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MAKE: Kit Reviews | Your Trusted Source for Kit Reviews
The Ultimate Kit Guide
Top Kits of 2011
Just Released

Simon

Make Kit Reviews

Simon

$25

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Reviewed: October 26th, 2011

All components are through-hole, making this Simon kit...

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  • MakerBot Thing-O-Matic Kit with Stepstruder MK7
  • Simon
  • Freescale Tower Microcontroller System
Just Released

MakerBot Thing-O-Matic

Make Kit Reviews

MakerBot Thing-O-Matic

$1,299

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If you want to get into 3D printing...

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  • MakerBot Thing-O-Matic Kit with Stepstruder MK7
  • Simon
  • Freescale Tower Microcontroller System
Just Released

Freescale Tower

Make Kit Reviews

Freescale Tower

$99

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Reviewed: October 25th, 2011

Got a project to prototype? Freescale’s Tower system...

Read On →
  • MakerBot Thing-O-Matic Kit with Stepstruder MK7
  • Simon
  • Freescale Tower Microcontroller System

Top Categories

  • Electronics
  • Robotics
  • Tools
  • Toys
  • Apple I Replica Kit

    Apple I Replica Kit

    Make Kit Reviews

    Apple I Replica Kit

    $149

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    Reviewed: October 26th, 2011

    Hobbyists are rediscovering the appeal of classic microcomputers from the 70s and early 80s, eager to tinker with computers at their fundamental level. Vince Briel designed the Replica I with permission from the Apple I’s original creator, Steve Wozniak. He sells it assembled ($199), as a kit ($149), or just the motherboard and specialized chips ($79). (Alternatively,...

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  • Egg-Bot

    Egg-Bot

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    Egg-Bot

    $195 to $220

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    Reviewed: October 25th, 2011

    The Egg-Bot is an art robot designed by Bruce Shapiro that’s fun to watch as it draws intricate designs on eggs or any other round objects 3cm–10cm in diameter, including ornaments, golf balls, and light bulbs. You design the patterns in the free app Inkscape, and the bot draws them using fine-point Sharpies, engraving tools,...

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  • Freescale Tower Microcontroller System

    Freescale Tower

    Make Kit Reviews

    Freescale Tower

    $99

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    Got a project to prototype? Freescale’s Tower system with its Real Time Communications Suite (RTCS) offers greater processing power and more programming resources than Arduino, although it takes longer to learn. The basic kit consists of the 32-bit microcontroller board with USB and RS-232 interfaces, accelerometer, four display LEDs, switches, and a potentiometer. Additional modules...

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  • NFC/RFID Controller Breakout Board

    NFC/RFID Controller Breakout Board

    Make Kit Reviews

    NFC/RFID Controller Breakout Board

    $50

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    In the next few years there’s going to be an influx of a not-so-new technology called Near Field Communication (NFC), which is very similar to RFID, and enables small devices to read passive tags and communicate with each other in close proximity. Card readers use it, as do phones that do payment processing. Adafruit’s PN532...

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  • Medabots

    Metabots

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    Metabots

    $6-$20

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    The box contains nothing more than a few sheets of die-cut foamcore, a dozen plastic ball joints, and instructions. But what they create, after some punching out and slotting together, are some of the coolest-looking posable robot action figures on the market today. Available in an all-white “prototype” version ripe for customization.

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  • Lego Mindstorms NXT 2.0

    Lego Mindstorms NXT 2.0

    Make Kit Reviews

    Lego Mindstorms NXT 2.0

    $280

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    Reviewed:

    This latest version of Lego’s popular Mindstorms robotics kit includes a new 3-in-1 color and light sensor with LEDs; a new ball shooter; and tank treads. On the software side, an image editor now lets you convert your own images to fit the LCD display, and a sound editor records and converts sound clips, to play...

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  • Sumovore Mini-Sumo Robotics Platform

    Sumovore Mini-Sumo Robotics Platform

    Make Kit Reviews

    Sumovore Mini-Sumo Robotics Platform

    $99

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    This is one of the most satisfying kits I’ve ever built, and the Sumovore it creates will be eligible for official RoboGames Mini-Sumo competitions, in which robots vie to push each other out of the ring. This is not a project for beginners, but thanks to clear documentation and well-organized components, anyone with moderate soldering...

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  • Topobo

    Topobo

    Make Kit Reviews

    Topobo

    $149

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    My living room looks like Darwin’s laboratory. A three-legged creature writhes on the floor. My daughter pulls off a leg and connects it to its face. My son teaches it to walk. It’s really moving now! This is how you play and learn with Topobo. Topobo is part construction toy, part kinetic memory robot. By...

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  • FireBall V90 CNC Router  Kit

    FireBall V90 CNC Router Kit

    Make Kit Reviews

    FireBall V90 CNC Router Kit

    $990 with additional 3-Axis ProboStep Motor/Driver Kit

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    Reviewed: October 26th, 2011

    Although the V90 is an entry-level machine, it’s decidedly not a toy. The way it functions is complicated — a platform carries the tool holder; a larger gantry moves the tool back and forth; the frame positions the gantry; and it’s all driven by a motor turning the screw interposed between two shafts. Indeed, this...

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  • Zen Toolworks CNC 12×12 Complete Package

    Zen Toolworks CNC 12×12 Complete Package

    Make Kit Reviews

    Zen Toolworks CNC 12×12 Complete Package

    $1,082

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    This awesome three-axis CNC kit is a must-have for small projects such as circuit boards, engraving, or machining various small parts out of plastic or wood. Everything you need is included, except for a few hand tools, a vise, and a computer with a parallel port for running the software. The documentation contains clearly described steps...

