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Factories

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How Bubble Gum Is Made

How Bubble Gum Is Made

This classic How It’s Made takes us inside the Dubble Bubble factory, where they make mass quantities of chewy, fruity gum meant for blowing bubbles. And if you ever wondered if it was okay to swallow your gum, the “made of plastics and rubbers” bit might dissuade you.

How Pencils Are Made

How Pencils Are Made

After seeing a series of incredible images of the process of making pencils by photographer Christopher Payne, we decided to hunt down some video footage of the process of turning wood, graphite, and clay into writing instruments at New Jersey’s General Pencil Co.

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How Plastic Bottles are Made

How Plastic Bottles are Made

Did you know that plastic bottles are blown like glass? Us neither. Here’s a look at a fascinating machine which takes small plastic tubes, heats them up, and then blows them into a mold to make water bottles. The same basic process is even used for big 5-gallon bottles.

How Pros Fix Rims

How Pros Fix Rims

If you’ve got a nice set of wheels on your car, there’s nothing worse than running them into a curb or hitting a pothole and bending them. But it turns out rims can be made good as new, as the folks at Proformance Industries show us in this video from AMMO NYC.

UNIQLO’s Robotic Warehouse

UNIQLO’s Robotic Warehouse

While most modern warehouses use a balanced blend of human and robotic workers, Japanese retailer UNIQLO’s Ariake warehouse replaced 90% of its human workers with machines. The result is both an engineering marvel, and a haunting glimpse of the future.

Bending Chain Links

Bending Chain Links

A wonderfully satisfying bit of engineering porn showing off a slick modular tooling machine. The Bihler Leantool system is used in factories to form and cut wire and rolled metal into precisely bent shapes, such as chain links, hooks, and other small, high volume parts.

Rolling a Steel Ring

Rolling a Steel Ring

Mesmerizing footage from inside QSC Forge, as a large ring of molten steel is gradually spun, flattened, and widened to form a smooth and perfectly round circle. Combined with a perfectly soothing soundtrack, the clip doubles as your daily 9-minute meditation.

Thermoforming a Suitcase

Thermoforming a Suitcase

Suitcases can be made from fabric or even metal, but there’s no more satisfying way to produce a bag than to form it out plastic. This brief video shows off the process of shaping a suitcase by molding a thick polycarbonate sheet around a heated form. More here.

Removing a Foam Tire

Removing a Foam Tire

A high speed look at the process that goes into removing a foam-filled tire at the Sierra Army Depot. These tires are often used by heavy equipment to reduce the risk of punctures. Got 11 minutes to spare? Watch the original real-time video here.

How Skateboard Wheels Are Made

How Skateboard Wheels Are Made

Go inside a factory where they manufacture polyurethane skateboard wheels. After using CAD tools, metal molds are milled for the liquid plastic, which is baked, polished, and printed with a design. As one commenter suggested, aluminum wheels would look pretty sweet.

How Bubble Wrap Is Made

How Bubble Wrap Is Made

It’s both a useful packing material and a wonderful plaything for fidgeters like us. Now go inside Sealed Air’s factory and see how they make their official BubbleWrap brand bubble wrap. It’s interesting that the first bubble wrap machine was designed to make wallpaper.

Making the BelugaXL

Making the BelugaXL

Aircraft maker Airbus presents video footage of its funky looking A330-based jumbo jet as the first plane makes its way through the factory. The BelugaXL’s unusual shape is designed to provide cargo capacity for large airplane parts like wings. Watch it take flight here.

Making Timex Watches

Making Timex Watches

While there’s something to be said for pricey limited-edition watches, Timex has a reputation for producing high quality time pieces that are still affordable. Go inside the Timex factory in Cebu, Philippines for a look at how they make so many watches, while still making them well.

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How Cake Sprinkles Are Made

How Cake Sprinkles Are Made

Whether you call them “sprinkles,” “jimmies,” or “hundreds and thousands,” these candies are a fun way to add edible color to desserts. Go inside the Cake Mate factory to see the process that transforms shortening, sugar, colors, and flavorings into this festive topping.

LEGO Car Factory

LEGO Car Factory

LEGO builder Daniele Benedettelli created a working miniature car assembly line. It can pick and place the requested body colors, then snaps the car together. The tiny factory was designed as a test bench for Eclipse Papyrus, a language for automation and industrial processes.

How Hostess Cakes are Made

How Hostess Cakes are Made

They may not be the most natural or healthy baked goods, but there’s no question that Hostess cakes are popular. In this clip from INSIDER, inside the Emporia, Kansas factory that cranks out hundreds of millions of snack cakes each year. THIS IS WHY WE’RE FAT.

