Editorial: What is Damascus steel?
Travel: Oral hygiene for travellers with Zauberfaden Floss
Technology: Qdee is the fun way for kids to learn robotics and programming.
Stationery: It's that time of year again! Christmas cards.
Gadgets and Gear: Creature Damascus key hanger for your EDC.
Books and Writing: A new edition of Natural Magick.
Miscellaneous: Really scary: Dracula artefacts for sale.
PD: Store

Contact Prowling Dog at

EDITORIAL: What is Damascus steel?

In this week's Gadgets and Gear section PD features a piece of kit made from Damascus steel. What exactly is Damascus steel?

This is wootz steel, first made in India and Sri Lanka in the 6th Century and exported, especially to Damascus for its thriving weapons industry, used for knives and swords.

[Photgraph: Wikipedia]

It is a crucible steel, made by melting the ore with fluxes such as sand, glass and ash, resulting in a steel with its recognisable mottled patterns. Blades made from Damascus steel were tough and resistant to shattering. They could be honed to a sharp edge.

Contact Prowling Dog at

TRAVEL: Oral hygiene for travellers with Zauberfaden Floss

Travelling should never be an excuse for neglecting personal care, and that includes your teeth. It is no fun looking for a dentist in a foreign place. For your flight make sure that you pack a good quality toothbrush (don't rely on those cheap ones handed out in airplane amenity kits) and a good toothpaste such as Marvis, which you can get in a small TSA-friendly size.


However that is not enough. You also should have dental floss in a handy travel size. There are a few brands available, however there is a new kid on the block which may be worth giving a try. The folk at Zauberfaden have had two very successful previous campaigns for interdent devices and are now releasing dental floss with a difference.


So what is different about Zauberfaden? According to the creators:

  • It is the first dental floss that PD is aware of that has charcoal; charcoal is an adsorbent and can bind bacteria.
  • The floss expands, which improves cleaning; it also has xylitol, a natural sugar that reduces caries.
  • The floss and packaging are biodegradable (all others that PD is aware of come in plastic cases).

It comes in two flavours:

And of course, the packaging is travel size but you will probably continue to use it when you return home.

Pick it up here:

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: This information is given for your entertainment only (PD has to say that to keep the lawyers at bay). PD is not and makes no claim to be a specialist in oral hygiene. Before using any oral hygiene product or should you have any problem related to the mouth, consult your dental specialist. Use any product strictly as directed by the manufacturer or your dental specialist. PD provides general information as a lay dog only and will not be held responsible for any consequence of you using any oral product whether featured in these pages or not.

Contact Prowling Dog at

TECHNOLOGY: Qdee is the fun way for kids to learn robotics and programming.

Qdee, based on the proven micro:bit system gives kids 8+ years a lot of fun while they learn how to build and program robots, controlling them from their cell phones or tablets via a Bluetooth connection.


The kit is made from aluminium and ABS plastic. There are sensors and an extension board plug-in allows utilisation of RDS lights, sound sensors, infrared remote control transmitting and receiving, sensors and buzzers.


Hiwonder, the maker, was founded in 2015 by a collective of robot enthusiasts, product designers, and experienced educators, with a focus on the development of educational robots, from hardware to software to curriculum resources.

Check it out here:

Contact Prowling Dog at

STATIONERY:  It's that time of year again! Christmas cards

Yes, it really is time to start thinking of Christmas. We all seem to need a few cards to send to family and far flung friends; not to forget having some at work just in case. You don't want to give the impression that you bought the first thing that you saw at the supermarket checkout. You want something warm and thoughtful, showing that you went to some trouble for those who matter. Here is a tiny selection to help you out:

This one is from Rifle Paper Co., a favourite of PD's.


For something with a more formal feel, try this card from Katie Leamon.


And for those who will be celebrating Chanukah time is really of the essence because this year it falls in early December. Rifle Paper Co. has this beautiful Twelve Tribes Menorah card.


Contact Prowling Dog at

GADGETS AND GEAR: Creature Damascus key hanger for your EDC

Key hangers are a cool way to carry your keys and small gadgets. They are hooks that you hang onto your pocket or bag and simply pull out when you need your keys.


They are not a new invention, but none have the cool of forged Damascus steel, except for the Creature.


PD will not mention the bottle opener and hex driver in the design. Long time readers will know that PD does not approve of including a bottle opener on everything, however he can forgive the creators of the Creature because it is such a beautiful piece of kit. It comes in two sizes.

Check it out here:

Contact Prowling Dog at

BOOKS AND WRITING: A new edition of Natural Magick

In the 16th C. magic had a different meaning. The word is derived from the ancient Persian "magu", a religious functionary, but later the term "natural magic" came to be used for the natural sciences. This was popularised by the Italian Giambattista della Porta who in 1558 published his popular book, "Magia Naturalis" which was translated into English in 1658, titled "Natural Magick".


Can't find a copy of this fascinating book at your local store? Never fear, the good people at Black Letter Press have created a beautiful new edition for those interested in fine books, history, the natural world and science, from a 16th-17th century perspective.


Natural Magic concerns itself with a variety of subjects della Porta had investigated such as magic, alchemy, optics, geometry, cryptography, magnetism, agriculture, the art of memory, munitions, and many other topics, all grouped together and refined, distilled, into a compendium of natural knowledge.


Satisfy your curiosity here:

Contact Prowling Dog at

MISCELLANEOUS: Really scary: Dracula artefacts for sale.

Do you love scary things? Do you collect historical artefacts? Now you can indulge yourself. These folk from Mexico and Spain have been producing interesting things from Dracula, The Novel and posting them on their FB page (link below).


They are now on a mission to produce these in real life.





Get your stuff here:

Here's the FB link:


Contact Prowling Dog at

PD: Store

X90 Planner

The X90 Planner has been thoroughly tested by PD and featured in PD: Cool Things 178:


The planner is hard back but opens flat. It is clearly laid out and uses quality paper. It is undated, so you can start working on your goals immediately. There are 90 days in the planner, the ideal length of time to achieve goals.


From US $31.95 plus shipping. Local taxes may apply in your country.

Contact Prowling Dog at

Important disclaimer: Remember that crowd funding sites are not stores. You may decide to back this project and provide funds, however there is no guarantee that any project will be delivered - the rate of failure is about 10%. PD is in no way accountable for the success or otherwise of any project and writes in this column purely for entertainment purposes, and will in no way be held liable for any failure or money lost by anyone. It is a case of "buyer beware". It is a sad reflection on the era we live in that PD must resort to this type of disclaimer.

Note: Photographs and illustrations are from the relevant websites and are the copyright of the respective owners.

© 2018 Prowling Dog