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Eccentric Cubicle (Make: Projects) 1st Edition

11 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0596510541
ISBN-10: 0596510543
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Kaden Harris (a.k.a. the Eccentric Genius: http://www.eccentricgenius.ca) makes antiques from a parallel universe: museum-quality miniature catapults and machina arcana, handcrafted corporate gifts, and executive rewards. He lives in Vancouver, B.C., with his wife, "The Sourceress," and six shopcats: Tolka, Miqo, Aggie, Jasper, Pugsley, and The Giant Cat-Bear.

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Product Details

  • Series: Make: Projects
  • Paperback: 392 pages
  • Publisher: Maker Media, Inc; 1 edition (November 8, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596510543
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596510541
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 1 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,087,995 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Susan Prosser on November 26, 2007
Format: Paperback
I definitely don't have the chops, supplies or tools to make the projects in "Eccentric Cubicle," but I still love this book. It's a blast to read through the instructions for gems like this one:

"Fugly? Uh huh. Useful? Yeah, that, too. Recognizing the potential alternative uses for garden-variety stuff is an essential part of improvisational fabrication."

See, I'm pretty sure I'll never need a drill pattern for a rachet, but dang, it's cool to see how it *could* be done if I ever wanted to. I pick up this book the same way I flip through my baking, knitting, quilting books. To see what I'm in the mood for. To fill up the idea coffers. Or maybe to get some creative sparks going. If you know what I mean when I say that I don't have to start a new quilt project to need dozens of quilting books, then you'll know that you don't need a metal shop to enjoy reading "Eccentric Cubicle."

Plus, Kaden Harris' prose is clean, spare and danged funny (witness such section headings as "A Warning to Woodworking Purists" and "The Rites of Springs: Roll Your Own Boinginess"). It just does my heart good to know he's out there, thinking of ways to keep stuff out of the waste stream, and better yet, returning it to use. I almost wrote "good use," but didn't -- only because not everybody needs a mini guillotine on her desk. Seriously though, it warms my heart to think that somebody somewhere spent the time to make a desktop chopper and document the process so other out-of-the-box thinkers could follow along. That Harris was the one to do it is outright providential.

If you like the guerilla DIY style of Make and Create magazines, you'll like this book. 'nuf said.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Duff HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 24, 2007
Format: Paperback
Following up on my review of The Best of MAKE, I also got a chance to read Eccentric Cubicle by Kaden Harris. You can think of this as MAKE magazine in overdrive. From a pure reading perspective, it's outrageously funny and very well documented. In terms of actually *building* the items here, you had better have some level of background when it comes to hacking and building things on the fly, making the rules up as you go along. And in some offices I know of, you'd probably get put on probation for having these items on your desk...

Contents:
Introduction; Active Deskchop; BallistaMail; Maple Mike; DeskBeam Bass; The Gysin Device; iBlow; Liquid Lens Meets DiscoHead; The Haze-o-Matic 3000 Fog Machine; Hammerhead Live; Homebrew Wood Finishes

There's a picture of Harris in the introduction, and he looks like someone you'd see on a show like Mythbusters or Junkyard Wars. He specializes in making incredible devices using discarded or trashed items he's found and/or scavenged over the years. I can only imagine what his house and work area must look like. All these projects, such as the guillotine and crossbow, are intricate and fascinating, and show a very high level of creativity and ingenuity to build without resorting to buying brand-new or made-to-order parts. The level of workmanship and detail that Harris puts into each one make them unique and special, especially considering that the parts are often from items that are rather mundane, like vacuum cleaners and record players. It just goes to show that looking at "junk" in different terms can open up a world of possibilities. Each project also has a little "nano-project" associated with it.
Read more ›
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Brian Atkinson on December 31, 2007
Format: Paperback
This book contains a series of interesting projects to read, however, unless you have some fairly serious Maker background, I don't imagine they would be easy to pull off (both skill and tool wise).

However, some of the included "nano projects" have applicability to making in general, not just the projects they are lumped in with in the book. Two that specifically come to mind are the foot speed control for a dremel and the pegboard clamping system.

Regardless of project difficulty, the book is an interesting read, due to the interesting subject matter and the writing style of the author.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Bean Slap on March 7, 2010
Format: Paperback
Amazing creations and stories. Apparently he built a four poster bed with only a rock and swiss army knife and with his skills I completely believe it. Anyone else and I'd be skeptical. He gives more than just plans; he gives a creative philosophy. Great book and great diverse projects!Def recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Perry Kaye on May 28, 2008
Format: Paperback
Kaden Harris is an amazingly intelligent "character". Let me start of by saying his book is great and even though I was offered a free copy I went out and bought one anyway. It is worth the money and a great read.

Kaden and I went to an elementary school, with the Makers Faire people to convince kids that making is a great thing to do. Kaden brought his wares, including the Guillotine shown on the cover of the book. I can tell you the guillotine could easily lob off the heads of dolls and a finger too.

So there we stood. Waiting to speak to the elementary school kids. I was speaking as an inventor showing my latest and greatest and Kaden had his projects (guillotine included). At this point I was curious as to how Kaden would describe what the guillotine was used for. Would he be graphic or dismissive? Even I did not know what approach I would take. What do/should you tell Elementary school children about guillotines?

The kids came in and I waited and watched... Kaden then showed them how the guillotine worked and said, "This is a great kitchen gadget. You can cut carrots with it." GENIUS! The kids were amazed! It is a very cool carrot cutter.

Then Kaden answered the questions you'd expect from elementary school kids. The top two questions were, "Can it cut a finger off?" and "Can I try it?" The top two answers were... "Yes" and "No".

We had a great time. Kaden is a great story teller and even better maker. Eccentric Cubical shows neat projects and is well written. Even if you don't make the projects the book is a fun read. Buy a copy OR take one out at the library. I think you'll enjoy it just like I did.
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