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Set phasers to... popping balloons of a specific color!
April 25, 2010 7:42 PM   Subscribe

Here's a mostly working replica Star Trek Phaser. Original series, of course. Build pics and description here.
posted by loquacious (68 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
Cached link.
posted by loquacious at 7:43 PM on April 25, 2010


Fake?
posted by Hoosier Prospector at 7:44 PM on April 25, 2010


See, this is what Hawking is talking about, right here. "We only have to look at ourselves to see how intelligent life might develop into something we wouldn’t want to meet."
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:47 PM on April 25, 2010 [7 favorites]


You sure could spoil a birthday party with one of those.
posted by Flashman at 7:51 PM on April 25, 2010




This will serve us well when we are invaded by Betelgeusian Balloon Beasts.
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 7:56 PM on April 25, 2010 [3 favorites]


I'd rather use the laser with the ST:TNG phaser one of my friends used to have. Or even better, a couple of them driven even higher in a replica phaser rifle.
posted by wierdo at 7:56 PM on April 25, 2010


MetaFilter: We only have to look at ourselves to see how intelligent life might develop into something we wouldn’t want to meet
posted by mazola at 7:56 PM on April 25, 2010 [4 favorites]


Visible ray or it isn't a phaser.
posted by DU at 7:57 PM on April 25, 2010 [2 favorites]


Team, set phasers to "blind."
posted by localroger at 8:00 PM on April 25, 2010 [8 favorites]


You show me an almost working phaser, and I'll show you a nerd with a hobby.
posted by The Esteemed Doctor Bunsen Honeydew at 8:02 PM on April 25, 2010 [2 favorites]


See, this is what Hawking is talking about, right here. "We only have to look at ourselves to see how intelligent life might develop into something we wouldn’t want to meet."

Yeah, but...These guys have us covered if, um, the aliens are thin and inflatable.
posted by The Potate at 8:04 PM on April 25, 2010


Visible ray or it isn't a phaser.

Visible Ray.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:05 PM on April 25, 2010 [1 favorite]


Do not stare at laser with remaining good eye!
posted by MikeWarot at 8:09 PM on April 25, 2010 [8 favorites]


In my day, we had to stick needles through spitwads and shoot them through a straw with our MOUTHS if we wanted to pop balloons
posted by Lukenlogs at 8:13 PM on April 25, 2010


I'm so sick of everyone desperately trying to be witty in the comments.
posted by aesacus at 8:15 PM on April 25, 2010 [6 favorites]


See, this is what Hawking is talking about, right here. "We only have to look at ourselves to see how intelligent life might develop into something we wouldn’t want to meet."

That's kind of a harsh opinion of Star Trek fans.
posted by Tashtego at 8:16 PM on April 25, 2010


It's not fake. But it wouldn't be very useful as a weapon. In the videos it can be seen failing to set wood on fire.

Phasers (that is, high-power lasers) are being tested as anti-air weapons.
posted by LogicalDash at 8:17 PM on April 25, 2010


I'm so sick of everyone desperately trying to be witty in the comments.

I, uh, think you should stay out of comment threads. In general.
posted by LogicalDash at 8:18 PM on April 25, 2010 [5 favorites]


Visible ray or it isn't a phaser.

Roll 1D20 against Vulcan wedgie.
posted by loquacious at 8:19 PM on April 25, 2010 [2 favorites]


This website has more information about lasers than I require.
posted by Hoenikker at 8:23 PM on April 25, 2010


I'm so sick of everyone desperately trying to be witty in the comments.

Seriously.
posted by thewittyname at 8:24 PM on April 25, 2010 [4 favorites]


I 'm so sick of everyone desperately trying to be witty in the comments.

Set comment to not-so-witty!
posted by zippy at 8:26 PM on April 25, 2010 [3 favorites]


Is this the right thread for desperately trying to be witty?
posted by TwelveTwo at 8:27 PM on April 25, 2010


Visible ray or it isn't a phaser.

Dispense dry ice... fire!
posted by Artw at 8:28 PM on April 25, 2010


Metafilter: Desperately witty comments.

I love the old Star Trek. I want one.
posted by tbonicus at 8:28 PM on April 25, 2010


I'm so sick of everyone desperately trying to be witty in the comments.

