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Dominoes, move over.
October 5, 2011 10:17 AM   Subscribe

This is a stick bomb. This is an AWESOME STICK BOMB. This is an awesome kid showing you how to make your own stick bomb. This is another really great stick bomb, but it's not done by that awesome little kid, so it's not nearly as cool.
posted by phunniemee (62 comments total) 91 users marked this as a favorite

 
WHOA
posted by hal_c_on at 10:19 AM on October 5, 2011


I would not have the patience to make a super long stick bomb. The small ones, sure, we've all done that. But 1000 sticks? Man...
posted by Fortran at 10:22 AM on October 5, 2011


Going backwards it looks like a cobra.
posted by zzazazz at 10:22 AM on October 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


Fantastic! How is it possible that I have never seen or heard of these despite growing up with a dad and two grampas who knew all kinds of stuff like this? I didn't even learn about these in Cub Scouts!
posted by usonian at 10:23 AM on October 5, 2011 [7 favorites]


Man, this was a serious craze in my school back when I was in grade 4. I studied these things for /months/.
posted by clvrmnky at 10:23 AM on October 5, 2011


This is something that completely passed me by in childhood and I'm delighted that it exists.
posted by V4V at 10:24 AM on October 5, 2011 [7 favorites]


We couldn't spare that much firewood.
posted by pracowity at 10:25 AM on October 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


I know what we're gonna do today.
posted by fijiwriter at 10:25 AM on October 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


I wonder if there are bulk tongue depressor salespeople on eBay who will be wondering why they are selling so many boxes all of the sudden...
posted by Fortran at 10:27 AM on October 5, 2011 [5 favorites]


I see we follow the same people on Twitter.
posted by jimmythefish at 10:28 AM on October 5, 2011


I like when they show the explosion in reverse. It's like a really cool CGI snake, but better, because it's not CGI.
posted by GenjiandProust at 10:29 AM on October 5, 2011


Very cool. Something new for me too.
posted by three blind mice at 10:29 AM on October 5, 2011


The small ones, sure, we've all done that.

I've never even heard of this, much less done one, small or otherwise. Neat!
posted by Malor at 10:29 AM on October 5, 2011


Never tried domino bombs, ehh?
posted by Cerulean at 10:30 AM on October 5, 2011


I see we follow the same people on Twitter.

I only look at twitter if I unknowingly follow something linked here on mefi. This is via thedailywh.at, if anyone's interested.
posted by phunniemee at 10:33 AM on October 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


My brother and I used to make these (small ones, though) out of toothpicks when bored at restaurants. Toothpicks are much more dangerous. (Very stabby.)
posted by phunniemee at 10:34 AM on October 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


::watching video::
"That's really cool, but who's going to clean that all up?"
::video reverses::
"Oh, okay."
posted by Faint of Butt at 10:36 AM on October 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


The third link is a video from "the Kinetic King", who was on America's got Talent, where he made some really impressive multidimensional stick bombs. He also makes Rube Goldberg-like collapsing systems.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:37 AM on October 5, 2011 [9 favorites]


In middle school we'd make these out of paper clips under tension and throw them at each other. Honestly I have no idea how we escaped 5th grade with vision intact.
posted by seanmpuckett at 10:39 AM on October 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


I wonder if there are bulk tongue depressor salespeople on eBay who will be wondering why they are selling so many boxes all of the sudden...

You can buy a box of 500 of them for $10.00 on Amazon. They have all sorts of uses around the house and shop, not just for depressing tongues and making stick bombs.
posted by bondcliff at 10:40 AM on October 5, 2011


Fascinating. Never heard of these before.

Am I interpreting it wrong, or is this illustration an error?
posted by Wolfdog at 10:46 AM on October 5, 2011


Am I interpreting it wrong, or is this illustration an error?

