Comment about Junkyard Wars

Given the attention BattleBots (A fine show IMHO) has been getting on this board, I’m a little surprised no one has opened a thread on this yet, but since I don’t see one, here goes.

I LOVE this show (The Learning Channel Wednesday nights). I have a Mech. Eng. background and this show speaks to me. In fact, Mrs. nrd, who is a Chem E. by training, also loves it, despite the complete lack of Chem E-type issues presented.

That being said, I’m a little disappointed in this current season. It’s a subtle point, but I think that the Junkyard this season is a little too “loaded” - presenting obvious and seemingly precontrived solutions. For example, last week, one team was trying to construct a Zeppelin-type airship and were struggling to find a suitable material for the body of the ship. Well, lo-and-behold, out of the blue they discover a roll (4ft x a few hundred feet probably) of Mylar in the trunk of a car, like that’s at all likely. I could give other examples, but this is long enough as it is.

In short, I think that last year’s teams were forced to show a little more creativity in their problem solving. This year, it appears that the teams are probably given a small set of solutions before hand and then they choose one, KNOWING the necessary parts are out there.

(And first prize for the lamest rant ever goes to - RPINRD!!!)

I’m glad to see Kryten get work, since there don’t seem to be any more Red Dwarf episodes forthcoming. And of course it is obvious that certain materials/items are “planted”.

That’s about all I have to say about the show, other than the British are light-years ahead of the Americans in developing show concepts.

I love this show! I just wish I had a chance to watch it more often.

It seems to me that the teams would have to know what the challenge is going to be in advance, since they have to pick an expert with the appropriate experience, and since they always seems to have agreed on how they’re going to solve the challenge right off the bat. In fact, they probably have to submit their proposed solution ahead of time so that the producers can salt the junkyard appropriately. (I’m just speculating here, I have no idea what really happens.)

I would guess that they have to think up their own solution though, instead of choosing from a set of solutions the producers give them. What fun is that?
btw, the Mylar wasn’t exactly out of the blue - the expert on that team spent the first half of the show rejecting every other type of plastic. But yeah, finding it where they did was pretty contrived, especially since the trunk was locked!

Sadly, I don’t get to see BattleBots as it’s not on any channel that I get. But I just saw Junkyard Wars for the first time a few weeks ago (their marathon), and it seemed pretty cool. I didn’t have time to see too much, but it definitly peaked my interests.

Just as long as it isn’t on at the same time as Iron Chef, I’ll check it out. :smiley:

Anyone else here like Junkyard Wars?
Watch Junkyard Wars: Reality TV Even Dopers Can

I love this show :slight_smile:

The first time I saw Junkyard Wars I loved it. I was fortunate to see it the day after Thanksgiving, which meant it was an all day marathon.

I do think they get the challenges in advance, due to the fact that the experts are always related to the challenge.
My favourite one was from last season, I believe. The teams had to construct tractors and have a pulling contest. From the marathon I gather that last season was better. Also, the wardrobe and style was cooler. It seemed like a post-apocalyptic war-zone. Kinda like Mad-Max.

Anyway, show’s still cool either way.

[slightly off the OP] rpinrd, you graduated from/attending RPI? [/slightly off the OP]

I am huge wrestling fan. My favorite wrestling show is on Wednesday nights, I even had a tough time not switching to Junkyard Wars…Just the point of making stuff out of peoples trash that actually work…gets to people. I think it gets in toouch with our inner childish self. Like when we were kids, trying to make stuff never worked, but then our dads would come in and do it no prob, what the dilly?

yojimbo D’ohh! Thanks for pointing those out. I’m horribly embarrassed now. I swear I searched first. Oh well, live and learn.

bouv Yep, a ‘94 grad of Dear Ol’ RPI

Dec. ‘00 grad of RPI here. One final left. Watched Junkyard Wars for the first time last night (Wednesday’s episode on tape). Didn’t think it looked contrived. Although sitting through the explanation of Pythagoras’ Theorem was rather annoying for a roomful of RPI students.

Well, given the other former RPI’ers mentioning their like of the show, I thought I’d mention this.

You may have seen the episode with the N.E.R.D.S. I can’t speak for the rest of them, but Crash used to spend time in Troy. Plenty of RPI rumors/legends about things he supposedly did.

(Not that I have ever met the man. His time at RPI predates mine.)

Incidentally, that’s why I first started watching the show. It had been mentioned on the RPI Players mailing list that he was going to be on the show.


I saw that too…at least I know I wasn’t alone in thinking that. It was just a little too much of a coincidence, a team needed a suitable material after the other couple they tried failed, so the wished for Mylar. Sure enough, opening the truck of a wrecked car (thats the first place I would look!) they found a big new roll of it. Give me a break. The other thing I was thinking of, what a stroke of luck to happen to find all those functions remote controls and servos, and I guess complete with batteries too!


you graduated from RPI? I’m there now, just a lowly sophmore…

just one question though… pardon my stupidity if his question is as stupid as i think it is…

is the battlebots on the learing channel and Comdey Central the same show? i don;t get to watch much tv, to much damn work. The one my roomate watches is on Com. Central

Heh. But I loved that aspect of it. I was thinking “AHA! SEE, this stuff IS useful!” Well, useful if you find yourself in the unlikely situation of being told you have to build a bridging machine in the middle of a junkyard…

The battlebots thread turned me on to this show (someone mentioned it there–sorry, yet ANOTHER place it came up!) and it’s a new favorite in my house.

IIRC the host said that they provided the remote controls for the teams they just had to build the aircrafts.
Also, I think that it would be pretty well assumed what design they will use because of the expert. The good example I can think of is the submersible episode. The NERDS had a guy that designed submersible that pulled you and the other expert worked on submarines that you ride in. Sure enought that’s what each team built according to their expert’s expertise.

I am so in love with this show! I am a mechanical black hole- not only do I not have any mech. ability, I suck it out of anything that comes too close.

I’ve noticed I have to pay really close attention to the dialog or I get lost in the Brit-speak. By the way, what the hell does “bodge” mean? I’ve got a good idea, but what is the US equivalent?