. . . and how to survive the experience, unscathed.
Assemble your audience. Because–as everybody knows–an audience makes every experience richer.
Provide snacks. Because–as everybody also knows–it’s easier to retain an audience when there are good snacks.
Set up a Safe Zone for your audience. This is a dangerous stunt. Eye protection and full-length pants and sleeves are a must. Pith helmets or construction helmets, though not required, wouldn’t be a bad idea.
Gather together the following items. You probably already have them in your kitchen or pantry.
- baking soda
- a plastic soda or water bottle
- plastic wrap
- liquid dish soap
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- additional snacks (just in case)
Add your liquids to the soda bottle in this way: (per Mack’s instructions)
Put “a reasonable amount of vinegar” in your soda bottle (about half full); add the dish soap (approximately 1/4 cup) and the orange juice (1/4 cup).
Hold in readiness.
Make your missile-shaped baking soda pellet. This is how you do it:
Pull out a piece of plastic wrap, approximately 1′ x 1′. Dump about 1/4 cup of baking soda onto the plastic wrap and pull the plastic tightly around it, making a cylinder shaped pellet, small enough in diameter to fit into the bottle neck.
Assuring that your audience is still paying attention, it’s go time:
Stuff the plug carefully into the soda bottle, quickly screw on the lid very tightly indeed, shake it for all it’s worth, and pitch it—high as you can!–into the air.
If your rocket is successful, you will need to . . .
If the bottle foams up but doesn’t explode and you leave it on the driveway to see what happens instead (you do have an audience) you may need to repeat all steps above. If you have a second bottle handy, which, hopefully, you do.
But before that, it might be fun to threaten your sister, with the “loaded” rocket. 🙂
But you should probably not do this. Although you may really, really want to.
Extra points if you can make her scream.
If your first rocket didn’t detonate, probably your baking soda pellet didn’t come into contact with the vinegar/juice situation. Tweak the pellet. Shake the bottle harder. Throw it farther up into the air.
Do what you must.
Boom, baby! When the rocket hits the ground, it will react, and take off!
You did it! With any luck, you’ll have another plastic bottle at the ready, so you can make another rocket, before your audience wanders off.
Have fun making your own rockets, and good luck!
Questions can be addressed to little Mack in the comments below. He’s the rocket expert at our house.
Don’t forget to put all your stuff away so your Mom doesn’t yell at you later. *sigh*
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