Instructables Podcast 002: A Lot of Pressure, and a Sharp Tug

Welcome to our second episode! Would you like some advice on a project your working on? Perhaps you'd like a few ideas from a new source? You can comment here or email us at

In this episode we discuss some of the projects we're working on, take care of some more housekeeping, and do a bit of brainstorming!

Enjoy the episode and enjoy the resources!

You can listen to or download the episode below, listen over at or check it out at our homepage:



From our Builds:
-Learning Electronics: littleBits, Snap Circuits and LogicBlocks.
-How to build a food dehydrator

3D Modeling:
-Jake's instructable on building his action figure
-Find 3D models: 123D, Thingiverse, Blender
-Create 3D models: 123D, SketchUp

Books and such:
-Awesome Prop Building Forum
-David J. Gingery: Build your own Metal Working Shop from Scratch
-O'Reilly and Make
-Kenn Amdahl: There Are No Electrons: Electronics For Earthlings

-Chainsaw bike

Sharp Tugs:
-Hammer on a revolver: From How Stuff Works, scroll down to "How Revolves Work" and click on the flash animation
-Bass drum pedal
-Rubber band gun
-Mini Crossbow (thank you again How Stuff Works)

Steam Power:
-Steampunk Motorcycle
-Very basic guide to steam engines
-Tesla Turbine
-Tea Pot Steam Engine (click on "How Steam Engines Work" for pdf)
-Pop Pop Boat (also, I know what I'm getting Jake for his next birthday)

If you'd like us to discuss one of your questions, please email us at or comment below.

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Goodhart4 years ago
I am a bit stumped presently on making some of the lab equipment (glassware mostly) "like it states in an old book I have,,,,,somewhere".

I don't need simple things like test tubes (they are as low as 50 cents a pc at Scientifics), but rather things like a vacuum bell jar (different shapes and sizes acceptable),  Flasks or bottles along that line that can be stoppered,  A "stand" to hold such things above the table (even test tubes over an alcohol lamp, etc ).   The instructions given are clear enough, but some of the equipment is no longer available (one of the projects is an electronic glass cutter that looks cool, but also sounds dangerous)  and many times the chemicals they want you to use are hard to come by.  I was able to procure H2SO4 and HCL from the local hardware stores, but many of the other things (potassium prochlorate, etc) are less common.

Any help in this endeavor of "building my own lab" would be appreciated.
StumpChunkman (author)  Goodhart4 years ago
You got that in just in time. We had to record a bit early this week. I got this question about an hour before we had to record. So a bunch of quick research and I found you a few resources. Hopefully some of it helps, if not, let me know and I can do a bit more digging. Also, send picture if you're looking for something specific.
Sorry for my lack of specifics;  SOME of the things, one can "make" from jars, and bottles, and a bottle/glass cutter (not the little hand held one, but one more along the lines of something electric although the one in the book I mentioned had a bare wire carrying some amperage :-)  ).  I have a few glass drill bits, but can not find a lot of instruction on using them. So that would be helpful. . 
That is the from the glass ware end.
The chemicals I was able to acqure were H2SO4, HCL, and some Potash (small amounts from the local country grocer....which is all I need). 

Here is the reason for the lab:   I am helping (as a volunteer) to teach science and doing projects for a young person with Asperger's Syndrome (like myself) and "physics" is easy enough, nearly everything can be constructed from stuff lying about.  Chemistry, is a bit less "stuff lying aroung" kind of project scenareo. Some of it is (a little milk, food dye, and a tiny drop of soap amazed her for hours :-)
Labware is available, even from eBay BUT is very expenesive.

The book gives me a method of making a bell jar (vacuum, not super vacuum) pc..  I will include some pictures with this so you get the idea.

Kiteman4 years ago
I think you solved my "tug" question, but I was thinking smaller for the steam vehicle...
blkhawk Kiteman4 years ago
If you are into metalcasting to create steam engines check this Youtube channel.
StumpChunkman (author)  blkhawk4 years ago
That's an awesome youtube page. Thank you!
I'm glad to be of help!
StumpChunkman (author)  Kiteman4 years ago
hahaha...Yeah, I figured you didn't want something you could jump onto, but I didn't want to keep us constrained to solenoids. That's awesome if we actually solved something, though I don't know how often something like that'll happen.
Kiteman4 years ago
I just thought of a solution to the clothes cleaning project - retro-fit a tumble-dryer with a steam-feed.

Throw in a couple of tennis balls, and it shoud beat out at least some of the dirt, as well as sterilising the clothes.
StumpChunkman (author)  Kiteman4 years ago
Huh! That's interesting, I'm going to have to pass this along...see if it's something he's thought about before.
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