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Steampunk Gear, Gadgets, and Gizmos: A Maker's Guide to Creating Modern Artifacts Paperback – October 4, 2011

ISBN-13: 978-0071762366 ISBN-10: 0071762361 Edition: 1st

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Steampunk Gear, Gadgets, and Gizmos: A Maker's Guide to Creating Modern Artifacts + The Steampunk Bible: An Illustrated Guide to the World of Imaginary Airships, Corsets and Goggles, Mad Scientists, and Strange Literature + 1,000 Steampunk Creations: Neo-Victorian Fashion, Gear, and Art (1000 Series)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 222 pages
  • Publisher: Tab Books; 1 edition (October 4, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0071762361
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071762366
  • Product Dimensions: 10.7 x 8.4 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (76 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #99,226 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Thomas Willeford has degrees in physics, history, and art. His alter ego, Lord Archibald "Feathers" Featherstone, has displayed his work, which blurs the line between art and engineering, throughout the United States and Europe for years. Willeford’s work (including the E-pod) was recently featured in the exhibit, “Device and Contraptions Extraordinaire” at the Ashmolean University of Oxford museum of the History of Science. He has made costume pieces for Abney Park, Beautiful Deadly Children, and GhostFire. Willeford has been called, "The most photographed person in the Steampunk community.” He has been featured in Steampunk Bizarre, the BBC, MTV, the Steampunk World’s Faire, Whitby Gothic Weekend, Glasgow Marker’s Faire, Pirate magazine, and the Daily Mail.


More About the Author

With degrees in physics, history, and art, it was perhaps inevitable that Thomas Willeford (aka Lord Archibald "Feathers" Featherstone) would become a steampunk enthusiast. His work blurs the precarious line between art and engineering. He is the author of the critically acclaimed steampunk how-to book "Steampunk Gear, Gadgets, and Gizmos" (McGraw-Hill), and the soon-to-be-published "Steampunk Adventurer's Guide" (McGraw-Hill) and "Cosplaying Lantern City" (McGraw-Hill).

Thomas has been creating unique and beautiful corsets and all manner of striking Steampunk gadgetry for more than 20 years. He and his products have been widely featured on television (MTV, BBC, "Castle", "Oddities"), online (Wired, BoingBoing, Popular Mechanics, Playboy TV), and in print (Art Donovan's "The Art of Steampunk", Morgan Spurlock and Stan Lee's "Comic Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope", Bizarre Magazine, Hustler Magazine, Gothic Beauty Magazine, Marquis Magazine, Leg Show Magazine, Pirates Magazine, DDI Magazine, Culture Asylum Magazine). Satisfied customers include musician Rick Springfield, director David Silverman (The Simpsons), and actresses Patricia Tallman (Babylon 5) and Virginia Hey (Farscape). Thomas also contributed to the design of Alchemy Gothic's "Empire Collection", a line of steampunk jewelry and accessories.

Thomas' artwork has also been featured in numerous museum exhibitions worldwide, including Penn State's "STEAMpunk!", Dr. Grymm's "Steampunk Bizarre", the Charles River Museum of Industry and Innovation's "Steampunk: Form and Function", and the Ashmolean Museum of the History of Science at Oxford's "Steampunk", "20,000 Leagues" at Patriot Place, and "Mobilis in Mobili" at The Wooster Street Social Club (home of TLC's "NY Ink"). His clockwork spider "Arachnae Mechanica" is currently housed in the Cosmopolitan Hotel in Las Vegas, NV. He is currently a consulting creator of the new steampunk television series "Lantern City", produced by Bruce Boxleitner (Tron, Babylon 5), coming soon.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

37 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Bojan Tunguz HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 2, 2011
Format: Paperback
Steampunk is a unique place where love of gadgets, art, and the nostalgia for the Victorian-era antiques meet. In recent years it has grown in popularity and today there are dedicated websites, publications and book that deal with Steampunk. Yet most lovers of Steampunk are still just the observers, not really creating any of these artifacts themselves. You might be one of those people, and if you have always thought that creating Steampunk would require talent and technical skills well outside of your comfort zone, then you should check out "Steampunk - Gears, Gadgets and Gizmos". It is an informative and instructional how-to book that will teach you how to create some relatively simple yet cool gadgets.

