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It's Not Just Duct Tape Anymore
Everyone's Got Duct Tape
Admit it, you've used duct tape! Every man, woman, and child out there has used duct tape at one time or another. Something leaks or breaks and you reach for the duct tape. Everyone's got at least one roll squirreled away.
First off, what is it? A fabric backed tape with a water repellent outer shell. Some say it was used by soldiers in WWII who began calling it 'duck tape' because it repelled water. Others say it's origin was for use in actual duct work. Whatever it's origins, it is as common in America as Scotch Tape, if not more. Not only is it in every day usage but books have been written about it, yes, books about duct tape.
According to the Ministry of Duct Tape and High Voltage, the tape was a by-product of World War II. In 1942, after numerous cases of ammunition were destroyed by humidity, the United States government turned to wartime supplier Johnson & Johnson, hoping for a fix. J&J promptly responded with a waterproof tape dubbed "duck tape" by the military due to its ability to repel moisture like water off a duck's back. It did the job admirably, and soldiers soon found an assortment of other uses for it as well. (http://ask.yahoo.com/20030502.html)
Did you know duct tape is now considered an effective tool in wart removal? Really. I can remember my father using duct tape to patch a whole in the wood on our front porch too. After a curing period he painted over it and voila, no more hole. How many loose leaf binders have been patched together with duct tape?
When we were kids we had truck inner tubes in our pool to use as swimming tubes. If one got a hole we patched it with duct tape and continued to use it. Speaking of swimming pools, we live in a neighborhood with lots of above ground swimming pools. If you walk around the neighborhood in the winter you can count any number of covers with duct tape over holes or tears in the covers. Duct tape is used in or I guess I might say on racing cars in bodywork in the UK it is called tank tape .
Duct tape also goes by the name of gaffers tape and in Scandinavia it is called Jesus Tape because it appears to perform miracles.
What about tools? I know you have at least one with duct tape on it. We have a sledgehammer and maul (both with splits in their wooden handles) that have duct tape holding them together.
Duct Tape Colors and Art - NSA and Clothing
Due to duct tape's popularity companies are coming out with all different colors and designs to better allow the incorporation of duct tape in your daily life. Companies from Johnson & Johnson, 3M, and Tape Brothers all specialize in duct tape manufacture.
Duct tape comes in not only all colors imaginable but now decorator designs as well - imagine duct tape colors. You name it you can buy it from the original gray duct tape to neon duct tape . If you're looking for projects to do with duct tape, search on hubpages, there are some great hubs with some good ideas and photos and it won't cost you a cent! Don't forget YouTube for videos on how to make all kinds of things with duct tape. One of the popular types of duct tape is Duck Brand, a company that deals in all kinds and colors of duct tape. They even have duct tape in sheets instead of rolls! College duct tape by Duck Brand has college team logos on duct tape. What more could you ask for?
NSA loves duct tape. It seems the lunar module Challenger carried duct tape. When the moon buggie's right rear fender was accidentally torn off Astronauts Gene Cernan and Jack Schmitt used duct tape to put it back on and yes, they did know Jack Schmitt!
Duct tape has also moved into art and clothing. Dresses, pants, wallets, beach bags, you name it, all have been made out of duct tape. The types of art are totally unlimited from flowers to Mt. Rushmore, all recreated in duct tape.
PhillyBlurbs.com tells of two 14 year old boys who made a slew of wallets out of duct tape. They took the wallets to a consignment shop at the Jersey Shore and sold every one of them. They have since made more and taken their business online. In 2007 The New York Times wrote an article about a young man named Garett Croft Stenson. He too made and sold duct tape wallets but he grew his business and continues to make and sell duct tape products under the name DB Clay. The article goes on to describe David Pippenger, the creator of www.ducti.com which sells bags, wallets and watches made from duct tape. We must've been sleeping when the duct tape boom took off!
Duct Tape Contests
It's easy to say there's definitely a future in duct tape. I think it was Johnson & Johnson that had the first contest asking what college students could make from duct tape and continues to this day. Creativity with duct tape can earn between $3,000 and $5,000 dollars in a scholarship contest. Duck Brand has a contest called "Stuck At Prom" which challenges high schoolers to make prom outfits out of duct tape - I said schoolers because boys are included too -they can make their tux out of duct tape. The "Stuck at Prom" contest is held every year in case you or someone you know is interested. The application deadline is between March and May and believe it or not the contest is in its fifteenth year!
Duct Tape has a Halloween Contest, "Stick or Treat", with a $1,000 prize. Entries must use Duct brand and decorate a Halloween themed decoration, craft, sculpture, costume or jack-o-lantern (real or artificial).
What creative uses you can you come up with? Anything that will make you rich? I certainly can't but maybe you can.
Think of all the things you use duct tape for, multiply those uses by one hundred and you might come up with a number somewhere near the real uses of duct tape. Everything from packages to clothing have seen duct tape at one time or another. Do you have a vacuum cleaner with a leaky hose, fixed with duct tape?
I could go on and on and I'm sure you could still add more. Duct tape is here to stay!
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