How Girl Scout Cookies Are Made

How Girl Scout Cookies Are Made

Insider presents a tantalizing look inside the two bakeries responsible for some of the most deliciously addictive sweet treats on the planet, including our favorites – Thin Mints, Tagalongs, Lemonades, and the almighty Samoas (aka “Caramel deLites”.)

How Duct Tape Is Made

How Duct Tape Is Made

A look inside the Duck Brand duct tape factory, where they transform rubber, gauze, and plastic into the super sticky, super strong material that’s a staple of every workshop. We wonder how quickly the Mythbusters could have built their duct tape canoe with that giant roll.

How Twizzlers Are Made

How Twizzlers Are Made

Some of our favorite candy treats are Twizzlers strawberry and cherry twists. In this excerpt from an episode of Unwrapped, we go inside Hershey’s Twizzlers factory, where machines spurt out seemingly endless red ropes and give them their trademark twisted shape.

How Model Trains Are Made

How Model Trains Are Made

An in-depth look inside Rapido Trains Inc.’s production facility in China, where workers painstakingly assemble scale model train engines and rail cars. Each model train body is individually molded, masked, painted, detailed, and assembled by hand.

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Inside a Lasagna Factory

Inside a Lasagna Factory

An extensive look inside the Roma Prince pasta factory in Costa Rica where a factory line engineered by Pavan continuously cranks out a stream of delicious noodle ribbons, ready for us to add pasta sauce, cheese, and meat to. Anyone else craving Italian for dinner?

Making Soap by Hand

Making Soap by Hand

Eirik Moe captured the traditional process still used today in a soap factory in Nablus. After combining the ingredients of their olive oil soaps, the mixture is poured onto the floor, dried, measured into individual blocks, embellished with a mallet, then hand-cut.

Ball-making Machine

Ball-making Machine

Footage of a machine that quickly makes wooden beads, using a lathe, hole saw and a drill. A square stick of wood is spun on one axis, and is gradually moved into the saw which spits out a finished ball. Here’s a similar machine that’s equally satisfying.

Candle Factory c. 1963

Candle Factory c. 1963

We’re guessing not much has changed about the way candles are made since this film was made over 50 years ago, showcasing the assembly line at Price’s Patent Candle Co. and waxing philosophical (pun intended) about the ways in which candles play a part in our lives.

Pioneer: The Art of the Speaker

Pioneer: The Art of the Speaker

We recently were given the unique opportunity to fly to Japan to visit Tohoku Pioneer Corporation’s factory. We learned how they design, engineer, and build some of the world’s best sounding speakers, from affordable car speakers to high-end audiophile equipment.

Porsche 911 Factory Video

Porsche 911 Factory Video

Porsche posted this cool behind-the-scenes video, which shows off some of the assembly process of its awesome gold and carbon fiber 911 Turbo S Exclusive Series. Watching the body meet the chassis was particularly satisfying, as was the Porsche logo on the wheels.

Michael Jackson’s CD Tour

Michael Jackson’s CD Tour

Back in 1995, Michael Jackson asked someone at Sony Music to explain how Compact Discs were manufactured, so they put together this factory tour video just for him, while producing his album History. It’s a fun time capsule, and a perfectly awkward corporate video.

Inside The Bentley Wood Shop

Inside The Bentley Wood Shop

A look inside the factory where craftsmen painstakingly select, attach, laminate, sand, shape, glue, and finish each piece of wood that goes into Bentley Motors‘ extravagant vehicles. We appreciate the lack of music or voiceover so we can focus on the work at hand.

How Jelly Beans Are Made

How Jelly Beans Are Made

We’ve been meaning to get to the Jelly Belly factory one of these days to check their operation out in person, but for now, we’re happy watch how the tiny, flavor-packed confections come together in this video from Community Balance.

How Ping Pong Balls Are Made

How Ping Pong Balls Are Made

We had no idea that it took so many steps to create a table tennis ball, but if this video of the Double Happiness ball factory is any indication, it’s more complicated than you might think, as discs of plastic are individually heated, curved, trimmed, glued, and tested before packaging.

How Rubber Bands Are Made

How Rubber Bands Are Made

The next time you launch a rubber band, watch this video as a reminder of the manual labor that goes into the production of these stretchy office supplies, which start as the extract of a rubber tree, which is dyed, dipped onto rods, peeled into tubes, then cut into thin slices.

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