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FAQ

My K'NEX building set is missing a piece - what do I do?

If you are missing a part from your new K'NEX set, first compare the parts you have to the list of parts in the instruction book. Each part will have a number next to it which is the quantity that should have been included in the set. For example, if you see a 2 next to a blue rod, you should have 2 blue rods in your set. Be sure to check the parts list carefully against the parts in your set. Determine which part(s) is missing and contact us at email@knex.com or 800-KID-KNEX. Make sure to have the model number from the set available when you call or email. You can find this 5 digit code on the front panel of your box in one of the corners or in the middle of the UPC bar code, for example: 44476_ _ _ _ _.

I lost a part. How can I replace it?

If you are ready to build again and find that some parts are lost or broken you can check Parts and Extras to order individual parts. If the pieces you need are not available online, give us a call at 800-KID-KNEX, and we would be glad to assist you.

I've lost or misplaced my instructions. Can you help?

Check out the Model Instructions page to find instructions for your set or to see additional builds that may be available. You will need to enter the model number for the set in the provided field. You can find this 5 digit code on the front panel of your box in one of the corners or in the middle of the UPC bar code, for example: 44476_ _ _ _ _. Enter this number in the field to find the instruction options available for your set. Instructions for sets produced before the year 2000 may not be available.

How do I download additional building ideas or instructions?

Visit our Model Instructions page and enter the model number for your set in the provided field. You can find this 5 digit code in the instructions manual you received along with your building set, or on the front panel of your box in one of the corners or in the middle of the UPC bar code (for example: 44476_ _ _ _ _). Enter this number in the field to bring up the instruction options available for your set. Click on the instructions you'd like to download.

What are Micro K'NEX?

Micro K'NEX are the smaller version of standard (classic) K'NEX. To help you tell the two sizes apart, the micro and standard shapes are always different colors. For example, a standard red three connector (a corner piece with three connection points and a hole) is yellow in the micro scale. If you are ordering parts online in the Parts & Extras section, be sure to match the color AND shape of the piece you need to be sure you are getting the right part. If you can't find the piece you want in the standard scale, it may be a micro piece you are looking for—remember that color AND shape are important. If you are not sure which piece to order or need additional assistance, please contact us.

How do I know what type of chain to use?

When choosing chain links, check the type of tracks your model uses. If your set uses preformed track pieces you will need micro chain link and perhaps coaster chain guides. If the set uses tubing you will need to order standard black chain link.

Do K'NEX bricks work with other sets?

K'NEX bricks work with other leading brick construction toy systems to expand your building possibilities. Look for special transition parts that enable you to combine bricks, rods and connectors in your creations.

Where are K'NEX parts made?

90% of K'NEX parts are made in the USA at our factory in Hatfield, PA. Visit our America's Building Toy page for more information and to see how K'NEX parts are made.

Can K'NEX pieces be recycled?

Should the time come that you were ready to give your K'NEX product away (and we can't imagine why you'd ever want to do that), K'NEX products can be recycled.

How do I clean K'NEX pieces?

Non-battery operated K'NEX pieces can be easily cleaned with soap and water. Keep soap & water away from all motors, sound modules and any other parts using batteries.

What is the best way to store K'NEX parts?

If you have one of our multi-model sets that came in a plastic storage bin, there is extra room to add pieces to your collection. Some of our biggest fans have told us that they use fishing tackle boxes or large plastic tubs to store their parts. Be creative and devise a storage method that works best for you.

What if a K'NEX piece is accidentally swallowed by a child?

K'NEX building sets are NOT appropriate for children under 3 years of age. All K'NEX pieces are non-toxic and do not contain hazardous chemicals. If accidentally swallowed, the K'NEX part should pass through the child. The parts have rounded edges to help prevent scratching in the digestive tract and are designed with opening perforations so the child should be able to breathe if the part is lodged in an air passage. See a doctor immediately if there is any indication the child is having trouble breathing!

What materials are K'NEX made from?

K’NEX parts are made primarily with ABS and POM.

How did K'NEX begin?

K'NEX was invented by Joel Glickman in 1992. To read Joel's fascinating success story visit the History of K'NEX.

Can I tour the K'NEX factory?

Currently we do not offer public tours of our factory. We invite you to watch our factory tour video for a behind-the-scenes look at our manufacturing and design process.

