Vroomba, the world’s fastest vacuum, reaches speed of over 55 km/h

YouTuber Alister Laidlaw created the Guinness Records certified "world's fastest robotic vacuum," a Roomba device capable of reaching a top speed of 57km/h.

Most Roombas are known for their relaxed pace and occasionally bumping into walls — but the Vroomba, the newly declared “world’s fastest robotic vacuum,” can do so much more.

Guinness World Records on Tuesday announced the new accomplishment in a congratulatory press release for the aptly named Vroomba and its creator, YouTuber Alister Laidlaw.

Laidlaw, an Australian, constructed the Vroomba by modifying an existing iRobot Roomba vacuum with high-performance electronics, 3D printed material and remote control (RC) gear. During one of his test drives, the tricked-out vacuum reached a top speed of 57 km/h, easily sweeping away any possible competition.

The process to build the Vroomba, and its many variations, was documented on Laidlaw’s YouTube channel, Electrosync.

To earn the Guinness honour, Laidlaw assigned himself four criteria: the vacuum had to look like a Roomba, had to use two drive wheels, have one motor per wheel, and, of course, it had to have functional sucking power.

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Off the bat, Laidlaw faced trouble fitting all the necessary components into the Roomba’s body, while also keeping the machine aerodynamic.

He stripped the Roomba down to its bare parts and started from scratch. Many of the Vroomba’s new pieces were 3D printed for a custom fit. Laidlaw had to creatively solve problems to do with balance, control and, simply, keeping the Vroomba in one piece.

In the end, the Vroomba functioned like an RC car. Laidlaw’s first test run saw the Vroomba reach a maximum speed of 36 km/h.

As he increased the Vroomba’s power, Laidlaw said it became more difficult to control.

But then, after some more modifications and a few more runs, Laidlaw finally saw his Vroomba fly by at an impressive 57 km/h — the same speed as that of a running grizzly bear.

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In a second video, Laidlaw took feedback from his followers and tried to improve the Vroomba’s design. He changed the wheel composition, the RC steering mechanism and even added a spoiler to the back, like that of a sports car.

He took the revamped Vroomba to an RC track. Though it did not set a new speed record, the Vroomba whipped around the track with impressive speed and agility — that is, until a later test run saw the Vroomba crash and split into four parts. One part disappeared down a storm drain.

The Vroomba was dead, but at least it wouldn’t be sitting around collecting dust.

In his second video, Laidlaw said he submitted his record attempt to Guinness, who told Laidlaw his design was a “product or company record” because it draws attention specifically to the Roomba brand. His application was initially rejected, though it is unclear what changed since.

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Laidlaw said he was inspired to create the fastest Roomba after seeing a number of other videos online falsely claiming the title. He has over 50,000 subscribers on YouTube, where he posts regular videos about RC technology and 3D printing.

He said he also plans to keep working on the Vroomba and will make more improvements to its speed and handling in the future.

For anyone looking to race vacuums or potentially speed-clean their home, the Vroomba is not commercially available.

Click to play video: 'Travel Drumheller organizing Guinness World Record attempt'
Travel Drumheller organizing Guinness World Record attempt

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