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A tiny gauss rifle built from only a few strong magnets. (It's not a coil or rail gun since its got no electromagnets, so I went with gauss rifle.)
 
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Step 1: Acquire magnets

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You will want some strong rare earth (Neodymium) magnets of two sizes. The larger size should be a ring magnet. The smaller magnet can be a ring or cylinder, and should fit snuggly into the first one. You can actually stack together several magnets, but single cylinders might work better.

I get my rare earth magnets from http://www.kjmagnetics.com/

Step 2: Arrange magnets

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Place the smaller magnet(s) end to end with the larger ring magnet(s). It should attract end to end but be off center as shown. If you attempt to join the magnets at the wrong ends, they will repel. (Although if you try really hard you can get the smaller ones stuck in the bigger. That's not what you want to do.)

Step 3: Load rifle

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Load the rifle by forcing the smaller magnet(s) into the larger. It will go in, but may take some work. Ideally you'll have some of the smaller magnet(s) sticking out both ends, as shown. This is the locked and loaded (and potentially dangerous) state. Be careful.

You'll want to make sure the inner magnet(s) fit into the outer. It should be a snug fit, not loose. It should also not be so tight that it can't shoot back out.

Step 4: Fire!

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Holding the rifle by its sides, point one flat end at a nice, soft, non-living target. The Neodymium magnets are fragile and will break, plus they can hurt people so be really careful.

Firmly push the inner magnet(s) into the outer and it should pop out the other end with greater force.
Cheezpaper4 years ago
some form of RAIL GUNZ FTW!!!
SG1Oniell6 years ago
hate to burst your bubble, but this does not qualify as a rifle.
now you need to tell us how to make a mini (or not :) ) railgun!
They have the railgun! search it
_soapy_9 years ago
You can do a lot better than this design! Buy regular, cheaper neodynium magnets without holes in the middle. Take a bag of steel ball bearings, and some strong glue, and get something to use as a rail, either wood or aluminium. Secure the magnets to the rail three ballbearing sizes apart, with 4 stages. Prime it by adding two BBs to the same side of each of the three magnets. Take a seventh single BB and take aim. Hold the BB a distance from the end of the rail without the BB on it, and roll it towards the magnet. You will fire the BB from the other end across the room! The upper limit is that the magnets shatter when hit too hard. This could be avoided with some lathework, however, for a truely formidable weapon. To "reload" you need to move the BBs back, so it's slower than the above method, but far more powerful, and you won't wory about losing a BB, unlike the expensive magnetic bullets above.
Hi Soapy you said he can do better than this design and you said about BBs flying across the room, i want to know how you make your design because i wanna try it out ....do you have a site that teaches you how to make the BB + magets projectile?
Ark (author)  _soapy_9 years ago
Yup, I already did that. Built the base out of LEGO parts. Used lots of small cube magnets (I think cylinders of the same size as the balls would work better) and steel bearings. I actually think this rifle is more powerful than the standard gauss rifle, at least based on the number of magents used. This one shoots several feet, though I need to get better measurements.

Here's a link to the design you mentioned: http://sci-toys.com/scitoys/scitoys/magnets/gauss.html
schweet i love neodymium magnets.
wotot27 years ago
Could This system be used to launch some sort of toy roller coaster? like maybe knex?
TMan03147 years ago
thats similar to how some roller coaster launches work and how some of their brakes work.they all work with magnets somehow.
cdawg147 years ago
what about developing this design into a self defense type weapon? i mean, does this have the kind of power you need to actually shoot someone and do damage?
what size are the magnets that you used??
aiden1200007 years ago
i doubt this is technichly a rifle as the projectile doesnot spin, it should be a guass gun (but thats not your fault because thats probably what you have seen elsewhere). other wise good idea, whats does it fire like, does it fly straght
you should make a warthog fromHalo 2 or just a regular car and mount it on the back, front, or sides
about how far does it fly?
AntiQuest9 years ago
Will this work with standard magnets that are of a lower Tesla rating than the outer ring magnets? (to reduce cost of projectiles).
Ark (author)  AntiQuest9 years ago
I have no idea. If the larger ring magnets are strong enough, then basic magnets or even some ceramic ones as the projectile may work. I suspect it has to do with the difference in magnetic fields, or some other technical reason. If you try it out, let us know what works.
mount the magnets on a ruler and put a STRONG barrier in front so the little magnet hits the barrier and forces something like a bb forward.
Im looking on the K&J Magnetics website, but arent sure which magnets im supposed to get. What do u recommend?
i think it's the ring mags
b-dog1328 years ago
this is wread i mean it funny.................not lol
Drusky8 years ago
It would be interesting to mount a feww of these hollow ring magnets inline with tube lengths of the same id and drop a BB through
another sorce for magnets is www.leevally.com
what size magnets did you use?
g_c_c9 years ago
You know, this could be a really good teacher's kit, you could use it to teach younger kids about magnets in general and maybe high school kids about the relationship between initial velocity of charged particles and the force exerted on them.
ingeeeniouse
lol
iman9 years ago
I was being sarcastic
pipo9 years ago
if you do that which iman sais, you'll have the risk of destructing the image colors of the screen..it might proof very difficult to fix if longer exposed to magnets
iman9 years ago
something really fun would be to it aim at a tv and see if it sticks
benjgvps9 years ago
It would be nice to know witch end it will come out:)
Ark (author)  benjgvps9 years ago
It doesn't seem likely that it will launch on its own. You push on one end and it shoots out the other. If the fit was a bit on the loose side, it may tend to launch on its own, but mine was petty snug. Travels a few feet too.