I was tired of making mechanical pencil launchers, so I wanted to make something different. I figured I should make something simple and small because there would be less pieces to break and less things to go wrong. As I was trying to think of something to build, I thought about lip stick cases. I heard that people make cap launchers out of them so I figured I would give it a try.
This is a very simple and cheap build. All of the pieces needed are already in the tube.The only difficulty is getting the turning wheel off of the tube.
Step 1: Disassemble the Tube
Simply twist the wheel at the bottom until the actual product comes out. There should be a small plastic cap attached to the wax, pull that off. Now comes the tricky part, you have to remove the wheel on the bottom.I found that the best method to removing it is to work it with your fingers, then slip something thin but sturdy between the wheel and the body of the tube. After that you can easily pry the wheel off. Feel free to lay them out as the diagram shows.
NOTE: You will not need the "wax" part of the tube.
Step 2: Creating "The Plunger System"
The first image shows what I call "The Plunger System" without the tube covering the mechanism. In order to build it, you need the cap that you took off of the wax and the wheel. Take the flatter end of the cap and slide that in the tube facing toward the top. Push it all of the way into the base (You may use the wheel to push it down) and screw the wheel into the cap through the bottom of the tube as shown in the second picture.
Step 3: Launch the Cap
Once you have built your "Plunger System" you are ready to launch it. All you need to do is pull the wheel all of the way back, put on the cap, and with one quick motion hit the wheel. You should take care to hit it straight on, otherwise it could bend and snap. You might want to paint the cap a bright color so when you launch it, you can eaisly find it. You now have a small, air-powered launcher.