Popular Mechanics ruggedize a notebook, a camera and a cell phone

waterlaptop-470-0909Remember making that science experiment where you have to drop a contraptions that houses an egg? Oh yeah. It’s a classic. Well, the geeks at Popular Mechanics did a similar thing expect with a Dell notebook, a Nikon camera, and a Nokia cell phone. Results? The notebook fared a hell of a lot better from an eight foot drop than the pricey Durabook I tested and broke.

The original article is worth your time but the skinny is that tennis balls and foam board was used to protect the notebook from an eight-foot drop. The end product doesn’t look that bad either. For the cell phone, an off-the-shelf food vacuum sealer created a water-tight casing that works but also seals in the power outlet. Both those solutions saved the devices. The camera didn’t follow the same path though.

The Coolpix camera was encased in a water-tight enclosure made out of PVC for the zoom lens, a plastic bag for the body, and a bit of foam taped onto the sides. The makeshift case kept the camera dry, but a drop test jarred the lens just enough to mess it up.

Anyway, give the whole thing a read. I am definitely going to use the phone trick next time I go fishing. It’s about time I use that vacuum sealer we got for our wedding years ago anyway.