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(WTSP)   Boy Scouts vaporize a watermelon with a ping pong cannon capable of launching a ping pong ball through the watermelon at supersonic speeds   (wtsp.com) divider line 74
    More: Cool, table tennises, supersonic speed, Des Moines, Iowa, Plastic pressure pipe systems, watermelons, speed of sound  
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7786 clicks; posted to Geek » on 28 Apr 2013 at 6:18 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-04-28 02:44:37 AM
Take that, Gallagher.

/That was actually pretty cool.
 
2013-04-28 02:50:28 AM
Yup, that beats the projects we did by a mile.

I'd love to see the design.
 
2013-04-28 02:57:17 AM
Not really the ping pong ball that blew it up, but the shockwave from the barrel.
 
2013-04-28 03:04:20 AM
FTFA: The cub scouts spend the rest of the afternoon mopping up the bigger than expected mess.

But the did earn their engineering activity badge and a whole new appreciation for science.


You see? Wholesome science activities for boys keep them occupied so that they won't do homosexual things with each other.

It's nice to see them doing something with their balls besides slapping them against each other's asses.
 
2013-04-28 03:06:24 AM

Rincewind53: Not really the ping pong ball that blew it up, but the shockwave from the barrel.


That's what I was thinking. Could the ping-pong ball even survive the pressure required to launch it at supersonic speeds?

Still far cooler than anything I built as a kid.
 
2013-04-28 03:14:44 AM

nmrsnr: Rincewind53: Not really the ping pong ball that blew it up, but the shockwave from the barrel.

That's what I was thinking. Could the ping-pong ball even survive the pressure required to launch it at supersonic speeds?

Still far cooler than anything I built as a kid.


Oh totally. I'd have loved to build that thing.

My thought is that the ball probably was partially crushed under the firing pressure, then vaporized on leaving the barrel and hitting the watermelon.

They should have built a sabot and fired it from across the room. Then you could get actual footage of pig pong ball vs. watermelon.
 
2013-04-28 03:27:34 AM
In b4 Michelle Malkin joke.
 
2013-04-28 03:45:20 AM

nmrsnr: Rincewind53: Not really the ping pong ball that blew it up, but the shockwave from the barrel.

That's what I was thinking. Could the ping-pong ball even survive the pressure required to launch it at supersonic speeds?

Still far cooler than anything I built as a kid.


Something must have survived-since I assume they had some sort of radar gun set up to measure the velocity. Also, the ping-pong ball must have been reasonably intact when it left the barrel, otherwise I don't see how you would generate enough of a "seal" to get that sort of velocity.

My guess is the ball formed a pancake the diameter of the PVC, which hit the melon like a giant slug. But if that is the case, it probably would have slowed down pretty quick due to its shape, so if the melon was a little further away, the damage would have been far less.

/enough armchair engineering

And nice job, men!
 
NFA
2013-04-28 06:04:08 AM
BOOM headshot!
 
2013-04-28 06:33:24 AM
Pretty special headline on the sidebar:

"Attorney: video shows Clearwater officer chased dead motorcyclist"

Ghost Rider?
 
2013-04-28 06:39:33 AM
Meaningless display of force. The Scouts are merely rattling their sabers.

Have they asked for anything yet? Big League Chew? Jello?
 
2013-04-28 06:46:25 AM
Yeah cub scouts didn't design that and buy the high speed camera to film it. Still pretty cool though. Hope they were more involved just watching the thing go off so the nerd scoutmaster could get his project on TV.
 
2013-04-28 06:48:27 AM
When they're done cleaning up, send one of the Scouts to proofread that article.
 
2013-04-28 06:56:20 AM
Yea, but did they use a pen knife?

/vague?
 
2013-04-28 06:56:56 AM
This was on fark a while back and I think they might have borrowed some of the design.
 
2013-04-28 06:57:44 AM
Gallagher Badge?
 
2013-04-28 07:00:39 AM

Rincewind53: Not really the ping pong ball that blew it up, but the shockwave from the barrel.


I'm not so sure. In the slow motion section of the video it looks like the watermellon explodes before the shockwave somewhat evenly comes along and slams into the plastic sheeting.
 
2013-04-28 07:14:23 AM
Ghey!

