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CTDL 157: Duct tape is just the greatest.

I think this was on Boing Boing a couple days ago (I tend to leave some random links up in my browser and I don’t always remember where they came from). Great story of how Duct tape isn’t just useful for college kids making moonbuggies, but also for the real guys who were on the moon.

At this year’s Great Moonbuggy Race in Huntsville, Alabama, Prof. Paul Shiue of Christian Brothers University was overheard joking that duct tape was his team’s “best engineering tool.” Others felt the same way. The sound of gray tape being torn from rolls practically filled the race course as dozens of college and high school student engineers busily assembled and repaired their homemade moonbuggies.

[From NASA - Moondust and Duct Tape]

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Cernan: “And I hate to say it, but I’m going to have to take some time to try … to get that fender back on. Jack, is the tape under my seat, do you remember?” (He’s referring to a roll of ordinary, gray duct tape.)

Schmitt: “Yes.”

Cernan: “Okay. I can’t say I’m very adept at putting fenders back on. But I sure don’t want to start without it. I’m just going to put a couple of pieces of good old-fashioned American gray tape on it…(and) see whether we can’t make sure it stays.”

In spite of his thick gloves, Cernan managed to unroll and tear off the needed pieces, but moondust foiled his first repair:

Cernan: “…good old-fashioned gray tape doesn’t want to stick very well.” (At a post flight briefing he explained: “Because there was dust on everything, once you got a piece of tape off the roll, the first thing the tape stuck to was dust; and then it didn’t stick to anything else.”)

His second attempt succeeded, however. “I am done!” crowed Cernan. “If that fender stays on … I’d like some sort of mending award.” And with that, they were off.

[From NASA - Moondust and Duct Tape]

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