Wallace was playing around with some matches when inspiration struck. He had an idea to use the matchsticks to construct a large sphere, an endeavor that cost “around $500” and took “about 10 months” to complete. After he painstakingly built the orb, gluing each match into place, he took it to the next level, by setting his creation ablaze.
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Wallace, who hails from Upstate New York, said, “I was playing around with matches one day and thought about how the heads of the matches are slightly larger than the bodies. It got me wondering, what would happen if I started gluing them together and never stopped.”
“I imagined a sphere would for, so I set out to find out.”
According to Bored Panda, Wallace began by estimating how many matches it would take to craft his creation.
“I was buying [the matches] in boxes of 300 from my grocery store (I am sure they thought I was crazy) and needed to know if I was about to break the bank,” said Wallace. “I started playing around in the modeling software Rhino to get a sense of what this match sphere would ultimately become.”
“I used that 0.82 degree angle to help me find the circle that the matches would create based on their shape,” he stated. “According to the program, if all matches are created equally (which they are not) then I would get a circle comprised of 439 matches that is 17.643” in diameter.”
After a bit more math, he determined that approximately “62,654 matches” would do the job.
He began gluing the matches together, a tedious and time-consuming process.
“I think the best way to describe this process is to articulate my mental and emotional state while gluing matches together for hours upon hours.”
Initially, he was excited and “optimistic” as his creation took shape. But then, the “euphoria” wore off as he gained “a strong understanding of just how much time, energy, and matches were going to go into this sphere.”
Wallace powered through, continuing his endeavor. As the sphere got closer to completion, according to Wallace, “it also got harder to place the matches as I had to reach inside the curve.”
But, he managed to finish the project, which took “exactly 140 boxes of matches” or “42,000 matches.”
Then, he did what any person would do; he set the sphere on fire.
“All in all this thing took approximately ten months to create chipping away at it during evenings and weekends. Totally worth it.”