How many K'NEX parts are there?

K'NEX has introduced so many new parts since the original 22 connectors, rods, wheels and pulleys that if you tried to hold them all in your hands they would overflow! Each year we design new and unique pieces and shapes—which is great news for those with big imaginations!

What is the biggest K'NEX model ever made?

The U.S. Space & Rocket Center is home to what Guinness World Records calls the world's largest K'NEX sculpture. In the summer of 2012, Space Camp crew trainers built a life-size T-Rex, whom they affectionately call K'REX, out of 160,000 K'NEX pieces. The sculpture is 12.46 feet high, 33.76 feet long, 5.93 feet wide and weighs 10 pounds.

How do the designers come up with their ideas?

If you can imagine it, you can build it. K'NEX designers let their imaginations run wild. They also listen to feedback from our fans and draw inspiration from what's popular at the moment.

How do K'NEX designers build the big display models?

Very carefully! All display models have an internal support structure made entirely from cubes built with blue rods and connectors. The support structure, or K'NEX cubes, prevents the display models from twisting or crumbling as they get bigger. The skin, or outer layer of the display, is made up of unique combinations of K'NEX parts. They're what give the cubes the final shape and look needed to create reality with the structure.

How can I share pictures of my models?

You are welcome to share pictures of your builds or models with other K'NEX fans through the photo gallery section of our website. Download the Photo Gallery Permission form.

What is the difference between K'NEX Education Sets and K'NEX sets sold at toy stores?

K'NEX Rods, Connectors and trim pieces used in both K'NEX Education and K'NEX retail sets are universal. You can combine parts from any and all K'NEX Sets and use them to create anything you can imagine. The difference between the two types of sets is that K'NEX Education sets are designed with the express purpose of being used as a classroom tool rather than an individual child's toy. K'NEX Education Sets contain curriculum support materials, developed and tested by award-winning educators in classrooms across the country. These curriculum materials provide lesson plans detailing how to integrate K'NEX into lessons to teach concepts such as simple machines, amusement park technology, potential and kinetic energy, space exploration, fractions, measurement, and much more. These sets also contain multiple K'NEX parts and instructions so that groups of students can build models and study these concepts simultaneously.

How are the curriculum materials in the K'NEX Education Sets structured?

The curriculum materials included in the K'NEX Education Sets vary based on the subject matter. For most sets, the curriculum is presented to the teacher in the form of the Teacher's Guide. This manual provides the lesson objectives, background information for the specified topics, student activities with reproducible worksheets, methods for assessment and lesson extensions. For these sets, students work in teams to build the models from the building instruction booklets or cards and then take direction from the teacher for experimentation and investigation. Examples of this are: the Intro to Simple Machines and Intro to Structures: Bridges series, Forces, Energy & Motion, and Amusement Park Science & Technology. Other sets have curriculum that presents the concepts and activities directly to the students in the form of Activity Cards. The cards provide the background information about the concept, written to the student, as well as directions for investigation and experimentation with the models they build. The students work independently, in teams, through the activities on the cards, using the Reference Cards for support. They provide feedback to the teacher for assessment in the form of written assignments such as journals and oral presentations. The teacher does not have to be actively involved in the individual lessons. Examples of this are the Simple Machines Deluxe Set and Primer Math sets. K'NEX Education's new Collectible sets offer teacher's guides separately. For a comprehensive list of guides that are sold separately please see FAQ #9. For examples of the curricula, please visit the Lesson Plans section of this web site and download sample lessons from various K'NEX Education Sets. In some sets, such as Exploring Machines and Forces, Energy & Motion, teams of students can build the same model simultaneously. In other K'NEX Education product offerings, this is not the case. We offer numerous opportunities for students to investigate the topics by including multiple models that demonstrate the same concept. This allows them to understand the concept universally as opposed to just related to one particular model. For example with the Simple Machines Deluxe Set, if you are teaching 1st-class levers, your students can build a balance, see-asw, catapult, handcart, rowboat, and scissors; all of which function in the same manner as the real-life objects they replicate. In the lessons, teams of students build and experiment with the different models. Then the groups can share what they learned with the class to establish how this idea applies to a variety of different things in the real world. This will help them understand the concept as a whole, not just how it applies to one particular example. We also encourage you to have the students build models of their own design, based on the concepts they are studying. This allows them to use their creativity to demonstrate their understanding of the concept being studied. This also serves as a performance-based assessment tool.

