Hack a Digital Camera Into a Kids' Toy with Sugru


Image via video screengrab

I'm in love with Sugru. This putty-like substance can help you fix or hack practically anything, and I've been in love with it since spotting it at Maker Faire in 2009. It's like the DIYer's or maker's magic wand, upcycling, repairing or repurposing everything from shoes to gadgets. It not only can fix something broken, but also prevent something from breaking in the first place, as projectsugru shows off on an Instructable for making a digital camera pretty much indestructible.

Kids make amazing artists. They have an open, straightforward perspective on the world that we tend to lose as we grow up, and they have a wonderful way of breaking rules we grown ups set up -- and both are traits that make for great art. This is true with photography as well. However, it takes an unusually kick-back parent to let their kids toddle around with an expensive digital camera.

As projectsugru points out on their Instructables page, "Most three to eight year olds are budding artists. They love to paint, draw and build. So why can't they be great photographers too? Maybe because cameras designed for kids don't actually work very well and who wants to splash out of a nice digital camera for their child when they are probably going to drop it all the time and end up breaking it in five minutes. Well, with a bit of Sugru and massive amounts of ingenuity your children can now become budding young photographers. By covering a camera with soft Sugru walls it can be made drop proof so even the most wild child wont be able to break it. The key to this hack is in the making of the walls. Once you've got that down its a doddle. Enjoy."


Image via video screengrab

The instructions for this project, just to make sure you cover every angle, can be found at Instrucables. All it takes is the camera, Sugru, a pair of scissors, and of course, a child.

Once the Sugru sets, you can hand the camera over to your kid and away they go, creating art and having a whole lot of fun.

However, the magic doesn't stop with protecting a digital camera for kids. it can also help photographers avoid buying expensive accessories for their cameras. For instance, you can fashion a better grip for your camera at a fraction of the cost (and most likely a fraction of the environmental footprint) with Sugru instead of ordering some piece of rubber or plastic from a camera store.


Photo by Jaymi Heimbuch

Photo by Jaymi Heimbuch
Sugru has a range of other uses for their product on their website. I definitely recommend checking them out, and getting creative with customizing, upcycling and repairing stuff around your house rather than buying new.

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Tags: Electronics | Gadgets | Maker Faire | Recycling | Upcycling

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