Scientific American "Amateur Scientist" Compendium

A place to keep track of reference material - any particularly useful books, articles, etc. should be listed here.
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Richard Hester
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Scientific American "Amateur Scientist" Compendium

Post by Richard Hester » Wed May 28, 2003 3:40 am

Though not precisely germane to this list, I still thought it woud be of interest.... The entire contents of Scientific American's "Amateur Scientist" column have been released as a 2 CD set. The 20's and 30's are all amateur astronomy, but it gets interesting from the 50's to the mid 80's, with projects such as lasers, an arc-jet thruster, a tube based NMR setup, a proton precession magnetometer, and much more. This column epitomized the amateur scientist mentality, and I mourn its passing. I got my copy through the Surplus Shack in Pennsylvania. No doubt other folks are offering it as well. Get it while you can - it beats a stack of moldy magazines.

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Richard Hull
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Re: Scientific American "Amateur Scientist" Compendium

Post by Richard Hull » Wed May 28, 2003 3:01 pm

I second Richard's comments. I obtained my CD set from the SAS, Society of Amateur Scientists. I grew up in the days when "Red" Stong's Amateur Scientist columns had real hard science in them. I couldn't wait for the next issues in the mid to late 50's and early 60's.

You know its gotta be good when they advise kids to make an electromagnet by first obtaining 200 lbs of #10 enameled wire and having a core machined from 6" diameter steel shafting.... Or, obtaining 28 old car batteries for a high current DC source in an experiment........Or, cutting 20 thermal and electrical insulating spacers from a large 1/2" thick sheet of "transite" on a bandsaw. (transite was 100% pure asbestos molded into a solid)

Beware, if you get the CD's you will find yourself using up reams of paper to print out the neat stuff. (the neat stuff is about 90% of the contained material!!)

By the way, this kind of good tech data is germane to the fusor list...........certainly to the "doers".

Richard Hull
Progress may have been a good thing once, but it just went on too long. - Yogi Berra
Fusion is the energy of the future....and it always will be
Retired now...Doing only what I want and not what I should...every day is a saturday.

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Re: Scientific American "Amateur Scientist" Compendium

Post by 3l » Wed May 28, 2003 3:13 pm

I'll third that!
Nothing can beat the projects on the Amatuer Scientist.
Built a bunch of them...simple to complex!
My super conducting cyclotron was inspired from the 1957 cyclotron project, hand made magnet,chamber and oscillator system.

Good food here!

Happy Fusoring!
Larry Leins
Fusor Tech

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Re: Scientific American "Amateur Scientist" Compendium

Post by badflash » Sat Dec 04, 2004 8:59 pm

I figured I'd post here to bring this to the top. Us newbie need all the help we can get.

I just got my copy from
They were very quick to send it, just a couple of days form ordering to arrival. $24.99+ s&h. Great stocking stuffer for the budding fusioneer or scientist on your list.

This is a weath of info for the newbie like me. I found a wonderful article first thing on vacuum techology. This should cut down on the sort of questions that drive the old hands around here crazy.

The java search engine that comes with the CD is buggy, but it gives you the date of the article and you can look it up the hard way.

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