There are no formal technical requirements before you can start working on the projects in this book, but some familiarity with workshops and tools is highly recommended. A few projects are simple enough that you don't need the skills much above the ones you needed for your elementary school projects.

This book contains a total of eight different projects, and they vary in the level of difficulty. The instructions for each one of the projects are extremely detailed and clear. The instructions are accompanied with numerous photographs and illustrations, which help you with your workflow and elucidate some of the trickier points. You will still have to tinker and figure many details on your own, but

There are numerous tips and hints throughout the book, which range from the completely general ("metal is always preferable to plastic") to very specific ("Bending the wire slightly shorter than the height of the bezel will help tighten and secure the entire apparatus.").
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Shala Kerrigan TOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 1, 2011
Format: Paperback
Steampunk Gear, Gadgets, and Gizmos ; A Maker's Guide to Creating Modern Artifacts by Thomas Willeford has a stated intention of teaching you to make you own retro futuristic accessories.

This is the book you're looking for if you're ready to take that next step into steampunk. If jewelry collage assemblages made with watch parts and sewing miniature top hats isn't doing it for you and you want to go bigger.

The author starts by explaining a bit about steampunk, it's origins and what it is stylistically speaking, and also what it is not.

He explains the tools and skills you'll need and how to find some of the tools less expensively . He tells you what tools will be necessary and which tools are wonderful to have if you can find room and afford them.

Then he goes into wonderful amounts of detail about how to find the pieces you need for your projects through thrift stores and other second hand dealers and what you can buy new. How to look in hardware stores for inspiration and using things in new unexpected ways. To me, this isn't just about steampunk, but it's the heart of crafting and the D.I.Y. ethic, to see creatively how things can be re-purposed and recycled.

A very practical chapter on taking apart an old clock for parts comes next.

The projects! Starting with the one thing everyone needs, goggles and ending with a cyber arm that looks like it might have come off a cylon if the cylon was built in Victoria's England. They have imagination inspiring names like "Aetheric Ray Deflector Solid Brass Goggles" which can be just a little scary. Don't worry. While this book has "only" 8 projects, those projects are explained and photographed in exhausting detail. This is a primer to various methods of making things and using things.
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34 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Gil Cnaan on October 25, 2011
Format: Paperback
I have the pleasure of running several Steampunk events, and have had the further pleasure of getting to know Mr. Willeford, and he brings the same level of craftsmanship, humor, and excellence to his writing as he does to all of his other works. This book is highly recommended for anyone looking to make really amazing looking steampunk accessories for very cheap, as well as people just looking to expand their range of DIY skills.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Sally on November 4, 2011
Format: Paperback
ISBN 978-0-07-176236-6

The publisher sent this to me to review. I am a painfully honest and direct to the point reviewer, so without further ado...

The book is a nice large format. I am not a fan of paper backs however. The book is easily identifiable on a shelf of what it is all about. I LOVE the instructions in this book. Nice & step-by-step. It includes a list of materials needed for each project. It is very much a manual for creating. They've got everything from goggles, pith helmets, electronic media enclosures to mechanical arms. And more. The skill level ranges it seems from Intermediate to Advanced. I say this because most the projects need more than just a Dremel and hot glue. Those would be beginner level things. I like the number of photos they put in the book, however some of them seem a *tad* low-resolution for me. The paper in the book is between matte & gloss, let's say satin. It feels a little cheapy but when I thought about it, if you have a manual you wouldn't want high gloss because you couldn't read it. And you wouldn't want matte because you'd get dirty finger prints everywhere. So it is a good compromise.

All in all, I'd recommend this book to anyone who has a nice little shop going on. Or someone who hosts/goes to a build day where machinery is available. Mostly mechanical and weaponry type stuff in this, no real feminine type things (like hats, fascinators, corsets, clothing type things). I'm sure my boyfriend Captain La Grange will take a hold of this book and make something from it before I do. In fact, he opened the package when it came because he knew I was expecting it. I told him all the pros & cons I listed above and he generally agreed to all of it.

Anyway, good luck in creating if you get this book!

-Miss Sally Van Eycke, First Lieutenant & Ship Entertainment of the Airship Archon (Columbus, Ohio)
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