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The Ultimate Book of Saturday Science: The Very Best Backyard Science Experiments You Can Do Yourself

The Ultimate Book of Saturday Science: The Very Best Backyard Science Experiments You Can Do Yourself [Kindle Edition]

Neil A. Downie
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £19.95
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Product Description


"In his book, physicist Neil Downie provides a series of do-it-yourself science experiments that stand apart from your ho-hum Mr. Wizard-fare because, well, they involve a few high-speed projectiles. . . . All you need are a few household items, some good judgment and, possibly, a carrotproof vest."--Aaron Leitko, Washington Post

"To keep the kids entertained this summer, what better than a bit of Saturday science? Neil A. Downie's compendium of experiments--'chosen on the grounds that they are new, that they work, that they are spectacular, and that they are interesting'--includes electric gunpowder, the knife-through-butter clock, the impossible turbine and armour-piercing carrots. Each experiment is accompanied by a straightforward scientific explanation, the occasional hazard warning and 'just a little math.'"--Nature Physics

"If you either run a science club or are a teenager who likes getting your hands dirty experimentally, you are going to love this. I certainly would have in my youth."--Popular Science blog (U.K)

"[T]his ample resource encourages readers to consider everyday occurrences and enlivens complex ideas with lessons designed to inspire curiosity. . . . Recommended as a follow-up to the author's previous collections in the series, and as a valuable treasury of projects for teachers, coordinators of science clubs, parents of advanced, older homeschoolers, and adult enthusiasts who have experience in the field and are seeking enjoyable activities to practice and share with others."--Karen Rigby, ForeWord Reviews

"Downie's instructions are admirably clear and straightforward; his explanations of the underlying science admirably comprehensive and comprehensible; and his passion and enthusiasm, totally infectious."--Helen Mulley, Teach Secondary

"This book is guaranteed fun."--New Scientist

"[T]hose willing to put in the effort will get a real kick out of this book."--Clarissa Ai Ling Lee, Physics World

"The Ultimate Book of Saturday Science is an absolutely fantastic book that contains one of the largest collections of fun-to-do experiments that you will ever come across in a science library. . . . Downie does not just stop at the experiment--each one is backed up with the science behind it, the equipment you need and references for further reading. It truly is a wonderful book to read, and more importantly, a book to bring out the scientist in anyone."--Paul Wolstenholme-Hogg, Education in Chemistry

"This really is the ultimate science project book and could be used as the basis of a great science club or for ideas for some interesting and unexpected physics demonstrations. The projects range from simple to quite challenging and all of them are original and guaranteed to work. There should be a copy of the book in the school and staff library. There is also a video on YouTube featuring the author that is well worth watching."--Sandra Baggley, School Science Review

Product Description

The Ultimate Book of Saturday Science is Neil Downie's biggest and most astounding compendium yet of science experiments you can do in your own kitchen or backyard using common household items. It may be the only book that encourages hands-on science learning through the use of high-velocity, air-driven carrots.

Downie, the undisputed maestro of Saturday science, here reveals important principles in physics, engineering, and chemistry through such marvels as the Helevator--a contraption that's half helicopter, half elevator--and the Rocket Railroad, which pumps propellant up from its own track. The Riddle of the Sands demonstrates why some granular materials form steep cones when poured while others collapse in an avalanche. The Sunbeam Exploder creates a combustible delivery system out of sunlight, while the Red Hot Memory experiment shows you how to store data as heat. Want to learn to tell time using a knife and some butter? There's a whole section devoted to exotic clocks and oscillators that teaches you how.

The Ultimate Book of Saturday Science features more than seventy fun and astonishing experiments that range in difficulty from simple to more challenging. All of them are original, and all are guaranteed to work. Downie provides instructions for each one and explains the underlying science, and also presents experimental variations that readers will want to try.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 5177 KB
  • Print Length: 536 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0691149666
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press (13 May 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007BOB8EU
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #549,008 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Neil Downie Biography June 2011

Dr Neil A Downie MA PhD has always been interested in making things and wondering how they work. Currently he is a R&D scientist at Air Products; in the past he helped discover the gluon, build better mass spectrometers and patent many industrial inventions. His career in gases started in 1986 and led to his first book "Industrial Gases" in 1996. In the 1990s he ran a children's science club which gave rise to his second book "Vacuum Bazookas, Electric Rainbows and 27 other Saturday Science Projects" which is a collection of highly original Home Made Science projects. He is now starting to work as a visiting professor with a group of MEng students at the University of Surrey on their final year projects.

Neil lectures and runs workshops on Home Made Science for all ages. Audience participation is encouraged!

Reviews for "Vacuum Bazookas...."

"What a great change, to see a "science book" with the sort of projects and demonstrations that will interest children of all ages, and quite a lot of adults."

"This is an excellent book for people wanting to build Saturday science projects in the garden shed. It also has a number of useful ideas for science students/teachers wanting ideas for projects to use in the classroom."

"The "Vacuum Bazooka" is an extremely powerful device - especially with a damned great wet/dry vacuum powering it. We used plastic 35mm film cannisters and got 100 feet (high) shots from ours."

There are two further Home Made Science books by Neil; "Ink Sandwiches, Electric Worms and 37 Other Saturday Science Projects" and "Exploding Disk Cannons, Slimemobiles and 32 Other Saturday Science Projects".

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Get your geek on! 8 Feb 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
An absolutely brilliant book filled with fun experiments which will not only whittle away at boredom but teach you something too.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Fun with Experiments for all ages. 23 Jan 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I love this book, it takes me right back to my childhood and those days when children were encouraged to think for themselves and allowed to experiment, before the days of nanny state and Health&Safety gone mad. I bought it to teach my grandchildren fun science and was surprised at how good it is. It is full of great experiments and should delight any parent wanting to enjoy science with their children. It has some easy and some fairly dangerous experiments (how about building a Thermic Lance) but nothing an adult with common sense could not handle. There is a great range covering most aspects of modern science , the experiments are well explained and if you choose to delve into the science in depth it is well covered and pretty detailed. Although written for an Americans it works for UK audiences, one warning though, some of the mortar experiments might draw the attention of Big Brother curious to know if you plan an attack on the state :-).

Very highly recommended for adults of all ages.
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5.0 out of 5 stars uboss 18 Jan 2013
By s lewis
The book will be appropriate for all audiences; good experiments and concise explanations making this a great read, even if you don't do the experiments
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.0 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bringing science to your kids on Saturday 18 July 2012
By Dr. F. K. Schweighardt - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Dr. Downie's newest book has a large number of interesting projects to consider for kids of middle school to high school age . The projects challenege both the parent and the student. Key to the book's success is the detail provided, and the refereces ( helps older kids to go to the library or web to find the path to the answer). The style of the book helps to encourage parents to guide their children to consider a career in science and technology.
The book should also help teachers guide studnets to projects for science fairs. These projects set the tone of the scientific process of collecting data and determining if the theory holds water.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Needs more than a backyard 26 Feb 2013
By John Feth - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Interesting experiments--hard to imagine they could be done in a single Saturday. Skills in electronics and circuit fabrication mandatory for many, if not most experiments.
5.0 out of 5 stars Parents prepare to give up all your free time.. 12 April 2013
By Daddy-O - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
My eight year old has marked so many experiments in this fantastic book that we shall have a spring and summer filled with father/son activities that enrich us both. Neil Downie carries the subject off in a way that is fun, funny and very educational. Invest in our future...your kids. Buy this book.
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