Good Stuff. :)
DJ, thanks for the up vote! Looks like your moniker is appropriate based on your location! A couple of my partners are in Canada where it gets cold like New Hampshire. I'm down South in GA, so I feel for you guys this time of year.
Thought there were only video instructions, but found the instructions in text, which is much better. Looks great, the arduino included is really good. Looking forward to building this!
Hi Betsy, glad I was able to talk with you today. The first lesson has a number of background videos about the components in the box to help provide a foundation. You can skip those if you want to start building right away. The rest of the build instructions in the Online Classroom are set up to cater to multiple learning styles. Every lesson has step-by-step instructions with text, pictures, graphics, and web links.
Please feel free to reach out to me directly if you are having any trouble at all. We want to make sure that this is as fun and interesting as it is educational.
Co-Founder, Project & Curriculum Development
I ordered 3 month gift for my son at Christmas...
Received first 2 boxes... third box arrived very late. I was contacted by Creation Crate and was explained the situation regarding the late delivery. I appreciate that Creation Crate reached out to me to explain and I feel better about my purchase as they are taking measures to improve their customer service.
The projects themselves are a great learning experience.
We are very sorry for the delayed shipment and especially the lack of timely communication from us. We have worked hard to sort out this issue and are in the process of shipping out the delayed projects as soon as possible. We have done two main things to ensure that this does not happen again:
1- We have implemented a process to ensure that the purchase orders we submit are more clear and another process to check each part before it leaves the factory.
2- We have a process to trigger a message that will go out to customers at a specified time if we encounter an issue, with subsequent messages to keep you informed if we encounter a prolonged delay.
My kids enjoy this box and look forward to finding out what each month's project will be.
Fun, easy to set up. Make a great reason for son and father to have time together
The mood lamp was very interesting to make. Would be nice to have a creation crate geared towards robotics too!
My nephew is 13 and always has his head in sega/Nintendo whatever. Wanted to give him another skill. It took all day with the help of his 21 yr old cousin, which was also a good thing. My only complaint is that there was no power source included and he wanted to use his new creation outside of just plugging into a computer. I went and bought what I thought was right- hope it doesn't blow up lol.
Creation Crate just came in the mail and we are super excited to get started... it is everything we expected and more. Thank you for putting together such a great product.
I bought my 12 y/o daughter the first month of the subscription because she is always curious about my projects. She sat down and even though the code was long, she copied every line down correctly.
Improvements could be:
Smaller Breadboard/ Larger Lamp, or a circuitboard to solder to once you've gotten the whole thing running, because the lamp is tiny and it just sits on the huge breadboard.
To the lady above with the 1 star review: I understand this is frustrating but its not a plug and play toy. Its very exact: Computers make very fast, very accurate mistakes. If you miss one line, or you mis align the holes in the breadboard, it won't work right. This is supposed to be a challenge, but I am sorry your grandson got so disheartened. I can understand how hard it can be.
My son loves circuit boards and mood lamps, so this first Creation Crate was a hit with him! I took computer programming classes twenty years ago and enjoyed dipping my toes back in. The kit is a good way to start in that it shows you exactly what to do - including code to either type in, yourself, or cheat and just download it. There is a little room for improvement in readability (the font chosen for the printed code makes commas look like periods) and the wiring diagrams in the materials have occasional inconsistencies (where both layouts work, but it would be better to have only one presented in all images). We enjoyed this so much that I'm ordering a second subscription for my other child.
My son, age 12, and I enjoyed completing the first project in the Creation Crates curriculum. We found the contents of the box to be well packaged and organized, and the reference materials and instruction clear. We found as well that the additional supports available online were easy to access and helpful in modeling troubleshooting tasks, etc. Working together, we found we had a functional shaded mood lamp in about 45 minutes, with the physical assembly equaling about half that time and the programming taking the other. This was a very fun project with minimal frustration and we eagerly await our second box in February!
I did the first month project pretty quickly but I have a bit of experience with Arduino stuff. My only complaint is they're pretty light on the explanations. The code does an OK job of explaining things except the mathematically library calls. The circuit didn't really have much of an explanation to it though. Didn't really mention why you should use a resistor or explain why the direction of the LED placement in the circuit matters.
The gift recipient loved the crate; he is 11 years old, so the skill level required was appropriate for his age group. My only quibble is no matter how hard I tried to avoid auto-renewal, the subscription auto-renewed anyway. This is likely more of an issue with the Cratejoy interface than this particular crate, but the star deduction is for the inconvenience of having to take time to get my money back when the subscription automatically renewed against my wishes.
My 13 yr old got this as a Christmas present. He loved the build and I helped with the code. Still has some glitches in the code so I’m not sure it works yet. Email in to support so hopeful that it’ll work shortly. :) already looking forward to the next box.
I loved the opportunity to mess around with the given code and see if I can get it to do different things. I’m currently working on a different way to code the program because the original I was given I didn’t quite understand. I also tried to code the buzzer to play different tones but it appears the buzzer is made to only operate at a certain frequency (my father is thinking about getting me a speaker to hook up to it- he works with arduinos a lot at his job)
This product is really good and it's cool to builld it !
I loved putting together my first arduino project, the mood lamp. It was a great introduction to the hardware and software, but it wasn't painless. I had issues configuring my Arduino Uno to be recognized on my system and there was no clear path to go for help. There seems to be no community forum where learners can collaborate, which would be a big help.
This is a great deal for the aspiring maker, especially as a light hobbiest. There's a bit of self-work needed to get going though. I had issues getting my system to recognize the Arduino provided which kept the guide from being helpful. I didn't realize I had a hardware configuration error until I had given up on the first build. I gave it a second try on day two and this time went off on my own to find a simple "blink the lights" tutorial first. In that guide I realized my hardware wasn't communicating to my computer and everything was a breeze from there.
As others have mentioned, support is a little thin. I went to the website hoping to find a forum community of users who would be able to share their difficulties and successes, but no such forum exists. If you give up easily, you might want to pass on this one.
Worked pretty well overall. Pins don't go in to breadboard as firmly as I'd like. Pretty happy with it. Arduino took a while to recognize our port as an option.