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  • micRo-cnc kit

    micRo-cnc kit

    Make Kit Reviews

    micRo-cnc kit

    $699

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    Despite all of the well-documented, homebuilt CNCs out there, I couldn’t get the momentum to build one, so I decided to start with a kit. The micRo looks great (in a NASA sort of way), and with a working area of about 12″×10″×4″, it’s big enough to be useful to the hobbyist, small enough to...

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  • X2 Mini Mill CNC Kit #2  with X-Y-Z BALLSCREWS

    X2 Mini Mill CNC kit #2 with X-Y-Z BALLSCREWS

    Make Kit Reviews

    X2 Mini Mill CNC kit #2 with X-Y-Z BALLSCREWS

    $579 (as tested $696)

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    What to do when you want to machine precise custom parts but don’t have room or funds for a professional CNC? Invest in a manual mill that can convert into a CNC. Considered a great tool for the price, the X2 Mini Mill is the kit builder’s top choice, and Probotix offers complete conversion kits (see...

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  • Simon

    Simon

    Make Kit Reviews

    Simon

    $25

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    All components are through-hole, making this Simon kit great for beginners. Reviewer Thomas O’Brien from San Antonio writes: “The instruction booklet is very well written and goes step by step with clear explanations. My grandson Ben, 5, helped put components in the holes of the circuit board, then I soldered them, and he clipped the...

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  • Drawdio

    Drawdio

    Make Kit Reviews

    Drawdio

    $20

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    Drawdio is an electronic pencil that lets you make music while you draw. It’s a great project for beginners: an easy kit with instant gratification. Invented by Jay Silver, it’s a very simple musical synthesizer that uses the conductive properties of pencil graphite to create sounds. The result is a fun toy that lets you...

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  • Mechamo Inchworm

    Mechamo Inchworm

    Make Kit Reviews

    Mechamo Inchworm

    $70

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    Make a mind-blowing remote controlled “Meka-Inchworm” robot with this fun, no-soldering-required kit. You’ve got to love a machine that moves like a bug! It’s Japanese, but we’ve got English instructions at makezine.com/go/inchworm. MAKE is proud to be the exclusive distributor in North America for these brilliant kits, part of Gakken’s Mechanical Animals Series. Reviewer Tyler Bennett...

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  • Karakuri Somersault Doll

    Karakuri Somersault Doll

    Make Kit Reviews

    Karakuri Somersault Doll

    $75

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    Employing a centuries-old secret technique from the Edo period, this kit has everything needed to create an acrobatic doll, plus a festive kimono and a tiered pedestal on which to perform. You can even adjust the velocity of the doll’s action. The instructions are in Japanese with beautiful illustrations that make it easy to put together. See the...

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Latest Reviews

Compressed Air Rockets Kit

Compressed Air Rockets Kit

Make Kit Reviews

Compressed Air Rockets Kit

$50

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Reviewed: November 17th, 2011

I was looking for something to do with the kids. They raved about how much fun the rocket launching

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Loud Objects Noise Toy

Loud Objects Noise Toy

Make Kit Reviews

Loud Objects Noise Toy

$20

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Reviewed: November 11th, 2011

Bzzzzrrrreeeeepeh-khkhkhhhhhhhk! Build your own Noise Toy with this kit from electronic noise group

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Drum Kit Kit

Drum Kit Kit

Make Kit Reviews

Drum Kit Kit

$19

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    Turn anything into a drum set with your Arduino and this simple kit. Some makers build

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Phantastron Synthesizer Kit

Phantastron Synthesizer Kit

Make Kit Reviews

Phantastron Synthesizer Kit

$195

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In an alternate Old West universe, folks played synthesizers, and they called ‘em “Phantastrons.

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Drone Lab V2

Drone Lab V2

Make Kit Reviews

Drone Lab V2

$230

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As a newbie to synthesizers and most electronics, I found the Drone Lab V2 a rewarding kit to constr

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Etherwave Theremin

Etherwave Theremin

Make Kit Reviews

Etherwave Theremin

$359

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Due to its hands-free interface (your body’s interference with its electromagnetic field controls

Musical Instruments: , ,

MOD 102 DIY Guitar Amplifier

MOD 102 DIY Guitar Amplifier

Make Kit Reviews

MOD 102 DIY Guitar Amplifier

$215

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Musicians have long praised the tone of tube amps, and after a face-melting guitar solo, it looks pr

Musical Instruments: , , ,

E.S.V. Fuzz pedal

E.S.V. Fuzz pedal

Make Kit Reviews

E.S.V. Fuzz pedal

$95

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Perfect for the hobby electronics musician, the E.S.V. Fuzz pedal adds that “Extra Special Vintage

Musical Instruments: , , ,

The Persuader Tube Drive Effects Pedal

The Persuader Tube Drive Effects Pedal

Make Kit Reviews

The Persuader Tube Drive Effects Pedal

$65

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Looking to get some clean preamp boost out of your guitar, and love the tone that vintage tubes offe

Musical Instruments: , , ,

Tenor Wolfelele Ukulele

Tenor Wolfelele Ukulele

Make Kit Reviews

Tenor Wolfelele Ukulele

$96

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It took me about 45 minutes (not including glue drying time) to put together a service-able ukulele

Musical Instruments: , ,

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