Hot Steampunk R&D Posts

Steampunk's Rising Popularity: How to Take Advantage of the Hottest 'New' Trend

As practically the entire Steampunk world knows by now, IBM has predicted that Steampunk will be the big new trend from 2013 to 2015. They based this prediction on their computers, which sift through broad swathes of the internet in order to see patterns that may help commercial industries. According to them, Steampunk has been on the rise for the last few years, and they predict that it will explode into peak popularity within the next two years. But what does that mean and how will it impac...

How To: Create a Steampunk Persona

Before I really get into this article, it's important to note that you do not need a Steampunk persona (or "steamsona") in order to be a Steampunk, or wear Steampunk clothes. Some people like to pretend to be a different person when dressed up in Steampunk clothing, but that is entirely optional, and only to be done if it appeals to you. That said, even if you aren't actually acting as your character, it may still be helpful to have one in mind when putting together an outfit. Personally, I'v...

How To: Hey, America—You're Drinking Your Tea Wrong!

Tea has been around for thousands of years, and as a result, tons of customs and ceremonies have sprung up around its consumption. Some cultures take their tea plain, while others put things in it. Sometimes there are special tea-holding vessels, other times not. Maybe there will even be special foods meant to be eaten with tea. However, in America, our appreciation of tea has waned. For many, iced tea is their biggest source of tea consumption, and it's imbibed with no ceremony whatsoever in...

Steampunk Spray Painting: How to Make Almost Anything Look Like Metal

What I'm going to do in this tutorial is, as the title implies, teach you how to make nearly anything look like metal. This can especially come in handy in Steampunk, as most of us don't have the ability to machine brass. We do, however, have access to wood, PVC, and spray paint. Not to mention that, as a costumer, I can speak from personal experience when I say that things made of brass are really, really, really heavy!

News: The 26 Best Online Stores for Steampunk Christmas Shopping

The holiday season is creeping up fast, and if you're shopping for a Steampunk, it could be almost impossible to find anything for them unless you know exactly where to look. Luckily for you, some of us have done all of the work you'll need. Whether you're Steampunk shopping for Christmas, Hanukkah, Chrismukkah (yes, that's real), Kwanzaa, or Festivus, you're sure to find something for that special lady or gentleman in your life by taking a stroll down this list!

The Time Traveler's Companion: Surviving the Past and Future with Your Kindle

Not that long ago I wrote an article discussing what it would be like, realistically, if you were to accidentally travel back in time to the Victorian era. At the end of that article, I mentioned that the best thing you could bring with you on a time-traveling adventure is a Kindle, or similar e-reader, stuffed full of the knowledge of the 21st century. Why a Kindle? Well, I own a Kindle, and I love it. However, there's far more to it than that.

How To: Eat for Free at DragonCon 2012

If you're like me, you've already spent a ton of money on your costumes, your badge, and your hotel room, and now you're looking for ways to cut costs. There are all kinds of ways to save money at DragonCon, but many of them involve violating the rules in some way, such as not buying a badge, sleeping on the floor in a hallway somewhere, etc. However, the one thing you can do that is totally not against the rules is eat for free. It requires a little self-discipline and a willingness to eat w...

How To: The Complete Guide on How to Build a Crystal Radio—Plus How They Work

There's a lot that goes into making a nice crystal radio set, so this is going to have to be broken down into two parts. The first part is the actual making of a functional radio, and the second part is making the whole arrangement look nice. In this part, I'm actually going to tell you more than just how to make a crystal radio, but I'm also going to explain how and why they work. Crystal radios are pretty Steampunk in and of themselves, since they were first developed in the late 19th centu...

Movember Mustaching Tips: How to Grow, Curl, and Care for a Handlebar

I've had a handlebar mustache for about five years now, and I've learned a lot over those years about how to grow and care for it. I will now share all of that information with you! Hopefully this will encourage you to grow one for Movember! The first thing I want to address right now is that I do not use wax on a daily basis. I kind of hate using wax, but I still do it on occasion. I shall teach you my secrets, starting from the beginning!

News: 8 Tips and Tricks Every Steampunk Writer Should Know

While I am a writer with a degree in Creative Writing, I haven't published any Steampunk fiction. However, as a panelist and track director, I've been on panels with many well-known Steampunk writers and have gleaned insight from the things they've said. I've compiled some of those things into this post, which will hopefully be helpful to all of the writers out there!

News: Which Actor Is the Best Sherlock Holmes?

Sherlock Holmes is one of the most famous characters in modern history, and has appeared in film more often than any other character. No less than 78 different actors have taken their turn at portraying the enigmatic deduction machine in various mediums, and each has brought their own foibles to the role. Some of the names may even surprise you: Tom Baker, John Cleese, Peter Cushing, Charlton Heston, Christopher Lee, Roger Moore, and even Leonard Nimoy.

News: Why Nikola Tesla's Wireless Power Was Fated to Fail Due to Exploding Airships

Nikola Tesla is one of the most tragic figures in the history of science, a history that is practically filled to the brim with tragic figures. Francis Bacon, a 16th century philosopher and scientist, caught pneumonia and died because he was trying to stuff snow into a dead chicken. Marie Curie died as a result of her long-term exposure to radioactivity, and her papers from the 1890s are too radioactive to touch without protective gear to this day.

How To: The Nuts and Bolts of Steampunk: Using the Right Screws for the Job

Let me start out by saying that Steampunk isn't about being historically accurate, and that everything I'm about to tell you is entirely optional. That said, let's take a look at the history of screws! What many people don't realize is that before we had metal screws, wooden screws were in wide use for things like wine and oil presses. Generally, the invention of the screw is attributed to Archimedes in the 3rd century BC. That was a long, long time ago. Metal screws and even screwdrivers hav...

Arthrobots: Steampunk Insects on the Loose!

A man named Tom Hardwidge has taken it upon himself to create an army of steampunk insects from a bunch of different found materials, including bullets and pocket watches. He's made a ton of them—and they're really awesome. They're modeled after real insects, too, and aren't just fantasy creations. His website has them all categorized by species, with clever, robot-inspired names. His arthrobots are for sale, too, so if you're interested in owning your very own horde of steampunk insects, you...

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