The Re-Inventors

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The Re-Inventors
Developed by Chris Triffo
Presented by Matt Hunter
Jeremy MacPerson
Country of origin Canada
Running time 22 minutes
Original network History Television
Original release 2008 – 2011
External links

The Re-Inventors is a Canadian TV show based around exploring historic inventions and testing them. The show follows the hosts, Matt Hunter and Jeremy MacPherson, as they discover and reconstruct inventions to see how ideas from the past hold up in the present world. In each episode, the hosts choose a historic invention and attempt to rebuild it. The hosts would examine the original patent information, including blueprints, then, along with additional tradesmen as needed, build the prototypes, and test each of these, often strange, inventions to see if any could actually succeed. Often, a few related inventions would be tested in the same episode. Each invention was given a set of evaluation criteria before being tested. At the end of the episode, the invention was graded and if the invention was considered to have met the evaluation criteria, it was granted the title of 'Patent Approved'. If the invention proved to be less than effective, it was granted the title 'Patent Denied'.

The TV series was developed by Christopher Triffo, CSC; he directed all 35 episodes.

The show was hosted by Matt Hunter and Jeremy MacPherson. Matt Hunter is an artist and craftsman, and played the on-screen contractor on the Canadian lifestyle program Colour Confidenetial for 65 episodes prior to co-hosting The Re-Inventors.[1] Jeremy MacPherson is a special effects artist and carpenter who has worked on hundreds of film and television productions, most notably X-Men, Chicago, Resident Evil: Apocalypse and K-19: The Widowmaker.[2]

On History Television, two half-hour episodes were typically broadcast back-to-back in a one-hour time slot. It aired on the Canadian French TV channel Historia as Absurde et breveté and was dubbed into French. The series is airing in over 60 countries in 30 languages[citation needed] and is currently running on Smithsonian Channel in the USA.[3] The first season was also released on Netflix USA on February 1, 2014.[4]

List of episodes[edit]

Note: Episode listing is based on the two seasons that aired on the Smithsonian Channel. The episodes from 2008-2009 were not shown on the Smithsonian Channel, and the show is no longer associated with or listed on the History Channel website, where the 2008-2009 episodes were aired.

Season 1 (2010)[edit]

Episode Number[5] Name Original Air Date [6] Synopsis Inventor Invention Outcome
1 Fire Fighting Oct. 6, 2010 The team builds and tests two non-water using extinguisher designs from the past, one using chemicals combining to create an extinguishing foam and the other seeking to blow out the flames with gunpowder. Clarence Macomber Foaming Fire Pail (1896) Patent Denied
Ambrose Godfrey Exploding Water Bomb (1723) Patent Denied
2 Double-Barreled Cannon Oct. 6, 2010 The Re-Inventors see what happens when you chain two cannonballs together and try to fire them at the same time. Cyrus Thayer Improved Chain Shot Battery (1860) Patent Denied
3 Life at Sea Oct. 13, 2010 The boys build and test the Davis Life Pod, a device designed to save people trapped at sea. Judson Davis Davis Life Pod (1912) Patent Denied
4 Syrian Torpedo Oct. 13, 2010 The egg which moves itself and burns![7] The team attempts to build an early Syrian torpedo. Hassan Al-Rammah Syrian Torpedo (1275) Patent Approved
5 Bourne Submarine Oct. 20, 2010 The team attempts to build an early submarine. William Bourne Submarine Patent Denied
6 Hydraulic Saw Oct. 20, 2010 Designed in 15th century Renaissance Italy, this saw was meant to harness the power of swift flowing streams and rivers and use this power to cut wood. Francesco di Giorgio Hydraulic Saw Patent Approved
7 Wind Wagon Oct. 27, 2010 A machine, a cross between a windmill and a wagon, that had never been built and tested, until now. Guido da Vigevano Windwagon (1335) Patent Approved
8 Ned Kelly Oct. 27, 2010 The Re-Inventors put homemade armour up to a ballistics test. Ned Kelly Body Armour Patent Approved
9 Earthquake Detector Nov. 3, 2010 The Didong Yi was intended to provide information to the Imperial Court that an earthquake had occurred so relief aid could be dispatched. Zhang Heng Zhang Heng's Seismometer Patent Approved
10 Battering Ram Nov. 3, 2010 Matt and Jeremy get medieval and recreate a full-scale battering ram to see how well they work. Various Patent Approved
11 War Kite Nov. 10, 2010 13th-century Chinese fire arrow technology and a 17th-century Japanese kite design are tested to see if they can help command the battlefield. War kite with fire arrows Patent Approved
12 Pedestrian Protector Nov. 10, 2010 The "Automatic Device for the Protection of Pedestrian and the Vehicle Itself" patented by Heinrich Karl in 1932 is tested. Heinrick Karl Pedestrian and Vehicle Protector Patent Denied
13 Aerosan Nov. 17, 2010 The team builds and tests an Aerosani. Andrei Tupolev NKL 26 Aerosani Patent Approved
14 Ice Boat Nov. 17, 2010 The team builds and tests J. L. Finch's early 1940s ice boat against a modern design. J. L. Finch Ice boat Patent Denied

Season 2 (2011)[edit]

