Fun with Frederick and Fleming – Popping Watermelons

Welcome to this week’s segment of Fun with Frederick and Fleming. Being out on the road, we wanted to do a few bigger experiments for the people who are attending the fair. This week’s segment is one that you shouldn’t do at home.

It is common in the fall to carve pumpkins, but why leave all the fun to the fall months. Because of this, we decided to try to carve some watermelons in the Fun with Frederick and Fleming way.

We scooped out these watermelons like you would a pumpkin. Then pre-carved the watermelon as well. But it takes a lot of work to get the parts out. So, what I have done is put in a chemical that when mixed with water creates acetylene gas. We will cap off the watermelon and let the gas build up. This is a trick to allow enough gas to build up to pop out the parts, but not blow up the watermelon.

Acetylene gas is extremely flammable, so when we add just a little flame to it, it quickly ignites. The pressure inside the watermelon builds up so great that it then pops out the carved parts.

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