That's just what happens when you let that wily Escher kid start editing wikipedia pages.
posted by phunniemee at 10:53 AM on October 5, 2011


Lunatim's homepage is almost worth an FPP of its own... like timecube but minus some of the raw insanity
posted by MangyCarface at 10:53 AM on October 5, 2011


MY GOD MY YOUTH WAS WASTED NOT KNOWING ABOUT THIS
posted by SmileyChewtrain at 10:56 AM on October 5, 2011 [9 favorites]


I've gotta figure out how to do this with my kids, in spite of the fact that for some reason I have always been COMPLETELY creeped out by popsicle sticks.
posted by BigHeartedGuy at 10:59 AM on October 5, 2011


Holy crap - how did I never hear about this? It is exactly the sort of thing I would have devoted entire weekends to when I was a kid. (Except I would have probably soaked the whole thing in rubbing alcohol and tried to get all the sticks to catch fire as the chain disassembled itself, spattering drips of blue fire everywhere. 'cuz, you know, that's the kind of pyro I was.)
posted by Mars Saxman at 11:01 AM on October 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


How did i not know about this when i was a kid :(
posted by empath at 11:03 AM on October 5, 2011


the Kinetic King also has a stickbomb tutorial titled "Xyloexplosives 1001" and while he's not an awesome little kid, his tutorial is very comprehensive. I've never met a stickbomb nerd before.
posted by numbskeleton at 11:03 AM on October 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Prediction: this will be banned somewhere because it contains the word "bomb."
posted by 1adam12 at 11:04 AM on October 5, 2011 [4 favorites]


I know what I'm doing with the kids this weekend.
posted by feckless at 11:05 AM on October 5, 2011


It's like a wave of entropy!
posted by Jode at 11:06 AM on October 5, 2011 [3 favorites]


I've never heard of these being called "stick bombs" before, and I'd never seen one made with more than seven sticks (and one was just stuck in as a handle). Where I came from, they were "popsicle grenades" because they didn't explode until you threw them at someone.

These make dominoes look so very, very sad.
posted by darksasami at 11:09 AM on October 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


He also makes Rube Goldberg-like collapsing systems .

Holy shit, that video is fucking incredible. I know there's crazy dominoes ones out there too, but most of those are made by teams, I think. This is one guy!
posted by kmz at 11:09 AM on October 5, 2011


It's probably because I've been playing too much minecraft, but now I want to see if stickbombs are turing complete.
posted by empath at 11:13 AM on October 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


Yeah, the Kinetic King / Lunatim Rex is a very focused fellow, when it comes to making chain reaction pieces.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:13 AM on October 5, 2011


Because I'm fairly sure you could construct logic gates out of them somehow.
posted by empath at 11:14 AM on October 5, 2011


Wolfdog: Am I interpreting it wrong, or is this illustration an error?

The sticks, they bend.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:14 AM on October 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


The only thing that second video is missing is cats.

Hmm, I have cats. I wonder...
posted by restless_nomad at 11:14 AM on October 5, 2011


empath: Because I'm fairly sure you could construct logic gates out of them somehow.

Single-use logic gates? A self-destructive computer?
posted by filthy light thief at 11:15 AM on October 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


It's probably because I've been playing too much minecraft, but now I want to see if stickbombs are turing complete.

I'm pretty sure that all stickbombs are guaranteed to halt. So, no.
posted by baf at 11:19 AM on October 5, 2011 [5 favorites]


The videos in this thread are giving me a whole new set of visual metaphors for the global economy.
posted by zjacreman at 11:19 AM on October 5, 2011


Oh great, now the algorithms have me listed as spending my afternoon looking at videos called "Making bombs."
posted by bitslayer at 11:21 AM on October 5, 2011 [1 favorite]


The only thing that second video is missing is cats.

[french accent] HO HO HONHHH! [/french accent]
posted by everichon at 11:26 AM on October 5, 2011


Way cool! But I don't think I'd have the patience to lay out something like that when I was 8. I know I don't have the patience now.
posted by crunchland at 11:31 AM on October 5, 2011


Ya callz dem stikk bomz? Dem ain't stikk bomz! Now DIS iz a stikk bom!!!

