- Kits and Plans
Here is a collection of emails that our customers have sent in about our kits and plans.
We had excellent results!!
My daughter (grade 3) was set to task on building a popsicle stick bridge with 100 or less popsicle sticks. We decided to take a serious run at winning this competition.
We made a practice bridge using your blueprints and attempted to break it. We ran out flat weights and books which came out to weigh 128lbs. This bridge showed no signs of breaking other than one bowed stick.
We then decided to make the real deal!! we used your recommended 3.5″ spacing and cut off the ends of the popsicle sticks. We used those small pieces to add strength and surface area to the “X” cross members. If you are interested in where etc let me know.
Competition day was yesterday. They could not break her bridge (safely)!!! they too ran out of weights.
She easily won the competition!!
I suspect this bridge could have easily held up to or over 200 lbs!!!
Thanks for your design!!
Kelly F., AScT
Just wanted to say thank you for your help. My 6th grade daughter built the bridge by herself following your instructions. She won Second Place in her school’s bridge building contest. It held 124 lbs and didn’t even crack. They ended the contest after that due to time constraints so we don’t know how much it would hold. They then weighed the surviving bridges and the lightest bridge won. They will be repeating the contest in the Spring so we will definitely be visiting your site again.
I am not sure where my 12 year old son came up with the idea for bridges for science fair, but he wanted to see whether an Arch or Beam bridge was stronger. In this electronic age, my kids have not built very many models. I had ideas in my head how we were going to build them, but decided to Google the world for help when I came across your website. Thank you!
My son viewed a beam bridge being stronger because they are more common. As you state on your website, there are so many variables. The plans were very easy. I helped my son tape a few copies to a board so he could build two bridges at a time. My son did a great job for his mechanical ineptness! We loaded from the bottom with a 5 gallon bucket. I found it necessary to use two hooks to even the load. We used some free weights from dumbells and then rock salt. Realized after the first failure we needed safety glasses! Enjoyed watching the bridge change shapes as it was distorted.
We found the beam bridge held about 19 kg and the arch held about 25 kg. My son did not do as much research as I would have liked. I forget he was only 7th grade. I tried to explain to him that the beam is probably used more than arch due to construction costs and practicality, but there are a fair amount of arch bridges out there.
His score for the project and presentation was 96 out of 100.
Again, I really enjoyed your website and appreciate your help and expertise.
My 7 year old son Christopher was studying Isambard Kingdom Brunel as part of his school topic on victorians.
Your bridge plans were ideal to show him how some bridges are constructed. I have attached a photo. Although I think the plans were to complex for him at age 7, he did have lots of fun building it with his grandad. His teacher was so impressed with the completed bridge she asked to keep it at the school for the term!
It worked out great! My son’s project is great I will recommend you and your products to others THANKS
We purchased the plans for my son’s seventh grade science project. It was a fun project for him to do. Your plans were extremely helpful in taking his plan to action.
The bridges that I received worked great. I needed them for my school science fair. These bridges where remarkable and very easy to make.( I made a few extra in my free time to display in my room). Although I didn’t win the science fair these bridges helped me get a 94 out of 100 Overall. It was a lot of fun building the bridges and the instructions where very easy to follow. They saved me a lot of time. It was great using your kits and I’m happy someone is spending the time to make kits like this for everyone to enjoy.
Bridge did great and my kids loved building it. Thanks for such a great project. We’ll be back again I’m sure!
The plans worked beautifully. My son used them for a fourth grade science/engineering fair project at school. He compared the weight bearing capacity of the three bridges. We were so surprised to see the strength of each bridge. He used bricks for his measurement. The instructions were very easy to read and the templates and photos were a huge help. He was one of the few students to choose an engineering project and surprised us all by getting third place out of about 60 projects in his school and is now headed to the regional competition.
Your bridge model was great!! My son earned an “A” on his science project using your plans. We used regular white glue, but it would have been stronger had we used wood glue instead.
Thanks for the plans! It was for my stepson’s project which was actually due in only two days after my purchase! So there was a huge rush to get the bridge built. Also, the bridge was required to be 39″ long so I had to make some adjustments.
The bridge was required to hold only 50 lbs…it finally collapsed at 145 lbs.
Thanks for your e-mail. The bridges were used for a school project for my son and worked excellently. Thanks for your help.
