How To Make Things when your matter duplicator is on the fritz ...
Just what have I been cooking up here? This page is a bit sketchy yet, but ... here are a few projects:
Viking Cloak-pins can be extremely useful. They hold your shawl in place, they keep your kilt behaving, and they'll turn a stadium blanket into a nice cloak for those chilly football games or tailgate picnics. And they're just the thing to fasten your Jolly Roger on as a cape, when you go off space-pirating.
Simple Medieval Garb is a good stop-gap when you are going to a Renaissance Faire or a medieval wedding; or perhaps for a class project.
The Geometry of Fabric Cutting for the Circular Cloak. All good scientists need to know geometry. And if they want some fancy garb, a bit of sewing isn't amiss. This is a fairly exhaustive article on making capes and cloaks, and ties together with the Viking Cloak-pin and the Simple Medieval Garb.Simple Musical Instruments are a lot of fun. I was helping teach a class on vibrations, and these classes always involve vibrating strings. You want to make the class activities interesting -- and one of the interesting things you can do with vibrating strings is make musical instruments. So I tried to demystify the whole enterprise. One of the most successful classes I've ever done. There are several simple demonstrations, followed by instructions to make the nicotina and the scheitholt. Recently I've been flitting about the Web, and have found a site that collects links to people who home-make instruments: The Experimental Musical Instruments Home Page. Give it a try.
Making Inexpensive Jewelers' Tools. I wrote this one with a smaller focus than necessary. I have also used these techniques to make small custom scrapers and carving chisels. But the astute reader will easily be able to generalize.
A Spectroscope is helpful when analyzing strange chemicals and stellar spectra. Here's an inexpensive one for beginners, made from materials that aren't really all that hard to find.
Static Electricity can make your hair stand on end, even if the rest of the curriculum doesn't. Here is the cheapest, simplest electrostatic generator you will ever find.
Leyden Jars let you store electricity. The bigger they are, the more they store. PDF
Volta's Pistol was invented (of course!) by Alessandro Volta. He used it to demonstrate explosive gas mixtures. PDF