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A Homebrew Ramrocket

Or, the Syringe Popgun Grows Up

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#1 Carbon

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Posted 17 May 2006 - 08:58 PM

This is something that started out as a basic water gun, but showed itself to be a lot more functional. My daughter had asked if we could build a water gun. As it turned out, I had an unused SNAP gasket set up on a .5" endcap. Thirty seconds of rummaging through my parts yielded everything I needed (A .5" tee, a 1" to .75" reducing bushing, and PVC in .5" sched 40 and 1" thinwall). I even had a 1" endcap that happened to have a hole in it. Put it all together, and this is what you get.

The amusing thing is, they're selling something like this at K-Mart for around $15.
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Here's the plunger.
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Anyway, it works very well as a watergun. Tonight, I was playing around, pumping it, and decided to pop a barrel on it. Typical SNAP construction, 1" => .5" reducing bushing, and one of my fixed barrels.

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Size comparison with the SNAP-1:
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That's a lot of slow air.

I shot it around the house for a bit, and found that it really had some power behind it. I took advantage of the break in the rain with no wind, and did some range testing. I tried a stock Mega whistler (stuck in the end of 21/32" brass) and got 50' and 55'. Micro stefans were a lot more fun: five shots yielded ranges of 80', 85', 85', 85' and 90'. Accuracy is a challenge, as the rear hand moving forward tends to jostle the barrel....but I was able to fire to the same general spot every time.

The immediate practical applications of this are about nil, except for fun. It's not accurate enough to take advantage of its range, and the concept of a breech/magazine for faster ROF is silly. As a Nerf gun, it makes a much better water gun, really. However...this could be a lot of fun with a larger diameter plunger (like from the Big SNAP) and homemade pool noodle rockets.

Edited by Carbon, 30 May 2016 - 04:55 PM.

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#2 Forsaken angel24

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Posted 17 May 2006 - 11:25 PM

Snap 1 is looking very sexy. How much would you say this gun would cost in parts in comparison to the $15 one at K mart.
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#3 m15399

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Posted 18 May 2006 - 12:10 AM

I made something like that with 3/4" PVC a while ago. I've been planning on testing it with nerf darts, but never got around to it.
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#4 Carbon

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Posted 18 May 2006 - 06:12 AM

Snap 1 is looking very sexy. How much would you say this gun would cost in parts in comparison to the $15 one at K mart.


If you had nothing, it would cost about four dollars.

Edited by Carbon, 18 May 2006 - 07:46 AM.

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#5 CaMbLaM

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Posted 30 May 2006 - 10:52 AM

I think this gun could have a lot more potential if you could get rid for having to move you rear hand. Just sitting here I can think of on way to do that. Please tell me if this way doesnít work for reasons I haven't thought of.

First, I'm thinking you should attach one or two springs the back, but make them tiny springs so they pull on the plunger.

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Second, cut a groove into the plunger to catch on the back of the tube, like how the NF works. Only have this set up so you can cock it and then push up on the plunger to release it.

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#6 Carbon

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Posted 30 May 2006 - 11:11 AM

I think this gun could have a lot more potential if you could get rid for having to move you rear hand. Just sitting here I can think of on way to do that. Please tell me if this way doesnít work for reasons I haven't thought of....


Yup, those would work....although, I think that surgical tubing would probably be a better bet than expansion springs. You'd probably also have to attatch the tubing to somewhere on the outside of the plunger as opposed to the end, due to the length of the stroke (you'd never get tubing to stretch from a half inch to over a foot, much less an expansion spring.) Now that you mention it, a spring like that would make it quite similar to the Uruk-Hai crossbow...I might have to try that out, thanks.

The trigger you mentioned would work as well...it's the same kind I used on the syringe popgun. I want to create a "notched plunger" style of trigger that uses the same kind of spring-loaded catch as a nerf gun, but just haven't had the time lately. Maybe this summer.
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