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10 Engineering Toys From Your Youth

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Daniyal_Ali
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Good Old Days!
Daniyal_Ali   4/17/2014 6:40:50 AM
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Nice post Rob. A lot of these toys made me nostalgic and brought back old memories. I played a lot with the chemistry set and did countless fun experiments, which helped in building my interest in chemistry as i grew up.

This set was the reason i came to know, that if you mix hydrogen peroxide with potassium iodide you can make white foam like substance. I used to ruin my room with it and my mom didn't like it one bit. Another cool thing i used to make was artificial snow by mixing sodium polyacrylate with water.

Anyhow, nice slideshow. Loved it!

Rob Spiegel
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Re: Good Old Days!
Rob Spiegel   4/17/2014 7:17:37 AM
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Thanks Daniyal_Ali. I did all the same things with my chemistry set. I ran through about three sets when I was a kid. My mom hated it, too. "What are you doing in there?" she kept asking as strange smells wafted from the bedroom.

Corona Rich
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Gold
Good stuff.
Corona Rich   4/17/2014 9:08:05 AM
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I was really hoping for 10 out of 10, but that Chemistry Set knocked me out of a perfect score. Well...my mom would't let me have one.

I noticed that there were no Lego sets on there.  With all the gears, belts, and chain drives available, it was possible to make some quite ingenious toys!  I even built one of my college engineering projects out of them.

Got the maximum score.

Rob Spiegel
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Re: Good stuff.
Rob Spiegel   4/17/2014 10:13:41 AM
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Hi Corona, I debated whether to include the chemistry set, but then I figured those who has the mechnical engineering toys probably also had the chemistry set. I thought about Lego, but Lego didn't appear until after most of these toys and I was already planning to use Lego has a major player in the next set of engineering fun -- today's toys. That should be out next week.

Corona Rich
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Gold
Play on
Corona Rich   4/17/2014 10:42:55 AM
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Rob, it is a good list, and it brought back good memories.  Thank you!

I remember I would design mechanisms, rockets, train and slot car layouts at school and ride my skateboard home to try them out! 

Of course, that's before the kids were buried in homework every day!

Free play reaps amazing benefits, but we seem to have lost sight of this.

ChuckMahoney
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Re: Good Old Days!
ChuckMahoney   4/17/2014 12:08:39 PM
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My first mechanical toy wasn't even really a toy - my dad had coffee cans filled with nuts, bolts, hinges an dother bits that I would spill out onto a newspaper and assemble in to different things. After that was an Erector set, and then later those "100 in 1" electronic kits. Radio Shack also use to sell kits in plastic perfboard boxes that had to be soldered together. I built a ton of those.

Rob Spiegel
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Re: Good Old Days!
Rob Spiegel   4/17/2014 1:08:22 PM
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Hey Chuck. I used to do the same thing with my dad's coffee cans for nuts and bolts. I also used to have a wordburner set. I still remember the odor from the woodburner.

fm
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Re: Good Old Days!
fm   4/17/2014 5:11:05 PM
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Yeah, that woodburner had a wonderful smell! So did the big Weller soldering GUN that i used to solder (and tear apart) old electronics. But, sad, i missed out on Girder & Panel - i don't remember that one at all, even though i had Legos with gears, wheels, and little axle blocks that you'd stick the wheel pins into. Anybody remember the old Lego train set, where you had to build the track from individual toothed rails and ties?

naperlou
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Re: Good stuff.
naperlou   4/17/2014 5:35:26 PM
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I think I might be 10 of 10.  We did have the chemistry set.  We were a bit cautious about it though, becuase a neighbor kid blew up his house with one. 

What I really liked was the Heathkits.  I also had the luxury of having a lot of electronic parts since my dad worked at an electronics lab.  He always brought stuff home for me.

Daniyal_Ali
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Platinum
Re: Good stuff.
Daniyal_Ali   4/18/2014 2:55:10 AM
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I wish i had used the Heathkits too. I heard a lot of stories about it from my dad, but never had a chance to use it as they were discontinued in the 90s. But i did use a lot of electronics kits that resulted in boosting my interest in the field of engineering and later helped me pursue my career in electrical engineering. I feel happy for children of today's age as they have a lot of learning opportunities with devices like littleBits which make engineering fruitful as well as fun.

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