Recently my 11 year nephew was visiting, and wanted to see how the machines in my shop worked. Rather than just showing him the machines, I came up with a quick project which he really enjoyed, so I thought I would share it here. The project was nothing more than making a 5/16" nut and bolt. I used brass hex rod as the material. Brass, because it cuts easily and does not need lubricant (which simplifies things), and also because it makes a nice looking project. I used hex rod because it gave us a jump start on the project (no need to mill a hex). The project went as follows - after a brief lecture on safety, and putting on safety glasses: Session 1 (lathe): start with a piece of hex rod about 2-1/2" in length. Chuck it in the lathe, set it up for facing, and let the nephew do the facing. Turn a section to threading diameter - let the nephew do it. Chamfer the end for easier threading. Cut off the turned piece, leaving enough hex to form a bolt head. Let the nephew do the cut off (assist with some cutting lube here). Re-chuck the cut-off piece and let the nephew face the bolt head. Put the "bolt" in a bench vise and begin threading with a threading die. Once it is started, let the nephew finish the threading. This ends session 1 - which is just about long enough for an 11 year old attention span. Session 2 (next day - mill) : [Note: This could have been done in the lathe, of course, but the idea is to give the nephew a chance to use the mill.] Start with a piece of brass hex rod just a bit longer than "nut thickness". Place the piece in the mill and mill the top flat (let the nephew do it). Repeat for the other side. Center drill the center of the piece, and set up for drilling to threading diameter. Let the nephew drill the piece (note - this step is a bit tricky due to brass being "grabby" - if you have a drill modified for use with brass, use it). Start the threading in the mill (just to get a square start), and then let the nephew finish the threading in the bench vise using a tap and tap wrench. Done. My nephew was quite happy with the result - a nut and bolt he made himself - which he could take home and show to his friends. He got to use a lathe, mill, and some basic tools, and he learned that he has the ability to "make stuff." Some additional comments: I did all of the set-ups for the job - both to make things go a little faster, and to make sure work-pieces were properly secure. I explained (briefly) each of the steps we were doing, and showed him proper technique - just enough to proceed safely, without going into too much boring detail. I also gave the finished piece a quick once over with a de-burring wheel to remove any sharp edges, and to polish it up a bit. My nephew was (justifiably) proud of the result, and I think his parents were too.