The plans worked fine for a first attempt with my fourteen year old. The problem came when we had to modify the plans and make the bridge longer and the passageway taller. We ended up having to glue sticks together and cut them to length. Our bridge ended up only supporting 28 pounds, because we had a faulty glue joint on one end. I suspect it would have held around sixty otherwise. We were under time constraints so I did not plug any of the modifications into the online site. Next time I will. All in all your plans were a big help, my son learned a lot about compression and tension (other than what was caused by working in close quarters with his dad), I would say it was a success. Next year we will start earlier and play to win!!
Hi Garrett …
The bridge plans worked well and were very straightforward.
My 10-year-old son was able to execute the construction himself after making some minor modifications to the design (length constraint of 12″ for the engineering society contest he entered).
The bridge with modifications utilized exactly 100 standard popsicle sticks and held 51 pounds. Unfortunately, the weight to load ratio was not a prizewinner — the winning bridge utilized only 12 popsicle sticks and held 41 pounds!!).
All in all, it was a great learning experience on engineering, trusses, and construction for my 4th grader (and he managed to win 3rd place in the airplane competition for the event that day, so all was well!!).
Grateful for your plans and website … I wouldn’t change a thing (and your follow-up/service excellent effort is outstanding)!!
Toni H. (Associate Dean for Academic Administration, Rollins College, Winter Park, FL and Matthew’s Mom)
Thank you so much for the design.
I am new to this thing, and had to quickly build a bridge with my son to help him earn his Arrow of Light at his cub scout’s graduation ceremony.
I took your design and basically reinforced it. I had 3 layers of sticks on each side. I also included about 6 triangles at the base (bottom of the bridge) and also completed the roadway (essentially gluing the sticks horizontally the length of the bridge. So with the roadway at the top, and triangles below the road, the sides got significantly reinforced. I ended up using 145 popsicle sticks. The boys were given 300 each. The organizers miscalculated and got about 85lb + 1 and half bricks. Of the nine participants, 5 bridges survived the full load (I would gestimate it at 91lbs as these were heavy bricks).
This design was the winner hands downs because the remaining 4 used up all 300 sticks.
Thanks again for your help.
I am very pleased with the outcome of my purchased blueprint. My daughter had to construct a bridge over night for her 3rd grade enrichment course on bridges. As you can see she added her own modification, but we wouldn’t have known where to start. I thank the Lord Jesus for you!!
Our bridge held at least 110 lbs (yes, one hundred and ten pounds)
suspended from the top of the bridge, down thru the middle, with a
bucket filled with weights and sand. The scale only went up to 110
lbs. One other bridge also survived up to 110 lbs in the contest.
My daughter needed to build a bridge that could hold five of their Math textbooks (9th grade Math class). I was so happy to find your website. I was very proud that she was able to follow your plans exactly and without my help (other than helping her print things out at the correct size)! Her bridge was one of 7 that were able to support the textbooks! Thanks so much! Well worth the price and easy to follow!
Hello Garrett –
My son Tyler used your plans for a grade 4 project. His goal was to build a bridge that would hold his own weight. The first bridge we built was our own (pathetic) design. It wouldn’t have held a cat. That’s when we found your site. The design worked perfectly. The bridge he made held up to 150lbs. I crushed it, but I need to lose a few. Your instructions are perfect. He built everything himself and was awarded with a good grade.
Thank you very much.
They worked well. When I tested them both types averaged around 430 as their strength-to-weight ratio. I think you should carry a beam bridge blueprint, as I made my own and between the 3 of them they averaged a strength-to-weight ratio of over 1,500.
We got three sets of plans and used them to build for my son Jonny’s science fair project. He did well enough to make the regionals which we were, unfortunately not able to attend. The plans were great and easy to follow we did however add decking. All three bridges held an incredible 90+ lbs.
Thanks for the help when we needed it the most!
Matthew and Jonathan G.
I just wanted to let you how the popsicle stick bridge turned out. My son had to build one for his Physics class using no more than 80 sticks and able to hold 10 kilograms. He put off building it until less than a week before it was due (of course). I told him to use the glue sparingly. He did not have a chance to test the weight on it before his class met. Needless to say he was very nervous about how his bridge would perform. It turned out just fine! His bridge held the 10 kilos and didn’t break. He got an A and was very happy. He felt that he didn’t follow the directions 100 percent so after class was over he decided to build another bridge – following the directions this time.
He really enjoyed building his bridge and was happy to have such great plans to work with. Thanks for providing them. I don’t think that either one of us would have had any idea where to start without them.
Your plans are great. My daughter built 2 – Short Warren bridges (the first was because she’d never built one before and she made some mistakes) and 1 Arch Warren Bridge. The first Short Warren was used to practice the testing procedure.
