HMS Beagle: Awesome geeky science store in Kansas City


Mat Mets of Make: Online visited a great science store in Kansas City called HMS Beagle.

While in town for the Kansas City Mini Maker Faire, we had the chance to visit the HMS Beagle, which is a gem of a science store located in nearby Parkville. Started by John and Carol Kuhns, they stock an impressive range of geeky equipment, from telescopes to model rockets, rock tumblers, and Arduinos. In addition, they also host science club meetings, star gazing parties, fossil digs, and other fun-sounding activities. If that isn't enough, they are also the home of Make: KC, an enthusiast group for Makers that meets in their shop on Tuesdays.
A visit to the HMS Beagle science store


  1. Holy crap, that place looks amazing!

    I wonder if anyone has compiled a list of science stores throughout the country?

  2. how has Homeland Security (or a throng of ill- informed and over-concerned parents)(same difference, really) not closed this place down yet?

  3. There used to be a very similar store close to London Euston train station (in the UK) called ‘The Boffin Shop’ or ‘Lawrence Corner’. The Boffin Shop sold all manner of laboratory apparatus, instruments, medical equipment…some new but most second-hand or government surplus. They sold instruments from the cockpits of cold-war RAF planes and all manner of bizarre and absolutely amazing stuff. They would let you wander round browsing for hours without hassling you. Lawrence Corner (their sister shop across the road) sold weird and wonderful gowns, disguises and theatrical equipment and stage hardware. Sadly they closed down in the 1990s and have never come across anything as magical or interesting since. I really miss that place.

    1. Laurence Corner re-opened as Squadron HQ, not far away in Camden Town. A quick web search for “Squadron HQ london” should find it

  4. I saw this post on MAKE this morning and geeked out. My girlfriend and I are making a trip up to Kansas City this weekend from lawton. I hope they aren’t closed for labor day.

  5. in some states you can get busted for have a three necked flask so watch what you buy..i guess their used to make some sort of meth.

    1. Buckets, pots and pans as well as coffee makers, milk bottles, etc., etc. are used to make illegal drugs.

  6. Parkville!

    That’s where my husband is from! It’s a bit out of the way if you’re hanging out in KC proper, but it IS conveniently right between the airport and the city. So, there you go.

  7. HMS Beagle is a great store! :)

    For those planning to visit — the last bit of getting to the store can be a little tricky the first time. Do a Google Street View recon of the intersection where Route 9 makes its 90 degree bend and onward, in particular. It can be easier to come down Main St. if you’re coming from the north.

  8. Crud. I used to live (until a year ago) just a 10 minute drive from there and I never knew it existed. I just wish my car was reliable enough to get me there and back again from where I live now.

  9. I discovered the store earlier this year and love taking the kids there. This is an absolutely wonderful place, and quite a rare treat for this part of the country.

  10. Even in Germany such places become rare. There is one in Berlin (Fiebig Lehrmittel, Langenscheidstrasse 10) selling the apparatus but had to limit selling chemicals to am large degree. There seems to be a global hysteria about everything chemical spreading around in combination with children growing up knowing nothing about the simple pleasures of scientific experiments (beyond jailing poor ants in a jar).
    When I visit the US next time, I’ll come to your place. Do you have an Online Store?

  11. Park University in Parkville has a bunch of its campus underground, tunnelled into the limestone bluffs. It’s pretty neat.

  12. The second I saw that image my mouth started salivating, my foot started to move uncontrollably and a big smile came across my face. I’m surprised I didn’t get an erection.

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