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Working with pneumatics

Anyone know how to setup a simple air system? I have a pneumatic air cylinder with dual 1/4 inch NPT threads and a 6 inch throw. Ultimately I would like to have the cylinder extend when I flip one switch and release/contract under weight when I flip another switch. Think automotive airbag systems. Anyone know how to wire or plumb something like this up? Ultimately a compressor only option is what I'm looking for as a air tank would add too much weight. Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thanks

Topic by prototype27    |  last reply


Pneumatic Revolver

 Hello, I've been coming to Instructables for a while now but I just made an account. Anyways, I've been trying to brainstorm an idea for a PVC Revolver. Does anyone want to give this a try and post your results? I might try if I can get to the hardware store this weekend.

Topic by Stevensb    |  last reply


Optimisation of pneumatics

Another interesting thing I found through research, a flaw in most over-under designs and pressurizing the stock, I have found that for every 90 degree elbow between the chamber and the barrel the resistance to the air is the same as adding 20 feet of straight pipe, this can be changes by using two 45 degree fittings put together to make a gentler turn or by using curved fittings instead of elbows, the gentler the turn the better. From this I have found that the simple straight cannon with the chamber directly behind the barrel as is shown in the picture below (please note this cannon is one I found from Google just to emphasize the point, and this is in pneumatics only). also to increase efficiency look at my other topic:https://www.instructables.com/community/best_chamber_to_barrel_ratio/(once again if you have found my research incorrect please tell me, I wont get fired up =)

Topic by cheeseboy    |  last reply


pneumatic airsoft shotgun

Does anyone have any ideas on how to make an airsoft shotgun?i wanna make one like gotja's.he didnt make an instructable,but he made a forum topic.the topic is called airsoft shower/shotgun/grenade launcher.please help me!!

Topic by megapun13    |  last reply


Pneumatic cannon no pumping?

I wanted to build a soda shooting fridge canon like this  http://www.youtube.com/personalbeerrobot#p/u/3/TVyLuosZ1rY but I don't understand how the cannon in question works. All pneumatic cannons I have dealt with have required pumping, but this one appears not to require pumping. How does it work?

Question by KarateLover21    |  last reply


Recommendations for safe pneumatics?

I'm looking for a pneumatic setup for an air tank and a blow gun that is safe enough to use around school kids.  I want to provide pneumatic feedback to give the sensation that they were hit by a small gust of wind.  Safety is the foremost concern on this.  What size tank, psi, and regulator should I use?  Also can this small 'gust of wind' be controlled from a USB port?

Question by codingJoe    |  last reply


Lego pneumatic electric valves?

Hey all. I was just wondering, I want to use the lego pneumatic parts like i would for the fischertechnik ones. And I was wondering if anyone know where i could buy an electric solenoid valve approapriate for the lego pneumatic tumes and pressures. 10-50 psi. or so. OR, if i cant find valves for the lego, where could i get a fischertechnik kit that had EVERYTHING needed including the electronics, motors, sensors, solenoids, tubes, wires, and everything else.

Question by sci4me    |  last reply


Satellite to Radio to Pneumatic Valve

I want to receive some sort of satellite signal with a radio and then use the data I receive to control a pneumatic system to replicate a heart beating. I have been talking around with some people who know a bit about radios and the such but haven't gotten much conclusive help.  I would like to build as much of this as I can myself, the entire radio and everything, though I only have about a month to do it. A DIY radio kit paired with an Arduino might be the answer due to time restraints.  What i've learned so far is that I probably want it to be a tunable AM radio. Whether or not I should build that myself from scratch, build a DIY kit, or just purchase one, I am not sure. How to then interface that into a system to then control a pneumatic system, I have no idea other than the obvious arduino. Lastly, I don't need any special signal from the satellite. I really just need to receive a voltage from the radio. Though, hooking into a satellite with an onboard atomic clock so that i can then display the time as well would be great. I am going to keep doing research, though if anyone here can lend a helping hand I would be very appreciative!

