THE BEST Hacks

Hot Saltine Hack

Hot Saltine Hack

Celebrity food expert and kitchen scientist Alton Brown shows us something fun we can do to make a tasty snack from stuff you probably already have in your pantry. Using a combination of dry mustard, hot sauce, and melted butter, you can give your ordinary saltines a kick in the pants and spice them up.

DIY TP Splitter

DIY TP Splitter

Thanks to hoarding and panic buying, it’s become much harder than normal to find toilet paper these days. Household Hacker thinks the solution is to split your 2-ply rolls down the middle, giving you two single-ply rolls instead. We’re not sure you’ll actually use less, but it might be a short-term solution if you’re desperate.

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Roomba Bicycle

Roomba Bicycle

William Osman had a bunch of robot vacuum cleaners left over from a previous project, so he asked his viewers what to do with them. After trying a bunch of bad ideas, he decided to go his own way and build a bike with Roombas for wheels. It doesn’t go well.

Cardboard Skateboard

Cardboard Skateboard

Usually, you want the deck of a skateboard to be made from wood, fiberglass, or maybe a durable composite. But maker James Bruton wanted to see if he could build one using cardboard. His design takes advantage of the structural rigidity of poster tubes, stacked and glued together to help distribute weight.

Faking a Traffic Jam

Faking a Traffic Jam

While crowdsourcing traffic data generally has improved the quality of navigation services, it’s also possible that the data could be manipulated. Berlin artist Simon Weckert shows how he was able to create non-existent traffic jams on Google Maps by walking through empty streets while pulling a wagon full of 99 cell phones.

Making an Animatronic Elmo

Making an Animatronic Elmo

James Bruton is always making cool and amazing things. His latest build is a version of Tickle-Me Elmo that can actually move and walk around thanks to an array of nine servo motors and a wheeled robot that pushes it along. The design was inspired by that creepy teddy bear in the Spielberg movie A.I. Part one here.

DIY Vector Games Console

DIY Vector Games Console

You don’t see vector-based video games these days, but there was something really cool about systems like the Vectrex and games like BattleZone. Electronics wiz Mixtela was longing for the days of vector graphics too, so he built himself an impressive little system, complete with game cartridges. More details here.

The SEGA Genesis Synthesizer

The SEGA Genesis Synthesizer

Look Mum No Computer loves to build music making equipment from retro technology. Here he shows off an awesome build – a synthesizer that uses the sound chips inside an old SEGA Genesis (aka Mega Drive) game console to crank out some wild electronic noise.

The 8-Wheeled Fiat

The 8-Wheeled Fiat

The guys are Russian auto-hacking channel Garage 54 have made some pretty insane stuff. After putting together their own version of the Tesla Cybertruck, they managed to convert a janky old Fiat Uno 70-S into a crazy mutant with six wheels spinning in back. Ironically, it’s still just front-wheel drive.

Infinite 3D Printer

Infinite 3D Printer

One of the challenges with cheap desktop 3D printers is their limited bed size usually means lots of supervision if you need multiple parts. But this nifty hack by Swaleh Owais incorporates a conveyor belt print surface that can eject parts and then move on to the next one without human intervention. By angling its print head, it can also print very long objects.

Russian Cybertruck

Russian Cybertruck

Why wait until 2021 for Tesla to start shipping Cybertrucks, when you can just build your own? That’s what the guys from Russian car-hacking channel Garage 54 did. While their version of the primitive looking truck looks the part, we’re certain the formerly concrete-armored UAZ truck it’s built on isn’t very energy efficient.

The Flying Roomba

The Flying Roomba

One of the big problems with Roombas and other robot vacuum cleaners is that they can’t go up or down stairs. Leave it to builder Peter Sripol and his pals to come up with a solution. They attached three ducted fans to a cheap Roomba knock-off, so it can fly like a drone between floors.

Probe Lens Robot

Probe Lens Robot

With builds like this and this, maker Giaco Whatever isn’t exactly known for his subtlety. So when he wanted to shoot a promo video for an upcoming Kickstarter campaign, he not only busted out one of those crazy Laowa probe lenses, but he fabricated a camera mount for an industrial robot to give it motion control.

