Latest Stories
The Makers of the Harry Potter Pop-Up Book

The art and design of pop-up books fascinate us, so we were delighted to chat with Kevin Wilson and Matt Reinhart, the illustrator and engineer behind the new Harry Potter pop-up book. Kevin and Matt open up the book to show us how they collaborated on its paper craft.

The Pop and Poster Art of Tom Whalen

We meet graphic artist Tom Whalen, who has designed some of our favorite pop art posters at places like Mondo and Gallery 1988. Tom talks to us about his design process and how he takes advantage of screenprinting to give his posters a distinct look.

Ask Adam: Cardboard Projects

Every week, Adam takes a question from the Tested Premium Member community in the comments section below or on social media (tagged #AskAdamSavage) and answers here. This week, Adam talks about using cardboard to prototype projects.

PROJECTIONS: Astro Bot Rescue Mission and Firewall Zero Hour

We review Astro Bot: Rescue Mission and Firewall: Zero Hour, two recent games released for PSVR that may be the killer apps for the platform. Let's dive into a discussion about how these games take the platforming and tactical shooter genres, respectively, and enhance them with virtual reality. Plus, an interview with the developers of Vox Machinae!

Adam Savage Meets the Spacesuits from First Man!

Spacesuit replica maker Ryan Nagata brings to the cave several of his spacesuits and spacesuit parts he made for the movie First Man! Adam and Ryan talk about his build of the X15 suit seen in the film, the technical accuracy achieved by the costume department, and what he learned from making pieces to be filmed for camera.

Hobby RC: Upgrading a Third Hand Tool

I'm sure that most of us have some variation of a Third Hand (aka Helping Hand) in our workshop. If you're not familiar with this particular tool, it's basically a pair of alligator clips that are attached to articulating arms with a weighted base. The mechanical "hands" will securely hold whatever small widget you're working on, while leaving your actuals hands free to do the work. The utility of these simple tools for outweighs their meager cost (usually $5-$10).

I have several Third Hands that I employ for a variety of tasks. The one I use most often is at my soldering station. I use it to hold wires, connectors, circuit boards, motors, or whatever else I need to solder. While I love this tool, I do have to concede that it has limitations. You can certainly buy nicer and more elaborate Third Hand tools. But there is often a significant bump in price for the upgrade. Second-tier units typically sell in the $30-$50 range.

There's nothing wrong with spending $50 on a high-quality tool that fits your needs. The problem was that I didn't see any off-the-shelf models that had everything I wanted for soldering tasks. So I decided to try upgrading my base model Third Hand. This was actually my second round of modifying the Third Hand I use for soldering. I previously adapted an aluminum heatsink that makes it easier to solder battery connectors.