Making a Foam Dart Gun (check Legality in Your State, Ages 18+ Only Please)

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Introduction: Making a Foam Dart Gun (check Legality in Your State, Ages 18+ Only Please)

About: My background: -over 10 years of welding experience and an AS degree in welding technology. I am also a welding instructor at TechShop Menlo Park. I am proficient in TIG, MIG, SMAW and oxy-acetylene. -se...

This whole project was made at TechShop, a nationwide "Do It Yourself" workshop.
Blow guns are not legal in every state or country.  Please check the legality of completing this instructable before continuing.  These foam dart guns can fire a projectile with extreme velocity.  Only responsible adults should complete this instructable.  Do not shoot darts at people!

To build and use this foam dart gun you will need a buy a few things.
-PVC pipe
-foam darts (this build is based upon Nerf brand whistler darts)
-string or twine
-duct tape
-paint is optional

Very few tools are needed to complete the build.
-some kind of saw (hacksaw will be fine, I will use a vertical band saw in this instructable)
-a dremel tool (sand paper will work as well)

Step 1: Purchase of Tube

Get yourself some 1/2" inside diameter PVC pipe.  Note that the inside diameter measured with a caliper should be approximately 0.585".  If you are using a different size dart, you may need to change the inner diameter of your pipe.  If you are using a different size dart, measure its diameter (at the widest point) with a caliper.  Allow 0.03" of clearance between the dart and the inner diameter of the tube.

Step 2: Cutting Your PVC Pipe to Length

Use a vertical bandsaw to cut your pipe to the proper length.  I have found 17.5" to be sufficient.

Step 3: Notch the Pipe

Put two small notches in the pipe (one at each green mark) so that a piece of string will fit snugly across the diameter of the pipe.  You can use a hacksaw to create the notch.

Step 4: Rounding the Edges of the Pipe

Round both of the openings of the pipe.  This is to help stop you from cutting your lips or hands on the sharp plastic.  If you want to paint the gun, now is the time to do it!  Do not get any paint on the inside of the pipe as it may decrease the size of the inside diameter of the pipe.

Step 5: Protect Yer Neck!

To help protect you from accidentally sucking a dart into your throat, we will put a piece of string over the mouthpiece hole.  We prevent the string from moving around by putting it into the notch that we created with the hacksaw.  The string is held in place by a piece of electrical or duct tape.

Step 6: Loading the Dart and Using the Gun

Push the dart into the open end of the tube with the whistle entering the gun last.  Use a stick to push the dart all the way to the bottom of the pipe.  Blow into the end of the tube that is protected by the string to fire the dart.

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    8 Comments

    If you want something a bit more advanced and have a 3D printer laying around I suggest you check out this project!
    http://www.techstuffed.com/3d-printed-robotic-foam-dart-launcher-nerf-gun-interview-with-the-maker

    It's on Kickstarter now for 21 more days!
    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1450307368/fdl-1-3d-printed-robotic-foam-dart-launcher

    I don't want to be responsible for some kid shooting his friends eye out! Or choking on a dart. I also have found out that any projectile powered by a blow gun is illegal in California, so I want to make sure that adults are making these things so they can check legality in their state.

    If this is made with intent on using only nerf darts, then it should be safe (to a degree) but I do understand why you put 18 plus.

    2 replies

    I was surprised at how hard the darts shoot out of this thing. If kids were to "play" with one of these I see potential danger. This gun should only be used to shoot targets. Thanks for the first comment!

    OH NO! THERE'S NO ADULTS!!! oh wait me.