How to make a model escalator

Escalators move millions of people in Singapore every day: at the MRT, in shopping malls, the airport, in office buildings and schools.

But do you know how they actually work?

In this demonstration, I will show you how to build a model that demonstrates the key components of the escalator.

I will show you how to put the components together step-by-step, finishing with a live demonstration of a working model, with steps moving in a continuous loop.

This demonstration will help you understand one of the most useful “people-moving” machines with come in contact with every day, and inspire you to develop your own ideas for better “people-movers”.

Key Components

Elevator truss


  1. The truss (or frame) supports the whole structure.




Escalator rails


2. The rails guide the moving parts on a track.




Gears and chain


3. The gears and chain drive the steps in their continuous loop.



Motor and switch


4. The motor and switch provide the power.




Model Escalator


5. The steps move up (or down) in a continuous loop.