How do I integrate K'NEX Education Sets into my lessons?

K'NEX Education Sets are designed to be open-ended and flexible. There is no right or wrong way to integrate them into your lessons. The Teacher Guides offer detailed information for how to execute the lessons. In many cases, you can open the book and teach without adding anything to the information presented there. You may need to spend some time reviewing the guides first to determine which topics fit into your curriculum. You will most likely not present everything included in the set to the students.

How do I structure my instruction to receive the maximum benefit from my K'NEX Education Set?

K'NEX Education Sets provide materials that support a variety of instructional models in the classroom. Some teachers use the sets to support full class activities, some use them as part of a modular program, and still others set up science or math centers that revolve around a particular K'NEX Education Set. The descriptions of the K'NEX Education Sets outlined on the web site and in the catalog specify the number of students the sets support. You can use this information to determine your particular needs. If a set supports 20 students, you can use it with an entire class. If a set supports 12-16 students, you may use it as a modular activity or science center or purchase more than one for use with the whole class. New Collectible Education Sets are designed for 2-3 students working as a team. These sets were designed to allow students to set up a work station or to collect sets over the course of the year to acquire a classroom solution. These sets allow one model to be built at a time. Examples- Simple Machines Deluxe supports 20 students. Organize the class into five groups. Each group focuses on a different type of simple machine i.e. levers or gears and completes the models and activities for that machine. At the conclusion of their investigations, the groups rotate to another station. When all groups have completed the rotation, have students present their investigations and findings to the class. Forces, Energy and Motion supports 12 - 16 students. This set provides materials to build four identical vehicles simultaneously. Assign 3 to 4 students to each group for activities. Each group investigates the same concepts with the same models as directed by the teacher. If you would like to use this activity with an entire class of 24 to 32 students, we would suggest that you purchase two of these sets.

Can these sets be integrated into my everyday lessons or are they designed for supplementary activities?

Some K'NEX Education Sets support existing curriculum while others are so comprehensive they can completely supplant existing units in the curriculum. K'NEX Education Sets are intended for use with students of all ability levels. Beyond the lessons that are included in the various sets, there are extensive opportunities for the teacher to design creative activities that motivate and challenge students in many settings. Educators successfully use K'NEX Education Sets in a variety of settings: Science, Technology, Math, and Gifted classrooms, home school environments, college classrooms, community outreach centers, etc. Many educators use K'NEX Education Sets as part of contests and competitions.

How much time does a K'NEX lesson take?

K'NEX Education lessons and building exercises vary in length. They are divided into manageable segments with easy breaking points. Most Teacher Guides offer suggested duration periods for the entire lesson based, for the most part, on 45-minute periods. Each K'NEX Education Teacher Guide also has introductory sections that address how the curriculum is designed and suggestions for usage. The building portion of the lesson takes a minimum of 15 minutes. Lengthier building projects can be subdivided as necessary. Clean up and organization are essential, so you need to leave at least five minutes for putting the pieces away and processing what was learned. You can adapt lessons to best fit your classroom environment and accommodate students of different ages and ability levels. Pick and choose the segments of the lesson you wish to present or do the whole lesson for a comprehensive discussion of the topic.

Where can I buy K'NEX Education Sets?

K'NEX Education Sets are available through a variety of educational catalogers and home school distributors. If you need assistance purchasing a K'NEX Education Set, please contact us directly via email at email@knex.com or by phone at 800-KID-KNEX.

How can I turn parts management into a lesson for my students?

Turn the potential problem of material management into a great lesson for your students by selecting a few to be your inventory control team. On a weekly or bi-weekly basis, have the team count the components to determine if any are missing and make the sets orderly. Explain the importance of materials management, inventory control and the need for accuracy in counting. All businesses must keep close track of their inventory and components to ensure that they have the materials they need to make their products, fill orders for their customers and deter theft.

How can I get replacement parts for my sets?

You may order replacement parts on-line by visiting Parts & Extras in the K'NEX shop.

Are K'NEX parts guaranteed?

K'NEX parts are made to last a lifetime of normal use. If you experience a problem, please call us at 800-KID-KNEX Monday - Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. EST. K'NEX Education representatives are happy to assist you.