Adam Savage Made His Own "Indiana Jones" Bullwhip
In this eight-minute video, MythBuster Adam Savage describes the construction of a replica Indiana Jones bullwhip. Savage made his first bullwhip in the early 90s, then got some advice from master whip maker David Morgan -- so Savage bought a piece of kangaroo hide (apparently kangaroo leather is exceedingly strong) and proceeded to make another whip, an 11.5-foot long one. (For the record, that's way longer than normal, making Savage's whip both dangerous and awesome.)
The video is full of geeky whip trivia, including the fact that the whip is made of a set of twelve continuous laces, that taper as the whip does -- meaning that the laces start out at 5/16" wide and end up at just 1/16". The biggest technical problem? Kangaroo hides are pretty small, so cutting extremely long continuous laces is really hard -- it took Savage six and a half hours just to draw the concentric-circle pattern of the laces on the hide, measuring the taper as he went. "It's crazy-meditative," Savage says. Geek on, brother.
Viewing note: Check out Adam's nails when they do closeups of him handling the whip. Dude works for a living.
See also: Adam Savage: About My “Indiana Jones” Hat.