10 hours ? Really?

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Ive watched several of theses shows. The final episode with the crawler machines was great. But how did the team with the hydralics ever finish in 10hours? I figured they needed at least 4 more.

I couldnt figure out how several of these teams (over several shows) finished in 10hours they must have gotten a few extra that moringing.

It would make for a boring show ending if there was only one team in the final race.. lol...

are they allowed a few hours of tinkering/ building etc?


-- speedy (speedtrader@hotpop.com), July 19, 2000


I think Robert tipped us off in the amphibious vehicle episode when he said, "Boy, the sun sure has set *really* early tonight!". Supposed to finish at sunset, but it was pitch black...I think the timer they use accounts for how well the teams are progressing. Wouldn't be very interesting if no teams finished!


-- Dennis O'Connor (boyoconnor@netscape.net), July 20, 2000.

I'd tend to agree. The probably use the 10hour mark as a kind of guide rather then a line in the sand. If both teams are having trouble completing the task then it might not be possible to complete in 10hrs, so they fudge the time. I'd guess that they probably ask the teams how much longer and come up with an approximate (wihtin reason) time to give them to complete the most basic function of the challange, i.e. the car runs, but the steering will be with a rope instead of that really neat pulley system they designed.

-- Prism (tater@co.sacramento.ca.us), July 25, 2000.

Yes it was built in 10 hours, whats more it weighed in at over 1/2 ton, from more than 2 tons of scrap pulled in off the set, how do I know? I had to carry most of it. The only tinkering with time is that stops for, power cuts:-)), lunch etc are added to the end but its never more than an hour or so tops. After the machine is built the only tinkering is when the health and saftey man says that somthing has to be changed for saftey reasons. Other than that you run with what you have. And in the crawler machines what we had was a shot condenser in the distributor, probable caused when the saftey man said 'you need a plate welded over that hole' so I welded it, but forgot to disconnect the electrices before doing the welding, the rest as they say is history.

-- Bowser (bowser@ogri.dircon.co.uk), August 03, 2000.

Well I do applaud you on building that in 10hrs. I had you pegged for to win that one(IMHO).. I thougbht the other would be compleatly unstable,. I still truly do not know how some of these are built in 10hrs though.

it was a great show, thanks for it!@


-- speedy (speedtrader@hotpop.com), August 04, 2000.

The building in 10 hours bit bugs me, too. Certainly I wouldn't be able to do it. I'd been wondering about the 10 hour build time, where the "junk" comes from, and what information/assistance might be given to the contestants. It was difficult to equate the building progress of some of teams with their actions/comments. No audience either, it appears. Very quirky. I had wondered how scripted the event is. Hats of to teams who can build this stuff in 10 hours unassisted.

-- Brian W. Cole (brian_cole@usa.net), November 25, 2000.

Its hard to tell for suree exactly how long we get, as we aren't allowed watches during filming. But it is pretty close (usually) Filming of the build really is done in a single (long, exhausting) day. Once that ball hits the cup, the clock starts running. You get an hour tools down for lunch, and credit for the time the host spends talking to you and when they ask for quiet to do some of the bits with the host and judge (usually a total of around an hour or so).

The next morning, we have to go over our creation with the safety inspector, who will ask for guards on rotating parts, safety rails, etc. There may be some time on-site to make last minute modifications, and that is usually where the machine gets its decorations.

Yes, they have to have one machine that is likely to complete the course, and the other at least able to fail in an instructive way. They really can't be completely certain that the problem can be solved in time; its usually never been tried before. But it is pretty close - If nothing else, they don't want to spend the money for another day of filming. (the show is expensive enough already, and the build day crew is over 50 people, so the director can't afford a second day of building, without completely blowing the budget) And they may only have access to the test site for a single day, so while time can get flexible, it can't get bent very far. When Robert calls "One hour remaining", you really pick up the pace, (from frenetic to frenzied)

No, the team doesn't get help (save the expert we are assigned). We really do build the stuff that fast. We really do find out what we are to build that morning. I even think its part of the fun.

Oh yea, it helps to understand the point of the show. Its actually sneak science education. The competition is to trick the 10 year old target audience into sitting thru the mini-lectures. Watch 15 seconds of "how a wing works" and get to see someone make a precision adjustment with a sledgehammer. The competition aspect makes it fun for both particpant and viewer, but the educational aspect rules. (and is why I like it a whole lot better than "battlebots" -- the robot fighting is the same problem every time, you can order parts, etc. But what really annoys me about the football types they have announcing it, is the "you aren't supposed to understand this" attitude.)

Yes, they do re-arrange things, sometimes creating drama that wasn't actually present. And the teams are not typically "competitive" during the build - The "stealing unguarded parts" doesn't happen. If you aren't using something, and the other team needs it, you let them have it. Pass it thru the door, and they make the other team put it outside, and pretend to steal it. In fact, you usually go out of your way to avoid intruding on the other teams "space".

As to getting built in the time, there are some tricks you learn, especially with regards to harvesting techniques. See my tactical advice to teams at http://www.the-nerds.org/contestant-advice.html Its also why you can't put a new team up against one who has done a show before.

Look elsewhere on the board for comments on the stuff we find.

-dp- Organizer, The New England Rubbish Deconstruction Society; The NERDS.

The first US team to compete. Watch us build a submarine on December 6.

-- Jeff - The NERDS (dp@the-nerds.org), November 25, 2000.

Justjay here captain of the Three Rusty Juveniles, 10 hours, if you are lucky. If you took out all the time spent with parts that didn't work and parts that we weren't allowed to use, it can get quite frustrating. Our expert got to go back for the safety inspection and go over a few things we weren't allowed to see it until the competition day. We were not allowed camera's or video camera's for the build or competition, I guess to keep it from appearing on the internet before it gets on TV.

-- Jay McKinney (justjay@neo.rr.com), November 27, 2000.

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