WE caught up with YouTube’s craziest inventor and author of This Book Is Not Safe!, Colin Furze!
For our readers who might not have heard of you before, what’s your channel about?
So I make YouTube videos, but I suppose more importantly I make crazy inventions and ideas into reality! You name it, I have a crack at it.
How long have you been inventing?
I always liked fire and things as a kid, LEGO and Meccano. I was fascinated by fairground rides, too; seeing them put together, off the back of a lorry. I remember trying to make one out of Meccano, with bits of wood and toilet rolls!
Since then you’ve made some truly epic things! What’s been your favourite project?
I think the magnet shoes! They were really cheap to make, and nobody had done anything like it before. But each one has its own story behind it. It’s really tricky to pick a favourite!
And I’m sure First News readers would love to know, which was the most dangerous?
The jet bike or the 360 swing, probably. The jet bike wasn’t very stable, and if you fell off you’d fall into a massive hot jet-engine. I’ve burnt myself on a jetengine before. I won’t be doing that again…
Have you had ideas for inventions that you haven’t been able to do?
Not really. It’s all just stuff I haven’t got around to doing yet! Like the hover bike. That was always one I wanted to do and didn’t. And although when I did, it could have been a bit better, I think for one guy in a shed I did pretty well!
You wear quite the uniform on your channel. Is there a story behind it?
It comes from my early videos, the ‘wall of death’ videos. I was riding this old moped, that looked like the kind of thing that an old man would ride. So every time I did, I’d dress as an old man. I never wore a helmet, and when people would comment on it, others would say: “He doesn’t need a helmet, he’s got a shirt and tie on!” So it kind of became my socalled ‘safety tie’. [FIRST NEWS DISCLAIMER: ALWAYS WEAR A HELMET!]
You used to be a plumber, so how does being a YouTube mad scientist compare?
You get people looking at you a bit funny sometimes, but it’s more like: “Are they looking at me because they recognise me from the internet,” instead of: “Are they looking at me because I’ve got a bit of toilet paper on my shoe?!”
Do you still use any of your inventions? Like doing the hoovering with your vacuum shoes?
The vacuum shoes work, but they’re not exactly easier to use than a normal hoover! Something will go wrong with them. I am in the bunker every day, and the doorbell gets a lot of usage.
What inspired you to write the book?
I’ve had all-sorts of people ask me: “How do I start doing things like this?” and this book is my answer. Basically me answering 1,000 emails at once. The book is filled with projects, which start off easy – basically screwing in nuts and bolts. But you only need to know a few basic things to make something quite cool.
This Book Isn’t Safe! by Colin Furze is published by Puffin, priced £14.99.