BB Video: The Flaming Bacon Lance of Death, from Theo Gray's book "Mad Science"


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Yesterday, I blogged about the release of Popular Science columnist Theo Gray's new book, MAD SCIENCE.

In today's episode of Boing Boing Video, a collaboration with PopSci, we debut the world-premiere of the first video documenting the sort of experiments you'll find in this book -- in which Theo cuts steel with bacon. It's a FLAMING BACON LANCE OF DEATH.

Yes, that's right, using nothing but bacon -- okay, prosciutto -- and an air hose, Mr. Gray constructs a high performance thermic lance that seriously cuts sheet metal.

In this video, you'll also see a purely VEGAN THERMIC LANCE built from one cucumber and several dozen thin vegetable-oil coated breadsticks. (Tip: the performance is all about the oil). This hotrod burns fast and furious, but does not last long enough to initiate a cut in steel sheet. The flame front travels towards the back of the cucumber and endangers the operator when it reaches the rubber connector.

CUCUMBER VEGAN FLAMING LANCE - THEODORE GRAY

Theo also built a CUCUMBER-BEEFSTICK LANCE. A high-performance thermic lance constructed from seven beefsticks and a cucumber. Later versions used Pup-Peroni brand dog treats, which are exactly like beef sticks only cheaper.

In some ways this device out-performed the Bacon Lance, and it's much easier to build.

But it's not made of bacon.

Theo tells Boing Boing,

"Cucumber is an *excellent* base for these things because it's air-tight, moist (to resist fire), easy to core, and has a rubbery skin that makes an air tight seal. About the only thing wrong with cucumbers is that they are not made of bacon. (I have a thing called a "fruit coring tool" which is like a very small round cookie cutter on a stick. You drill it down the middle of the cucumber until it comes out the other end, then stuff the cucumber with the chosen fuel.)"
Here are Theo's columns at PopSci.com. And more on the flaming bacon of death at PopSci.com.

These devices were created by Theodore Gray. Videography in this BB Video episode by Nick Mann (shot on the 5D Mk II). Stills are by Mike Walker.

Previously: Mad Science: Experiments You Can Do at Home, But Probably Shouldn't (Book)

Special thanks to Boing Boing Video's hosting partner Episodic.

FLAMING BACON LANCE - THEODORE GRAY

FLAMING BACON LANCE - THEODORE GRAY

CUCUMBER VEGAN FLAMING LANCE - THEODORE GRAY