/NTTAWWT
 
2013-04-28 07:15:19 AM

mr_a: nmrsnr: Rincewind53: Not really the ping pong ball that blew it up, but the shockwave from the barrel.

That's what I was thinking. Could the ping-pong ball even survive the pressure required to launch it at supersonic speeds?

Still far cooler than anything I built as a kid.

Something must have survived-since I assume they had some sort of radar gun set up to measure the velocity. Also, the ping-pong ball must have been reasonably intact when it left the barrel, otherwise I don't see how you would generate enough of a "seal" to get that sort of velocity.

My guess is the ball formed a pancake the diameter of the PVC, which hit the melon like a giant slug. But if that is the case, it probably would have slowed down pretty quick due to its shape, so if the melon was a little further away, the damage would have been far less.

/enough armchair engineering

And nice job, men!


Even if it stayed round it would have lost velocity and energy quickly. A sphere is a poor ballistic shape, especially at high velocities. Also the ping pong ball would carry little energy in its natural (round) state, having low mass from being hollow and plastic.

Now if they had taken a slug of wood, worked it into a shape more like a modern bullet...they could have a nasty cannon on their hands.
 
2013-04-28 07:25:54 AM
Seal the end of the barrel with a thin film and pump the air out. Then the ball is free to accelerate the length of the barrel without air resistance.

The ball busts through the film at the end of the barrel going very quickly. Of course it will immediately slam into the air and start slowing down so you won't maintain that kind of speed for much distance.
 
2013-04-28 07:28:59 AM
And now Homeland Security has put them all on the No Fly list?
 
2013-04-28 07:34:48 AM
*Thai girls look around nervously*
 
2013-04-28 07:41:02 AM
=
          miles per hour                                           feet per second

An M16(AR15) is capable of firing a bullet at  3,200 feet per second, thats almost half the speed of an M16.
 
2013-04-28 07:41:50 AM
880 m/h = 1290 f/s
 
2013-04-28 07:59:43 AM
This is what happens when you have heterosexual scout masters. You get masculine experiments that blow stuff up. If they let the gays in their engineering projects would involve making sewing machines and other deviant devices.
 
2013-04-28 08:01:33 AM

Cucullen: Yeah cub scouts didn't design that and buy the high speed camera to film it. Still pretty cool though. Hope they were more involved just watching the thing go off so the nerd scoutmaster could get his project on TV.


Cub Scouts usually don't do the hands on design.  And very likely the Den Dad (I bow to your awesomeness) found the design and realized the kids could build it over several meetings.  Sure beats Raingutter Regatta.
 
2013-04-28 08:42:29 AM
Two thoughts -

"When this baby reaches 880mph, you're going to see some serious shiat"

That newscaster makes me feel funny in my pants
 
2013-04-28 09:28:05 AM
i148.photobucket.com

Mayor Bates: Daryl, he wouldn't hurt a fly. I know my son, Colonel. He's not the guerrilla type.

Colonel Ernesto Bella: According to records, Mayor... your son is a prominent student leader.

Mayor Bates: Yes, well... he's a leader, but not in a violent or physical way. You see, Daryl... he's more of a politician, like his father.

Colonel Ernesto Bella: A member of an elite paramilitary organization: "Eagle Scouts."

Mayor Bates: Yes, but that's not military. If he's alive, he's scared, he's hungry... and he's just as anxious to avoid conflicts as you and me. He's not a troublemaker.

Colonel Ernesto Bella: Then who is?

Mayor Bates: ...It runs in some of the families.

Colonel Ernesto Bella: [to an aide-de-camp] This community is indeed fortunate to have a shepherd like him.

Mayor Bates: Well, I just want to see this thing through, Colonel.
 
2013-04-28 09:44:00 AM
That is the gayest thing I've ever seen
 
2013-04-28 09:54:47 AM
That's the weapon Captain Kirk needed for his battle with the Gorn.
 
2013-04-28 10:21:52 AM
I wonder how using a golf ball would change things.
 
2013-04-28 10:25:15 AM

quatchi: In b4 Michelle Malkin joke.


Mentioning the Malkin in a thread not about something she said IS a joke.

/ call it OddOne's Law?
 
2013-04-28 10:27:18 AM

nmrsnr: Rincewind53: Not really the ping pong ball that blew it up, but the shockwave from the barrel.

