Instructables

Altoids Danger Demolition Racer

Contest Winner
Picture of Altoids Danger Demolition Racer
Altoids Danger Demolition Racer screams 20 feet or more across the floor with rubber band power. Knock down card houses or K'nex robots.
 
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: Prep the Can

Picture of Prep the Can
The Altoids tin is strong and light and makes a good chassis for this air car.

You will need a balsa wood rubber band airplane - the kind with the red propeller is best:
Guillow Sky Streak

You can buy these at most toy shops, hobby shops, discount stores, or drugstores for a dollar or so.

But you probably have a broken one already at home !

Hold the Altoids tin on the airplane's body and mark the tin at the center of the motor hook.

Do this on both ends of the Altoids tin.

Step 2: Punch Holes

Picture of Punch Holes
Use a standard paper punch.

Punch a hole at each end of the can.

The hole should be centered on the marks you made in the last step.

Step 4: Attach Wheel Struts

Picture of Attach Wheel Struts
Duct tape the two wheel struts to the Altoids tin bottom.

Use beads or plastic bottle caps for wheels (see intro photo).

Milk jug caps work great. Just poke a hole in the center with a small nail or awl.

Bend the wires to hold the wheels in place.

Step 5: New Engine Mount

Now you will make a replacement engine mount. Normally the propeller holder fits on to the end of the airplane body.

If you want to save the airplane stick and not have to cut off a section, you can use a paper clip to hold the propeller in place.

Gently squeeze the small loop on the paper clip with pliers.

This is so the loop will fit in the grooves on the propeller holder.

If your propeller holder does not have notches, you can use a 2 inch piece of the original balsa airplane body, or popsicle sticks, to attach it to the Altoids tin.
pieman124 years ago
i made one of theese and it allways goes in a question mark pattern. plz help
007dna pieman123 years ago
Try bending the wheels to correct the path....?
iectyx3c (author)  007dna3 years ago

I agree with 007, try bending the wires.

Are you using beads or wheels, I wonder?

Beads work well because they do not wobble like a wheel. And if they do not turn evenly, it does not matter, because they slide smoothly

In fact you can build the propeller-car without any wheels or beads and it will still work on a flat, smooth floor, using the paper clips as skids.
libr0466.jpg
Very nice! I happened to have a small motor and made a motor-powered car based upon your design.
Dante90304 years ago
i would build but i dont feel like buyin some altoids
i already hav it
mohnish mohnish4 years ago
:P
corey114 years ago
Does it actually fly? I think it will be to heavy
freed2174 years ago
ya add the wings that came from the air plane kit. the wings r light weiht and long
TyMan2104 years ago
When i make it i'm going to add wings.
thing 24 years ago
this is cool nice work!!! :-) now go have some coffae (kof-ay) ~D|
iSmack4 years ago
I'm definitely doing this next time I go pickup some stuff at Walgreens :P
Speedmite4 years ago
Easy, simple, new creative twist on old rubber band stuff. I like.
kuhldad4 years ago
Wow! Your simple design overcame our biggest challenge, the pull of the rubber band displacing the propeller support. I didn't know about Instructables back when we built our propeller car or we would have done some things differently. Thanks for the posting.
iectyx3c (author)  kuhldad4 years ago
Thanks - your propeller car looks like it works great. Why not build both and race 'em? I use Altoids tins because they are light and strong. And paper clips so I would not have to break my rubber band plane stick.
I'll have to give that a try and post the video results! That is if I haven't used all my Altoids tins for geocaching. v/r Kuhldad
This looks great! Does it tend to turn to left due to p-factor (greater lift on right down-stroke blade from higher angle of attack)? I guess you could also make it turn by bending it's "landing gear". Thanks for posting. This will make a great Cub Scouts project!
iectyx3c (author)  highwingpilot4 years ago
The P-factor is certainly an issue. But luckily the gyroscopic force of the Cub Scout beads used for wheels tends to overcome it ;)
Extremely cool!
this is way cool! altoids and duct tape.. what's not to love!?
TRL10875 years ago
This is great! The construction is simple, and the parts are common (that's a biggie). I might suggest a more aerodynamic body, just to increase speed and distance. Great Job!
iectyx3c (author)  TRL10875 years ago
You are so right. I thought of making light cardboard or card stock fairings to streamline it and I bet it would go faster and further just like you say. The Altoids tin is super light and very rigid which is essential for a good sturdy frame. If you build it, you'll be amazed at how fast it goes. Experimenting a bit, I learned that the red caps from milk jugs look very cool and make it go faster than the beads shown here.
hg3415 years ago
nice how far will it go?
the first pic look really good
iectyx3c (author)  hg3415 years ago
Thanks - it goes at least 20 feet at full speed - then since the propeller is free-wheeling it might roll on even further. It depends a lot on the wheels and how smooth the floor is too.
hg341 iectyx3c5 years ago
cool i might do this
budsiskos5 years ago
i made an electric version of this about 2 years ago. i was waiting for someone else to do somthing like it.
iectyx3c (author)  budsiskos5 years ago
Your electric ornithopter 'ible is tremendous ! An electric Altoids Air Car would be cool, hope you will post a link here.
lemonie5 years ago
Any chance of a video? (looks powerful!) L
iectyx3c (author)  lemonie5 years ago
  • Yes you are right, the Altoids Air Car sure is powerful
  • I wish I could post a video.
  • It just blazes straight down the hallway like a rocket.
  • Great for hall racing at school BTW (get the science teacher to sponsor you)
I must have a go at something like this - I have enough elastic-bands... L
Pro

Get More Out of Instructables

Already have an Account?

close

PDF Downloads
As a Pro member, you will gain access to download any Instructable in the PDF format. You also have the ability to customize your PDF download.

Upgrade to Pro today!