5 Cool K’NEX Builds DIY Projects

K'NEX Helicopter with Motor

K’NEX has been around for decades and never disappoints anyone who loves to build from simple to complex structures with hundreds of pieces and bring them to life with motion features. So, in this article, you will find some Cool K’NEX Builds to see how awesome they are and try out its fun building experience at home.

K’NEX has a wide variety of different building toys suitable for different ages and skills. You can build almost anything  ‘If you can IMAGINE it, you can BUILD it’, by snapping plastic rods and connectors together to form vehicles, amusement park rides, Ferris wheels, world-famous buildings, weapons, and many more to count!

Why build with K’NEX?

Everyone can build with K’NEX – regardless of age and skill level, you will find the perfect K’NEX project for beginner or advanced K’NEX enthusiasts. Besides enhancing creativity and immersive play, you are having a hassle-free, enjoyable building experience with K’NEX construction toys. K’NEX models are so fun to build that you might even lose track of time! In addition, building with K’NEX enhances fine motor skills, spatial awareness, and creativity. Each model and kit provides opportunities for both creative and curious kids and adults as an educational tool.

Kid assembles K'NEX with manual
Kid assembles K’NEX with manual

Playing with K’NEX gives kids the opportunity to learn STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) introduction while building. Whether K’NEX sets in boxes or DIY projects, as you enter a world of construction and engineering, your imagination can run free as you use patience and determination to create a result you’re proud of.

Explore 5 fun K’NEX DIY projects

There are tons of stunning K’NEX models from simple to complex structures that K’NEX enthusiasts create at home, we’ve rounded up 5 of the coolest K’Nex builds to show off. From the list below, they range from complicated ball machines to simple guns that you can check out and build similar to the parts you already have at home. Let’s get it on:

1. K’NEX Ball Machine: Elysium

K’NEX Ball Machine Elysium
K’NEX Ball Machine Elysium

This happens to be one of the biggest and most complex machines that is to be hit up on Instructables. ‘Elysium’ ball machine has some unique features like a moving floor, 8 new lifts, and multiple new elements. The lowest floor is not like any other white K’NEX ball machine floor, as it is motorized. The floor makes random movements, so you never know where the balls will end. The surface itself is also different than white connector floors: this one is a combination of white a red connectors. This pattern was much more flexible, necessary to make it move.

If you want more than a moving floor, take this: All lifts in this machine are new. 9 lifts in total, 8 new lifts, because one lift has been used twice. Some of them are small and simple, others are bigger and more complex. The last lift also serves as a path separator.

Besides the new lifts, there are also multiple new elements. You can find one new path separator as well.

Because this machine’s networks are not very clear and interconnected, the video is split up into so-called ‘parts’. There are 4 parts in total. This machine has 18 paths and 7 connections. Connections are smaller paths that connect one part to another. Here’s an overview:

  • Part 1: 2 lifts, 4 paths
  • Part 2: 3 lifts, 3 paths, 2 connections
  • Part 3: 3 lifts, 5 paths, 3 connections
  • Part 4: 1 lift, 6 paths, 2 connections

Ball machine features:

  • Height: 2,75m (= 9 feet)
  • Width: 2,10m (= 6.9 feet)
  • Depth: 1,45m (= 4.8 feet)

Number of pieces: 40252
Take your time, get ready, and build a working ball machine. Click on step-by-step full instructions here.

2. K’NEX Coin Sorter

Coin Sorter
Coin Sorter

This K’NEX coin sorter has many features worth trying, including faster sorting, easier adjustment for different coins, choices of how to take the coin holders out, and easier to replace them. Also, it includes an optional funnel so inserting coins is easier.

These features make this sorter excellent for sorting American coins (dimes, pennies, nickels, and quarters), but can be easily adjusted to sort coins of different sizes. The funnel just makes it easier to add the coins into the sorter. 
Before your coins can be sorted, you’ll need to sort out your k’nex pieces that count total for the coin sorter without funnel: 762 and for the funnel – 310.

