mindstorm Hacks" YouTube channel.  He shows us how the new 28 tooth gear can mesh with other Technic gears.  If you didn't know, Lego has introduced a new Education product line called "Spike Prime" and it has several cool new Technic parts, and programmable HUB.

Next up is an interesting new lift mechanism that I haven't seen before.  This one is from Bananaman2018

And in this new layout video, Cadder takes us through the GBC @ the Sydney Brick Show.

Have a great week everyone!

Thursday, April 4, 2019

GBC Instructions - Emmet's Red Crane

GBC Community Chat Member Pinwheel has released instructions for his Emmet Red Crane Module.  I really like this module and look forward to building it sometime soon!

They can be found here: https://bricksafe.com/pages/pinwheel/emmets-red-crane

You can see this module in action below at this recent TwinLUG GBC display.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

GBC Observer 👁 Week 15, 2019

Welcome to week 15 of the GBC Observer.  Spring has arrived and with it, several new GBC modules and layouts have appeared online.

Here is Beyond the Bricks BrickWorld Indy 2019 GBC layout walkthrough with Tom.  There are several new modules here including the upcoming BW2019 workshop module!  Can you spot it?

Next, here are some interesting modules from what appears to be a recent BayLUG meeting.  The top of the ball pump is simple but interesting to watch as the balls bubble up and sit around.

And in this video Ben shows us the 3 modules he's built from the 42055 Bucket Wheel Excavator set.  He's arranged them in a small layout which is clever.

Have a great week everyone!

Monday, April 1, 2019

Quick Look - Space Balls the Contraption

Here's a quick look at the Benny Space theme I applied to Ryk Field's REF03 module.

Instructions for Ryk's module can be found here: https://github.com/rykfield/REF03-16x16-Stepper/blob/master/REF03%20-%2016x16%20Stepper.pdf