A tour through New Zealand's amazing steampunk town

Steampunk HQ, New Zealand
We went to Oamaru, New Zealand to see the blue penguins (and they were super cute), but it was the town's dedication to Steampunk that really got us fired up.

Beautiful steampunk creatures

Igor Verniy creates amazing steampunk animal junkbots from watch parts, car parts and electronic junk (here's his Etsy store); in this Bored Panda interview, he explains his process. Read the rest

The Expeditioners and the Secret of King Triton's Lair

SS Taylor and Katherine Roy's adventurous YA series continues in a second volume that gets everything right: it's a steampunked alternate history story that's full of intrigue and light-touch, thoughtful critique of imperialism and colonialism, a story that lets you love your pith helmet while still questioning all that it stands for. Cory Doctorow (who loved book one) reviews the second Expeditioners book.

Luxury South African safari train where work is forbidden

The 3-day, $2750/person Rovos Rail train safari from Pretoria to Durban is pulled by 1930s steam trains; features giant, luxurious staterooms with their own bathtubs; offers high tea; and, true to its Edwardian time-warp, passengers are prohibited from working in public areas, lest this break the atmosphere of idle wealth and privilege. Read the rest

New Agatha H novel out today, capturing the action from Girl Genius webcomic

Carol writes, "The next installment in the Girl Genius prose novel series is out! Agatha H. and Voice of the Castle brings Agatha to her family's ancestral home, a sentient castle whose intelligence has become fragmented." Read the rest

The Raven's Chamber: a mad scientist's apparatus

Art Donovan (previously) created this amazing, mixed-media sculpture as a commission, called The Raven's Chamber, resembling some arcane astronomical instrument from a mad alchemist's lab. Read the rest

Beautiful junkbot rayguns

By Roger Wood/Klockwerks Read the rest

Kickstarting jigsaw puzzles made from Wondermark's fake Victorian charts

David ! from Wondermark and Machine of Death sez, "I'm hoping to turn some of my fake Victorian charts and diagrams (such as the venerable Hierarchy of Beards, or the newer Zoological Times Table of chimerae) into 1000-piece jigsaw puzzles -- my pitch video also features a cameo from my adorable kittycat!" Read the rest

Junkbot steampunk car

The Zephlaprop is a new piece from found-object sculptor Tinkerbots, AKA Dan Jones of San Diego. Read the rest

HOWTO make a steam-powered RC tank

On Instructables, user Steamhobby shows you how he retrofitted a steam-boiler and drive-train into an RC tank-toy, turning it into a steam-powered, remote-control tank. Read the rest

Vintage-look industrial lighting

The Manhattan Project's Delancey Lamp ($56.25) is part of a whole line of industrial-looking, vintage-y lamps with safety cages and beautiful cords; they also sell the cords separately. (via Canopy) Read the rest

Modded pressure gauge displays your Internet usage in Mb/s

Building ​Ed Konowal's Raspberry Pi-based Internet Pressure Gauge (as seen at SIGGRAPH 2014!) costs about $425 in parts ($100 for the vintage gauge on Ebay, including metal-shop time for the refurb), or you can support the kickstarter for his kit, which gets you everything except the gauge for $310 (for $500 he'll build you one, but you still have to supply the gauge). Read the rest

Steampunk wings for a guinea pig

Skypirate Creations (Etsy) made these steampunk leather guinea pig wings as a showpiece; it's not for sale, which will disappoint your steampunk guinea pig. (via Geeks Are Sexy) Read the rest

Steampunk/singularity mashup: Sun of Suns is now a graphic novel

Karl Schroeder's 2006 novel (review) set a new bar for imaginative worldbuilding and exciting adventure sf. Read the rest

Steampunk spring-heeled jack stiltwalker

Spotted yesterday at the Swecon Steampunkfestival in Gavle, Sweden: a magnificent steampunk spring-heeled jack cosplayer whose stilts were the hit of the show. Read the rest

Astounding steampunk leatherwork bags and books

Russian leatherworker and throat-singer Sergueї Kooc produced this beautiful steampunk briefcase in 2013. It's just one of the many versatile and wonderful pieces he's posted to his Livejournal: Read the rest

The stupendous hand-painted signs of Carter's travelling Steam Fair

The Better Letters tumblr has posted a massive gallery of the hand-lettered signs from Carter's Steam Fair, a touring vintage fair that stopped last weekend in Clissold Park in Stoke-Newington, London. Carter's is a family business, and it's a magnificent affair, even down to the gleaming, streamlined family trailers parked around the perimeter. Joby Carter, the fair's signpainter, is the son of the founder, John Carter, and he is part of a five-generation tradition of handpainted signs. My wife and I took our daughter and a friend to the fair yesterday and were amazed, thrilled and delighted by every single detail, from Voltini's Electrocution sideshow to the penny arcade where we gambled recklessly with enormous, Georgian pennies to the many rides and funhouses (and don't forget the steampunk QR code!). As my daughter's six-year-old friend said while we left, "This was the best day of my life!"

I took some pictures, but Better Letters had the run of the place at a pre-opening tour and is in any event a much better photographer than I'll ever be, so look at those pics, too. Read the rest

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