Introduction: How to Crush a Can in Less Then 30 Milliseconds With Only a Can Water and a Heat Souce.

Picture of How to Crush a Can in Less Then 30 Milliseconds With Only a Can Water and a Heat Souce.

This is my second instructable that I learned in science class a few months ago. It is cool because after a few steps you can crush a can faster than you can blink.

Step 1: Things You Need

Picture of Things You Need

The Things you Need.

. A can...

. A stove,or bunsen burner. (some kind of heat source that can boil water)

. Tongs (to hold the can while heating it).

.A bowl (to fill with water)

. Water (room temperature water to fill the can with, and cool water to fill the bowl with)

Step 2: Let's Get Started!

Picture of Let's Get Started!

Okay, here we go. First fill a bowl with cold water, then fill your can about 1/6th of the way full with room temperature water. Next, using the tongs hold the can over your heat source until you can see well defined steam rising from the drinking hole. Last step, and the fun part. Still using the tongs pu the can in the water about 1/8th of the way in the water (DO NOT SUBMERGE THE CAN).

(P.S- This may make you jump, so be prepared)


pingbotan (author)2007-05-13

well the science behind it is really just pressure differences between outside and inside of the can (inside drops to real low due to rapid cooling) and atmospheric pressure on the outside literally crushes the can. Neat.

swimmerstyle (author)pingbotan2009-07-12

Yup was amazing at my school.

swimmerstyle (author)2009-07-12

I did this in Chem works by causing a differen't air pressure inside the can...something like diffusion or something causes the crushing power. It was pretty sweet...filled the room with first warm gooey sugar, then burning fructose.

johney12345 (author)2008-11-07

how does it work? what happens ?y does the can get crush ?

sharlston (author)johney123452009-05-17

its something to do with moving a warm thing into a diierent heat causing it to react i think

awang8 (author)2009-02-13

Yeah, I've done this at a science fair. It works guys.

Sandisk1duo (author)2008-07-01

i've done this in 8th grade! it works!

blue72 (author)2008-06-08

it does not work show us a video of you doing it

Vertigo666 (author)2007-02-28

what the neighbors must've thought- 'they're putting a 55-gallon can on a grill...'

Something along the lines of 'hey dingus, them there nayburrs of awres ahr gone done puttin my toilet on thayr greel... BOYT wahtchu doing, woah whatchu jsut do, you practicing that thayr voodeedoo'

remeika (author)2008-01-24

Very nice. Does anyone have a suggestion for a good kind of tongs to flip it over quickly? Also, we tried with with ice water; have folks noticed a difference in the power of the crushing with varying water temps?

itsmanofpopsicle (author)remeika2008-03-27

You can pour out the water into the bowl and then put it in water. it has the same effect.

butt fungus (author)2007-10-21

i love doing this

Biotele (author)2007-08-27

You forgot to mention that the can should be dipped upside down, to create a vaccuum. Make a movie of it.

chickenliver123 (author)2007-07-22

ido this in my fireplace for years! its so funny

AT (author)2007-07-11

Very cool! Back when I was in school, we didn't do this. But that was so long ago, I think it was before they had invented steam.

I was inspired by your instructable and have created my own on how to crush a can. How to crush a can in .13 seconds

chennate (author)2007-06-30

Is the can full or empty?

Neodudeman (author)chennate2007-07-01

not full, only 1/6 full. The steam from the water will fill the can, pushing out the oxygen. When you dip it into the cold water, the steam rapidly cools, turning it back into liquid. This leaves a vacuum in the can, since the air was pushed out, and the steam turned back into liquid; and thus, implodes.

BlueFusion (author)2007-06-21

Cool. I also learned this in science class. Just a couple of tips to make it easier: you don't need 1/6th of the can filled, only just enough water to come to the top of the dome in the bottom when it's flat. Even less will suffice. That's how we did it, and it worked great. If you do this, you don't need cold water, either. Room temperature, or cold tap, will suffice.

robodud3 (author)2007-06-15

u might want to include cold or frigid water not just cool some poeple my think to just use the cold tap and u reely need like ice water or at the least veary chilled water

lightpacker (author)2007-05-01

we did this at school the other day

medieval214 (author)2007-04-30


taos777 (author)2007-03-22

the 55 galolon drum vid was mine, thank you all ok all the info i see being asked bout it i went to Metro Blvd in Wichita, KS, i jumped when it first popped i was happy i had the cam on a tripod and as for the neighbors, every where i go people hide cuase i walk around in a big blackl trench coat and at the time of the vid had long black hair (its now short :p) and you saw the others that set it up, this was also on the school's front yard if you have any more questions just ask or pm me and i will try to stop by every now and then and answer them (i was bored and checked my links page on the vid and this came up :P)

jtobako (author)2007-02-19

try it before you post it. the drinking hole is to big to create a vaccum, and the amount of water is to small to cool it quickly. you need a much smaller hole, or a screw-top can that you can seal before cooling. ps-tested, didn't work. Dark_Helmet's recomendation got the sides to cave slightly.

