DIY for the Non-Hardware-Elite
October 16, 2007 8:42 AM   Subscribe

DIY blogs that don't require you to be a goddamn logic board-soldering wizard?

I could have sworn I saw a question about this a long time ago, but I searched the archives and even asked one of the mods, who had no memory of it. So I'll ask it:

I'm looking for DIY-project blogs and websites that don't require the electrical engineering proficiency of a site/publication like MAKE: and its related blog. I'm a programmer, so code projects are cool, but I'm crap at soldering and know squat about electronics and hardware hacks.

Particularly I'm looking for sites that have fun small-to-medium-sized projects (meaning cool bookcases are great, but not backyard sheds). Again, programming project ideas would be great, but I'm really looking for stuff I can build with my hands and my now not-unrespectable collection of power tools.

I know about instructables and finkbuilt and that's pretty much it. Ideas?
posted by middleclasstool to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (7 answers total) 53 users marked this as a favorite
Checkout Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories.
posted by fallenposters at 8:48 AM on October 16, 2007 [1 favorite]

I've found Instructables to be useful. I found a bike-rack project on there that I'll do this winter. The quality of their projects vary, of course. But at least not everything starts out with "Go get your soldering iron..."
posted by iwhitney at 10:02 AM on October 16, 2007

Ikea hacker.
posted by damn dirty ape at 10:06 AM on October 16, 2007

objects of desire
posted by logic vs love at 10:25 AM on October 16, 2007

Yeah Ready Made is pretty good. They usually rate the hardness of each of their projects, and in every issue there are usually 2-4 that are low to medium skill level. If you have power tools, you might be able to do most of their projects. FYI: It's a magazine, not a blog. And their website doesn't link to too many of their articles.
posted by bluefly at 11:03 AM on October 16, 2007

Response by poster: Great suggestions so far. I'll stress (since I didn't really touch on it in the post) that furniture/carpentry stuff is welcome as well.
posted by middleclasstool at 5:26 PM on October 16, 2007

Actually, I've been horrified at how basic and simple a lot of the stuff on Make is. So the pertinent thing is (especially with the blog) they cover a wide range from quite advanced stuff to easier-than-dirt-simple, so I suspect you've seen some of the more advanced ones and decided it's not for you.

Either that or you're thinking "Argh! electronics!" and mentally tuning out projects that in reality, YOU could competently complete in mere minutes without trouble, if you actually stopped to think about it.

A few weeks back the Make blog had a video showing you how to use a multimeter to test for continuity. Ie you turn the meter on, simulatanously touch two things with the probes, and if there is an electrical connection between those things (such as if they're the two ends of the same wire), then the meter goes "beep". A video - to teach how to do that!

That is not above your head. In addition to your woodworking projects, instead of running from electronics, put aside a few hours in which to learn how easy it can be, then a whole new world of hands-on projects opens up to you.

(I understand if you're just not interested in electronics, but your explanation did not give this impression).
posted by -harlequin- at 11:05 PM on October 16, 2007

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