Holiday Gift Guide 2010: Maker letters to Cyber Santa

Maker News
Holiday Gift Guide 2010: Maker letters to Cyber Santa

Cyber Santa by Jim Leftwich, from 1993’s edition of Beyond Cyberpunk!

We asked our readers to tell us what was on their wish lists. They composed letters to Cyber Santa. Here’s a sampling.

Nick Brenn:

Dear Santa…

I want an Arduino Uno and a Drawdio Kit! I think I am on your good list.



A Rotex punch


Oh, Santa please, I’ve been… kinda good…

I would like a 3D printer, a laser cutter that can do sheet metal, and a Rotex punch.

Thank you,


Dear Cyber Santa,

I would like time, to finish some of my current projects! I need to put a digital voltmeter on the solar charging circuit in the shed, hang the 40 meter extended dipole antenna, rewire the old cabinet stereo to have an iPod interface, and hook up the Mac Mini to the home theater setup. Any chance I could get a week of vacation?





Rockwell Jawhorse, Amazon, $179

Make: Electronics Components Pack 2, Maker Shed, $129.99

Aluminum kits, Sheek Geek, $12.50
Got the kids each one at World Maker Faire and now I want my own!

Lego Mindstorms NXT 2.0, Shop Lego, $279.99


Parrot AR.Drone Quadricopter


Pioneer DJ-Inspired SE-MJ71-K Steel Wheels Headphones, Amazon, $60

Parrot AR.Drone Quadricopter, Amazon, $300

BDL190S BullsEye Auto-Leveling Interior Line Laser/Stud Sensor Combination Tool, Black & Decker, $49

Nerf N-Strike Stampede ECS, Amazon, $55

Lego Architecture, Fallingwater, Amazon $99

Lego Technic Motorized Excavator, Shop Lego, $199

Star Trek Enterprise Pizza Cutter, Think Geek, $25

HP Windows Home Server, MediaSmart EX495, NewEgg, $600


I’m a web developer looking to get into electronics so that I can make non-virtual things — I would love to see an electronics gift set that includes:

Make: Electronics, Make: Books, $34.99

Make: Electronics Components Pack 1, Maker Shed, $109.99

Make: Electronics Components Pack 2, Maker Shed, $129.99

Make: Electronics Deluxe Toolkit, Maker Shed, $110.00

Now that would be awesome!!!!


Black & Decker Thermal Leak Detector


Black & Decker Thermal Leak Detector, Black & Decker, $65
This tool is indispensable if you’re serious about improving the energy efficiency of your home. The TLD 100 changes color when the region where you are scanning is 1, 5 or 10 degrees different than the set point. This makes it a lot easier to use than standard infrared thermometers because you can watch the area you are scanning, rather than constantly having to look at the temp reading on the screen.

Channellock 357 Cutting Pliers, ChannelLock, $22
I need a pair of these, all I have are slip joint, linesman, and needle nose pliers and it would be great to have something with a nipper type end.

Craftsman 2A Multi-Tool, Craftsman, $80
I have the Harbor Freight Multifunction tool, but would love to step up to this 2 Amp Craftsman version with better ergonomics, a built in LED, and variable speed.

One-Handled Mini Bar Clamps, Irwin, $18 ea.
I need another pair or two of these, preferably a pair of 6″ and a pair of 12″. I saw an Irwin multi-pack clamp set at Home Depot that has all sorts of clamps (including these) in a single package, and that set would be the best option.

Scanguage II, Scanguage, $169
The Scanguage II is just one of those cool things that I’d love to have, but can’t justify buying one. The ability to watch my MPG in real time while driving has always intrigued me.


A rotomolding machine

Travis Ripley:

Santa, I’ve been super-good this year! So I want:

1.) A Rotomolder!

2.) Casting Materials (silicones and resins)

Please, Cyber Santa, I really want to make awesome stuff. I sawAdam Savage in the new issue of MAKE, and It made me even happier!

You’re the BEST Santa EVER!
(And I promise to leave the best cookies for you!)


I’m playing Santa, and giving away copies of Make: Electronics to some students.



Dear Cyber Santa

I would sure like to take the plunge and get an Arduino Projects Pack.

Happy holidays


Casio EX-FH100 camera


I as going to ask for an Arduino board and the Getting Started with Arduino book, but I went ahead and bought myself an Uno when the Maker Shed had it on sale. I gave it to my mother to wrap up. The first couple of items are more realistic to what I may get, as there’s no way I am getting a $2000 tablet that I don’t pay for myself. Haha, good times. Merry Holidays!

