The Kid Should See This

The Engineering of the Drinking Bird

How is a drinking bird like a heat engine? In this video from Engineer Guy Bill Hammack, we can see how this famous drinking/dipping bird toy “exploits a temperature difference to convert heat energy to a pressure difference within the device, and performs mechanical work.” A peek inside the bird’s hat and head, and a closer look at the red methylene chloride its body contains, shows what’s really going on.

Find the drinking bird toy on Amazon for your own hands-on experiments.

There are more videos from the Engineer Guy on this site, including Plastic Injection Molding, The Ingenious Design of the Aluminum Beverage Can, and How Does a Retractable Ballpoint Click Pen Work?

Plus: More toy videos, Feynman’s Building Blocks of Thermodynamics, and why don’t perpetual motion machines ever work?

Browse the TKSST Video Collections
Search & enjoy 4,000+ smart & super-cool, “not-made-for-kids, but perfect for them” videos in the classroom or together at home, curated by Rion Nakaya with her 8 & 10 year olds. Click play and start a conversation.

Get 7 smart videos delivered every week.