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KiwiCo Eureka Crate Review + Coupon – 2-in-1 Lantern

Eureka Crate (from parent company KiwiCo) is a subscription box for teens and adults ages 14-104. It arrives every month with all the materials and instructions needed to create a functional, lasting object with a focus on engineering. The goal of these projects is to use science and math to solve real-world problems while inspiring the recipients to become creative innovators.

KiwiCo offers boxes for a variety of different age groups: 

This review is of the $29.95 a month Eureka Crate, for 14-year-olds and up.

This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes).

About Eureka Crate

The Subscription Box: Eureka Crate

The Cost: $29.95 per month + free shipping. Save with longer subscriptions.

COUPON: Save 40% off your first box. No coupon needed - just use this link.

The Products: Detailed instructions and all of the high-quality materials needed to create a unique, lasting, and functional engineering project as well as a Maker’s Guide that explains the science and technology behind it.

Ships to: The U.S. for free, Canada for $3.95 per month, worldwide from $4.95-$6.95.

KiwiCo Eureka Crate “2-in-1 Lantern” Review – December 2019


The project for this month is to make our own 2-in-1 Lantern. We received this Maker’s Guide which is full of helpful information related to our project along with the directions. This month they included some information about reflection and portable lights. My favorite section is the “Behind the Design” page where they go into detail about their own process in creating this month’s project and some fun details about it such as the fact that this lantern will have about 90 sticky foam squares when we are done!


Our directions are separated into various sections which makes it so much easier since it breaks it down into smaller, more manageable tasks. The instructions are always clear and easy to follow with detailed, colorful pictures to reference. They even include information on troubleshooting, which can be very helpful!

Part A: Wire the Light Source


The first part of our project was to wire the light source. First I added all four batteries to the battery pack, then I stuck a sticky foam square to the center of this wooden piece and stuck the battery pack on top.


Next, I found this rectangle with the large circle and added six adhesive foam squares to the back.


I screwed on this button with wires attached to the ends.


Then I used the screwdriver they provided along with the small screws and bolts and matched up the red wire from the button to the red wire from the battery pack and screwed the rings together.


Next, I added some foam stickers around the edges of this wooden piece and a double-sided foam circle to the center.


I stuck the LED light to the center of this circle and stuck the wires through the holes.


Then I matched up the black wires from the light to one black wire from the battery pack and one black wire from the button by securing the rings with more screws and bolts. I pushed the button and turned it on, but nothing happened.

I realized it was because the red wire from my button had come out, but luckily I was able to fix the connection by shoving it in a little harder.


Once my light was working, it was time to add some more screws and bolts into the holes on the wooden piece with the LED light on it.

Next, I added six foam stickers to this wooden piece and then slid two number 1 tabs into the holes and held them in place by wrapping O-rings around them making sure to fit them into the notches.


Then I began assembling the base by adding the button piece to one side and sliding the tabs from the battery and LED octagons into the notches on it. Then I added the other rectangular piece to the opposite side.


I added one of these large rubber bands around the two side pieces to help keep the whole thing together.

Part B: Finish the Base


To finish the base I first had to roll this translucent sheet and place it inside of the clear tube.


I used the mini screwdriver to add these screws and bolts to the four holes around the top of the cylinder.


I added this ring to the clear plastic cylinder and then stuck the whole thing on top of our base piece by sliding the tabs into the notches.


I prepared the rest of the bottom pieces by adding foam sticky squares and peeling the paper off them. Then I began placing them around the base pressing them to the frame so that they would stick and stay.

I turned it upside down and then slid on two rubber bands leaving one at the top and one at the bottom to help keep our pieces together.


I slid this wooden ring over the base and then added screws and bolts to the four holes around the top.

Part C: Add the Reflector


Now it was time to prepare the reflector by rolling it up after folding the creases. I overlapped the ends and used these clear stickers to hold it.


I added these sticky squares to all of the tabs around the edges.

I stuck this ring on top of the sticky pieces around the silver cylinder. Then I stuck this on top of our base.

Part D: Finish the Top


Now it was time to finish the top, similarly to how we finished the bottom. I added foam stickers to this “E” piece and another similar piece then stuck in the two #2 tabs and added O-rings to hold them in place. The “E” piece went above our button piece while the other rectangle I prepared went opposite that on the other side.


