You are here because you are a manufacturer and you would like to inspire someone near you with this DIY spark too. It means finding projects that are fun and easy, and those that make learning fun. We’ve found the perfect electronics project kits to help you get there.
We’ve also included some extended builds that you can give to friends who might need a new project. and we promise not to tell anyone if you pick up a few of them for yourself.
Introduction to robotics is often a bit difficult. The MOSS Zombonitron kit offers an approach to building robots that doesn’t require any programming out of the box. There are sensor blocks that allow your creations to react to their environment.
Sensors allow your creation to respond to light and proximity to motion control. So you get a working robot just by assembling a couple of parts. However, with a smartphone app that connects via Bluetooth, you can run more complex programs that control the robot.
All parts are connected to each other with magnetic balls that transmit power and command signals, so this should be accessible for beginners.
If you’re trying to make one of your younger cousins do it yourself, this electronic lab is the way to do it. Designed to resemble those old Radio Shack kits that used to be sold, this Elco kit has everything you need to create a variety of electronics projects.
Radio Shack kits were great when I was a kid and were an easy way to learn the basics. I’ve always been fascinated by the FM tuner that moved the tube to change the frequency (I’m old enough to compare this to the dial on our living room stereo). These types of kits are a great way to learn because they lay out the concepts in straight forward projects.
Everything you need is included except for the batteries. Working on these projects should help someone master all the basic electronics components and guide them through projects using these concepts. No soldering required, so it should pass the test of even the most overprotective parent.
3. BOSEbuild Speaker Cube ($150)
Bluetooth speakers are ubiquitous and almost a disposable technology. However, if you want to give someone a basic build project, the BOSEbuild speaker cube is an option to give the Bluetooth speaker some extra value. Aside from making a complete beginner-level project, the Speaker Cube also doesn’t look like it came out of a vending machine.
With LED and insert customization, this speaker can be taken apart and reassembled for a new look. Even more impressive is that in the kit you work with the magnet, coil and paper that make up the speaker. There is an iOS app that will help you with the development and allows you to customize the colors of the LEDs.
4-6. LittleBits Kits
littleBits kits are also aimed at young people. The elevator pitch for their approach is Lego electronics. You connect modules to electronic components and they connect to each other with magnets.
littleBits basic electronics kit ($100 / £80)
The main entry point into the littleBits ecosystem is a ten-piece set that includes an engine. There are eight designs in the instructions, but the combination of the parts allows for further experimentation. If you choose the premium bundle, you can quadruple the number of combinations and get two extra designs. This set costs $150.
The Gizmos & Gadgets Kit is for robots, remote controlled cars and other electronics that move. It is more specialized than the starter kits and includes sixteen designs per box. These artworks can also be used for other projects.
LittleBits Electronics Synth Kit ($160 / £135)
If your toys aren’t meant for motorcyclists, they might want to make their own synthesizer. With twelve modules that can be combined in a variety of ways to create different instruments, you can use them for recording or performing. This set will be a great gift for an experimental musician.
We have previously discussed in detail in their smart home kit ($200) which includes a web control module.
7. Squishy Circuit Kits ($60)
So if you’re getting a kid’s gift more in Play-Doh than Lego, Squishy Circuits might be the best place to introduce them to DIY projects. You make your creations out of conductive and insulating clay and then attach wires and LEDs to them.
One of the nice things about this gift is that it has everything. You can make both conductive and insulating doughs in your kitchen with common ingredients. Just take the recipes from this page, add a few ingredients from your supply, and you can have a gift that is completely self-contained.
If you’re looking for a ready-to-use kit for beginners, you can choose from three kits. The difference is in the number of components you get and the amount of test (both metaphorical and literal). The Lite kit is limited to a battery holder and some LEDs, but only costs $10. The deluxe set has a variety of motors, fans, and other components and is $60. The standard kit is somewhere in the middle for $30.
8. Arduino starter kit ($70 / £75)
Arduino is the gateway to more advanced hardware projects. What better way to help someone get started on this journey than the official Arduino Starter Kit. You get the parts you need for fifteen basic projects, with a solder-free breadboard and DC motor.
The kit includes some interesting projects such as a digital hourglass and a musical instrument called Light in the RAM. a lot more in common with Arduino: when they finish with the basics.
9. Kano Computer Kit ($130 / £110)
You can always give your kids an old laptop, but a Raspberry Pi might serve them better. Pi teaches them that their computers are more than just entertainment devices. It also has Minecraft, which might be enough to sell most kids on it. However, by learning Kano OS, they will find an introduction to coding using music and other games.
The Kano Kit is a great place to start with the Pi. because he has everything they need except a monitor. It comes with a combo speaker enclosure, an external keyboard and trackpad, and all cables needed to connect the Pi to a monitor. Kano OS comes with additional games and activities to help kids learn how to code. For another $150, you can also get an assembly kit. If you want to build the kit yourself, you can download the Kano OS for free — there are no special hardware requirements other than the Raspberry Pi.
10-12. Adafruit Kits
If you’re shopping for someone who loves DIY but needs a new project, then Adafruit kits are a good choice. These three kits are just the main cutscenes of the various kits and components that Adafruit has to offer.
Mintyboost 3.0 Kit ($24 / £28)
USB chargers are another almost disposable tech item. However, many people reading this section may have made the Altoids tin charger. If you’re unfamiliar, Mintyboost lets you charge your USB devices with two AA batteries. Adafruit is updating this kit to support modern devices. This requires a bit of soldering, but it’s a good, basic design.
Adafruit Drawdio Kit ($18)
Drawdio is a fun little project that lets you «draw» music using a pencil and a speaker. This kit is a bit more advanced and requires soldering. Several Amazon reviews complain about the quality of the pencil, so you might want to opt for a stronger one for your final build.
Times Square DIY Kit Kit Red Display Matrix ($33)
Forget the clock buy someone a watch they can build this year. Homemade clocks will need soldering and after-dinner assembly. The dial is an LED matrix. The time scrolls when the button is pressed. This build is an intermediate project and requires extensive soldering.
I hope we were able to inspire you to get this perfect gift for another DIY helper. Be sure to send them to us when they are looking for a new project, because we have tons of projects to keep them interested.
Let us know in the comments if someone gave you the perfect gift.Also, we’d love to hear your stories on how to help someone take up a hobby.