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Welcome to the Machine

Winner of the Most Innovative Use of Te Reo Māori at the ServiceIQ 2015 New Zealand Museum Awards.

Nau mai ki te Mīhini

They’re everywhere – the kitchen, the lounge, on roads, in schools and workplaces. Where would you be without them?

‘Welcome to the Machine’ shows in a creative and interactive way how six simple machines can be combined to make more complex machines. There is plenty of hands-on learning for the children. Fun and interactive activities include a pinball machine, a giant lever on which you can lift a friend, an Archimedes’ screw that winds balls into the air, the Strongulator that magnifies strength, and much more.

Begin your journey with interactive examples of the simple machines which include, the lever, wheel and axle, pulley, inclined plane, wedge and screw, and learn the technology behind each of them. Visitors will also be encouraged to see if any simple machines are utilised in our larger and more complex objects. 

Children can take a hands-on approach, getting a chance to see each machine in action. Prepare to have your perceptions changed the further you explore, as we take you through some of the most recognisable examples of simple machines including a corset, ships block, scales and even a tennis racquet!

The bicycle as we know today is a great example of technological evolution, and uses levers in the form of pedals, and the later addition of a chain and a wheel with sprockets gives us the final element of a contemporary bicycle.  Compare the 1930s-style racing bike of champion cyclist Wiremu Paratene  and compare it to Olympic silver-medalist Hayden Roulston.

You’ll also learn about Kiwi ‘No 8 wire’ innovation, with the story behind the ‘Kindling Cracker’, invented by the 2013 Fieldays young inventor of the year award winner, Ayla Hutchinson.

Innovation, invention and the ‘No 8’ wire attitude; an important day out for the next generation of young Kiwi minds!