I feel bad that I can only afford knockoff fidget cubes-I'd love to support the actual, but I don't have that kind of money or time. Anyway I don't know which knockoff is reliable/which one to get because I don't want it to like wear down after just a couple of uses if that makes sense. Sorry for bothering I'm an idiot. /.\
Anon, you’re not bothering or an idiot. This is a really good, important question, and this is at the heart of why I say things like “it’s cool to support the creator if you can but I will never judge if you cannot”. Never. Nor will I judge if you buy Spinmaster’s Kinetic Sand or cheap, cool toys from Dollar General. Stim toys, for us, aren’t optional extras, but the thing about disability is that we’re often in situations of having less money and/or less access to the very tools that help us in a world not made for us. Sometimes we are in situations where we cannot live the philosophies we wish, and I am very much against the idea of going without something that helps us function better because we lack the access, money or both to get the better item.
(And, in all honesty, having to wait six months for an expensive toy to arrive - keeping in mind that for this community the fidget cube is not an optional extra but a disability aid - is somewhere past ridiculous and heading toward inexcusable. If it’s an item you only want, it’s not so terrible, but if it’s an item you need, like we need stim toys, it’s a problem. If I’m seriously recommending that folks who can should support the designer but buy a cheap cube for in the meantime, there is a problem!)
So, no judgement. We can talk about the ideals of supporting creators and the reality of the situation in which we live at the same time. And if this blog doesn’t discuss the knock-off options, this blog doesn’t fully support the community.
But, anon, I’m in the same boat. I’m planning to order a couple of different ebay knock-offs so that @ambiguouspieces and I can write a comparative review when hers arrives. But I don’t actually know how well made they are, and there’s so many different cheap options. But if we can’t afford to buy the real thing, we also can’t afford to spend $5 on a cube that only lasts one week. We need a middle ground. Something more affordable but reasonably well made.
(This post contains purchasing information for the Antsy Labs cube, for those who are more comfortable purchasing this one.)
If you’re Australian, Sensory Oasis for Kids sells a knock-off fidget cube for $12.95 AUD plus $9.95 AUD flat rate shipping. This is expensive, but it’s much cheaper than the $40-something AUD required to get an Antsy Labs cube here to Australia, and I can confirm both that it felt good in the hands (albeit just with many ways to click things, in my opinion), was nicely made and didn’t squeak. The sellers stock them because it’s a quality item (we discussed their spinners versus the many dollar shop spinners now available) and do take returns if needed. If you live in Melbourne and can travel there, it’s even cheaper.
I’ll also link to the recent Pat Catan’s post ($5 USD, no online listing, sadly).
Other than a few ebay links that we mods have pulled up from various places, I don’t have cubes from a specific seller or listing that have come with a recommendation of being reasonably functional. I can find very cheap listings - here’s one for $1 AUD with free shipping from China. (Note that the listing uses Antsy Labs’ stolen promotional graphics, too.)
So. I’m going to open this one up to the community. Have you bought a knock-off cube? Are you reasonably happy with the cube for the price you paid? If so, could you do us the incredible favour of commenting on this post with the link to the store or listing where you bought this cube?
Hopefully together we can help our anon out and build a resource of options that are affordable but are of reasonable quality, as buying these from ebay and other cheap sellers is a matter of pot luck!
Otherwise, anon, I’ll buy a couple of ebay cubes next week and give you updates on the user experience when they arrive. But I hope someone else can help you out long before that!
- Mod K.A.
I own a ebay knockoff cube, really love it. I don’t use it much atm since I sorta tend to cycle through stims? But it feels right, hasn’t broken either which is surprising - I bought it during year 12 last year and at one point it was coming to school with me /every day/ and getting fairly heavy use. Some of the parts are probably looser than the original would be, but personally I like that :P
Good to know that some of them are that kind of durable! (And I absolutely cycle through stims; I expect most of us do.) Thank you so much!
I purchased mine off of Banggood.com. I have 3 (2 regular size, one mini with a wrist strap). I love, love, love them! I should have a full write up on my sideblog soon.
There’s several listings (including an imitation Prism for holding the cube) here for those who wish to check it out, with various prices and additional lanyard attachments. (They’re called “whiny cube” for some reason, which made me giggle.) We’ll look forward to your review, but thank you for the recommendation! I might get one of those and an ebay one for our review post…