Gonzo Gizmos: Projects & Devices to Channel Your Inner Geek

Gonzo Gizmos: Projects & Devices to Channel Your Inner Geek

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by Simon Quellen Field
     
 

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Step-by-step instructions to building more than 30 fascinating devices are included in this book for workbench warriors and grown-up geeks. Detailed illustrations and diagrams explain how to construct a simple radio with a soldering iron, a few basic circuits, and three shiny pennies. Instructions are included for a rotary steam engine that requires a candle, a soda… See more details below

Overview

Step-by-step instructions to building more than 30 fascinating devices are included in this book for workbench warriors and grown-up geeks. Detailed illustrations and diagrams explain how to construct a simple radio with a soldering iron, a few basic circuits, and three shiny pennies. Instructions are included for a rotary steam engine that requires a candle, a soda can, a length of copper tubing, and just 15 minutes. To use optics to roast a hot dog, no electricity or stove is required, just a flexible plastic mirror, a wooden box, a little algebra, and a sunny day. Also included are experiments most science teachers probably never demonstrated, such as magnets that levitate in midair, metals that melt in hot water, a Van de Graaff generator made from a pair of empty soda cans, and lasers that transmit radio signals. Every experiment is followed by an explanation of the applicable physics or chemistry.

Editorial Reviews

VOYA
Using items around the house such as soda cans, CDs, and pennies, teens can make a spectroscope or a plastic hydrogen bomb (that turns out to be little more than a homemade water gun). For a few dollars more and a trip to the hardware store, one can create a solar cooker, film canister cannon, or a simple radio. Reading like a recipe, each project includes a shopping list, required tools, and step-by-step instructions. Principles of chemistry and physics are proven by hands-on projects and then explained in detail. Trickier experiments include troubleshooting suggestions. Field's tone is personable and informative, more like a cool mentor than a lofty professor. Reinforcing the scientific method by regaling trial-and-error tales, Field demonstrates that science is a process. The book is well arranged, with projects in each section progressing from easy to more difficult and more detailed. The index was missing from the galley, some terms are not defined in context, and a glossary is lacking. Uncaptioned black-and-white photos clarify the procedures; pictures are especially useful in the "Constructing a Van De Graaff Generator" directions. Because many projects require materials beyond copper tubing and alligator clips, an appendix of suppliers for harder-to-find items would be helpful. Most of the computer-generated diagrams look dated, and cheesy line drawings add to the overall amateurish look. The dull cover and self-published, from-lab-notebooks look might deter casual browsers, but students looking for dramatic science fair projects can find several between these pages. VOYA Codes: 3Q 2P S A/YA (Readable without serious defects; For the YA with a special interest in the subject;Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12; Adult-marketed book recommended for Young Adults). 2004, Chicago Review Press, 240p.; Index. Illus. Photos., Ages 15 to Adult.
—Beth Gallaway
Library Journal
Readers who wish they could build tiny cannons, cook hot dogs using the sun, or create a handheld radio transmitter are in luck. Field, an information systems specialist and "tireless tinkerer who collects science experiments," shows readers how to create these and other unusual gadgets using common materials. Several are wacky (e.g., a solar marshmallow roaster), but each illustrates important scientific principles (described in a "Why Does It Do That?" section). The projects explore magnetism, electromagnetism, electrochemistry, radios, thermodynamics, and light and optics, with later gizmos building upon what was learned in previous sections. Some of the experiments could be potentially dangerous because of heat-related hazards, but with adult supervision, they would be appropriate for kids of all ages. This title is ideal for science teachers who are looking for new ways to hold their students' interest and belongs in most collections. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781569766781
Publisher:
Chicago Review Press, Incorporated
Publication date:
12/01/2003
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
240
Sales rank:
1,204,230
File size:
12 MB
Note:
This product may take a few minutes to download.

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