Pop-Pop Boats Are Weirder Than You Think

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I got a glass pop-pop boat made (or putt-putt boat, or a Ponyo boat!) to look at for good what is going on inside!

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just like these astonishing folks:

Frank Hereford
Will Ackerly
Brendan Williams
Cameron Leigh Middleton
Matthew Cocke
Frederic Merizen
Jeremy Cole
Alan Wilderland
Joel Van der loo
Glenn Watson
Doug Peterson
Paul Warelis
John Zelinka
Grant Hay
Heather Liu
Marshall Fitzpatrik
Lukas Biewalk
JJ Masson
Ben McIntosh
Damien Szerszinski


  1. If you’re wondering why the boat never cracked under thermal stress, it’s because they made it out of quartz glass! How cool is that!
    You can also discuss this video on REDDIT: https://stvmld.com/xf-isn5j
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    • Another reason the boat doesn’t go backward much is due to its shape: a smooth slope at the front and a wall at the back. One question I had was what is the effect of adding more tubes? What about changing the size of the tubes? What about changing the volume of the ‘pot’ section?

    • Quartz glass is incredible difficult to work with as the melting temperature is 1650 °C!!

    • @Ian Belletti Nah. I don’t misunderstand. Touching a projector bulb can break it, but the micrograms of oil left by your fingers are not in the right 2 or 3 orders of magnitude needed to cause the cooling effect you’re saying it does. Sorry. You’re incorrect.

      You may be familiar with quartz glass tube heaters? You can get those dirty as hell with practically anything and they don’t break. They don’t break because there’s no light to be absorbed to cause uneven heating. Uneven heating, yes. Caused by oil evaporation, no.

      You want more science? Unfortunately I know a lot of chemistry too. Squalene boils at 300 ish C. The bulb doesn’t get that hot. The majority of the oil from your skin is fatty acids or triglycerides, which don’t have a boiling point. They have a smoke point. The smoke point is pyrolysis happening, which leaves behind that thing I originally said: carbon.

      Tell you what: I’ll bet you whatever that we take two identical bulbs, on one of them we put a tiny amount of something we know will evaporate before it breaks down like octane or nonane, and on the other bulb we put a tiny amount of carbon black. Then we see which one breaks. I mean I already know the answer, which is why I can say “whatever” is what I’l bet.

    • Roman Berdichevskii

      Would be interesting to compare the speed of the liquid in the pipes using slow motion. Maybe there is a difference between cases when liquid going in and out.

  2. It’s odd how making a simple mistake made me loose all trust in him but when some entertainment youtuber does it I don’t care.
    These good videos are slowly restoring it though.

  3. as well as the cancellation of the motion… The shape of the boat makes it easier for the boat to move forwards through the water.. the flat edge makes it harder to pull the boat back.

  4. Boats are “forward streamlined” such that a forward force should give more forward speed when compared to the same reverse force and speed. The boat wants to go forward with even a symmetric periodic force (I think).

  5. Michael Bristow

    I’ve never seen these toys before. Are they just a British thing?

  6. Is that a pebble watch at the end… how is yours still working lol

  7. The shape of the boat should also influence the drag

  8. 4:38 boyoyoyng

  9. Why should the deceleration of inrush water at the end of the suction stroke be numerically any different from its acceleration during the beginning of the expansion stroke and thus leave a net gain in momentum?

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