OT - Mechanical "busy toy"

My 2.5 yr. old grandson seems to be totally facinated by tools and anything mehcanical. When he's in my garage he goes straight to the workbench and tool rack and says "papas tools" and wants to know what everything is. I was installing a facuet today and he sat down by me and start playing with the wrenches and again wanted to know what everything was. He loves to move levers, turn knobs ...
I thought I could make a toy / board with captured large nuts (maybe plastic pipe) so he could screw and unscrew them, old faucet handles, maybe sprinkler stuff ... and other fairly large things he could manipulate. of course they'd have to also be safe.
Thought I'd poll the group for other ideas / links to stuff like that.
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wrote:

Big wood screws and nuts (can't be swallowed)? Something that might integrate with an erector set, or some such later.
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On Saturday, July 23, 2016 at 8:25:13 PM UTC-5, sawdustmaker wrote:

My first thought was to add a hinge to the hardware mix, but then....
Or make a toy box, briefcase-like, with a hinged lid, drawer handle. A sm all wooden mallet is easy to make, but be aware of abuse of the furniture a nd other fixtures. Have an old cabinet drawer handy... just add a lid & la tch to it, trim the face edges, if need be.
Plastic pipe is a good idea. PVC and CPVC?... and a few fittings.
*Gojo and paper towels for his birthday?
Sonny
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My favorite tool is a wooden mallet. I've made 2 or 3 of them recently, of various sizes. One happened to be just perfect for tapping the bearings out of my inline skates, not heavy enough to harm anything but just enough to get them moving.
A wooden wrench and some nuts would be a cinch to build, Grizzly has a tap for 1"-8 threads for around $20, I don't remember about the die. If you make a round top with several studs you might be able to show him tightening patterns. I don't know if you'd want to taper the nuts like a lugnut for this, it does show the problem better but at the same time he's at the age where he'll just trust you.
Puckdropper
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On 7/23/2016 9:25 PM, sawdustmaker wrote:

I can not offer any suggestions on the toy, but getting the child (I had two daughters) involved with tools at a young age is good. My daughters are in their 40's and still like to "Play" with tools. In fact their tool knowledge is better than their husbands. They will take an appliance apart to see if it can be fixed, while their husbands are wondering what to do.
When they were about your grandsons age, they would help me work on the car. They would basically hand me tools as I needed them. When we did little odd jobs around he house, they would be their helping me. Again started hand me tools then holding things as I nailed or whatever.
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When my son was that age, I built him a box. A cube about 8" on a side. E ach side had a door (except bottom) with a different type of cabinet latch for him to try. He enjoyed "storing" things in that box. While he didn't make it, he enjoyed watching it come together.
Bill Leonhardt
On Saturday, July 23, 2016 at 9:25:13 PM UTC-4, sawdustmaker wrote:

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On Sat, 23 Jul 2016 21:42:35 -0700 (PDT), Bill Leonhardt
Teaching the tyke to be able to break into anyone's cabinets, eh?
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snipped-for-privacy@attt.bizz wrote:

When I was about that age, my parents gave me a "woodworking kit" that was designed around cutting and drilling 1/4" styrofoam. I really liked it. I think instead of 4'by8's I had 3"by6"s! ; )
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On 7/23/2016 7:25 PM, sawdustmaker wrote:

A child that age will be perfectly happy with a box of odd-size pieces of scrap wood.
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Perhaps.
I was given a Stanley tool box with real adult hand tools when I was about 5 yrs old. First thing I recall doing ....using the bit and brace to drill a hole in my child-sized all-oak roll top desk. Worked perfectly. Strangely enough, both my mother and father were not quite so proud of my newly acquired woodworking skills. ;)
nb
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sawdustmaker wrote:

I still have the tool box with the bent-in top that my first daughter stood on to watch me work. (1963) I made her a non-tipping stool to stand on that she carried around. Wonder if she still has the stool.
--
GW Ross

If it walks out of your refrigerator,
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