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walking on hot coals

paul wheaton
Trailboss

Joined: Dec 14, 1998
Posts: 20494
    ∞

I've never done it. I really have no interest. But I seem to be bumping into a lot of people that have done it recently.

And .... I wonder ....

I've never heard of anyone trying it and burning themselves.

I wonder if this is one of those things where people feet don't burn easy. I wonder if has nothing to do with the power of the mind over .... getting burned.

I wonder if somebody that is into piercings, tattoos, scarring, etc. would get all excited about getting burned, then do the same thing everybody else is doing and get to the end of the coals without a burn. (Damn!)


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Vikas Kapoor
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Joined: Aug 16, 2007
Posts: 1374
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fire-walking#Factors_that_prevent_burning

I knew the 4th point. Time of contact is also one of the crucial factors in it.
fred rosenberger
lowercase baba
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Joined: Oct 02, 2003
Posts: 11154
    
  16

Coal walking has been looked at by everyone from the Mythbusters to Penn & Teller to James Randi to who knows who else. it has to do more with the preparation of the coals than anything else. there is a layer of ash that coats the coals, which is a pretty good insulator. and you don't stand on the coals very long at all...


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Bear Bibeault
Author and ninkuma
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Joined: Jan 10, 2002
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  65

I don't care how much science is behind it, I ain't walking on no hot coals!


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Arvind Mahendra
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Joined: Jul 14, 2007
Posts: 1162
its physics.physics professor teaches thermodynamics


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Bear Bibeault
Author and ninkuma
Marshal

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  65

I still don't care.
Jeanne Boyarsky
internet detective
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Joined: May 26, 2003
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Despite the physics, it sounds like it would hurt. What if you walk too slowly? what if you fall?


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Pat Farrell
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Joined: Aug 11, 2007
Posts: 4646
    
    5

Jeanne Boyarsky wrote:Despite the physics, it sounds like it would hurt. What if you walk too slowly? what if you fall?

It also helps if you usually walk barefoot, builds callouses.
Brian Legg
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Joined: Nov 07, 2008
Posts: 488
Jeanne Boyarsky wrote:Despite the physics, it sounds like it would hurt. What if you walk too slowly? what if you fall?


I think even if you were to fall you could just roll off the path of fire and be fine, however I wouldn't recommend fire-walking to anyone who's accident prone.

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W. Joe Smith
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Joined: Feb 10, 2009
Posts: 710
If I remember correctly, there are 3 main components to walking on coals, but I can only remember two:

1. Walk at a normal pace. If a person walks faster or with an unusual stride it will stir up the coals which will burn your feet. If you walk at a normal stride each step puts your foot on the coals for less than a second.

2. The way the coals are spread out. The temperature on the top of the coals (where you walk) is way cooler than you'd anticipate (I believe it was approx. 300 degrees F, as compared to around 750 degrees F underneath, but I can't remember for sure on the temperatures). While it is still quite warm, the short length of time means you won't burn your feet. Going along with number 1, however, if you walk quickly or with an unusual stride you will stir up the coals and get the 750 degree painfulness.

I watched the Mythbusters episode on this, and it was pretty cool. Kari, Grant and Tory all walked on coals fine with there first try after VERY minimal training. I'd like to try it sometime.


SCJA
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Jeanne Boyarsky
internet detective
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150

Brian Legg wrote:I think even if you were to fall you could just roll off the path of fire and be fine, however I wouldn't recommend fire-walking to anyone who's accident prone.

Rolling on the path of coals sounds even less fun that walking on them!
Amit Ghorpade
Bartender

Joined: Jun 06, 2007
Posts: 2716
    
    6

Brian Legg wrote:

I think even if you were to fall you could just roll off the path of fire and be fine, however I wouldn't recommend fire-walking to anyone who's accident prone.

Well I have seen people walking in a pit of burning wood (not coal) so if someone falls, there is no chance of getting out unhurt.
Also since its burning wood and not coal, more than half of Wikipedia's reasons don't hold.


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