Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Steampunk Mug

But not a pillock with gears on his hat.
  (+12)(+12)
(+12)
  [vote for,
against]

Steampunk Mug is a drinking vessel with a novelty method of thermoregulation.

Sixteen brass leaves, or petals, form the outer surface of the mug. They are aligned vertically, like planks of wood forming a barrel. Each one is hinged near the top, just below the solid rim for drinking from. Enclosed between each leaf and the inner mug is a wax-filled piston, attached to the base of the mug and to somewhere just under the hinge of the petal.

The wax in the pistons is chosen to have a phase change at drinking temperature. If the liquid is warmer than that, the petals gently unfold and form a heat-radiating flower shape. When the liquid has cooled sufficiently, the petals fold in tightly and trap a layer of air around the mug, insulating it.

Be the envy of your colleagues as you drink from a contraption that features brass, pistons, a certain amount of steam and indeed a token amount of practicality.

mitxela, Oct 25 2015

A Little Stirling engine for mugs http://www.amazon.c...36TY8TFGXPPAX139REK
This little engine runs off the heat of your hot coffee or tea. [travbm, Oct 29 2015]

[link]






       + and very lovely, too!
xandram, Oct 26 2015
  

       If you shoot down five pillocks, you're a pillock ace.
pertinax, Oct 26 2015
  

       I like the idea of the phase change piston. Does such a thing exist? I wonder if one could tune these such as to make solar panels that follow the sun by virtue of heat-sensitive wax-filled pistons.
bungston, Oct 26 2015
  

       Much as I'd like to take credit for it, wax filled pistons already exist. I fitted one to a greenhouse window, it works well.   

       (... something's been deleted here. Did someone delete their account? )   

       (some searching later - was it Beauchamp? uh oh, what happened?)
mitxela, Oct 27 2015
  

       (deleted by response to Beauchamp since it didn't make sense any more.)   

       So, this helps your drink cool faster at first, then slows the cooling down a little. I'll give the at [+], but what you really need is a system that absorbs the heat at the initial temperature, cooling it quickly without wasting it to the environment, then slowly releases that heat back into the liquid, maintaining a nearly constant temperature for a significant time.   

       An alternate system would simply store the mass of the liquid at its initial high temperature, but cool the liquid that flows towards the sipping edge to the ideal temperature. Though I'm not sure how to properly include steampunk technology in that solution.
scad mientist, Oct 27 2015
  

       //If you shoot down five pillocks, you're a pillock ace.//   

       And if you shoot five men, you're a men ace.
MaxwellBuchanan, Oct 27 2015
  

       I thought putting a small Stirling engine on a mug automatically made it steam punk?
travbm, Oct 29 2015
  
      
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