Sunday, February 22, 2009

Snap Circuits – a toy and a company from another era

The following is modified from my Amazon review of Snap Circuits (SnapCirtuits) -- a highly recommended electronics toy (a review by Mr. Verwillow helped sort out the confusing supporting web site story):

Snap Circuits Pro SC-750 (

... The toy is the work of genius, but the manuals could use a refresh, the web sites are the work of a pre-Internet generation (The company was founded 30 years ago by two electrical engineers), and marketing is not exactly a priority.

As best I can tell the official web sites are and ( now redirects to tries to cover their educational market, soldering kits, and non-toy devices, so the Snap Circuits (SnapCircuits) site is a better bet. is your best bet.

The web site parts page includes upgrades kit from the simpler to more comprehensive Snap Circuits kit. I think the SC-500 is the sweet spot for most of us.

I strongly recommend the inexpensive Student Guide (experiments up to SC-300) and the Student Guide extension (covers the added experiments of the SC-500). Some Elenco documents mention a teacher's manual, but I get the sense that's obsolete.

I had to print out a paper form to order these, and even do my own arithmetic! First time I've done that in over 10 years. There is a (third) online site for ordering the manuals and other parts but it was so poorly done I preferred to trust the post office.

This toy really is a blast from the past, but it's wonderful.

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