Organic Chemistry Molecules

I really think this would be a nice project. At the minute I cannot work on it myself but I might aswell plant the seed.

Using molds to make a chemistry molecule set, like this one! Is this possible? What do you guys think?


Should not be a big problem in my opinion @ezekields , you just have to build injection molds for them. Only the beams could be a bit harder, because they have to bend quite a bit. But with LDPE it’s worth a try!
Great idea anyways!

Yes moulds!

@andyn he’s probably using some kind of silicon moulds with a spheric shape model. Since it doesn’t cool down properly and there is not enough pressure to fill the gaps, it comes out with lots of air bubbles.

I actually like it if you make it like a moon-shaped keyholder or car charm, where the top of the mold will be used to fix a hook where a keyring holds the keys 🙂
If you choose the right plastic colors (gray, white/black umixed, complementary colors, etc…) and polish them well, I’m sure they will turn out pretty. Can you try that and show us the result you get in better pictures ? (these look kinda blurry to me) and also please tell us in detail how you obtained them.

Things that don’t work for a purpose can give birth to a totally new idea 🙂

What method did you use to make those?

Hi news from my mould… Unfortunately not usable…
😋 too much bubbles
See you for the next try

I have a large box of these molecules. Used them at Uni. If anybody wants me to post them to you just send me a DM. Would be good to get a feel for the plastics and using as moulds. Cheers.

@dbougas In Snatoms they use black crystal shapes to make double and triple bonds.
The number of molecules is not that much of an issue. We only need to make one functional atom of each element (H, C, N and O as representative of the whole set).

The more important part is a mold for each atom half. The 5mm spherical magnets are easy to find will get simply inside a cylinder slightly larger in diameter to allow them to move freely.

One way to prototype quickly is 3D printing if available, or carving in exapanded polysterene (styrofoam) blocks.

Proposed next steps… Having no machines for the moment. 😅 hard for me to share my pp’s machines experience…

But people with more practical background could advice use on extrusion or compression, and mold and all the others staff.

For a serial prod what’s about defining quty (if mold has to be optimized for instance) :
I will say
O2, H2O, 2*H2, CH4 and C2H8… Will cover the beginning of chemistry,:
18 H
3 C
3 O
Too complicated for me. Let’s copy. What was the quty for snatoms?

I am not sure to saw the double liaison problematic on santons ??

Videos saw… Not bad.
What will be the next step?

I’ve tried the mechanism with some 5mm magnetic beads in sealed used pill tablets and it works perfectly 🙂
Could we have some pictures?

My children’s have some toys having the same system, magnets inside and sticking hardly together …

Quick update to my last reply :
There’s actually this video where Derek visits the Snatoms factory in Shanghai and explains some things about the manufacturing. My guesses were not wrong (ABS for the outer shell with spherical Neodymium magnets inside).

Totally up for any ideas about educational and scientific tools and toys made form recycled plastic 🙂

These molecular kits reminded me of Snatoms made by Derek Muller (Veritasium). It would be very cool to produce a similar magnetic molecular kit.

– The plastic by its texture and sound is more likely ABS or PS.
– Magnets used are more likely to be spherical strong enough magnets put in cylindrical containers inside the atoms. I’ve tried the mechanism with some 5mm magnetic beads in sealed used pill tablets and it works perfectly 🙂

for people who can model them, then either create molds or 3D print them, they will be easier to make :). If only we’ve got 3D printers here in Algeria 🙁

If anyone interested with the idea, I’m ready to contribute if possible. I didn’t find any existing patent for Snatoms (or I haven’t looked well), but even patented, personal and non commercial manufacturing will not be a problem.

Nope… But I work actually with silicon mold and I wait one to do marbles 16 mm diameter. Could be a nice H atom.

@dbougas do you have the machines?

PP to create PP molecule
How precious could it be!

‘flexibility’ not necessary… We could imagine double beam like on the picture i posted.
Have fun

@dbougas do you mean make polypropelene / polyethene molecules out of recycled plastic?

@flo-2 I see what you mean. they could nearly be rubber…

@ezekields well for double and triple bonds you do need flexible bonds, otherwise you could only make single bonds (if you look at your picture, the thinner bonds you can see in the box are flexible. I played around with these kits in school quite a lot 😉

@flo-2, the bonds dont have to be flexible so I would just have to make a mold for it too.

Purpose for education… My favorite subject.
Lot of things possible.

Could it be possible for you to define more precisely the needs for a classic kit:
How many different size of atoms
And associated colors
Beams difference

Let stay by precious plastic and imagine kit for the different type of plastic

For instance Polypropylen