When I was a child growing up, I loved playing with construction and model building toys such as LEGO. I loved following instructions and building the models as well as creating my own. These kinds of “toys” are not only fun to build but as I know now, help children develop their dexterity skills, cognitive skills such as planning, problem solving and logical thinking, being able to read and follow instructions and other skills such as patience. Now as an adult I enjoy helping the kids – when they were younger it was simple marble runs that got more complex and now LEGO sets (which the kids display rather than play with). Therefore, I was delighted when I was sent the Machine Works Haynes V8 Model Engine Kit complete with Digital and Interactive Augmented Reality to work on.
The Machine Works Haynes V8 Model Engine Kit is an educational model building kit of a functional, motorised model V8 internal combustion engine that car and engine loving adults/parents will just loving helping the kids assemble and then learn more about how an engine works.
The Machine Works Haynes V8 Model Engine Kit is a comprehensive but manageable kit of a simplified replica working engine. It doesn’t require any special tools or even glue to assemble and once it is fully assembled, the battery-powered engine model can be turned on to reveal moving parts, lights and sounds. To show it off, it is encased in a transparent housing so that you can see how the engine works and with the aid of a special interactive augmented reality app on your tablet or smartphone you can see what parts are and what they do. Not only is it an excellent model building kit but an educational tool to see and learn how an internal combustion engine works and powers a car.
In the box there are over 250 parts that need to be assembled. When looking at all the parts filled with parts it does look like quite a daunting experience but fear not it does come with a comprehensive Haynes style manual and a screwdriver – everything that you need to assemble it and no extras, like glue, needed.
Once you have worked your way through the assembly instructions in the manual you will have built a functional, motorised model of a V8 internal combustion engine, measuring approx. 23x30x25cm, and be able to see how it works with its moving parts, complete with illuminated spark plugs and engine sounds.
Overall, the Machine Works Haynes V8 Model Engine Kit an excellent bonding experience for any parent/child or grandparent/grandchild. It requires several hours of your time to assemble but is great fun and the interactive app adds to the fun and is very educational. It is a perfect STEM product for car enthusiasts and model builders with curious minds.
The easy to read manual and assembly instructions are easy to follow. Some bits can be fiddley to assemble and require patience, but it is fun to put together and the screws used are all the same size so no putting the wrong one in the wrong place.
Whilst you are assembling it you are not just learning to read and follow instructions, but it also helps children develop patience, hand-eye coordination, manual dexterity skills and problem solving skills.
Once built, that isn’t the end. The model engine looks great on display, housed in its plastic transparent casing but add 3x AA batteries and you will now have a V8 engine where the spark plugs light up, the pistons move up and down and the crankshaft rotates. And as it is all in a transparent case you will see it all working.
Then there is the app for iOS and Android smartphones and tablets. This is a free download which then gives an interactive experience with exploded views of the engine, animations of five key components and detailed descriptions of 11 engine parts. It explains and shows how the engine works. It is very easy to use and gives a lot of extra detail so you can learn a lot about what you have just built – so much better than just building a model and then just forgetting about it.
The app works by scanning the completed model. You can switch between normal, x-ray and exploded views. The app also has a How It Works section explaining how different components work and what their functions are. Also in the app is a digital copy of the manual complete with parts list and assembly instructions.
The Machine Works Haynes V8 Model Engine Kit with Digital and Interactive Augmented Reality is a really cool construction project and bonding experience that is so much more than assembling parts. I have really enjoyed building it and learning more about how it works. Highly recommended educational fun.
Available to buy from Amazon here.