Topic by dlandry2    |  last reply


Pneumatic PVC Can Crusher

I have put together a very well documented guide, to build your own pneumatic PVC can crusher. This can crusher is constructed from easy to find parts at any local hardware store. For more information, and a video of it in action check out my website. Let me know what you think, Thanks http://cancrusherguide.webs.com/

Topic by GOHST RIDER    |  last reply


Using sprinkler valves for pneumatic cannons

Many people have used sprinkler valves for a dump valve to release the air. I have made a launcher that used one of these and when I hook the air up it releases it all before I can hit the switch causing a pre-mature fire. Does anyone have these problems. I think it can be fixed by adding the air in slowly rather than hooking up a quick connect coupling like I am now.  Any help would be appreciated. 

Topic by rocketman20    |  last reply


Pneumatic soda can cannon on Mythbusters?

I just watched a Mythbusters where they made a pneumatic soda can gun.  Go to 5:50 in this video to see their description of it.  Go to 7:00 to see it in action.   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZMYuQ5daXxk&feature;=related My questions are: what is the "fast acting valve" he used?   How do you refill that thing? Anyone seen an instructable for something similar?  I've seen lots of PVC versions, but I like the metal version because it's sexier looking, and potentially higher pressure/power. Thanks!

Topic by guaps  


Die Grinder, Pneumatic... Are all underpowered?

So, it's compact.  Nice.  But it is so easy to stall it out. It cuts sooooo slow. I'm using it today because I dont wanna use the electric die grinder in the rain. It is from harbor freight, so I'm gonna take my initial aversion to the tool with a grain of salt. Perhaps a more expensive one would have more power?  Or is there a way to soup it up a bit?

Topic by Toga_Dan    |  last reply


Holy moley! Pneumatic mouth cannon!

I don't know how much more random fun you can find. I discovered this while at a buffet with my girlfriend and her brother on his birthday. Anyway, I was finished after two plates and a salad, and was balling the straw wrapper between my fingers. A tiny piece, probably a half-inch by a half-inch, ripped off in my hands. Staring at this little fragment, I put down the rest of the wrapper. I balled up the fragment, and put it between my fingers in such a manner that when I blew, it sent the fragment flying at great velocity. Thank God no one noticed or was killed. I have yet to chronograph this little amazing scientific breakthrough, but I estimate about 25 fps. Cool, huh? Anyway, rip off a tiny corner of a napkin or straw wrapper. Ball it up. Touch your thumb and index fingers on both hands together like you're rubbing something off of them. Put the tips of them together, and there should be a little diamond-ish hole between the four fingers. That's where the ball of paper goes. Put the ball in that hole, and pinch gently. Put your lips up to the hole, and blow. If nothing comes out, good! Blow to ready this little weapon, and release the pinch of your fingers to fire. Awesome, huh?

Topic by DrWeird117  



Would an 12V air compressor be enough to power a pneumatic rifle?

Although I have a larger air compressor available I was wondering if a more portable 12V would be sufficient

Question    |  last reply


how do i connect a soda bottle to pvc or copper pipe?

I am making a pneumatic rifle with a soda bottle...i just have no idea how to connect the threaded end to further piping such as valves and barrels. any help?

Question by Polar9393    |  last reply


has anyone built a pneumatic tube system

Hello, has anyone built a pneumatic tube system? Or anyone have ideas on how to build one and the materials needed? thanks

Topic by gregdove    |  last reply


Air compressor set-up/not just for cars

Ive got all the fixns<need to run aroun 10x12 garage

Question by DOCCRASH  


Where to source Pneumatic solenoid valves in Canada?