Overall for her project she got a superior, a perfect score, and Best of Fair runner up. Not bad for first time presenting at the fair. She is considering district.
The students absolutely loved building the bridges using your designs.
I was/am very impressed with your plans!!
My best regards,
Terrific! I will recommend to my students! Thank you very much!
Hi There –
The plans were great. We used them for my 8th grade son’s geometry project (doing high school geometry in junior high.)
We downloaded the plans on a computer that wasn’t ours and didn’t have internet access, so we couldn’t later view the pictures again – the only trouble that we had was determining which sides of the ‘sides’ were the outside, so that the top track and bottom track could be built on the right ‘side’ of the sides. Other than that, the directions were great, helpful, easy to follow.
My son’s bridge had to hold his very heavy geometry book, which it did just fine…And for extra credit, if it could hold a person, that would have been swell, and should have been able to hold a person per your instructions. But it collapsed. Not exactly sure if those upper and lower track pieces would have had it collapse, or if it was something else.
But it was fun to build. Thank you.
Thank You Garrett, everything went well
regards Joe J.
The plans where purchased for my 12 year old grandson to help with a school science project.My father and brother are both bridge buiding engineers so it was very interesting that this was a preferred topic for Logan to do for school.
He was not only able to follow the plans but also do a modified design to compare the arched bridge with.He came 3rd place in his school and went though to the area competitions.Although he wasn’t placed here it was an enormous achievement for a shy boy.
Thank you very much for your clear and achievable bridge design,I can not offer any ideas on improvement.
My husband and our 8 year old Grandson used your plans with great
success and are confident that a excellent grade will be his reward.
This is Pedro, German’s son. Im in 8th grade and i tested which truss
bridge is strongest, the Warren truss, or the pratt truss, for my
science fair. It was a very fun project to do. I am in vacaciones and
I dont hace the pica with me, but the result was great. They want me
to go to the second round in the science Fair.
Hace a nice holiday season.
The plans worked well. My son and I ended up using oversized popsicle sticks which made things harder because we could not scale up the size of the plans.
To make the bridge even stronger, we added sticks in key areas. In the end, we used about 120 sticks vs the 80 in the plans.
The bridge held 132 pounds before breaking which was really amazing.
It was a great experience and one I recommend for other friends to try.
thank you so much for making the plans. it worked really well. the bridge carried 160 pounds, it broke at 170 for the first bridge.for the second bridge I added more lateral braces and another layerof popsicle sticks to make it stronger and it worked. I made a beam bridge, suspension bridge, and a truss. I actually used the lateral braces for my suspension bridge. Thank u soo much, I got an A for my project. I got a lot of positive feedback.
My classes are just about finished with that project I told you about. We tested the bridges using textbooks, weighing approximately 1000 grams. We put each bridge on a flat surface instead of elevated across because this was their first project. Some groups got efficiency scores in the 100s while most got in the 500s & 600s with this highest being 690. I also had them color the bridge according to the part of the bridge. Thank you again for the blueprint, I think I may consider ordering one of the more complicated ones and see how they do with that before moving on to our bigger project. I will also include a few bridge photos that we worked on. Myself and the students at IS75 in Staten Island NY thank you!
We have finally destroyed both bridges, they both held over 80 lbs. We were shocked. My son really enjoyed. Thanks for your designs.
I bought some plans for a Arched Warren Truss Bridge an for a Short warren Truss Bridge, and they both worked great! The plans were very easy to understand.
When I tested them I hung a 5 gallon bucket under them. For both bridges I had to completely fill the bucket and then put 5 bricks in that each weighed 15lbs. The Arched Warren Truss ended up holding 130 pounds, The Short Warren Truss held 140 pounds.
Thanks for the great plans.
We purchased the bridge plans for my sons science fair project. The plans were very easy to follow and build the bridges we needed to build . We used Elmer’s school glue, our best bridge held 87.5 lbs for three minutes before it broke. We were impressed! I don’t think you need to change anything about the plans, they worked great. Eric
I am using your Short Pratt and Short Warren truss bridges in my
technology club at the Banyan School in Fairfield, NJ. Our school is a
3rd-8th grade school for special needs students. I have 14 students in
the club ages 8-13. After we finish constructing the bridges I plan to
hang a 5 gal. bucket from them and load it with weights to see how much
each bridge can hold. A prototype I made held 95 lbs.
Garrett was able to convey a complicated method in a simple fashion with his well thought-out drawings and templates. Thank you.
Garrett offers great customer service as well as excellent products.