How to decide

Before you commission or even build your own rolling ball sculpture, it´s advisable to give a good thought about what kind of rolling ball sculpture is best for your needs.

 

SPACE

First you must consider the space you dedicated for your rolling ball sculpture.

Free standing rolling ball sculpture is best for spaces where can be observed from at least two sides. Large waiting rooms, hallways, partition walls, display windows etc. are the places for free standing rolling ball sculpture.

Wall hanging rolling ball sculpture can be placed in almost every room with a free space on the wall. It´s about 20 cm deep so it doesn´t take much space and can be observed mostly from the front. If there is space for a picture there is also space for a wall hanging rolling ball sculpture.

Desktop rolling ball sculpture is portable, small and simple free standing sculpture. It can be placed on the desk or any place you like.

 

OBSERVING DISTANCE

By knowing the distance of observation, you can determine the size of balls used in the rolling ball sculpture.

I don´t recommend balls smaller than 25 mm.

25 mm balls are good for distances up to 2 meters.

35 mm balls or even 40 mm balls are used for greater distances.

One must know that glass (or any other solid material) balls get quite heavy the bigger they get, so they need thicker tracks, bigger frame etc.  Not only the material gets more expencive but it´s also harder to hand bend it so the price of the sculpture rises with the size of the balls.

 

AUTOMATED OR INTERACTIVE

It´s great fun to watch fully automated rolling ball sculpture. This sculptures are good idea for public places where you don´t want million hands touching the sculpture.

But interacting with the sculpture is so much greater fun - especially for the children. They always want to touch what they see and it´s better to give them something to touch instead of constantly saying: "Don´t touch!" Interactive elements are very good feature for private rolling ball sculptures. These elements are manually operated by pushing the lever, rotating the wheel or pulling the rod and cause to lift the ball, discharge a ball collector - you can even make an interaction into a game.

Rolling ball sculptures can be:

Motorized - motor driven lift (elements) with no interactive elements

Motorized / interactive - motor driven lift (elements) with interactive elements

Hand powered - hand operated lift with no interactive elements

Hand powered / interactive - hand operated lift with interactive elements

 

NOISE

A ball rolling down the track makes a calming mesmerising sound but metal rolling ball sculptures can get quite noisy. Some elements where balls jump, suddenly stop by hitting something etc. are better to be excluded from the sculptures that are meant for a quiet place.

The elements I recommend for a quiet rolling ball sculpture are: S track, wavy track, spiral (not very tall), horizontal track switch and a track dip.

Balls are also very important when considering a quiet sculpture. Ping-pong balls can be a good idea for a very quiet rolling ball sculpture. There is also an option of using rubber or phenolic resin (a material billiard balls are made of) balls. Glass and steel balls are not recommended for a very quiet rolling ball sculpture.