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Inventions

  1. Sep 20, 2004 #1
    Hi

    I need to come up with an invention. Any ideas? What are some problems you have that can be solved with a simple invintion (it can be complex but not too complex)?

    ~Thanks
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 20, 2004 #2
    I am currently in the need for a time machine. However, there is no rush.
     
  4. Sep 20, 2004 #3

    Ivan Seeking

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    I want a heated butter knife. We don't use butter quickly enough to leave it out, and refrigerated butter tears up the bread.
     
  5. Sep 20, 2004 #4

    Gokul43201

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    As the guys on the Guinness commercial say, "Brilliant" !! <clink> :approve:
     
  6. Sep 20, 2004 #5

    Ivan Seeking

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    Brilliant!!!
     
  7. Sep 20, 2004 #6

    Moonbear

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    This is why I could never survive in patent law. My mistake is I always wind up thinking about marketability rather than patentability. One of my friends is a patent attorney and sometimes tells me about things that he processes (after the patent is issued so it's no longer confidential). He thinks these things are so cool, and I end up asking how he keeps a straight face when someone describes their invention to him. With something like that, I'd be just sitting there laughing...isn't it easier just to quickly warm the knife under hot water than to find a battery or plug and wait for an electric one to warm up? Then again, 5 seconds in the microwave works for butter too. Then he'll tell me that having an electric knife is so much faster, and I'll say something like, "faster than 5 seconds?" :uhh: I can't imagine why he gets annoyed with me when I start laughing at the stuff he works on.
     
  8. Sep 20, 2004 #7

    Gokul43201

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    Holding the knife under hot water in not ideal. It takes several seconds to warm up, and you don't want to be using a wet knife, so you wipe it down, removing most of the heat that way. Nah !

    Putting the butter in the microwave isn't great either. Too little time and you only heat up the surface - but you heat up the entire surface, making it all slippery and messy. Too long, and you've got (b)utter chaos.

    But getting a knife (edge) to heat up fast is not easy either. It takes at least a few tens of joules to get the knife warm enough. And with about a 1.2V battery (you can fit a AAA bettery in a knife handle), you want to get at least 4 or 5 watts to heat up the knife quickly. That's the tricky part, I guess.
     
  9. Sep 20, 2004 #8
    :rofl:
    Holding the knife under you arm, so it gets to body temperature :rolleyes:
    We don't have much money for experimental physics back in France :frown:
     
  10. Sep 20, 2004 #9

    Ivan Seeking

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    Most inventions are a waste of time [including this one], but, Moonbear, since you wish to discuss the finer point of butterology... First of all, it is not possible to sufficiently soften a slice of butter in the microwave without melting the edges. So the edge effects create inefficiencies that demand a more economical solution. Also, the wasteful microwave solution requires that an additional plate be used for each buttering event. Then the plate much be washed, dried, and restocked. Next, a typical butter knife does not have enough mass to sustain butter homogenity when applied to a system in paneity. Besides, the energy lost in heating pipes and water far exceed even the cost of the butter being used. Clearly these facts alone justify further furnding and research. :tongue2: :tongue:

    Really though, it doesn't matter if a product makes sense as long as it sells. It doesn't even matter if the product actually works!!! :yuck:
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2004
  11. Sep 20, 2004 #10
    Wow I really like your idea :smile: ! I have this problem all the time. How would I make such a thing? How would I get the knife to heat?
     
  12. Sep 20, 2004 #11

    Moonbear

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    More importantly, how do you get the knife to heat without heating the handle too?!
     
  13. Sep 20, 2004 #12

    Moonbear

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    Hmmm...but, you don't just put the slice of butter in the microwave, you put the whole stick in. Then, the melted edges ARE the slice. Besides, melted butter is even better to spread on bread than soft butter. Just blot it up with the bread and you don't even need a knife. :approve: And no need for a plate. Butter comes packaged with it's own handy dandy wax paper wrap. Or leave it on a plate in the fridge. :biggrin: Then again, I prefer home-baked bread, and I manage to eat most of it fresh out of the oven while it's still hot, so the bread itself is the solution to softening the butter. The knife naturally warms while slicing the hot bread. :tongue:

    :rofl:

    This thread keeps making me hungry.

    EDIT: Hey, it's been done...well, sort of...not battery-operated, and not intended for butter. There are plug-in heated knives for beekeeping (getting the wax caps off the hives) and for candle-making.

    http://www.jonesbee.com/tools.html

    http://www.longwyckcandleworks.com/EquipAccess.html

    See near the bottom of both pages. Now just make a somewhat lower-temperature battery operated, water-proof and dishwasher safe version, and you'll be rolling in the dough...or at least will have the butter for the dough once it's baked. :rofl:
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2004
  14. Sep 20, 2004 #13

    Gokul43201

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    This is not hard at all...no really ! The melting point of butter is just about 34C or 95F.
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2004
  15. Sep 21, 2004 #14

    russ_watters

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    I'd buy it too...
     
  16. Sep 21, 2004 #15

    Could I make it so the blade screws off? How would I make it so the battery heats the blade?

    Could I still use this idea even though it has already been invented but not for butter knifes?
     
  17. Sep 21, 2004 #16
    You could put the knife in a warmer and then remove it to cut the butter.

    The Bob (2004 ©)
     
  18. Sep 21, 2004 #17
    The Bob, that's a good idea but i want the knife to warm itself.

    Hears what I was thinking about.
    The batteries would go in the handle and the blade would screw into the handle (so you can wash the blade). But I don't know how exactly I would build this (I've never built anything that runs by battery). What would I need to but to make this? Any ideas?
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2004
  19. Sep 21, 2004 #18
    See : Gokul backups the sudation process for heating the knife because he likes salted butter too :tongue2:
     
  20. Sep 21, 2004 #19
    Thanks. I try.

    Yes. Make an electromagnetic. The blade can be the metal to magnetise and that should create heat, IIRC.

    The Bob (2004 ©)
     
  21. Sep 21, 2004 #20
    I went on a site that said how to make an electromagnetic and in one of the steps it said:
    "Neatly wrap the wire around the nail. The more wire you wrap around the nail, the stronger your electromagnet will be. Make certain that you leave enough of the wire unwound so that you can attach the battery."

    Would I have to wrap the blade in a wire? I can't cut butter with a blade that has wire wrapped around it? How do I make an electromagnetic without wrapping wire around the blade?
     
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