Zero gravity (sort of) on a budget

zeroGravRoom

At $250,000, Virgin Galactic is probably out of most people’s price range; even reduced gravity flights run $5k. You may be in luck, though, as [Justin] and his friends have built a spinning room for $350 (Warning: loud noise @ beginning) that can turn your world upside down. The video provides a time-lapse of the build, but you’ll probably want to skip ahead 5 minutes in for the real fun.

It may not be anti-gravity, but holding onto furniture to keep from flying into the ceiling looks pretty entertaining. The room works like the fairground favorite “Gravitron” ride turned sideways. 2 forklifts support a massive wooden cube, which includes familiar features from home: drywall, flooring, and some furniture. [Justin] managed to borrow two car wheels, which he mounted in the middle of the walls on opposing sides of the cube. Two casters support each rim, and the forklifts hold the casters just high enough to allow a few friends to manually sling everything around.

http://vimeo.com/74254518

[via ISO 1200 and DIY Photography]

[Thanks Dave]

Comments

  1. naroom says:

    What a feeling / When you’re dancin’ on the ceiling

  2. Quads says:

    Interesting hack. Best part of the video is the acoustic cover of Orion.

  3. Bob says:

    This is how they did the stewardess walking “upside down” in 2001: A Space Odyssey.

  4. mmhmm says:

    But…but…. forklifts are expensive…like, cheap car expensive. :(

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    I want a forklift.

  5. Scootin' says:

    Alternate version:

    I once saw a video where some kids used a scooter to drive a playground merry go round at extreme speed. The scooter wheel was pressed against the edge of the MGR.

    I figure you could just stick one of those plastic playhouses on the MGR.

  6. Hirudinea says:

    Ah, Fred Astaire did it better (though not so cheaply I’ed bet.)

  7. garym53 says:

    Very good! BUT, and I know things are cheaper in certain parts of the world, but $350? Well all I can say is adding up the number of studs as best I can (46), and (12) sheets of (what is it plywood?) – I would guestimate even at US prices > $600 – It would be closer to $1000 here – and that’s without nails screws paint etc.

    • Natedagreat6666 says:

      The particle board could have been had free from the right source but on their page they mentioned borrowing much of the things such as the fork lifts, car rims, casters and furniture etccc

      • garym53 says:

        It could I suppose, but I took the things they wrote that they “borrowed” into account and only considered the “consumables”. Generally speaking, when I see a cost in the title of a project, I take that as meaning it is reproducible at that cost or thereabouts.

        • medwardl says:

          Neat but I would have liked it more if it was enclosed all the way with a door so the angle of the light didn’t keep changing. Could of probably used a 1 way mirror for camera shots. I’ve seen this done a couple of ways I’m still waiting for someone to really blow me a way and figure out how to rotate the room on 2 axis.

          • Ginsublade says:

            just stick the room on the end of a big ole robotic arm….might be more axis than you wanted… sorry, I don’t know the plural spelling of axis…

  8. damntech says:

    Sorry Gary where ever your are building materials prices suck, $350 USD is about right for materials for building a box out of 2x4s and plywood. I just made a shed with a concrete foundation it was a little over $400 USD. Including concrete, whitewash and galvanized roofing panels.

    • Rob says:

      Gary’s list would be approx $550 out here on the left coast, after taxes (state sales tax, local sales tax, lumber products assessement tax). This depends on what thickness of plywood you’re using, of course, but I’m assuming you’d err on the side of caution when building such a box.

      • garym53 says:

        I assumed 1/2 plywood (eyeballed) although that is probably a bit light on – I suppose it was just a temporary structure (BTW I am sure somebody wrote that it was chipboard but it doesn’t look like it to me).

    • garym53 says:

      >Sorry Gary where ever your are building materials prices suck,
      Mate, from the day you were born to the day you die you have not and will not speak a truer word! :-(

      I was shocked recently to discover what a concrete slab for a shed I was hoping to build would cost – my chin hit the floor!

      However, as later comments indicate, prices do vary even in your part of the world.

  9. twdarkflame says:

    Dean Cane used this setup in the pilot of New Adventures of Superman.
    Never again mind.

  10. fartface says:

    you are missing another (not really) after the “on a budget” part. For the price of two forklifts and this build I can easily pay for several flights on the Vomit Comet.

    • Josh Marsh says:

      He borrowed nearly everything, so the stated cost is accurate. Probably easier to borrow some terrestrial heavy-lifting equipment and wheels than it is to borrow a plane and a pilot, or a spaceship.

      • Sven says:

        The point here is that you can’t really count gifts and borrowed items when you describe something as “only costing $350″ in the way this is presented.

        To give a fair representation you would have to state the price of every part that anyone can’t be expected to just get for free. You could expect almost anyone to be able to get cardboard for free, but not wooden beams, paint and forklifts.

        To be fair though, had the guys not had the forklifts they probably would have just built it on a frame, but that would have added another couple of hundred dollars in wood. Trying to tack on the price of two forklifts just makes the assessment wrong the other way.

    • Tomasito says:

      You can use just about any plane, I’m a pilot and I made it manyof times on a piper cub wich isn’t super easy to stall. It’s just for a couple of seconds, but it’s very fun! Also, it’s part of the training, so it’s a very common practice.

  11. Sasha says:

    Damn. DIY materials are bloody expensive where I live… wish I could build something like this!

  12. Awe Lucid says:

    This is Awesome!!! Great build and documentation.

  13. MikeJ says:

    Neither a hack….nor does it cost $350 so to say that’s what it cost is sort of an asshole thing to say and gives people the idea they can actauly do something like this for $350.

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