Monday, July 29, 2013

A Trick Even I Didn't Know As a Kid

And I wish I had:

How To Turn A Match Into A Tiny Rocket

The swift strike of a match on July 4 typically precedes sky-high spectacles. But matches themselves can be fireworks. When ignited, the bulb of fuel on a match’s tip combusts into space-hogging gases. By containing the gas in aluminum foil and directing it downward, you can create a miniature missile. Follow these steps to become a rocket scientist in your own driveway.
Sewing pin or needle
Paper clips
Aluminum foil

1. Bend a paper clip into a 45-degree angle. Presto! You have a launch pad.
2. Lay a pin along a matchstick so that the sharp tip touches the match head. Wrap the head with a piece of aluminum foil, and gently crease the foil around the pin (avoid tears and holes).
3. Remove the pin. This leaves a hollow channel that will direct gas downward, so it can act as propellant.
4. Rest the match on the launch pad, hold a small flame under the foil-wrapped match head, and start your countdown.

Time: 10 minutes
Cost: About $3
Difficulty: Easy
Of course, if I had, there's an excellent chance Southern California would have burned even worse than it did.

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