When 17 year old Hayden Parker says he’s a backyard scientist, he means it literally. He’s converted the family backyard BBQ area into an outdoor chemistry lab where he shoots videos of his experiments. It’s a little harrowing watching him do some of these procedures, such as synthesizing nitric acid, and making some critical mistakes (which he apologizes for in his YouTube descriptions). Hayden: Be careful! We dig your enthusiasm and curiosity, but we don’t want to see people in Hazmat suits swarming over your backyard on the evening news!

In this video, Hayden gives a tour of his lab, which is a good place to start with his YouTube offerings. [Thanks to MAKE subscriber Jon Rutlen for sending us this link!]

Backyard Chemistry

See more lab set up and chemistry projects in the Make: Science Room

Gareth Branwyn

Gareth Branwyn

Gareth Branwyn is a freelancer writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of over a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture. He is currently a contributor for Boing Boing and WINK Books. And he has a new best-of writing collection and “lazy man’s memoir,” called Borg Like Me.