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Walking Bicycle 2.0

Walking Bicycle 2.0

Taking obvious inspiration from artist Theo Jansen’s Strandbeests and CARV’s earlier efforts, maker The Q fabricated himself a crazy bicycle which has no rear wheel, and instead can walk across the ground. This design appears much smoother than the one we previously saw, but by no means the fastest way to ride a bicycle.

10-Shot NERF Blaster

10-Shot NERF Blaster

There are lots of NERF blasters out there that can fire in rapid succession, but the majority can still only fire one dart at a time. James Bruton shows off an enormous custom NERF weapon he built that can fire 10 foam projectiles simultaneously. Each bank of darts is loaded into a magazine that rotates into place to be fired by rollers.

The Barcode Guitar

The Barcode Guitar

When it comes to guitars, the strings are one of the most critical elements. But James Bruton built this electronic guitar that’s played not by plucking strings, but by scanning barcodes. It has four necks and uses an Arduino MEGA board to map the scanned data into USB and MIDI signals to control a synthesizer.

How to Pick up NERF Balls

How to Pick up NERF Balls

If you’ve ever been in a NERF war, you know it can be a pain to pick up the ammo lying all over the ground. Out of Darts shows us how a tool designed for picking up acorns does the trick brilliantly – especially when it comes to those NERF Rival balls. And it handily beats NERF’s own picker-upper.

Triple NERF Rival Nemesis

Triple NERF Rival Nemesis

NERF modder Coop772 combined three Rival Nemesis blasters into a tripod-mountable turret that’s perfect for the old spray-and-pray tactic. Thanks to a custom hopper on top, the triple gun can rapidly load up to 1200 rounds with minimal user intervention.

Killer Rip-Tire Spinner

Killer Rip-Tire Spinner

Mad inventor Colin Furze was asked by game maker Blizzard to replicate the Rip-Tire, a spinning weapon featured in Overwatch. His first version was entertaining, but not nearly as deadly as the one in the game. So with the help of a 600cc motorcycle engine, he built another version that is far more dangerous.

Automatic Strike Bowling Ball

Automatic Strike Bowling Ball

Smart guys Mark Rober and James Bruton show us how to game the system with engineering know-how. They recently collaborated on a special bowling ball that can consistently bowl strikes by simply leaning in the direction you want it to go after you release it down the alley.

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Flamethrower Charmander

Flamethrower Charmander

After a viewer provided a really bad idea of how to create a flaming version of Pokémon’s fiery little Charmander, maker Allen Pan of Sufficiently Advanced decided to hack together his own fire-breathing orange dragon from a talking plush, an air freshener machine, and birthday candle pilot light. He’s also got a taser Pikachu.

Homebrew Railgun Tank

Homebrew Railgun Tank

Turns off you don’t need to be the US Navy to build a railgun. YouTuber Ziggy Zee shows off his backyard railgun, which he mounted to an old RoboteX remote-controlled platform. This killer beast fires up to 35,000 joules of electricity, laying to waste anything in its path.

Faking Daylight with a Broken TV

Faking Daylight with a Broken TV

Do you have an old flat-screen TV or monitor with a broken LCD panel? DIY Perks shows us how you could use it to fake daylight in any room. By upcycling its fresnel light diffuser, and swapping out the LEDs, you can create a smooth and bright light source that can convincingly simulate a window or skylight.

Driving on the Ceiling

Driving on the Ceiling

Maker Ivan Miranda’s decided to see if he could modify a remote-controlled car so it can drive upside-down on the ceiling. He added a pair of powerful fans to create downforce (or is it upforce?) It took some trial and error, but he ultimately got it to work. Of course, he could have just bought one of these.

Skittle Pixel8r

Skittle Pixel8r

This bit of geeky fun comes courtesy of builder JohnO3, who created a machine which works like a giant dot-matrix printer. Except in this case, it deposits colorful and tangy Skittles to create its prints instead of droplets of ink. He provided the full build details on Instructables, should you want to build your own candy printer.

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