.
posted by Lukenlogs at 8:29 PM on April 25, 2010


I really don't get why some people go beyond obvious danger points like this. Yeah, I was a hardcore (no pun intended) Trekker when introduced to TOS, and yeah, I would have sold my possessions for such a toy back then, but - to make it with REAL eye-frying lasers? Even my adolescent self would put on the brakes when eyesight is on the line.

There are those who listen during Science class and those that don't; this here is one of the reasons to listen.
posted by Hardcore Poser at 8:29 PM on April 25, 2010


Seriously.
Seriously. And does anyone have a greasemonkey script that can erase the "Metafilter: i'm utterly without my own wit and can only repeat an unfunny line from above" comments?

on preview: exactly.
posted by Tristram Shandy, Gentleman at 8:29 PM on April 25, 2010


Logically.
posted by Artw at 8:30 PM on April 25, 2010


You sure could spoil a birthday party with one of those.

I know, right? Total buzzkill. You'd all excited and expecting a real phaser that you could stun dangerous people or other life forms in a mostly gentle but non-lethal fashion or it could be turned up to eleven to blast holes in metal - but all it can do is cut electrical tape or garbage bags very slowly.

In the videos it can be seen failing to set wood on fire.

It just needs a little more time. Focus the lens a little, maybe fluff up the wood to make some kindling with some lint or something, maybe a match head.

It is a totally gratuitous eye hazard, though, and probably looks super cool on a foggy night.
posted by loquacious at 8:31 PM on April 25, 2010


You should see what they get up to at CERN on Half Life night.
posted by Artw at 8:31 PM on April 25, 2010 [1 favorite]


There are those who listen during Science class and those that don't; this here is one of the reasons to listen.

I think the guy who made it is an older fellow. In one of the videos he's using wavelength appropriate vision protection. I don't think he's making them and selling them. He knows it's a dangerous object. He even built a safety interlock into it.
posted by loquacious at 8:36 PM on April 25, 2010


"Seriously.
Seriously. And does anyone have a greasemonkey script that can erase the "Metafilter: i'm utterly without my own wit and can only repeat an unfunny line from above" comments?"

Tristram Shandy, Gentleman: Taking comments way too seriously.
posted by tbonicus at 8:37 PM on April 25, 2010 [1 favorite]


Also, not that I'm a fan of micromanaging my own threads but please lay off aesacus. If I'm allowed to be desperately witty in my post, I think the comments are safe.
posted by loquacious at 8:42 PM on April 25, 2010


/administers Vulcan nerve pinch.
posted by Artw at 8:44 PM on April 25, 2010


You're not Vulcan! I saw you experiencing and expressing emotions yesterday!
posted by loquacious at 8:48 PM on April 25, 2010 [1 favorite]


my own threads

I kinda miss the 70s, when "threads" meant "clothes".

"Hey, cool threads, man!"
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:55 PM on April 25, 2010


Wit, paronomasia, jokes, all good. I just wish the "Metafilter: x" joke had a higher bar for execution. Sorry for the derail.
posted by Tristram Shandy, Gentleman at 9:05 PM on April 25, 2010


MetaFilter: I kinda miss the 70s.
posted by The Tensor at 9:05 PM on April 25, 2010 [1 favorite]


Ooh! You could make a great trap by stuffing a mylar balloon into a black latex balloon and inflating the two. The phaser would pop the black exterior, exposing the deadly-shiny mylar surface and then the beam would reflect back at the source, blinding the shooter! I bet Khan would have done it, given the chance! MUAHAHAHA!

Metafilter: I have a lovely Gruyere that would go very well with your Chardonnay
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 9:16 PM on April 25, 2010 [3 favorites]


If Number 6 had had one of these, he really could have been a free man. Take that, giant white balloon blob things.
posted by w0mbat at 9:18 PM on April 25, 2010 [7 favorites]


I'm so sick of everyone desperately trying to be witty in the comments.

How do you feel about the baggage retrieval system they've got at Heathrow?
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 9:28 PM on April 25, 2010 [4 favorites]


If The Prisoner had acquired one of these, on the first use it would pop out a little flag saying "bang" or perhaps "zap." Then, Rover would smother him and he would wake up in his apartment, with the radio announcing "Good morning, another beautiful day!"
posted by zippy at 9:35 PM on April 25, 2010 [1 favorite]


If The Prisoner fought Captain Kirk, who would have the smirkier smile at the end?
posted by Hardcore Poser at 9:47 PM on April 25, 2010


I'm so sick of everyone desperately trying to be witty in the comments.

