Eureka Crate (Ages 12-104)
Is This The Right KiwiCo Box For My Family?
While most KiwiCo crates are designed for younger kids, Eureka Crate is a box that I actually fall into the age range for as an adult. I have personally been reviewing this box for over 2 years now, and I have loved the challenge of creating fun and functional items, some of which have also delighted my younger children too.
Since KiwiCo has so many different lines to choose from, I wanted to give you a more in-depth look at what to expect long-term as a subscriber so that you can decide if this is the crate for you and your family!
About Eureka Crate
The Subscription Box: Eureka Crate
The Cost: $29.95 per month + free shipping. Save with longer subscriptions.
The Products: Materials and instructions needed for anyone aged 12 to 104 years to create functional, lasting objects with a focus on engineering.
Ships to: The U.S. for free, Canada for $3.95 per month, and worldwide from $4.95-$6.95.
Interested in the monthly box? Check out our past reviews here.
Pros & Cons
- The projects are a great mix of both fun and practical projects that can solve real-world problems.
- The designs are incredibly innovative and they even dive into the idea behind the design.
- They provide everything you need, even the tools that you need to build with.
- The instructions are incredibly detailed with illustrations and tips along the way, and even a troubleshooting page to ensure that you can be successful.
- The booklet they provide is full of educational information that includes history and other pertinent information about the projects that is really engaging.
- They encourage learning and further experimentation each month with challenges to take your projects a step further.
- These projects can be time-consuming.
- Some projects are more complicated and require some patience.
- The projects themselves can be bulky when completed, which might be an issue if you don't have much space to store them.
Is It Worth It?
- Yes! I have been so impressed with this subscription from the way they include fun and useful projects to the inspiring designs behind them and the way that they provide all the tools necessary to be successful. It's just the right amount of challenge!
I'd Recommend This If
- You or your child is interested in engineering or likes to build with their hands.
- You would like a bit of a challenge each month.
- You appreciate a mix of fun and functionality and creating on your own.
How Does it Work?
Each month you'll receive a box delivered to your door containing all of the high-quality materials you'll need for that month's engineering project. There will also be a Maker's Guide with detailed instructions inside. Crates are assigned based on your history so that you never receive the same crate twice.
What's in Each Box?
The materials you receive each month will depend on the project you receive, but the most important item with be the Maker's Guide which has everything you need to know inside. Each box also has a page that you can access through your account, which includes some extras related to your projects.
How Will I Know What To Do?
The instructional booklet that comes with your project will contain everything you need to know. These projects can be intimidating at first since there are so many pieces, but the instructions are broken down into sections which makes it so easy to follow along. There are also illustrations with little tips along the way and even a troubleshooting section if you have any issues with your project working properly. I find the little checkpoints helpful because it lets you know that you're on the right track before moving along, and if you're not, it gives you the opportunity to go back and fix it before you get too far along.
Is This Educational?
Yes! The booklet that they provide includes a ton of educational information in addition to the instructions. They have pages mixed throughout that explain various components of the design and how it works as well as some history about the different mechanisms you might be using in your project. There is also a "Behind the Design" page which goes into detail about the different prototypes they went through. It's awesome to get a glimpse into the process of these innovators!
Do I Need Any Tools?
No! They provide everything you could need, including screwdrivers, wires, and even batteries. The materials are all high-quality and are built to last and actually be put to use.
What Types of Projects Are There?
This box is all about being fun and functional. They do a great job of alternating between those two categories, and sometimes the projects are a great mix of those two! I've made a vending machine, a rivet press, a programmable music box, a table fan, and even an indoor golf set to name a few. It seems that nothing is off-limits and no matter how difficult it sounds like it might be to make, they provide you with everything you need and finished projects can leave you feeling confident and accomplished!
Some of my favorite functional projects that I've completed which are still in use today are the Stereo Headphones, the Mechanical Globe, and the Perpetual Calendar. I honestly would never have thought I'd be able to build a pair of headphones from scratch, but I did and they actually work! My son loves the globe and uses it to locate the different countries where animals live while the calendar sits in our school room and helps me keep track of the date with ease!
While I appreciate the usefulness of the functional projects, I love that this subscription balances them out with others that are just plain fun! The Pinball Machine and the Table Tennis Robot were both so much fun to play, but one of our favorites that my kids still play with and use all the time is the Ukulele. I got such a great sense of satisfaction being able to assemble my own ukulele that actually works!
Fun and Functional Projects
While it's great to have fun projects and it's helpful to have functional ones, some of our favorite projects are the ones that have combined the two! The Trashketball can is one that perfectly fits into this category. I also think the 2-in-1 Lantern, which can be used as a flashlight or lantern, is also fun thanks to the red cover they include for it and the fact that it is great for pretend camping! The Mechanical Lockbox is one that my kids actually use in their playroom. They love that it has a key and that they can hide their treasures inside, so I view this as one of those projects that's a good mix of fun and functional!
Questions You May Have
How difficult are these projects?
- These are definitely challenging and time-consuming projects, but really, the way the instructions are broken down into sections means that you can work at your own pace and they really do provide everything you could possibly need. While they may be challenging, it is certainly rewarding!
Do these projects really work and last?
- Yes! Honestly, my kids have taken several of these to play with on their own and they have held up to them using them frequently. We have had 2 projects maybe that didn't quite stand up to long-term use, but otherwise, everything else has been designed with longevity and durability in mind.
How much knowledge of engineering do we need?
- None! They give you all of the information that you need in your Maker's Guide and explain the different components and how they work. It's really very educational and would be great as part of a homeschool curriculum!
Will this work if my child is younger than the intended age?
- The projects are pretty difficult, but I think they could be completed as a joint project between a younger child and an adult or older child. I do think it would be difficult for a younger child to complete the projects independently, but this is one of those cases where you know your child best and they may surprise you!
How long does each box take?
- The amount of time it takes per box really differs, but they always include a little note in your Maker's Guide with an estimated time to complete. I would say each project takes at least an hour, while some may take just a bit longer!
Is everything I need in the box?
- Yes, everything you need (with the exception of maybe scissors) is included in the box.
Each month Eureka Crate delivers innovative, creative projects that combine fun and functionality. The projects are educational, allowing you to work with your hands, and while they can be challenging, they are also incredibly rewarding. It's always overwhelming to see the project and all of the various pieces you'll be using, but as soon as you open up the instructions booklet, your mind is put at ease because they have taken the time to break it down into easy to follow steps that allow you to be successful. It's amazing to see what they come up with and even more amazing to see what you can accomplish with the right tools! While it is age-appropriate for the 12-year-old age range, I am proof that persons of any age can enjoy this subscription!
If this isn't the monthly subscription box for you, check out some of the other KiwiCo boxes for different age groups:
- Panda Crate for 0-24-month-olds,
- Koala Crate for 2-4-year-olds,
- Kiwi Crate for 5-8-year-olds,
- Atlas Crate for 6-11-year-olds,
- Tinker Crate and Doodle Crate for 9-16+-year-olds,
- Maker Crate for ages 14 and up.
What do you think of Eureka Crate?