3-D Maze in Acrylic

Inspired by something I saw on the forums, but can no longer find with a search, and by my grandson’s upcoming birthday, I designed and built a 3-D maze from 2.2 mm acrylic sheet. You drop the ball in the hole in the top, rotate the cube this way and that and finally – if you do it right – the ball comes out the hole on the maze’s bottom.
Here’s the prototype:


Once I homed in on the right tab dimensions to get a nice interference fit, it all went together very nicely. The prototype is just held together by friction and is quite solid. I plan to weld the final version together with solvent and filling the engraving with paint to make it stand out.

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Wow! What a great present!

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Very cool! So much fun to make … And to give!

That is a great idea, can’t wait to try it!
Thanks for the inspiration!

Oooh! That’s nice! (Kind of like a Perplexus.) :slightly_smiling_face:

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Or Perspexus ?
:upside_down_face:

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Very cool! It’s the first 3D maze I can recall seeing on this forum.

This is fantastic!

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This is really cool. Did you make the maze paths by hand or did you use a program?
Designing in 3D and making a workable path seems very complicated.

I’m glad you found it interesting.
I designed it in AI, starting by sketching out the maze path. It looks like this:


Each of the big squares is a “floor” in the cube. The red lines are the path through the maze. Red dots mean “when you get here, go down one level,” green dots mean “when you get here go up one level.” So, starting at the top. you go down through the hole, ending up in the floor just to the left of the top. From there you go west, north and then east to the hole where you go down one level. And so on.
Using this simplified sketch let me design and verify the path and to build in various pitfalls and dead ends to make it more confusing.

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What a great vision and a fun challenge to design! cool project.

The real puzzle in this project is the assembly. I just finished the second one.
The first one I built I put the A floor at the top. The ball fell out the bottom almost immediately with that configuration.
Realizing my error I built one with the floors in the correct order - E D C B A - top to bottom.
After about an hour I have not solved the maze.
If I ever build a third one I think I will make some kind of jig or drawing to assemble the individual pieces together before inserting them into their associated floor.

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Yes, that’s right. The ground floor is “A” and the top floor is “E”.

As to solving it, there’s always the map a couple of post earlier. I’ve found that solving the maze doesn’t make appreciably easier – at least not after a few days have passed. :wink:

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