With the popularity of construction toys, it’s easy to get lost in the aisle of crazy contraptions. Do you go with a car, helicopter, or truck?  Hexbug is offering a like-no-other construction experience for little engineers with its VEX Robotics Hexcalator. The building kit employs traditional engineering mechanisms like gears and axles, while creating a fun, rollercoaster-style ball machine to show kids that engineering can have an entertaining end result.

HexcalatorThe Hexcalator works using a kintetic knob that kids can turn to set the wheels in motion. The balls then climb up the track until they reach the top, and then they’re launched down the slide. The faster kids turn the knob, the faster the balls make their way through the machine!

This toy includes more than 260 pieces to construct the perfect ball machine. The pieces click together easily and make building exciting (no messy glue required). A motor kit can be purchased separately to make the balls move through the Hexcalator by the push of a button.

The Hexcalator is one of many Vex Robotics kits, which aim to encourage skill development in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) concepts. The Hexcalator embodies all of these things, and it also allows for creativity beyond the standard building instructions. The set comes with alternate construction options called the Dragonfly and the Gyrocopter, so kids can pick and choose which gadget they’d like to create.

The Hexcalator is considered one of Vex’s “intermediate builds” and usually takes anywhere between three and five hours to construct. During these hours, future engineers can learn the importance of following instructions, how different pieces can work together to create movement, and how patience and hard work can really pay off.