Usually when I do a “Best of YouTube” post, I feature about three different videos. This time I’m only going to mention one. For the past few years, Colin Furze has been building a tunnel from his house to his shed. He has been releasing videos periodically showing his progress, but he recently combined them into one magnificent 2.5 hour video. If you haven’t seen this project before, grab some popcorn and settle in for a treat!
After 2.5 years, I’m back with another “Best of YouTube” post! How have you found anything to watch without these incredibly valuable posts? I’m definitely not claiming that these are the best videos I’ve seen since that last post, but I don’t think any of them will disappoint you.
Frank Howarth’s meticulous combination of math and woodworking resulted in an amazing wooden globe. He went into great detail about the process and the complexities of getting this all to work correctly. Wonderful! If you like this one, his followup video where he makes a stand for the globe is good as well.
The Swiss Army knife that I’ve had since I was a child has a sewing awl in it. I’ve never had any idea how to use it. If I had to do it in an emergency, I probably would have poked the awl and thread through, pulled the thread out of the awl and all the way through the hole, rethreaded the awl on the other side and poked it back through. Now if I have to do it, I’ll know there is a better way… but I probably won’t remember the details so I’ll be stuck with the same dumb approach as before.
It’s a traditional old man joke to see a flyover at a game (remember when we didn’t have parenthetical comments after talking about public events?) to say “There’s our tax dollars hard at work.” It turns out that those flyovers are actually valuable training opportunities and not just ostentatious displays of money burning.
As penance for the last 2.5 years, I will not just give you a fourth video, but I’ll give you hundreds of videos. I recently started watching the very popular Donut Media channel. I wouldn’t call myself that much of a car guy but the production value of these videos is fantastic and most of the videos interest me. They put out videos every day and they have a variety of content types. My favorite so far was a “High Low” series where they bought two identical trucks and then outfitted them with overlanding gear. One truck would get an expensive version of the item while the other truck got the budget version. You can see the whole season in this playlist or just watch the summary video. That playlist also includes a previous season where they did the same thing with 350Zs.
About a month ago I wrote a post about how people on the internet are manipulating your emotions. Destin from Smarter Every Day completed four videos that are extremely helpful in understanding what’s going on and how to protect yourself from it. This is the kind of thing that I think will be critical to teach our kids as they grow up in a world that looks very different from our childhood. (Video links: 1234)
Matt Cremona built a ridiculously nice tool storage cabinet. The highlight for me was how he used bookmatched pieces of wood surrounded by epoxy. They look incredible and the process for making them is wild as well. The video below should link directly to the point in his video where he talks about them, but if not, jump to 4:26.
OK Go is famous for their incredible Rube Goldberg style music videos. They recently published a series of videos that is kind of a mix of “how we make music” and “science for kids”. They have a playlist on YouTube. I’ll embed one example below, but if the whole playlist is worth a perusal, especially for parents.
Bob Clagett makes yet another appearance in this post category for his recent ping pong table build. It’s a collaboration with two of my new favorite YouTube makers, Evan and Katelyn.
Colin Furze has another ridiculous build: a huge Hulk Buster from the Avengers movie. It’s full of hydraulics so it’s not just a big statue. The reveal is embedded below, but I recommend watching his build videos too: Part 1, Part 2
I hope you got a chance to watch the Falcon Heavy test launch by SpaceX earlier this week either live or afterwards. If you didn’t, grab your popcorn and fire up this video. I watched it live at work and it was quite a thrill to watch the biggest rocket since the Saturn project lift off and then see the two boosters land simultaneously back on earth. Unfortunately the main booster didn’t land successfully back on the floating platform (not in the video), but two out of three isn’t bad. Since this was a simple test flight, Elon loaded his personal Tesla Roadster into the rocket for weight (generally companies just use heavy chunks of metal, etc) and there was a subsequent live stream of the car floating through the solar system.
I love the videos about the science behind games at the fair, but Mark Rober’s video was the first time I’d seen the same formula applied to an arcade. it taught me something about the rainbow circle game that will change my life forever.