Here are separate lists, one for the coin sorter without the funnel and one for the funnel.  The pieces to build below are listed according to their classic-colored names (The pieces for the funnel are listed after the pieces for the main sorter, separated by a comma): Rods: green – 123, 65, white – 53, 28, blue – 107, 29, yellow – 33, 19; Connectors: dark grey – 103, 49, light grey – 16, 2, red – 55, 25, green – 15, 4, yellow – 72, 15, orange- 16, 12, white – 5, 0, blue – 7, 8, purple – 47, 27. Then, 72, 12 blue spacers, 4, 8 silver spacers, 14, 1 tan clip, 20, 6 black Y clip. After you have all the parts, start building with  instructions. Now you can sort all of your coins at ease!

3. K’NEX Christmas Wreath

K'NEX Christmas Wreath
K’NEX Christmas Wreath

This small homemade K’NEX wreath will look good with your other Christmas decorations. It’s mostly made of green connectors and white rods, plus red “berries” and a red ribbon at the bottom. You can even add some fake lights to elevate your Christmas decorations. This very particular model was the winner of one of the Instructables contests.

Before you begin building, gather all of these parts, containing a total of 382. There are only 10 kinds of pieces: 227 rods, 153 green, and 74 white rods. 1 dark gray, 4 light gray, 22 red, 109 green, and 4 white connectors. Other parts include 5 Y clips, 1 metallic blue clip, and 9 head caps. Once you have all of those pieces, then let’s get building! Make sure to follow full instructions for an accurate building process.

4. K’NEX “Gremlin” Pistol V1.0

K’NEX "Gremlin" Pistol V1.0
K’NEX “Gremlin” Pistol V1.0

This particular K’NEX pistol is a pretty simple DIY model and performs well. Most of the advantages, it holds include epic sights, a comfortable handle, its visuals, a good range of 40-50 feet (1 rubberband), and the mech operates on no rubber bands. As a first step, you will need to have all the necessary pieces. The way to build your simple gun requires the following: 9 green, 9 red, 4 white, 6 light gray, 11 dark gray, and 27 orange connectors. From the rods 110 green, 22 white, 7 blue, and 1 black gray pieces. Then add 6 blue and 1 gray spacers. Gather 2 blue clips, 4 tan clips, 20 Y-connectors, 1 ball joint, 1 gear. As a cut, pieces have ½ green rod – 4+1 optional piece. Once you start to take in motion, build the gun handle, then the barrel and you are about to test your very simple yet cool K’NEX gun model.

5. K’NEX Desk Tidy

K'NEX Desk Tidy
K’NEX Desk Tidy

You never have to worry about the items scattered on the desk with this K’NEX organizer. This desk organizer stores all the necessary stationary supplies you might need for working or studying. It has a compartment for a stapler, felt pens/writing pens, pencils, sellotape, and markers/highlighters. It is very handy to keep your desk clean, and it also looks pretty cool! It is a unique way to keep your desk tidy and clean, as well as it being creative and original. See the complete instructions to build a model of this little organizer and have fun with creative building ideas!

FAQs about Cool K’NEX Builds

Before you take your hand on DIY K’NEX models, test your strengths, or just spend some fun time with new challenges, here are some common questions and answers you might want to know:

What can I build with K’NEX?

With K’NEX, you can build a wide range of vehicles, structures, and mechanisms, such as rocket ships, rollable cars, and epic rollercoasters, whether as construction sets or homemade project creations. Be it cars, roller coasters, or ball machines made from high-quality materials, the possibilities are endless.

How do I set up K’NEX challenges?

K’NEX challenges promote creativity and problem-solving skills. Depending on the skill level and age group, they can be completed by children and/or adults with different abilities. Through K’NEX, all participants receive a rewarding building experience while being stretched by more challenging tasks.

Is K’NEX suitable for all ages?

K’NEX is designed for people of all ages, from children to adults. The building system allows endless creative possibilities, making it an enjoyable and engaging activity for everyone up from 3 years. K’NEX kits and homemade designs make a perfect gift for every budding builder.

Immerse yourself in endless adventures and develop your skills with cool K’NEX designs. Take part in an interactive building experience today.

About Author


Liam is a dedicated and experienced toy enthusiast and is the beating heart of All About K’NEX. Born in 1990, he played with K’NEX in his early years. After moving, he encountered his K’NEX sets again and began to relive his youth. From this passion he started All About K’NEX and has not let go since then. Favorite K’NEX set: Giant Ferris Wheel K’NEX hot take: never too old to have fun

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