I really enjoy paper-related crafts and projects… all kinds. I especially enjoy paper automatons with moving parts. (I’m a fan of Rob Ives — I’ve built a number of his designs, and if you’ve never heard of him… click here.) Not only are they fun to build (for adults and kids), but they’re often very useful for teaching concepts involving gears and motion and timing.
If you’ve never tried your hand at building a paper automaton, let me point you to a great Kickstarter project with two amazing designs. I’m having trouble deciding which one to back. The designer is Geoff Rayner, and his company, Bag of Badgers, LTD, has put together a great little Kickstarter that is offering up parents two great projects for a family night or two. The best part is that the projects require no glue… and everything you need to build them is included in the boxes.
The two projects are The Magnificent Flying Machine and and The Magnificent Walking Machine, and rather than try to explain them, just take a look at the two GIFs. If a picture is worth a thousand words, than GIFs are worth at least a few thousand, right?
Eye-catching colors, really cool movement effects, and a sure-fire attention getter when placed on a mantle or bookshelf… pretty cool, huh?
The Kickstarter has just started, so point a browser here, go read the project’s information and check out the entertaining videos (the one near the end is sped up and really shows you what goes into making a model). For about $35.00 US (that price includes shipping), there are still early bird slots for both designs. After 50 of each design is sold, the price will jump to about $41.00 US. The project states that all items should be delivered in time for Christmas 2014 — I’m thinking this will make a great project with my sons between Christmas Day and News Year’s Day.
By the way, Geoff’s a total geek dad, and he provided this additional details about the projects and getting to spend more time with his children:
The idea behind Totally Glueless is to make paper-based gadgets and toys that are as fun to put together as they are to fiddle about with when assembled. A few years ago I took the decision to leave the corporate world and go freelance in order to spend more time at home with my children when they were small. To keep them entertained when on duty in the long summer holidays I started making them paper models to colour in and assemble which kept them going for a whole day until my wife got home to rescue me.My models are designed to be robust like the expensive wooden versions, but at an affordable price. They are intended for adults and older children over the age of eight or as a family activity.
If you like the project, help Geoff get his project off the ground by backing and providing your support. He’s hoping to create many more automatons in the future if the project is successful, and I can’t wait to see what he comes up with next.