I don't get it.
posted by mazola at 9:50 PM on April 25, 2010 [1 favorite]


Sets phaser to 'utterly without own wit'.

Metafilter: Nicknames from 'the NY Times bestseller'.
posted by tbonicus at 10:28 PM on April 25, 2010


MetaFilter: And does anyone have a greasemonkey script that can erase the "Metafilter: i'm utterly without my own wit and can only repeat an unfunny line from above" comments?
posted by magnificent frigatebird at 10:34 PM on April 25, 2010


I'm so sick of people being so desperately light hearted in a benign star trek gizmo thread. Lasers are serious business.
posted by beardlace at 10:49 PM on April 25, 2010


In the videos it can be seen failing to set wood on fire.


that's really not going to work well when on one of those cold planets where you have to phaser a rock until it glows red and you can then warm your hands by it
posted by angrycat at 10:51 PM on April 25, 2010 [3 favorites]


Metafilter: I don't get it

low hanging fruit, I know
posted by wierdo at 11:32 PM on April 25, 2010


Metafilter: low hanging fruit, I know
posted by flapjax at midnite at 11:51 PM on April 25, 2010 [1 favorite]


This fills me with an irrational joy. I want a wheelchair-mounted phaser capable of popping the tires of illegally parked cars in the handicapped spots and reducing curbs without curb cuts to rubble. And then I shall call it the Enterpoop.
posted by Soliloquy at 12:08 AM on April 26, 2010 [5 favorites]


All your complaints about wity comments won't hide the simple fact you keep your Starfleet uniform clean and pressed.
posted by Goofyy at 12:17 AM on April 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


wity on the moon
posted by flapjax at midnite at 12:18 AM on April 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


I'm so sick of everyone desperately trying to be witty in the comments.

You can take something for that. It's called bleach.
posted by obiwanwasabi at 12:19 AM on April 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


Doubleish. Not the same links but it's the same bad idea.
posted by edd at 12:29 AM on April 26, 2010


Metafilter:
posted by Pendragon at 3:26 AM on April 26, 2010


You say the same bad idea like it's a bad idea.
posted by tommasz at 5:50 AM on April 26, 2010


Metafilter: Not the same links but the same bad idea.
posted by stevil at 7:31 AM on April 26, 2010


Needs more mode locker.
posted by humboldt32 at 8:16 AM on April 26, 2010


This thread turned out way better than I even expected. Thanks, Metafilter!
posted by six-or-six-thirty at 8:45 AM on April 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


This toy came out in the 90s....I have one too....though what I don't have is someone standing off frame with a bb gun shooting objects I'm aiming at, or a rudimentary skillset using a cracked copy of after effects.

Though if I did, I would have done my best to somehow set those paper towels on fire, and to somehow draw in a full, visible laser beam.
posted by The3rdMan at 8:48 AM on April 26, 2010


Metafilter: [insert funny here]
posted by andreaazure at 9:29 AM on April 26, 2010


My comment may not have been witty but perhaps was prophetic.*

---
*See: rest of thread
posted by mazola at 9:38 AM on April 26, 2010


The phaser would pop the black exterior, exposing the deadly-shiny mylar surface and then the beam would reflect back at the source, blinding the shooter!

The balloon is a curved surface. Could put english on the beam blinding his lovely, if evil, assistant. Thus sending the shooter on a rampage of Laser Vengeance.

Think of the innocent!
posted by vurnt22 at 9:59 AM on April 26, 2010


Call me when you've got one that pops weasels.

"Order now! and we'll send you a mulberry bush at no extra charge! (If you're ordering from the U.K., we'll send you free plans for a Cobbler's bench instead.)"
posted by Twang at 12:30 PM on April 26, 2010


This toy came out in the 90s....I have one too....though what I don't have is someone standing off frame with a bb gun shooting objects I'm aiming at, or a rudimentary skillset using a cracked copy of after effects.

Just to be clear, you do realize that there's no BB gun involved in the making of the videos? It's actually a fairly powerful solid state visible laser in that thing. Granted, laser scientists have been popping balloons of a specific color with lasers for about 4 decades now, but even the "hand held" or "portable" versions they used back then weren't quite so compact or efficient.
posted by loquacious at 6:51 PM on April 26, 2010


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