Pools these days are packed with rafts of every shape and size; unicorns, riding bulls, poop emojis.
But these weren’t the first designs constructed.
By Taylor Harkey and Phil DaviesLong before a plastic slice of pizza or a donut with a bite in it became the summer rage, the world’s most cutting-edge designers were pushing the envelope of pool floats—and drowning in failure. Here are the top pool-float designs, unanimously rejected by society as a whole.
Design: Electric Chair
Description: In this king-like throne-raft, the floater sat down and strapped their wrists to the arms of the float. The back of the raft had a series of live wires that plugged into the nearest outlet and came with an optional stick accessory to bite down on before the show began.
Recalled for: Basically every single thing you just read. Pretty obvious, really.
Fail Scale: X X X X X X
DEAD MAN’S FLOAT
Design: Floating Body
Description: This human-like raft resembled a body, floating face down in the water, torturing public-pool lifeguards across the country. It came in two carcass styles: Freshly Found and Belatedly Bloated.
Recalled for: Accidentally making the 11 o’clock news every single night.
Fail Scale: X X X X X X X
Design: Easy-Bake Appliance
Description: This box-shaped float looked like an inflated oven with a functional front door that opened and closed. Kids would put on the [included] inflatable Dutch hats and oven mitts, then crawl in through the back of the Dutch oven, then waft out the front.
Recalled for: Insulting the Dutch community and giving actual Dutch ovens an even worse name.
Fail Scale: X X X
Design: Large Intestine
Description: Modeled after its predecessor, the small intestine, this raft curved and coiled in hundreds of shapes—all of which were the shape of the large intestine.
Recalled for: Rupturing at a 68th birthday party and contaminating the entire water supply of an active senior-living facility.
Fail Scale: X X X X
SPRAY N’ PLAY
Design: A Bidet
Description: This tube-like float featured a foam noodle underneath it that extended upward. It was powered by a large, rubber air bulb similar to a blood pressure air squeezie thing. The rider would sit down and squeeze the bulb, firing a stream of water straight up into his/her balloon knot.
Recalled for: Putting local enema companies out of business. (Apparently those exist…)
Fail Scale: X X