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December 2016

Skee Ball Machine


The Skee Ball Machine was a collaborative project.  We needed to design and construct a fully functional skee-ball machine that possessed all of the qualities of the popular arcade game.  Some of the main focus points of the machine include the ball return system as well as the scoreboard that keeps track of the points scored by each player.

Electronic/Robotic Aspect

  • The electrical circuit was applied to the underside of the pocket board 

  • A phototrasistor was applied to the back of each pocket; each with a jumper cable attached connecting them to the beadboard 

  • The phototransistors detect when a ball is scored into the pocket and sends a signal to the scoreboard to record a score 

  • A scoreboard with a LED light display is connected to the pocket board to show the score each time a ball is deposited into a pocket 

  • Each pocket has a different point value 

  • The correct number of points are added to the score

Major Components

  • Return system

  • Basket

  • Support system

  • Pocket board

Improvements for Future Design

  • Improve code and develop a way for phototransistors to detect the ball when a specific player tosses the ball.

We were able to construct a low cost, functional, stable, and marketable skee-ball machine using wood, PVC, and other household materials resulting in an old-fashioned game feel.