And everyone’s favorite woodworking geek, Matthias Wandel, posted a video showing how you can use a free app on your phone or tablet to measure the RPM of your shop tools.
I started watching William Osman earlier this year. He’s a maker who created his own laser cutter (The Retina Smelter 9000) and has a very comedic style while producing some interesting creations and wearing crazy cat shirts. In a sad twist of events, his house burned down in the California fires. He has documented some of that process on his channel. His most recent video was probably the last one that was filmed before his house burned down and it’s a gem.
Evan and Katelyn are a husband and wife team that make stuff with a lot of different mediums. They are fun to watch and produce projects that aren’t so complex that you have to devote a month to make something similar.
And the last one isn’t a YouTube video. It’s a podcast episode. It’s probably the best explanation I’ve ever heard of blockchain (the tech behind Bitcoin, etc) and how the basic idea could impact your life in ways far beyond weird investments. They intentionally structured the episode to be approachable regardless of your comfort level with technology. Whenever someone has questions about blockchain or BitCoin, this is the single place that I will point them to: https://after-on.com/episodes/017
Dude Perfect’s first “All Sports Golf Battle” video was one of their best. They play a hole of golf but the catch is that their golf bags are full of random balls and sticks from various sports. They can only use each type of equipment for one shot. Hilarity ensues. The second time around was just as funny as the first!
Jimmy DIresta is finally starting on his upstate NY dream shop. He hired Kyle from Rural Rennovators (@rrbuildings) to do the work and Kyle created a 15 episode video series about the build. It’s really neat to watch a professional frame and roof something this big in just a couple weeks. I’ll embed the first video below, but you can watch the whole playlist on YouTube.
With the new Star Wars movie coming out, lots of people have Star Wars fever. Nobody does it like Colin Furze though. He built a FULL SIZE tie fighter! If you like this, check out the video explaining how he built it.
Mark Rober has another great video. This time it’s about the science behind carnival games. I’ve seen videos like this before but he does an especially good job. I appreciated how he broke down the games into categories based on their feasibility and collected data about win percentages, cost of the prizes, etc.
Flite Test started out as an remote control airplane channel, but they have expanded to include some full scale airplane content as well. Recently, Josh got to take a flight with aerobatic pilot Sean Tucker. When I was growing up, I had two pictures with autographs hanging on my wall. One was from all 6 Thunderbird pilots and the other was from Sean Tucker. He shares some interesting thoughts in addition to amazing flying in this video.
Frank Howarth is a wizard with the lathe and recently he learned how to carve perfect circles. He immediately took it to the extreme and created a wooden eyeball.
One of my favorite new channels on YouTube (where “new” means “I just learned about it) is Learn Quick With Mike Boyd. Mike is a Scottish YouTuber who picks a skill and videos his attempts to learn it. And when I say he learns it, I mean that he works incessantly on the new skill until he hits an impressive milestone. For example, how about riding a wheelie for 50 meters or doing a 5x5x5 Rubik’s Cube in under 10 minutes? I’m plowing through the entire catalog of his YouTube channel.
It’s infectious. Think of all the skills you’ve been impressed by but have never taken the time to learn. The really amazing part of his channel is that it generally only takes me five or six hours to pick up these incredible skills! He goes from zero to impressive in the time it takes to watch a couple movies. I think we’ve all wasted five or six hours in the last month, or maybe even the last week. I can’t help but feel motivated when I watch this stuff.
One of my new favorite YouTube channels is from Mike Boyd. He picks an interesting skill and goes all-in until he figures it out. His recent video about stacking dice is a great example:
Destin traveled with his kids to see a US world record domino fall. If you like this video, check out the other behind-the-scenes video that he mentions.
Peter Brown is a magician when it comes to epoxy. In this latest one, he experiments with adding fluorescing pigment to the epoxy. The video starts a big abruptly but just stick with it. The end result is really neat.