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LEGO Zip Wire


When we are doing our Building Event with LEGO, it is always great to have new LEGO challenges. This summer the children and I really enjoyed the LEGO zip wire.

At the beginning of the programme, I explain to the children that today’s challenge is to build a zip wire trolley. They are free to choose their own design of trolley and it may look like a car, a boat, or a plane as long as it has some kind of loop at the top to attach a hook. My hook is a hook from my children’s old IKEA play kitchen. You can also use a big paper clip and shape it into a hook.

The track for the zip wire was a thin rope between a handle of a chair trolley and a leg of a chair. You can also use coat hangers, a door handle, a leg of a table or an easel as long as you have two different heights for the rope to be attached to.

It is important to work out the right angle for the rope to get the right speed for the trolleys. Too slow and the trolleys do not move and too fast and the trolleys might fly off the rope or smash when they come to the end of the rope.

The children and the dad who was in charge of the zip wire challenge the first time we did it loved the thrill of seeing the creations coming down the zip.

The next time I did the zip wire challenge, and to introduce something new, I asked the children to build the trolleys big enough to carry mini figures and to see which trolley could carry the most. Suddenly we saw more storeys created with big wings to be able to carry more mini figures.

Another way of doing it, which I haven’t tried out, but have seen on Pinterest, is to race the trolleys by making more tracks next to one another. They recommend only to use two ropes next to one another to make it easier to control the race, for the rope to have the same angle and to make the letting go phase of the trolleys fair.

Have a go it is really good fun!

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