I prepared the wooden pieces for the top by adding these foam sticky squares and then peeling the paper off to reveal the adhesive.

I made two sandwiches with a mix of wooden rectangles and various foam pieces and then added one on either side of our lantern. Then I placed the rest of the wooden pieces around the sides to form our top.


I added four gray foam stickers to the top of our lantern and then stuck this clear lens on top.

Part E: Add the Handle


Now it was time to build our handle. We used a mixture of foam and wooden circles to create two arm pieces.


We added the arms we made to the holes on our handle using these metal pins and screws and a few extra foam and wooden circles.


The arms of the handle easily fit into the tabs with holes on the side of our lantern base.


We used these rings and small wooden rods to create a pin that would fit inside the larger holes on the side of the lantern to hold the handle. First, we stuck one pin through and moved it around to clear out any stickiness, then this pin became our backup as we inserted the clean one afterward.


Here is what our finished lantern looks like with the handle on top providing an easy way to hold it.


To operate the lantern you pull up on the handle to expose the base and push the red button once.


They provided instructions for how to turn our lantern into a flashlight. We simply took the pin out of the hole and swung our handle around swiveling those arm pieces until the holes lined up with the bottom set of holes in the tabs and secured it with the pin at the bottom.

This is when I realized I made a mistake. Apparently, there were two sets of #1 pieces and two sets of #2. I needed the ones with the larger holes in both of these spots so I did have to disassemble my lantern and swap out the pieces. It was a tedious task, but fortunately, it was a somewhat easy fix!


Here it is in flashlight mode with the handle now on the side.


Here is the flashlight turned on. Nice and bright!


They did also provide a fun idea for us to learn about night vision using this red cover for our flashlight.


Here you can see how the red light looks.


With this project complete, my daughter was eager to borrow the lantern for her pretend camping trip! We did also use the lantern for a family dance party that evening as well, so it certainly has come in handy already!

In our booklet, there was a design challenge section which is always a great extension of the project. This month they are challenging us to try building a hands-free lamp that we can wear!

Verdict: This was another cool project from Eureka Crate this month. I’m pretty sure everyone can use an extra flashlight around the house, but one that doubles as a lantern is even cooler! While I love the finished product, I do think this month’s design is a little flawed in the sense that it is battery operated and in order to replace the batteries, we have to take apart the bottom of our lantern to get to them. This seems pretty time-consuming and also makes me feel like the life of this lantern will be pretty limited considering each time we take it apart, those foam squares will get a little less sticky. It’s is not really a huge deal, but it’s just a bit surprising considering how well-thought-out these projects usually are. I hold them to a high standard because they themselves have set the bar so high with their thorough projects. Otherwise, the construction of this 2-in-1 lantern is still pretty solid and it works well, so I still think this was a great project for a $29.95 + free shipping box!

To Wrap Up:

Can you still get this box if you sign up today? It is possible you might get this crate, but it is not a guarantee. From KiwiCo:

Crates are assigned each month based on availability and your crate history – not all subscribers receive the same theme each month.

COUPON: Save 40% off your first box. No coupon needed - just use this link.

Check out all of our KiwiCo reviews and the best boxes for teens!

Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!

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Written by Brandi Dowell

Brandi Dowell

Brandi has loved the idea of subscription boxes since joining Birchbox in 2013. Now that she’s a mother of 3, she loves finding unique boxes to educate and entertain her kids while enjoying some more pampering boxes for herself. Her favorites these days are Lillypost, KiwiCo boxes & Wicked Good Perfume!

Posted in Eureka Crate Reviews, KiwiCo Reviews, Subscription Box Reviews, Subscription Boxes for Kids, Subscription Boxes for Tweens| Tags: eureka crate | 2 comments

Comments (2)

  1. This looks awesome & I think my almost 12 year old would prefer this to the doodle box from this company that I ended up canceling because she just wasn’t interested in it.

    • This one is definitely very hands-on and more in-depth than Doodle Crate, so it may just hold her interest a bit more! 🙂 Let me know if you end up trying it out for her!

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