Hot Hobbies & Toys Posts

How To: Make a sling shot with a stick and soccer ball

This video demonstrates how to construct a sling shot out of a soccer ball. You will need an old soccer ball or tire tube, a "Y" shaped stick, and a pair of scissors. Slice the soccer ball open to remove the rubber lining. Next, cut two thin strips of the rubber lining. Cut out one hexagon shaped piece of leather from the deflated soccer ball. You can use this for the sling shot pouch. These visual guidelines depict how to use these materials to construct a sturdy slingshot in a matter of min...

How To: Make & Fly a kite

Kites are a great way to pass the time and they are oodles of fun! Learn how to make your own kite including how to select the size and style, how to tie the thread and how to fly a kite in this free video clip series.

How To: Build a dragon kite with a gold tail with your kids

This awesome kite has a long tail just like a dragon and is traditionally flown to celebrate the Chinese New Year! Watch this instructional how to video to learn how to make a dragon shaped kite. Have fun creating your kite with an adult helper. For this project you will need: rib-stop nylon, bamboo dowels, cloth tape, pencil, scissors, and gold tinsel.

How To: Build a beam bot twin motor robot base

This robot is BEAM bot inspired. First we build up the Motor Drive, an excellent and cheap Robot Bot-Base. We start with the Tamiya kit, get it going, then strap on a battery and a drag wheel, center the drag wheel. Tape it all in place with bright yellow tape and make a BEAM Bot with batteries. Plans for this BEAM framework are to add smarts.

Meet Tanky: The Super Smart DIY Tank Robot That Can Map Its Own Surroundings

There are plenty of tank robots out there, but how many of them can recognize 3D objects and map their environment? Tanky, the tracked mobile robot, can do all that and more while rolling around on his bicycle chain treads. Created as a Master's thesis project, Tanky is made almost entirely of parts you can find at your local hardware store. It was built in two "layers" with the motors, electronics, and batteries on bottom and the processing unit, a laptop, on top. The motors came from cordle...

RoboDoc: A Kid-Friendly DIY Robot That Makes Doctor Visits a Little Less Scary

Remember going to the doctor when you were a kid? If the word 'traumatizing' comes to mind, you'll love the RoboDoc by MarkusB, a robotic doctor that makes checkups a little less scary (and a lot more fun) for kids. It all started when Markus took his 14-month-old daughter for a checkup. The finger clip that the doctor used to check her pulse terrified her, so Markus decided to build a heartbeat monitor just for kids that's much more likely to make them laugh than cry.

News: Autonomous, Solar-Powered Fijibot Only Lives to Survive Another Day

Aside from being completely adorable, Fijibot is a completely autonomous robot that automatically seeks out light sources to charge his solar-powered battery. He's built from a 1.5 liter Fiji water bottle, packed with an Arduino Uno, 6 volt solar panel, and an Arduino Proto Shield. His other parts are all off-the-shelf gear you could grab at RadioShack, while the wheels are from a discarded RC car. Fijibot isn't a particularly useful robot, but it's still fun to watch him navigate from light ...

News: This LEGO Mindstorms Submersible Can Be Piloted by Your Xbox Controller

Making little robots with a LEGO Mindstorms NXT set is already cool, but putting one underwater? Now that's just crazy. That didn't stop this engineer, who built a LEGO submarine that can not only maneuver around his fish tank, but can also be remotely controlled with his Xbox controller. The craft has a sealed battery compartment, exposed Power Functions motors, and features real-time communication between it and a laptop using a NXTbee wireless module.

News: NASA's Curiosity Just Got Bricked! Working LEGO Mars Rover Ready for Exploration

Using a LEGO Mindstorms NXT kit, a pair of awesome engineers put together this fully functional replica of the Curiosity Mars rover. Not only is it built completely out of LEGOs, it's motorized, programmable, and ready to explore the far reaches of your living room. The rover was built for the Build the Future in Space event at NASA's Kennedy Space Center. Four of the six wheels are powered, allowing it to make 360 degree turns, and the arm and mast are both fully controllable. The entire con...

News: World's First 3D Printed UAV Takes to the Skies

The use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) has been widely used by the military for surveillance and reconnaissance missions—even armed combat. But there are other beneficial applications of an unmanned aircraft, such as search and rescue operations, scientific exploration, locating mineral deposits, transporting goods and even filming bikini models. But drone development can be pretty pricey, unless you just happen to have a 3D printer...

News: Flying Pegasus Operated with LEGO Gears & Cranks

Korean MOC Pages user Kyoung-bae Na, aka edulyoung, constructed this beautiful LEGO automaton of a winged Pegasus. Maneuvered with a series of mechanical LEGO gears and cranks, watch below as Pegasus "hovers", flapping her wings. Kyoung-bae Na sells his creations out of his e-shop, Studio Amida. The Pegasus automaton was previously going for $140, but is no longer listed; however, there is a clownfish currently available for the lower price of $33.50. The models are so fantastic—it makes one ...

How To: Turn a Finger Board into a Mini Snowboard

Unscrew the trucks from the bottom of your board.On the deck of your fingerboard you will see two groups of screws. These screws attach the trucks to the board. To unscrew the screws use a mini screw and wrench used to change trucks and wheels on finger boards.Unbolt.The trucks consists of two parts - one is the part that holds the wheels, and the other connects the trucks to the board. The only thing connecting the two is a tiny bolt. Unscrew the tiny bolt and the pieces should fall apart. Y...

News: 4 Years of Spectacularly Pointless Marble Machines

So very pointless, yet unquestionably spectacular. The best kind of "art" performs no other function than to delight the viewer, and Japanese YouTube user Denha's complex marble machines do just that. But are marble machines art? You can call them that—or toys, scientific contraptions, engineering feats—but however you choose to label them, the best marble machines are complicated, skillfully crafted, and driven by the principles of potential energy, kinetic energy and gravity.