Stikkbommaz iz da 'splodiest!!! WAAAAAAAAGH!!!!!


Or perhaps I have grievously misinterpreted the topic of this post, for which I most humbly apologize. Carry on, all.
posted by McCoy Pauley at 11:47 AM on October 5, 2011


Sticks do bend, but they appear to be passing through one another in that picture. It looks a lot like things I used to make when I was first learning to use POV-Ray.
posted by Wolfdog at 11:50 AM on October 5, 2011


THANK HEAVENS kids still know how to have fun. REAL fun, not just pictures of it.
posted by kinnakeet at 11:51 AM on October 5, 2011


Needs more frames per second.
posted by that's candlepin at 11:58 AM on October 5, 2011


I didn't even have the patience to watch the clip, let alone set something like this up. I totally skipped to the money shot every time.
posted by cjorgensen at 12:07 PM on October 5, 2011


Am I interpreting it wrong, or is this illustration an error?

It is partly in error, Wolfdog. The central popstick bends enough that it lies completely on top of the two converging side popsticks to the right.

Due to a CAD glitch, it appears to pierce them, or be notched where it meets them. No permanent alteration of any sticks is necessary.
posted by IAmBroom at 12:26 PM on October 5, 2011


We had these, only we called them 'throwing stars'. The ninja craze was in full fling then, you see.

Key is to use old popsicle sticks rather than tongue depressors. Popsicle sticks have a better length-to-width ratio, but more importantly, the popsicle residue gives it just that touch of resistance you need to avoid self-detonation.

*rainbow*
THE MORE YOU KNOW!
posted by Capt. Renault at 12:34 PM on October 5, 2011


In middle school we'd make these out of paper clips under tension and throw them at each other.

When truly bored at work, I sometimes make these. Although my method involves unbending a single clip into a triangle shape and having one end hold the other in place. When dropped, an appropriately made one will usually jump about eight or so feet in the air.

The idea of littering the floor with them as a booby-trap never even occurred to me...

Until now.
posted by quin at 12:48 PM on October 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


It's probably because I've been playing too much minecraft, but now I want to see if stickbombs are turing complete.

I'm pretty sure that all stickbombs are guaranteed to halt. So, no.


But so will desktop pc's... They halt pretty damn fast without a constant influx of energy.

The question, I tihnk, is whether one can build a stickbomb to carry out an arbitrary computation, independent of the size/total energy of the stickbomb that you build. Recall that the turing machine gets an infinite amount of tape to play with, so it should also be allowed to have an 'infinite' stickbomb if our program requires it.
posted by kaibutsu at 1:37 PM on October 5, 2011


Sullivan is watching us.
posted by LarryC at 1:38 PM on October 5, 2011


Between this and speed stacking, I have hope that the kids these days are gonna turn out alright.
posted by misskaz at 2:44 PM on October 5, 2011


So much delight on the soundtrack of the "AWESOME STICK BOMB" video!
posted by eugenen at 3:16 PM on October 5, 2011


This scares me.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 4:00 PM on October 5, 2011


I wish I had the stick bomb manual I wrote as a kid.
posted by willF at 4:18 PM on October 5, 2011


Previously.

Tim may not be that rad kid, but he's totally a kid of thirty some years of age. I got to spend a fair amount of time with him when he had a show at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts.
posted by advicepig at 5:49 PM on October 5, 2011


Good gravy. Have you seen his related video?
posted by uncanny hengeman at 8:13 PM on October 5, 2011


600 stick stick bomb by the same cool kid. There's also a 1000 stick stick bomb clip.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 8:34 PM on October 5, 2011


The reason stick bombs don't explode until you pull the trigger is that the overlap pattern of the sticks is not consistent with any set of straight line segments; the sticks must be curved. Removing one crossing (pulling the trigger) puts the sticks into the configuration space of straight line segments, and because straight sticks have less potential energy than curved sticks, the sticks move to the straight configuration.

Ain't geometry cool?
posted by erniepan at 1:53 AM on October 6, 2011


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