Instructables
Picture of Powerful air cannon
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dDp7Ool6Qwc

This instructable will show you how to create an air cannon. Most of these supplies can be found at a home depot or other hardware store. The rest can be ordered off amazon. This is a moderately hard project.


I do not take any responsibility for injuries or damages done. Read and fully understand the document before proceeding. Follow all directions carefully for best results.


What did I make?

I made a powerful air powered cannon.I had all the tools I needed at home.A Hacksaw, a ruler/measuring tape, a drill/ drill bits, scissors, pliers, and an air pump with a meter. The rest of the supplies I had to buy from home depot and amazon.com. This cannon works by storing air in a chamber and pressuring the air. Then the air is released in an instant into the barrel of the gun. A projectile is stored in the barrel and this prevents the air from escaping the barrel. The air pushes out the projectile at high speeds. 

How did I make it?

I got this idea from the air soft gun I made a while ago.I wanted something larger, and more powerful. I made his gun by myself, consulting the internet for help, such as hoe to make something air tight, and how to glue PVC. The plans definitely changed as the project progressed. I figured the simpler the design, the easier and more efficient the machine would be. So, I changed the design as I went to benefit the cost and efficiency.  

Where did you make it?

I made the whole cannon at home in my back yard. I don't have a work shop so I used my concrete patio for all the cutting, gluing, and assembling. This was a fun project to build, as well as use after the construction was complete. 

What did you learn?

I learned that making something airtight is harder than it seems. I used epoxy and PVC cement to make sure absolutely no air escaped. Also, I learned that you always should give a sufficient amount of time for glue or other bonding materials to dry and set. If I did this project again, I would use a remote valve as a trigger instead of a ball valve. This would make the release of air faster, and therefore giving more power to the projectile.
 
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DanTDM7 months ago

Never use foam core pipe or hub-hub DWV reducers. All pipe and fittings must say NSF-pw or NSF-61. Valves are always safe and you do not have to worry. Instead of reducers, use couplers and bushing reducers. You should still never use PVC. Just order plastic air compressor pipe online. Steel, black iron or copper pipe are also great choices.

DanTDM7 months ago

Use a gas ball valve. It is brass and threaded. Mine is rated to 200 psi, some are rated to 600. I built a steel mini air cannon with a 1 foot 1 1/2 inch tank and a pressure gauge. It is light, easy to pump up, easy to load and easy to fire. The reason is gas ball valves are made very accurately made so they stop gas completely to prevent an explosion.

"NEVER look down the barrel."
It's sad that some people need to be told these things.

You are right. Even if it looks depressurized, the gauge could be stuck, Even without ammo, the burst of air can rupture the lungs!

rajasekeraj (author) 1 year ago
Thank you for the criticism! However, I have a couple reasons for using a ball valve. First, I was having a hard time finding any other 2" diameter valves(this is a CANNON). Also, ball valves are rated for very high pressures. They are very hardy and can take a beating. Finally, they are very cheap and can be picked up at any hardware store. These plans are for a pneumatic air cannon.
For qev valves. You can buy 2 inch versions but they are expensive so you would have to end up making one. Also you can improve the ball valve by making it spring loaded so it opens faster
rajasekeraj (author)  Coolnventions1 year ago
That's a great idea! I will definitely look into making it easier to open the valve.
this one is powered by a ball valve, not a very efficient system, actually one of the most inefficient, research QEV Valves, they give the most power, or research "coaxial air cannon" which is also more efficient and powerful.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Co-Axial-Pneumatic-BB-Gun/