Dorm Room Dippin Dots




Introduction: Dorm Room Dippin Dots

About: I am a physics student at Wheaton College who likes building interesting physics demos and other stuff that I think is awesome!

The inspiration for this came from the videos out there on youtube of people making dippin dots by dripping melted ice cream through a syringe into a bowl of liquid nitrogen. When trying to replicate this effect I found that it was painfully slow at producing dippin dots so I tried to come up with something that would be more suitable to produce dippin dots from melted ice cream at a higher quantity.

This instructable contains my two attempts at creating a dippin dot machine. The first one was based on the method that I described of dripping melted ice cream into a syringe. I essentially tried to automate the process of pushing the back of a syringe so that I could just set the machine up, step back, and watch as the dippin dots were made. However after completing the first device I realized that their was a much simpler and more effective way to make dippin dots quickly. The second device is just a container with a bunch of holes in the bottom and it is put over a bowl of liquid nitrogen. I will go thorough the construction of both of these devices in this instructable although I would recommend making the second device if you actually wanted to make a lot of dippin dots. 

Step 1: Materials

- 2x4's I ad enough laying around to make a 3'x2' frame
- Wood Screws
- 3/8'' inch polyurethane tubing
- 4 Syringes
- Two plastic bottles
- Three 3/8'' T-connectors
- you will need a valve to control the flow (not pictured)
- 3 bowls (metal isn't necessary)
- Airtight plastic container
- Paracord (or other string)
- Ice-Cream
- Liquid Nitrogen*

- Dermel (this was only used for cutting the metal bowl and the bottles)
- Drill
- Dewar (for holding the liquid nitrogen)*

*Liquid Nitrogen can be purchased at a local welding supply store if you have a suitable dewar
*Used Dewars can be found on ebay for relatively cheap. Some welding supply stores will also rent them to you.

Step 2: Constructing the Frame

The frame is basically just a wooden structure that I used to support the tubing assembly. You could make it out of PVC or really anything I just had some wood around. the important thing is to make sure that you have two horizontal bars to support the rim of the loading bowl.

Step 3: Preparing the Loading Bowl

To prepare the loading bowl first use a dremel to cut a triangular hole in the bottom of a bowl. It isn't necessary to use a metal bowl here I just was testing out how a dremel would do at cutting metal... It did pretty well. Then you need to cut the top off of a gatorade bottle and attach a male 3/8'' tube connector to the top of the bottle. Then seal it over the hole. I used silicone followed by a healthy layer of duct tape to make sure that It would be secure when it was held upside down. Once everything is attached fix a small piece of tube to the connector that is coming out of the bottle. 

Step 4: Attaching the Tubing

First attach the valve to the small piece of tubing coming out to the bottom of the bowl. Then use the three T-connectors to create 4 tubes branching out of the original line. 

Step 5: Preparing the Receiving Bowl

Create four holes in the receiving bowl that are just big enough for the syringes to fit into. Then feed the 4 output tubes into the back of the syringes and duct tabe everything in place.

Step 6: Making Dippin Dots

Now you are ready to make dippin dots!!!

First pour liquid nitrogen *carefully* into the collection bowl. (that is the bowl that the blue bowl is sitting on top of)
Then take a bowl of ice cream and put it in the microwave.
Pour the ice cream into the loading bowl and use the valve to adjust the flow rate until the ice cream is dripping out.
Make sure that you don't let the ice cream drip out too fast and clump together. 

You can repeat until all of the liquid nitrogen evaporates.

Step 7: The Faster Way

So basically all that you have to to if you really want fast dippin dots is take a container with an airtight top and drill a bunch of holes in it. Then just fill it with melted ice cream and dangle it over a bowl of liquid nitrogen. The melted ice cream should drip out and you should get a bunch of dippin dots in no time!

Step 8: Enjoy!!!

BUT before you enjoy let the dippin dots warm up a bit otherwise they will really hurt your tongue (I found out the hard way). Also have fun making different flavors and mixing them together to get an awesome final result. 

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    3 Discussions


    7 years ago on Introduction

    This looks awesome..but I am trying to figure out why it's in the cardboard contest..:)


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    I am glad that you asked about storage! To store the dippin dots after were made I put them in large ziplock bags and packed them in a styrofoam cooler with dry ice. I used a slab of dry ice on the bottom of the cooler and then in between each bag and on top of all of the bags. The dry ice kept the dippin dots cold enough so that they stayed crisp and would still stick to your tongue. If you just put them in the freezer then they will start to stick together. I have attached a picture of the Styrofoam cooler that I used for storage. You can usually pick these up at a grocery store.

    photo (12).JPG