Hi, Does anyone know where to find miniature Pneumatic Solenoid Valves in Canada? I have only been able to find rely cheap low quality ones from china or really expensive ones from America. Something in the middle would be great! Thanks

Topic by IanS160    |  last reply


POLL Which gun to finish first

Hi, I am making my 2 first guns at the same time, they are of different types. the first one is your run of the mill sniper with the bolt action, modded sprinkler and barrel LEDs, this one shoots big marbles and the traditional potato. the second one is not as constructed as I started it when I got tired of making the first one ( I swap between them depending on which one i feel like making) anyway it shoots the small type of marbles, but this one uses a hammer valve Which I'll try to explain now, the cylinder is pressurised to about 100 psi, the hammer is drawn forward which pulls the whole barrel forward, this is then caught on a sear trigger, when the trigger is pulled the barrel is pulled back by rubber bands and hits the hammer valve, this opens the seal allowing air to escape, then once the projectile has been fired a spring pushes the valve closed, blocking the air, there is an animation that helps exlain it down the bottom (it isn't mine but works on the same principle) also I am not going to make a magazine for it as I cant find a way to make sure only 1 marble falls into the barrelP.S if you find anything wrong with my designs tell me as I am only 13 and these are my first gunsP.P.S I will only be able to post around new year as I am busy with exams and the suchP.P.P.S If i am to make the hammer valve gun first it will take longer because I am not as far advanced in itthanks for reading be sure to check my topics on some of the aspects of the designs:optimisation of pneumaticsbest chamber to barrel ratio

Topic by cheeseboy    |  last reply


How do I construct a Pneumatic Cylinder?

I would like to know if anyone has made a Pneumatic cylinder out of an old Coleman Lantern green gas tank. Or What about making out of PVC? I'm making a halloween prop that it using a door closure as a piston. It needs about 60 to 70 pounds of pressure per use and will be fired about 10 times. It uses up about 5 pds of pressure on each firing. Any ideas on making a cheap regulator for this would be helpful too. The prop will be outside in the woods for a haunted trail. So having it self contained would be nice. I didn't want to run an air hose 150' to make it operate. Thanks.

Question by ijtw69    |  last reply


Pneumatic Toilet Paper/Spud Air Cannon-

This is a project I'm wiling on with my little brother. I'm building a cannon out of PVC. I want it to be able to shoot four times without adding air again. So my idea was to make four chambers to store the air. Each chamber would have an individual ball valve. Then another ball valve where the chambers stem into the main body and barrel of the cannon. From the three inch PVC Im going to drop back down to 2"-2.5"  PVC for a more forced compression, then the barrel will be 4". I understand that PSI is a pressure measurement, however I'd assume that my PSI's wouldn't be able to exceed the lowest grade of PVC I build with? That would only make since.  The problem I'm having is, I'm not sure if any stores such as home depot or lowes has couplets that could couple 4" and 3" as well as 3" to 2". I also need to know what kind of pressure would I need to get to launch toilet paper into about a 10-15 foot height? Or would this just be a trial and error experiment?  Thanks for all help. It's much appreciated!

Topic by B52280  


how to convert a 25mm pneumatic gun to shoot bb pellets?

I made this 25mm pneumatic gun, however i would like to convert it to shoot bb or plastic pellets, am having trouble trying to do it myself. anyone already made an add on?

Question by thatfamousguy    |  last reply


I have a pneumatic tube from a bank, what's something cool i could do with it? Answered

 Had it for 5 years, never could figure out the best thing to do with it, but it is too cool to pitch. It's the thing you put your money in and watch WHOOSH away. I've attached a pic of someone who turned it into a handbag.

Question by blorgggg    |  last reply


Need help identifying this tool.

My father found this tool at work and we can't figure out what it is.It is pneumatic and when activated the tip opens up to reveal 3 spike thingies...Anyone have any idea what it is?

Topic by mpasd94    |  last reply


Raise Sunken Concrete?

