Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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BI-metallic shower nozzle

Aim that cold water somewhere else
  (+12, -1)(+12, -1)
(+12, -1)
  [vote for,

Who hasn't suffered the traumatic abuse of being in the middle of a relaxing shower when suddenly someone flushes the toilet, and boiling water shoots you in the geehuncoids, or having the water heater suddenly run out, so that you are shot in the boogabooga with ice cubes.

Some sort of regulating system would be desirable, and until my under basin heaters are ready, we need a simple solution.

The problem is of course with the temperature of water, and in regulating temperature, the thoughts of every good engineer turn to bi-metallic strips. Simple, reliable, and fun to play with. Bi-metallic strips are springlike devices made with one metal on one side, and another metal on the other side. One of the metals does not expand or contract much due to temperature variations. The other side expands and contracts quite a bit,and the result is that the strip itself curls upwards or downwards depending on the temperature.

I propose that we make thin bi-metallic tubes, and connect them together into a sort of shower head which would resemble a fistfull of straw. As the water coming out of these tubes gets cold, they will all wilt away, and hardly even get your ankles wet. When a sudden surge of searing water passes into them, they will quickly curl upwards, hitting the cieling, and allowing the water time to cool.

My manufacturers at Virtucom urge me to mention that these shower heads will come with a "THIS SIDE UP" sticker, and an embossed label that reads "WARNING: Do not install this device beneath electric lighting."

ye_river_xiv, Apr 24 2007


       This would be cool. +   

       Would bimetallic tubes really work? There are some pretty neat thermometer sculpture ideas to be had from this.
nomocrow, Apr 25 2007

       Hehe, I can picture this as a cherub water fountain.   

       The water cutoff I can understand, but the aiming at the ceiling is a little troubling. When the water gets a bit too hot, you get it square in the face and then as it gets hotter it becomes harder to avoid as the arc increases and chases you to the far end of the shower/bath.
marklar, Apr 25 2007

       If this could work, and I'm not going to state an opinion on that (I suspect response time issues) you might do better with square tubes where the top and bottom were bimetallic (set opposite each other) and the sides were flexible. This way hot would be pinched off, and cold would open so wide that the pressure drop would cause it to fall straight (or vice-versa).
MechE, Apr 25 2007

       An overly-expensive solution for a problem that lasts all of 30 seconds once every few days.   

       I cannot possibly give this enough positive votes. Shame we can only vote once.
shapu, Apr 25 2007

       I'm sure theres' room for improvement. I guess they could be made to shift left or right instead of up or down. That would at least avoid getting hot (or cold) water to chase you down to the end of the tub. Of course, that would also put a lot of pressure on the shower curtain.   

       What? Oh, My lawyer says if I'm going to have all these tiny wire-like tubes in a place where people tend to move around with their eyes closed, I should encase them in a protective wire mesh.   

       Hey, if we encase them in a mesh, and put solid sections on either side, a rapid change in temperature would move the spray onto a shielded spot, where it would then drizzle straight to the floor.
ye_river_xiv, Apr 26 2007

       The plumbing at my parents house isn't exactly up to par, so temperature variations happen about every 10 seconds or so. I think I would buy them one of these just for my sake when I have to stay with them. Have a slightly soggy [+].
Hunter79764, Apr 26 2007

       I like it. Are said strips fast reacting enough though?
conskeptical, May 10 2007

       //Are said strips fast reacting enough though?//   

       They would certainly have some thermal inertia. You therefore have the opportunity for a sort of thermomechanicohydraulic oscillator, which would oscillate between scalding and icy.
MaxwellBuchanan, May 10 2007

       Actually, I'm almost certain it would be a total failure, either too slow to respond successfully, or unable to move enough for any change at all...   

       But the idea of showering in front of something resembling the tail end of a play-dough extruder struck me as just the sort of thing for the halfbakery.   

       I guess if the bimetallic tubes followed the pipes back into the wall for several feet it would work enough to be considered OK...
ye_river_xiv, May 10 2007

       I need to look up geehuncoids and boogabooga in my copy of Grey's.
RayfordSteele, Dec 20 2007


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