Picture of Periodic table of the elements blocks
I made small building blocks representing the elements.  I milled down a poplar board into 2.75" cubes and laser engraved each side with a different property.  Made a great birthday present for my 4 year old nephews. 

I made this at Techshop using the planer / joiner, table saw, chop saw, router, and laser cutter.  Their website is, check them out!

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Step 1: First steps with the board

Picture of First steps with the board
I purchased a 10' x ~2" x ~7" poplar board from Aura Hardwoods, down the street from Techshop.  I cut it in half to make it easier to work with.  

It got a little rain on it, so I started off by drying it in the powder coating oven at 200F for 30 minutes.  

I tried to match the dimensions of the 2 blue blocks shown.  

For the first pass through the joiner, use the ruler to set the height.  Try not to take off more than 1/8" per pass, especially the finishing passes that need to look good. 

Make sure not to plane it down to the final thickness, just get it close, but leave yourself room to take more off later.
jjmorrison49 months ago
This is a pretty cool way to trick kids into learning. You should add like weight and number on the sides.

Seriously do you want to sell this by chance, would love to buy it for my kids

misko1311 months ago

I love the idea!

rasha yellow11 months ago
People will buy those blocks
It's a fun way to learn .
Todd Gehris11 months ago
This is so cool! Fantastic idea.
bob303011 months ago
Cool gift. Great job. Thanks for sharing. You got my votes.
mbryan611 months ago
Ooh. Sell these for a few hundred on Etsy! Might include additional info like proton number and chem symbol
GinaT11 months ago
love these! I am the market that Kiteman is referring to:)
makendo11 months ago


Kiteman11 months ago

These are great - do you realise that, if you get your price right, there's an actual market for things like this?