Okay, I know that this may be bordering on the "Too Much Information"
threshold, but I’ll confess that when I was a kid, I loved magnets. Not many
things would make me happier than coming across an old speaker that I could
dismantle to remove its magnet disk. Ball bearings were the other thing that I
really found cool. Friends of my parents would sometimes give me 1" and larger
stainless steel examples that they came across in their oil & gas industry
related jobs. I am sure that they found my fascination with the perfect spheres
amusing, but my deal was that I liked their inexplicable mass in relation to
their relatively small size.
When Think Geek sent us a sample of
the Original GeoMag /
GeoPanel Magnetic World, the nine year old in me reappeared. I was sent the
GeoPanel 84 kit, which has 21 magnetic rods, 18 steel balls, 17 triangle panels,
11 quadrangle panels, 11 rhombi panels and 6 pentagons. Inside the box was a
Styrofoam tray system that gave a glimpse at the colorful GeoPanels and the
accompanying book which includes general information and facts about magnets and
shows some examples to get the user started on their magnetic building spree.
The reusable plastic GeoPanel tray slips from the donut-shaped Styrofoam
And then the top of the tray removes to reveal the magnets. Because of the
small pieces included in the box, and their inherent choking risk, GeoMag is
recommended for anyone age six and up.
Side note: Do I need to mention that if you are going to play with magnets at
your desk, you should keep them as far away from your computer as
possible? It should also go without saying that if you wear an automatic watch
or if you have a pacemaker, then the same warning applies. Have fun, but don’t
do anything that you might regret later…
Inside the tray are 21 magnetic rods and 18 steel balls. Try to remove just
one of the 1" bars; it’s impossible! If pulling that first bar from the others
it is touching doesn’t reawaken the kid in you, then touching that bar to one of
the 1/2" steel balls should.
Go ahead, see how many balls you can pick up with a section of rods.
Each rod is covered in a thin clear plastic sleeve that says "GeoMag".
Evidently depending on the kit, some GeoMag rods will have an azure sleeve as a
bit of variety. The next natural thing to do is to put the rods and balls
together into a shape. Check it out – magnetic jewelry! Too bad it doesn’t
really cure arthritis, or whatever wearing it was supposed to do.
These magnets have such a strong force that it would be possible to wear them
throughout the day without worrying about anything causing them to release. My
daughter took one look at the GeoMag kit and said that she had seen girls at
school with "those necklaces" on, so it looks like kids here have already
Of course, the magnets and spheres are only part of the kit, there are also
GeoPanels which can be used to color and fill in the magnetic creations.
Each geometric piece of colored plastic has a hole through its center, which
a rod can pass through; a sphere on either end will keep things in place.
Here you can get a good idea of how the pieces fit around the various
GeoPanels. I wish that it were possible for each reader to feel the weight of
the simple forms that I put together in teh pictures below; they are quite
Part of the fun of playing with the GeoMag is experiencing the strong
attraction and repulsion evident every time a magnet bar comes into contact with
its twin. The steel balls though not magnetic themselves, will hold a small
magnetic charge after contact with the magnetic rods, which is also a good
learning example for kids who are just discovering the special properties of
Photo courtesy of Think Geek
For whatever reason, magnets have always been, and will always be, one of
those mysterious things that fascinate both adults and children alike. The
GeoMag / GeoPanel kit is a great way to either introduce a child to magnets or
reintroduce yourself to their magical properties. Adding the fact that this is
also a building kit ensures that the owner will get many hours of creative play.
Take a look at some of Think Geek’s customer’s truly original "action
shots". I particularly like the "GeoMag WiFi Antenna" and the "Stage 4"
Price: $34.99 to $99.99
Fun and educational
Imaginative building kit
Magnets are fun, so are ball bearings…admit it!
Should be kept clear of hard-drives, automatic watches, pacemakers, and anything
else affected by a strong magnetic field