EX-FH100 Camera w/ 720p video and up to1000fps high speed, $249.95

Blue Snowball USB Mic (Brushed Aluminum style), $65.00

Blue Ringer shock mount for snowball mic, $38.42

PopFilter for Microphone. Anykind 6″ 12-20$ Example follows, $16.67

Eye-Fi 8GB Pro X2 SDHC Memory Card, $129.99

Otterbox Black Waterproof Case for the EX-FH100. Need to figure out which one fits it. Might want to check Amazon or elsewhere for cheaper, $10 to 25

Otterbox HTC Droid Incredible Defender Case $49.95 retail. Check for cheaper prices, as long as it is the case and black., $42.99

Westcott uLite Two Light Kit $164.99

20:1 Fingertech “Goldspark” 16mm gearmotor. Buy in sets of 2, I will end up needing a bunch of them., $37.54 per 2

Fingertech Tinyesc V2. Buy in sets of 2, I will end up needing the same amount as I do motors, but I will buy them over time, $67.56 per 2

Mamba Monster (Castle Creations) 2200kv motor and ESC for my E-revo truck., $242.78

Cintiq 21ux Wacom tablet/screen, $1999


Intuos4 Medium Wacom tablet, $349

1/16 E-revo VXL So I can have a mini version, hah!, $287

Another tripod. Same model as the one we have so I can setup multiple cameras for standard 720p, high speed, and streaming, $16.99


Dear Cyber Santa…

I recently moved from San Diego California to Norway (near Oslo). We don’t know how long we’ll be here, but it is nice being closer to you.

For Christmas, I am asking for the Make: Electronics book, the Make: Electronics Component Pack 1, a solderless breadboard, and the Deluxe Toolkit.

The reason I want these is because my brother lives in San Diego, and his son and I were always working on projects together (stop-motion animation etc.). He’s 10 years old. And so I bought him the stuff I mentioned above for Christmas and we’ll be doing the projects together over Skype once every weekend (because of the time difference and his school schedule, we only talk on Saturdays and Sundays).

Now I just have to get my set so we can work on stuff together.

Thanks Cyber Santa,


Oh, and PS. If you can’t get the kit stuff above, maybe you can send some warmth over here.


Dear Cyber Santa,

I would like more time to spend with my nieces and teach them electronics. Also I would like a Drawdio kit to show them how to solder.

For myself, I would like the book that is coming out about Wireless Networks from O’Reilly Media.

Happy Holidays


Dear Cyber Santa,

Check out our hackerspace holiday wishlist!



Dear Cyber Santa,

I’d love a vintage radial arm saw, and an ancient floor drill press in reasonably close to working order, and enough electronics chops to get the garden irrigation system to automatically pull from the rain barrel instead of the hose when there’s enough water in it.


A mobile fab lab. Our island community is widely distributed and its been hard to find a good permanent home for our maker space that is equally inconvenient to everyone. Our present hope is to find some semi-convenient small space for meetings, etc and get a trailer to hall our laser, MakerBot, soldering kits, and more to schools and community centers.

So please, Santa, bring us a 16ft enclosed trailer!

We’d also love a small MIG welding setup and a bunch of Cool Neon’s Learn To Solder kits (EL-wire!!)



I wish… for more time to complete all the ever expanding list of things I want to work on.


Dear Santa,

I want a small manual mill like a Sieg X3 so that I can make parts for my CNC machine and laser cutter. It would be my multi tool-deluxe!



Dear Cyber Santa

I would like to finish my CNC router and get the shop insulated.


Dear Santa

I know I have to start out small, so if you can give me just these few things to help me become a maker it would be appreciated.

A Makerbot Thing-o-Matic 3D printer
A soldering iron kit

I know you have a limited space on your sleigh, so I am going to stop there.. but if you have more room.. both of the electronics kits in the Maker store and a six pack of some of the Windy City glassware tumblers. That should get me started.. until my birthday.


Winners of the Make: Ultimate Workshop and Tool Guide 2011 issue:
The winners in our Holiday Gift Guide wish list drawing are: milkman, upir, and peterman921. Congrats! You all get a copy of the Workshop Guide. Please send email me your mailing addresses ASAP!


In the Maker Shed:
Want more? Stop by the Maker Shed. We’ve got all sorts of great holiday gift ideas, Arduino & Arduino accessories, electronic kits, science kits, smart stuff for kids, back issues of MAKE & CRAFT, box sets, books, robots, kits from Japan and more.

Holiday Shipping Deadlines in December:

15 (Wed) – Postal shipping deadline
14 (Mon) – Ground shipping deadline
18 (Sat) – 3-day shipping deadline
20 (Mon) – 2-day shipping deadline
21 (Tue) – Overnight shipping deadline
*Orders placed after these dates using these shipping methods may arrive on time; however, the dates listed are what we consider likely “safe dates.”

United States Postal Service (USPS):
Due to the high volume of mail that the postal service deals with around the holidays, please order by Dec 15 if you intend to select this method. However, we have had increased reports of packages sent via USPS lost or delayed in transit during this high-volume period. Since we do not replace or refund any order placed using this shipping method, we strongly encourage you not to use this method in December.

Discuss this article with the rest of the community on our Discord server!

Gareth Branwyn is a freelance writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of over a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture. He is currently a contributor to Boing Boing, Wink Books, and Wink Fun. His free weekly-ish maker tips newsletter can be found at

View more articles by Gareth Branwyn


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