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Amazingly Fun (and Inventive) Uses For Compressed Air

Got a compressed air container and some time to kill? Here's what fun engineers and companies are coming up with

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2. The Air Powered Car

Honda / Via carbodydesign.com

We've heard plenty about hybrids in recent years but this concept from Honda is bizarre looking as well as featuring an innovative design. The Honda Air is inspired by roller coasters and runs on compressed air in very much the same way.

3. Making Your Own Airsoft Guns

Wood Gears / Via woodgears.ca

There are so many DIY air gun tutorials online you really are spoilt for choice. This marble shooting gun looks cool and is very effective but it's work remembering that these guns can still be lethal. Air compression can propel a projectile at a very, very high speed. More than enough to penetrate an eye/ body part.

4. Creating Compressed Air Batteries

Lisa Poole / AP / Via slate.com

You can actually produce power from compressed air, though this is less of a DIY and more a genuinely helpful invention. We love using solar panels to get alternative energy but peak production is during the day, whereas peak use for homes is in the evening. In LA they're looking into using compressed air to offset this issue, using excess power to pump air into compressed tanks to conserve the energy for later use.

5. And Compressed Air Roller Coasters

Joe Baz / Via Flickr: joebaz

There are some fantastic ways compressed air is being used to give us the thrills of our lives. The Thrust Air 2000 uses compressed and frozen air to propel cars from 0-80mph in just 1.8 seconds. This use of compressed air is the first of its kind, though Japan also has the Dodonpa, which utilises the same technology.

6. Making Your Own Actual Wolverine Claws

View this video on YouTube

Colin Furze / Via colinfurze.com

This video has already done the rounds this year but (just in case you're unaware) a guy in the UK made himself some fully retractable Wolverine claws all powered by an air compressor. And you may think you've seen plenty of those on cosplayers but the ones Colin Furze has created move as quickly as any of the block buster versions. Fast and deadly!

7. A Convenient Keyboard Cleaner

呉 松本 / Via Flickr: gullevek

Okay, it's a bit more domesticated than Wolverine claws but, if you have a keyboard that you know is full of crumbs then a small canister of compressed air and a long nozzle can help you. Get a small and thin nozzle, hold at an angle 2 inches from the keyboard and you'll get to watch detritus leap from inside your keyboard. This can also be handy if you're working inside a computer and want to clear dust without wiping/touching anything.

8. Impressive Movie Special Effects!

View this video on YouTube

20th Century Fox / Via youtube.com

If you've seen Fight Club then you know that there's a climactic scene where Edward Norton shoots himself through the cheek. And although a lot of CG was used to create the effect, it also involved the actor getting blasted in the face by an air compressor (as the video shows). Anything for art!

9. Making a White Christmas in the UK

Make Snow / Via instructables.com

Every year we go back and forth on whether it's going to be a white Christmas and, for us in the south of England, the answer is usually "no". But you can create your own white Christmas thanks to this handy instructable just by using a few ingredients and some pressurized air. Probably the closest I'm going to get to snow for some time!

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