That's what I was thinking. Could the ping-pong ball even survive the pressure required to launch it at supersonic speeds?

Still far cooler than anything I built as a kid.


Agreed. There may be some interesting science coming out of this if there is anyone capable of thinking outside the box.
 
2013-04-28 10:29:47 AM

StrikitRich: And now Homeland Security has put them all on the No Fly list?


And DARPA has hired them.
 
2013-04-28 10:32:43 AM

hogans: [i148.photobucket.com image 607x330]

Mayor Bates: Daryl, he wouldn't hurt a fly. I know my son, Colonel. He's not the guerrilla type.

Colonel Ernesto Bella: According to records, Mayor... your son is a prominent student leader.

Mayor Bates: Yes, well... he's a leader, but not in a violent or physical way. You see, Daryl... he's more of a politician, like his father.

Colonel Ernesto Bella: A member of an elite paramilitary organization: "Eagle Scouts."

Mayor Bates: Yes, but that's not military. If he's alive, he's scared, he's hungry... and he's just as anxious to avoid conflicts as you and me. He's not a troublemaker.

Colonel Ernesto Bella: Then who is?

Mayor Bates: ...It runs in some of the families.

Colonel Ernesto Bella: [to an aide-de-camp] This community is indeed fortunate to have a shepherd like him.

Mayor Bates: Well, I just want to see this thing through, Colonel.


Eagle Scouts are an "elite paramilitary organization"? Really?
 
2013-04-28 10:37:32 AM
Meh, I've seen strippers do something similar.
 
2013-04-28 11:20:47 AM

Marquis de Sod: That is the gayest thing I've ever seen


Now Stuart, if you look at the soil around any large U.S. city with a big
underground homosexual population - Des Moines, Iowa, perfect example.
Look at the soil around Des Moines, Stuart. You can't build on it, you
can't grow anything in it. The government says it's due to poor farming.
But I know what's really going on, Stuart. I know it's the queers.
They're in it with the aliens. They're building landing strips for gay
Martians. I swear to God.
 
2013-04-28 11:21:00 AM
I'm calling BS to the 880 mph claim.

I'd have to break out my old fluid dynamics text to find the equation, but Ernst Mach figured out that it's hard to get gasses to move at supersonic speeds.
 
2013-04-28 11:24:58 AM
what-if.xkcd.com
 
2013-04-28 11:36:18 AM

MurphyMurphy: I'd love to see the design.


Here you go...

The originator of the cannon was a guy by the name of Stokes..
To improve on that design, you change the ends so that you use mylar instead of packing tape
 
2013-04-28 11:43:33 AM
The gun was so close to the melon I bet it would have exploded the melon even without a projectile in the gun.  Still cooler than anything we did in scouts.
 
2013-04-28 11:44:07 AM
Just great, now we'll have to register our pvc pipes and ping pong balls.
 
2013-04-28 12:09:27 PM

NFA: BOOM headshot!


This would be a cool weapons mod for Q3A/UT.
 
2013-04-28 12:28:45 PM
SCIENCE!
 
2013-04-28 12:40:22 PM

QFarker: The gun was so close to the melon I bet it would have exploded the melon even without a projectile in the gun.  Still cooler than anything we did in scouts.


This. Science experiment? Puh-leese. The poing-pong ball had nothing to do with the watermelon's obliteration.

Maybe next time they should arrange solar panels like oak trees' leaves to increase efficiency by 20 to 50 percent.
 
2013-04-28 12:46:03 PM

Meltro: [what-if.xkcd.com image 161x187]


More Power (known as a light gas gun).
 
2013-04-28 12:52:12 PM
Wait:
i43.photobucket.com
I guess the old ideas are the best
 
2013-04-28 01:06:00 PM
when, exactly did science=engineering and engineering=science and both neq evolution ?
 
2013-04-28 01:10:10 PM

wildcardjack: I'm calling BS to the 880 mph claim.

I'd have to break out my old fluid dynamics text to find the equation, but Ernst Mach figured out that it's hard to get gasses to move at supersonic speeds.


Gustaf de Leval figured out a way to do it in 1888.
 
2013-04-28 01:19:00 PM
One of my Den Mothers was a Hot Yacht Club Trophy Wife MILF.

She still looks good 40 years later.

Hey Burt, your Mom is hot!
 
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