Kiteman (author)jtobako2007-02-19

This is an experiment I demonstrate on a regular basis. Make sure you only have around 1/2 inch water in the can to start with, that you have a decent jet of steam from the can, and that you turn it over quickly when you put it in the water.

The science bit:

When the water boils to steam, it displaces all the air from the can. When you turn it over and touch it to the cold water, the steam condenses back to liquid water. This causes a massive drop in volume of the steam (the 330ml steam becomes about 0.3ml liquid water), and consequently an equally sudden drop in internal pressure. The excess pressure on the outside of the can simultaneously crushes the sides in and pushes water into the ring-pull hole. The sides and in-rushing water meet with a satisfying >smack<.

One day, I'll try it with a 50 gallon oil-drum: boil water in it, then screw the lid on real tight (gloves!) and then spray water on the side of the can.

Kiteman (author)Kiteman2007-02-19
Ah, see, even a wee bairn can do it:

The rat! somebody beat me to it!

taos777 (author)Kiteman2007-03-22

wow cool some one mentioned my video haha thank you, just randomly all my videos are on weird websites and this one is loved haha so thank you :D :)

Robb (author)Kiteman2007-02-23

1 gallon can? retards.

Calltaker (author)Kiteman2007-02-20

OMFG!!!!! That was neat. I had to rewind a couple times to make sure it wasn't 'fixed', but that was so freaking cool. I really need to try this at home some time :) ~C

evy-wevy (author)Kiteman2007-02-19

my god! the drum! :o

wiml (author)Kiteman2007-03-09

I see your 55-gal drum and raise you a 23000 gallon tank car.

fegundez1 (author)Kiteman2007-02-20

try that in a swimming pool or water trough,you shouldnt have to put on the lid...just do it like a giant soda can

Kiteman (author)fegundez12007-02-21

Put on the lid and chuck it into a frozen lake ...

jtobako (author)Kiteman2007-02-19

i must not have waited long enough on the second heat. i ended up with more of an early steam condensing cylinder when the cooling water was sucked up into the can instead of the walls of the can colapsing fully.

nightowlJG (author)2007-03-15

i tired it and it didnt work

e1337 (author)2007-03-06

What School you go to?

Rectifier (author)2007-03-05

A classic trick I've shown off while drinking can beers at the beach. Heat them up in the fire/on the grill, then bam! when you dunk them in the ocean. Tons of fun, just don't burn yourself with the hot cans. And clean up your mess.

Run N Gun (author)2007-02-19

I forgot to add that you must put the top of the can in the water. sorry more the misunderstanding.

Run N Gun (author)2007-02-19

Oh yeah, make sure the can is a regular sized 12oz can. Plus, remember to fully boil the water until you can definently see steam, and then dip the bottom in water about 1/8th the way up the can. (DO NOT FULLY SUBMERGE THE CAN)

Run N Gun (author)2007-02-19

I have tried it... also, it does work. It is a soda can and the hole is not a vaccum. And if it is, it works, I know this because I did it in science class. Good luck with this experiment.

crestind (author)2007-02-19

Cool! I just did this in chemistry the other day. Use 3/4 inch of water to boil and dunk it halfway in ice water. It should be completely crushed to 3/4 the original size, not just cave in a bit.

Dark_Helmet (author)2007-02-19

I remember doing this in science too! But aren't you supposed to turn the can over so that the drinking hole is the part that touches the water?

ARVash (author)Dark_Helmet2007-02-19

yeah.. he screwed up there :P

knex gunman (author)2007-02-19

why do you have two pics? & I modifided my gun. Come check it out! It makes it almost 15% more powerful!

Brennn10 (author)2007-02-19

I have seen this before and it is a very neat experiment. I would suggest that you should acknoledge which way you should hold the can, upside down or right side up. Good Work

bpwagner (author)2007-02-19

How about a video? I want to see this in action!

About This Instructable




Bio: . My age is confidential . My location is confidential . My sex is confidential . My hobbies are confidential . I like Guns... . And girls... More »
More by Run N Gun:Curcuit Man/Woman, the Post-It HolderA Neat Trick on how to Resurface a CDCool Fridge Magnet
Add instructable to: