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Ball Bearing Skates

Line the rink floor with ball bearings & watch the fun.
  (+13, -1)(+13, -1)
(+13, -1)
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Actually the title says it all. Line the floor of a skating rink with rows and rows of close-set ball bearings in little racks (ever seen those cargo slides they use to unload big trucks or move boxes along in factories? Something like that.) Then you could come in wearing regular sneakers or boots and skate. It would admittedly be more like what kids do on puddles in winter than normal skating, but I wasn't meaning to re-bake roller skates anyway. You could, I suppose, also create shoes with special hard flat plastic or metal soles for the rink. The only problem I see is, once you fall down, how do you ever get back up again?

Or, really, how do you get out there in the first place. I guess the fun would be in the flailing, crashing around, and falling down, which was always my favorite part of learning to skate.
submitinkmonkey, Mar 16 2005

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       Sounds like a lot of fun but how would you stop if you need to?
Machiavelli, Mar 16 2005
  

       With the right protective clothing we can bump into each other and have a lot of fun.
zeno, Mar 16 2005
  

       Baller Disco!
Machiavelli, Mar 16 2005
  

       I like this. It seems to me that with all those metal balls, there should be magnets.
bungston, Mar 17 2005
  

       So your trailing foot would be pushing against ball bearings?   

       You need an edge to push off of, this is why curlers for example have one shoe that is slippery and one shoe that grips the ice.
Giblet, Mar 17 2005
  

       What [Giblet] said - I don't see how you're going to push, unless the aim is to take a run from off the rink onto it, and see how long it takes you to get back to the side.
AbsintheWithoutLeave, Mar 17 2005
  

       I think that if you move your upper body up and down a lot you might create a changing state of friction with the floor allowing you to move around. The floor is not entirely frictionless. We would look like birds walking on ice. Silly and great fun.
zeno, Mar 18 2005
  

       the toe tip of your shoe could have little spikes that grip inbetween the bearings for friction. or maybe magnets. then when you need to move or stop moving, you point your shoe down. um, i think. [+]
changokun, Mar 18 2005
  

       Would the rollers be motorized?   

       There could be different weights of rollers, arranged in lanes. Once you built up some speed, you would ease over to the heavier rollers (like shifting gears). Also, heavier people would skate on the heavier rollers.
robinism, Mar 18 2005
  

       I got it.   

       The boots could have an electro-magnet that turns on with the press of a button in hand.   

       You'd have a whole mess of cool new sports injuries, so I'm changing my vote.   

       +
Giblet, Mar 19 2005
  

       Having had some experience on those roller runways they use to move baggage or parcels along, I think the thing to do is surf the roller floor on a tray, with a running start from the side.
DrCurry, Mar 19 2005
  

       Sounds like fun! Should bear a warning, though: for the love of Pete, do NOT put a cat out on the rink.
spacecadet, Mar 20 2005
  

       add fan backpacks and I'm there... +
silverstormer, Mar 20 2005
  

       Why the bearings? Could you not just put a rim around the floor and cover it with a one-bearing thick layer ball bearings? (This could add a new dimension - if someone goes down and ploughs up a bunch of ball bearings, this would leave a gap into which other bearings would move, exposing an area of floor elsewhere).
Basepair, Mar 20 2005
  

       I'm all for the motorized bearings myself. With fast lanes and slow lanes. Also, I believe that random electomagnetic switches should suddenly magnetize some sections of the floor. A whole new category of sports injuries!
submitinkmonkey, Mar 23 2005
  
      
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