Meet Jay Settle. For almost three years, he has been a Software Engineer at Flexware. Outside of work, Jay has an interesting talent. He builds unique things that range from a motorized lawnchair, gas powered mountain bike, and even a remote controlled mower. Recently, he tackled a new project – the Rubens’ Tube.
This post comes from Jay Settle’s personal website.
My brother and I stumbled on this YouTube video below about three years ago. Since we had all the materials available, we decided to try to build it.
How to build the Rubens’ Tube
In 1904, Heinrich Rubens, whom this experiment is named after, took a 4-metre-long tube and drilled 200 small holes into it at 2 centimeter intervals, and filled it with a flammable gas. After lighting the gas (whose flames all rose to near-equal heights), he noted that a sound produced at one end of the tube would create a standing wave, equivalent to the wavelength of the sound being made.
The idea is to pump propane through one side of a tube roughly 2 to 3 inches in diameter and on the other side mount a speaker approximately the same size. Then drill as many holes a half inch apart in a straight line on the top of the tube as it lays horizontal.
Running different frequencies show us a standing wave. The higher the frequencies, the more waves. The lower the frequencies, the less waves. For the sound, I wanted to install a crappy bluetooth receiver and found one from Walmart for $20. I took the guts out of the bluetooth speaker-box, designed, and 3d printed a mount for both speaker that slides over the left side of the tube. Halfway through the build, the on-board charger on the bluetooth stereo went out. Now I have an USB cord with two 3.7V lipo batteries that I plug into the USB port of the BT stereo.
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