Instructables

Water Balloon Catapult

Make a wicked cool catapult that shoots water balloons really well without them exploding right away! You can buy water balloon shooters in stores, but they never work well and explode the water balloon as soon as you let go.
 
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Step 2: Cut the pattern for the rag

The rag will become the pocket for the water balloon. It should be cut in a big "+" pattern. So, make a big 14" by 14" (it doesn't need to be perfect) square and cut out 3" by 3" pieces from the corners. You will want two of the tabs to be able to fold over the wood, so plan accordingly.

Step 3: Put it together

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Lay a piece of wood on one of the tabs. Then fold the rag over the wood and wrap the duct tape around it so the wood is stuck inside. Repeat for the opposite side and the other piece of wood.

Next, lay out the surgical tubing so that it runs over one of the other two tabs. Then curve it 180 degrees so that it runs down the other side of the rag. Once again, tape the rag over the tubing. Make sure you don't actually tape the tubing so that the pocket can slide freely up and down the tubing. Tape all of the corners and seams to reinforce them. You can not have to much tape on this project.
CreativeGeek7 months ago
You could substitute water for paint, mud, paste, or any other type of goop as long as it's harmless as well.
I luv dis.
insted of tubing could i just tie a ton of rubber bands togeter.
you'd need like a whold TON of rubber bands
na, that prolly wouldnt work, unless you have reeaally good rubber bands theyre prolly gonna snap pretty fast, i made a slingshot about 6 ft tall that shot pebbles about 150 ft using rubber bands, they snapped after 50 uses or sumthing like that, so i dont suggest it.
I'll bet bike inner tubes would work well.
slimguy3795 years ago
where do yo get surgical tubing?
some ace hardware stores carry tubing like this. or medical supply stores may as well.
do you mean like this kind http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-100183224/h_d2/ProductDisplay?langId=-1&storeId=10051&catalogId=10053
i know it says latex hose however it's really latex tubing.remeber this is for constructive and reponsible use
yeah thats it. very useful stuff
store
thank now i know what one to get it from, thanks
no problem
ShNitZulll2 years ago
@backyardpyro217 that's because, assuming that they launched the balloon at less than the balloon's terminal velocity, the balloon would be going roughly the same speed at which it was launched when it landed.
dsmith12 years ago
Instead of the rag and duct tape pocket to hold the water balloon in, i used the top half of a coke bottle, and just roll the cut edge to stop the edge cutting the balloon and it strengthens the cup ring to attach the bungie cord to. Drill holes through the threaded end and thread a some cord through it to make a loop to pull back the balloon cup. These work awesome.
alex46463 years ago
sorry to get technical on you but this is a slingshot, not exactly a catapult
Haha my thought exactly!
adamnsmith2 years ago
can it shoot more than water balloons... like fire crackers?
what about grenades and molotovs? MUAHAHAHAHAHAHA! i actually know a guy who made this with a few of his buddies, they were able to launch a water balloon about two blocks and still take out a window XD
Hitman2272 years ago
HeHe... I made one like this ( used a funnel instead ) and it can take bark off trees at about 200ft, it's a little to powerful to use on human targets. =( Great job!
Wow that would sting like heck if it hit somebody
Yeah, mostly for firing at stationary targets. =(
tracerb1237 years ago
That isn't a catapult. That is a slingshot. A catapult would be something like what you see in medieval times movies.
a slingshot is a type of catapult (which they don't mention in the movies) ;)

http://wordnet.princeton.edu/perl/webwn?s=catapult
http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/catapult

Aircraft carriers use catapults to launch planes... Some roller coasters use catapults (just about anything that adds momentum without a chain lift)... A trebuchet also happens to be a type of catapult... Even a crossbow is technically a catapult :P
It doesn't say in those definitions (they are somewhat cursory - although the princeton one alludes to this by saying a "heavy" engine), but generally catapults have to not be handheld devices, so not a crossbow (which agrees with our gut feelings that a crossbow is kind of a silly thing to call a catapult - and also the fact that nobody ever calls them that in practice).
why are we even haveing this arguement. it dosent matter what you call it it still works the same.
intoon (author)  tracerb1237 years ago
I guess you missed the big discussion on this matter last month. A slingshot is something that you swing around (i.e. David and Goliath) and release shot out of. What we call slingshots are actually types of catapults.
Ironstar intoon5 years ago
Actually...the david and goliath story used a SLING, which was simply a pouch at the end of 2 cords... similar to the slingshot, but still quite different. Sling: Pouch, 2 cords, uses whirling action for propulsion Slingshot: Pouch, 2 rubberized cords connected between the pouch and a forked shape, uses stretchability for propulsion.
Too true. Also, both slings and slingshots typically would be handheld too, making them not catapults. Since this is tied to a tree, it probably qualifies as a catapult (though possibly still also a slingshot. The two can overlap)
So true, so true.
depend on where you are a catapult and slingshot vary in meaning in britain versus U.S.
I have a store bought one, and it works fine, never had any problems with it. Also, if you tie one end to something, in my experience with multiple launchers, there is a good chance that the balloon won't leave the pouch and will come back at you. I highly recommend having to friends hold the ends of tubing much better and actually safer.
depends on the friends especialy mine.
King Crab4 years ago
I have a feeling that if I told my friend to hold one end, he'd either get pulled over when I pull back, or he'd just let go and I'd go flying back. Either way, it would end badly.
johnlin1184 years ago
how did this get so dirty?
popa272724 years ago
im building a balista for a phsics project too this will be alot of help because i was wondering how to keep the pocket open
this is gonna be fun can u use a huge rubber band that can stretch 2 like 20 feet
dude this is sweet now i can shoot my 2 sisters thanks man
AWSOMENESS!!!!!! I wish i had one of these to soak my buddies!
Mine!5 years ago
Sweet! I think I'm going to try it... MWAHAHAH!
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