Extra computer parts are all over the place now a days. Everyone has a few old computers sitting in their basements, or garages collecting dust. We take those usually useless computers and take them apart. Then we microwave the various components.
The hard disk (or hard drive) is a very crucial part to the computer, it stores all your data. There's also a lot of shiny metal in one, and some circuit board, and cable.
Hard Disk video
When microwaved, the flat flexible cable caught fire, and spread very quickly, creating a very bad smell.
USB devices are all the rage now a-days It seems that you can't go 5 minutes with out some new USB powered thing coming out. Well that's all good, what happens to the older 4 - 16 MB USB keys? They aren't useful for anything anymore, so, this is what we do with them. (we don't know for sure what this USB thing was as it no longer worked at all when plugged into a computer)
There is a little piece of metal on the circuit board of the USB thing, they are forever known as "blue spark makers" to us because of the significant blue spark that was emitted by it.
Michelle was kind enough to donate the wire that connected her Ti-83 calculator to her computer. She never used it, and got a new calculator anyway, so it was ok. We took the wire apart because it was mostly all insluation and plastic, to get the circuit board part. There was a single "blue spark maker" and it excited us just a little.
The stripped wires on the end didn't work as we planned, and even though there was no blue sparks, there was a fire because of the little metal thing.
If this came from a VCR, or a TV we will never know for it was found on the ground and given to us. We debated for a good 10 minutes as to the posistion we should place it inside the microwave. Eventually we choose to put it on it's side, and with the buttons facing the back of the microwave.
Remote control video
What once was was a remote control, is now a charred peice of silicon. It was a very nice experiment, we are still not 100% sure where the fire originated from.
Another circuit board comes from one of the few laser printers we've taken appart over the years. Which one was it, I don't remember, but it's probably likely that you would find something like it in other printers too.
Printer circuit video
We again had a debate as to which way to posistion this circuit board too. We decided on facing the resistors towards the back of the microwave because we had never microwaved that many resistors, and we didn't want to die.