Episode Number[8] Name Original Air Date [9] Synopsis Inventor Invention Outcome
1 Floating Suit July 5, 2011 Inventions ranging from shoes to suits that can help you from drowning. John Edmond Floating Survival Suit Patent Approved
Floating Boat Shoes Patent Denied
2 Gun Helmet July 12, 2011 A World War I era helmet gun is built to see who would be in more danger, the user or the target. Albert Pratt Gun Helmet Patent Approved
3 Flying Machine July 19, 2011 See if some of the ideas that were put forward to figure out how to fly could have beaten the Wright brothers to the sky. Human-Powered Helicopter Patent Denied
W.O. Airs Multiple-propeller human-powered helicopter Patent Denied
4 Flying Car July 26, 2011 With the advent and spread of airplanes and automobiles in the beginning of the 20th century an idea emerged that a marriage of the two would create the ultimate travel miracle. Moulton Taylor Taylor Aerocar Patent Approved
5 Monowheel August 2, 2011 Matt and Jeremy test out designs for a couple of monowheels. Vernon Venerable Human-powered Monowheel Patent Denied
Frank Marcovski Pneumatic bicycle crash suit Patent Denied
6 Invention War August 2, 2011 In this episode, Matt and Jeremy modify a number of their previous inventions and pit them against one another in a bizarre battle scenario. Matt and Jeremy Chinese Flamethrower - Added pressurized air tank No decision
DaVinci's Tank - Added machine gun and flamethrower
DaVinci's Multibarrel Musket - Converted to breech-loader
Rotating Catapult - Added an electric motor
7 Panjandrum August 9, 2011 The team tries to figure out where the World War II Allies went wrong with the Panjandrum project. British Navy's Directorate of Miscellaneous Weapons Development Panjandrum Patent Denied
8 Snow Annihilator August 9, 2011 The inventor of the Snow Annihilator claims the machine has all the answers to winter road maintenance and is tested against the Canadian winter. Benjamin Roman Snow Annihilating Machine (1939) Patent Denied
9 Solar Crematorium August 16, 2011 The Re-Inventors test out the idea for the Solar Crematorium, an invention that used sunlight to cremate dead bodies. Kenneth H. Gardner Solar Powered Crematorium Patent Approved
Coffin Alarm Bell Patent Denied
10 Body Armor August 16, 2011 Two designs from World War I in an attempt to aid a soldier from dangerous weapons. Alfred Bailey Bullet-Proof Enclosure (1915) Patent Approved
L.M. Norwood Combined Trench Shield & Helmet for Soldiers (1915) Patent Denied
11 Roman Crane August 24, 2011 The team attempts to build the Roman crane. Ancient Romans Human-Powered Crane Patent Approved
12 Chinese Rocket August 31, 2011 The Chinese were the first to design and construct a multi-stage rocket. Chinese Navy Chinese Rocket (1300's)

Unlisted Episodes (2008-2009)[edit]

Name Synopsis Inventor Invention Outcome
Chinese Flamethrower The Re-Inventors try to build one of the world's first flamethrower designs. Double-action flamethrower Patent Approved
Da Vinci Chariot Matt and Jeremy find out if Da Vinci's chariot could have found a place on the 15th-century battlefield. Leonardo da Vinci Scythe War Chariot Patent Approved
Da Vinci Gun Leonardo da Vinci designed the world's first 12-barrel machine gun. The team tests how effective it could be in offence and defence. Leonardo da Vinci Multi-barrel musket Patent Approved
Da Vinci Tank The team attempts to build one of Da Vinci's most ambitious projects. Leonardo da Vinci Multiple cannon wheeled mobile armoured platform. Patent Approved
Four-Armed Catapult A design for a 13th-century four-armed catapult that shoots projectiles, using some elements of traditional catapults and trebuchets. 4-armed gravity-driven catapult Patent Denied
Head Parachute Getting people out of a burning high-rise building has been a challenge faced by inventors and designers since people started living in them. Head Parachute Patent Denied
Fire Basket Patent Denied
Modified Parachute for use by light passengers only Patent Approved
Human Propulsion Matt and Jeremy combine machines with muscle and add some rockets, propellers, and jets into the mix. Horace Morrow Propeller-driven skating (1948) Patent Denied
Godfried Mayer Rocket-Propelled Skis (1962) Patent Denied
Godfried Mayer Jet-Propelled Skis (1962) Patent Denied
Incinerating Toilet As populations have increased over the years, so have the ideas for disposal, removal, and processing regarding waste. Hardy Sunberg Dry Waste Incinerating Toilet (1966) Patent Denied
Norman Street Personal Waste Disposal Garment (1993) Patent Denied
Windmill The team digs out plans for an Islamic windmill design. Islamic Windmill Patent Approved

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "The Re-Inventors". Smithsonian Channel. Retrieved December 7, 2014. 
  2. ^ "The Re-Inventors". Smithsonian Channel. Retrieved December 7, 2014. 
  3. ^ "Smithsonian Channel". Retrieved July 16, 2014. 
  4. ^ "All Flicks". Retrieved December 7, 2014. 
  5. ^ "The Re-Inventors". Smithsonia Channel. Retrieved December 7, 2014. 
  6. ^ "". Retrieved December 7, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Smithsonian Channel". Retrieved December 7, 2014. 
  8. ^ "". Retrieved December 7, 2014. 
  9. ^ "". Retrieved December 7, 2014. 

External links[edit]