Welcome to the brick balancing challenge!

I'm back at the construction site, where I did

the brick domino effect in the road over there

and it dawned on me afterwards, now that i've befriended

some construction workers

in fact bonded over unusual ways to lay bricks

I should come back and - you know I've got - I've now got access

to all this construction material, so I explained the

brick balancing challenge to them and

they said I can - I can have a go with their bricks. Right, so:

This is the brick balancing challenge. If you put a brick on an edge

the center of mass of the brick is roughly in the middle

which means you should be able to bring the brick

all the way out to -

Oop!

Okay, there, that's it right there

OK, so that is right on its center of mass. It's right on the edge there.

Just for safety reasons I'm gonna bring it back a tad.

So there we are.

You can get 50 percent of the brick

sticking out over the edge.

Can we do better?

So, brick number two. So if I back

up the brick, brick number two can

balance on brick number one and it can come out

to 50 percent. Oop, there it is, that's it balancing right on the edge there.

Now you can see already that brick number two

is further out than 50%, because there is 50% to there

and we've already got this bit of an overhang.

So let's actually see how far can we bring that overhang

That's probably it

There -- oops -- there.

OK, so - so now

the joint two brick combo is

just balancing on the original edge, and

the second brick is just balancing on the edge

of the first brick. And so look at that, you can see,

we got a decent amount of brick hanging over the edge...

so the challenge is:

Can you continue this pattern until you have a brick with over a 100% overhang?

So is there a brick which is completely off

from the original edge?

I'm gonna try this, there will be some kind of video montage

You can use that time to decide in your own mind,

do you think it is possible for me to do this?

I mean, not possible in terms of my physical constraints

possible mathematically speaking, but okay let's have a go

Alright! There's three

Okay, is that overhanging? What do you - ugh!

uhh. Just to be certain

let's do six.

Okay, I've gone straight for seven,

I'm hoping i can do it in six.

The edge on the concrete blocks, isn't very even

so I'm gonna kinda use this bottom brick

as my official edge

and then I'll see if I can get the six above it

to overhang, okay here we go, first one.

This is to... it feels almost weightless like wobbly bricks

Alright.

I think this one can come a tad more.

That's

That's so close to falling

Is that good enough? Are we gonna accept that?

I could convince myself, that is already fully overhung but

why waste a perfectly good

degree of brick freedom, here we go.

Boy!

Okay! There is it.

I am convinced I've done it.

That this top one is definitely completely off the edge

of this bottom surface there .

So, just by sliding them out, I've managed to get a completely suspended brick.

Look at it! It's hovering in mid-air

well... it's on the other bricks, but you get the idea

and i feel like I've not been optimal, like that gap there is a bit small

but the surface of the bricks is far from ideal

and they don't sit very flush sometimes.

It's crazy looking at it actually, cause you can see all the gaps where each one is just

ready to fall off the one below it.

Your challenge now is, well it's not to make one of these

if you are gonna do it, please be extremely careful and to be honest you can make this

with objects with far less mass than actual building bricks.

The real challenge though is in theory - what is the limit?

What is the theoretical maximum distance this could come out?

If I kept going and these were perfect ideal bricks,

could I get a bricks gap

between the top one and the original edge,

like could I have a brick and then this one out over here?

Could i get three bricks out?

Is there an upper bound on how far this can go?

If you know the answer by the way, no spoilers!

So if you want to put something in the comments

which is a bit of a spoiler,

I don't mind if you do calculations or results for

you would need this many bricks

in theory to get to two, should it be possible,

or three or so on. I don't want anyone ruining

what the actual upper bound is.

I want people to be able to try and work that out, it's kind of fun

and see if you can discover it for yourself.

If you really want to, I'm sure you can look on Google

and find the actual solution to this.

So there you are, that is the brick balancing challenge.

Do try and work it out in theory

I am now gonna try, cause I left this brick flush with the bottom,

I'm gonna see if i can drag it out a little bit

because, I mean ... why, you know

I'm nothing, if not a completist, so I'll see if I can get ...

I need to hold these steady. Drag that out.

Uh! That's too much!

The bricks slide over themselves a lot easier than the concrete block.

Okay, that's out a bit.

We align that.

It barely moved!

Okay.

I think that looks good.

Yes ... Oh no!

[Bricks crash on the floor]

It's okay, I'll pay for those.