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MAKE Newsletter

April 12, 2011

Spring is literally about making things. For us humans, it's about shaking off the coat of winter, starting to circulate, planning projects for the year, planting seeds, opening up windows and garage doors, and generally feeling a sense of freedom and possibility. And for makers, that means making cool stuff! Combining spring, making, and that sense of circulation and childlike adventure encapsulates this month's theme: bikes, go-karts, and other fun, wheeled wonders. We hope you'll join us in celebrating human-scaled transpo that's as much fun to make and mod as it is to ride! —Gareth

Giant Machete-Shooting Slingshot

Make: Projects: Doortop Stash

Large Display From A Bunch of Small Ones

NES Guitar in the Wild

Karts and Wheels Issue is Here!

As you read this, mail carriers on scooters, skateboards, recumbents, and go-karts are rushing MAKE Volume 26 to subscribers. OK, they're in trucks and on foot – we have vivid imaginations. But you'll be climbing onto such conveyances after reading "Karts and Wheels." We have 19 projects, including building a drill-powered kart, a simple longboard, a motorized bike, and a little wind vehicle that defies logic. And there are oodles of other non-kart projects, too! Subscribe here. On newsstands April 26.

Enter the MAKE Bike Shop

The theme and Skill Builder series on the site this month are both on bikes. We're covering bike basics, maintenance and repair, and mods (mutant or otherwise). We have Chris Nodder on board, author of The Little Book of Bike Boo Boos, talking about repair; and the folks from Atomic Zombie covering bike hacking. We're also rounding up the best bike content from our bike archive on the site, Make: Projects, and the magazine. We've done a lot of bike coverage over the years, so there's a lot of juicy stuff to choose from. To get you started, here are some highlights of what we've covered so far:

Refreshing an Old Bike

Fixing a Broken Bike Chain

Turning Several Trashed Bikes into One Useable Bike

Building Bikes From Steel (Bike-Building Mini-Documentary)

Roundup of Our Favorite Recumbent Bikes and Trikes

Follow the whole Bike Shop Skill Set here.

Tell Us Your Go-Kart Stories

EVERYBODY has a go-kart story (at least, those of us of a certain age are likely to). When I was a teen in the 70s, we made so many feeble attempts at building go-karts. Go-karts and mini bikes were the Cadillacs of kiddie rides. Not knowing anything about internal combustion engines, not knowing how to weld, and having no access to machining tools didn't stop us from trying (over and over again). Eventually, we ended up giving up and just going to a go-kart track and renting the fruits of what we could not build ourselves. Do YOU have a go-kart (or other youthful rec vehicle) story? Tell us about it in the Comment section of this post on the MAKE website.

Who's the Greatest Maker in Comic Books?

PT just keeps hitting them out of the park with his new bi-weekly column (2nd and 4th Thursdays). Last week he asked a provocative question: Which comic book character is the greatest maker of all time? And he presented his candidates. This led to an epic nerd fight over possible contenders. You can watch the fur fly (and jump into the dust-ball of flailing arms and legs yourself) here. Follow all of Phil's columns here.