Vehicle: Aircraft: Balloon
Flame organ balloon   (+37, -1)  [vote for, against]
Hot air balloon with musical flames

'Arr, the Dragon sings tonight!' 'Nay, that be Spidermother and his flame organ balloon.' 'Arr...'

A flame burning inside an upright pipe near the lower end of the pipe creates a pleasing musical note at the resonant frequency of the pipe. I first tried this with a length of metal downpipe and a gas stove with the flame spreader removed, after reading about it somewhere. If you assemble a collection of pipes of different lengths (just like a set of ordinary organ pipes) with a burner and pilot light in each one, and link the valve controls of the burners to the appropriate key on a keyboard (easy - switches in electronic keyboard connected to servo relays on valves) then you have a flame organ. So far, pretty much baked, but without the keyboard interface: _see link_ OK, now you mount one of these where the burner sits in a hot air balloon, and start playing. Manic evil laughter optional. For best visual effect, use heat-resistant quartz glass pipes, and inject metallic salts flame spectrophotometer style for chromatic scales. Like, I can see the music.
-- spidermother, Jan 26 2006

(?) Flame organ
[spidermother, Jan 26 2006]

Hullaballoon Hullaballoon
by bristolz. [calum, Jan 26 2006]

(?) Flame organ chord
[spidermother, Feb 05 2006]

Cool, I gotta go try this now.

Welcome to the halfbakery.
-- MikeOxbig, Jan 26 2006

Thanks! You know how to make a bloke feel welcome (sniffle).
-- spidermother, Jan 26 2006

you could control altitude by playing faster or slower... asuming you can get the contraption off the ground. But fire organs are awesome, so bun.
-- 5th Earth, Jan 26 2006

Petit Chien takes you into orbit...and Widor's Toccata melts all the pipes.
-- Ling, Jan 26 2006

"I wish I could carry a tune like that."
-- Shz, Jan 26 2006

//So far, pretty much baked// That's the part that startled me.
-- wagster, Jan 26 2006

Oooh, this could be the inflationary mechanism for a hullaballoon. Fantastic idea, especially if the organist is a wild-haired Rotwang/Great Oz hybrid gentleman in a dusty coat and the organ is styled similarly.
-- calum, Jan 26 2006

Bun for this and hi to all the mad scientist types out there! How long before we see this in a film? Imagine a cross between the flying hunchback Inspector Clouseau and the mad Chief Insp. Dreyfus in the castle at the organ!
-- Texbinder, Jan 26 2006

/chromatic scales/ - oh yes. Very good. But you had my vote with the title.
-- bungston, Jan 26 2006

//inflationary mechanism for a hullaballoon// Yes! And someone needs to compose a fugue for flame-organ hullaballoon. Each balloon's entries in the fugue are timed to begin its inflationary phase (which will hopefully not be associated with a big bang).

bristolz - S'il vous plaît... dessine-moi une flamme orgue montgolfière...
-- spidermother, Jan 27 2006

Destined for greatness.
-- RayfordSteele, Jan 31 2006

Flying machines, music, stuff on fire...

All the important things for a great invention.

I love it! (Especially the 'see the music' thing)
-- neutrinos_shadow, Jan 31 2006

For one quick second, I thought "FarmerJohn is back!" but 'tis not true...
Perhaps 'tis fate, and you shall join the ranks of greatness among the halfbakers. 'Twould be nice for you to establish yourself here in poermanence whilst many other new bakers come, post and never come again.

In other, less eloquent words, welcome! And flakey croissant for you!
-- DesertFox, Jan 31 2006

Thanks for all your comments. I love this site. Intellectual freedom, ideas rather than people judged, honest praise and well intentioned criticism... Kind of like how I thought University would be. Ha!

But that gives me an idea...
-- spidermother, Jan 31 2006

Marvelous - give everyone a sense synaesthesia ;)

OOOOOOooooooh C# Aaaaaah FMaj
-- Dub, Feb 04 2006

I think the attack and decay rates might be a bit...relaxed...which wopuld have some bearing on what kind of music you could play. It would tend to be all somewhat dreamy, with the notes fading in and out. Very cool.
-- elhigh, Feb 05 2006

Thanks for your comments [elhigh]. You inspired me to do some tinkering. I don't have a digital camera at the moment, so no photos of microphone cables trailing from office to kitchen and a 1.7m length of metal drain pipe held over the gas stove, but here (link) are the results.
I recorded a note from flame on to flame off (actually flame very low like a pilot light, turned up full, turned off) so you can hear the attack and decay. I made 2 copies, pitch shifted them, and spliced the lot together in my wave editor, to make a 4:5:6 chord.
-- spidermother, Feb 05 2006

Oh yeah... This one. I like this one.
-- bristolz, Feb 21 2006

here in Europe, there's 'Café Warmers' available, with glass tubes that has gas flames inside.

They are used at night, and in autumn and spring, to extend side walk serving's tables season.
-- sirau, Jun 01 2011

I have since seen an actual flame organ, played (very badly by the artist...) by a mechanical keyboard, range of 2 or 3 octaves IIRC. The keypress -> note delay is a bit slow, but a decent composer/pianist could take that into account.
-- neutrinos_shadow, Jun 02 2011

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