“Soy Pedro el pintor y pinto con Procolor”
That line, my father used to sing, comes into my mind every time I think of myself as an inventor . Who knows why.
All I know is that it comes from a very old spanish paint commercial.
Since I was a little kid I have enjoyed creating my own little inventions. For the most part I used Lego to build my visions. In time, when more money become available I started to use other materials and much more elaborated manufacturing techniques, such as laser cutting and stainless steel used in my CVT.
The first successful invention I can recall I created when I was 12 years old. Back in the old house we used to live in Bilbao we had a multitude of rodents (big rats) visiting our backyard every summer. They only came at night time when we were sleeping and I really wanted to see one alive instead of poisoned, killed with a trap or slaughtered by my dog. The challenge was to create a device that would catch an specimen without harming it.
To accomplish this feat, I modified and existing bird cage and with some plastiline, a cardboard platform attached to the gate and some cheese crums bait I created my first rat trap.
Previously, my dad had attempted to modify that cage using a couple of photoelectric cells, a solenoid connected to the gate, and a circuit he spent hours designing and testing. Rats never got caught with that.
However, my 30 minutes fix-up reaped results in just one night. The morning after setting the trap, I rushed outside and there it was, a humongous rat, victim of my ingenuity. The rat ate all the cheese and even the plastiline. Then, I started to torment the rat by doing experiments. The thing that caught most my attention was the rat’s sensibility to loud noises. Every time I shout at it, the rat would jump scared like a spring against the top of the cage. Eventually, and not after several hours of psychological torture my mom convinced me to free the poor nasty rodent.