Hello. I have a 5x5 concrete porch that has sunk 6-8 inches. The porch consists of a top surface with an 18 inch skirt, and a step. I believe it was a single pour.  The porch itself is in good condition, so I am seeking methods of raising it. I have looked into slabjacking, and pressure-fill lifting, but was actually looking for a pneumatic solution. any thoughts, comments, anecdotes, would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

Question by sgunkler    |  last reply


Tennis Ball Cannon

Alright, so ive been into making all sorts of cannons whether they are pneumatic or hairspray, and recently I've been wanting to build a pneumatic tennisball cannon. i came across halve a dozen empty fire extinguishers, i am still deciding if i should use one as the chamber. i am using an electronic sprinkler valve and a 2 1/2" barrel i am also getting a 12 volt (dc) car air compressor (125 psi) and i am going to incorporate this somewhere in the cannon, the air compressor is really small so i could make it built in. i really want to make this cannon portable but i am concerned about the weight of it with the fire extinguisher tank, Any Ideas?

Topic by struckbyanarrow    |  last reply


In the Pipeline

I have some parts on order and will be adding two more instructables in the near future. 1. Cascading multiple squibs with adjustable delay. 2. A miniature trigger module with increased sensitivity.

Topic by Crosius    |  last reply


Are there multi-shot designs for pneumatic cannons operating at 60psi?

I am trying to design a t-shirt cannon that can shoot at least twice with one pump of the tank. I have a two tank design with ball valves for each tank, but the system is too complicated to explain to school officials. Is there a better design?

Question by splttingatms    |  last reply



To whom it may concern. Regarding: Building a Pneumatic Launcher

Question: How can I use a CO2 cartridge for propellsion, attached to a valve & trigger that is linked directly to the barrel without the use of a air chamber tank? Any ideas of how to engineer this is much apppreciated. Thank you, Gerald J. Wygladalski President & CEO SafeBrella Co.

Question    |  last reply



What's another name for a rotary pneumatic indexing valve?

I am trying to find or create an air indexing or selection valve that has one line going in and several (6 to 12) coming out. I can imagine how to create such a thing: A valve disk that rotates in a body with 6 to 12 outlet fittings on the valve housing. The disk has one hole cut radially and one cut axially intersecting it at the center. Install in the valve body, spin it around with the valve stem, and there you go. Agitate away!The thing is, I'll bet these already exist if I could find them. Can anyone tell me what this thing-a-ma-bob is called? Or who might make them?

Question by cmblocker95    |  last reply


Which pneumatic cylinder model will be best for robot fight and push 30KG easily??

I wanna a poweful pneumatic cylinder which can push fastly 30-50KG easily. I want this cylinder for robot fight (But not big pneumatic cylinder max. weight of pneumatic cylinder should be 1.5KG. cause robot has weight limit. i wanna buy this cylinder form online shop ( Like ebay,amazon,hobby king etc. good online shop). But i haven't good knowledge about pneumatic cylinder. So if anyone have good knowledge about pneumatic cylinder then please recommend me a good one for robot fight with all equipment ( solinoid bulb, fitings). Give me the proper goof online shop link where i can buy this pneumatic cylinder. Thanks.

Question by Takrim    |  last reply


can any one tell me how to make a pneumatic screwdriver???

I just want to make a pneumatic screwdriver can any one tell me how to make it??/

Question by bhargava_0589    |  last reply


I'm looking for a pneumatic solenoid valve of a certain layout and not having much success. Can you suggest one for this

I'm looking for a pneumatic solenoid valve of a certain layout and not having much success, although I am CERTAIN it must exist and by the level of knowledge exhibited around these parts -someone here will know of one! Here we go, I need a really simple "normally open" valve with low current draw, small dimensions, good sealing, -in fact something very much like this type only normally open in design and capable of handing 18psi http://www.allelectronics.com/make-a-store/item/SOL-132/SOLENOID-VALVE/1.html Do you know of a suitable design on sale for my project? Thank you for your constructive input and I hope the answer will help anybody else who is looking for a valve with similar requirements on their project :D

Question by Fingermouse    |  last reply


Will this launcher design work?

Concept - A hybrid-launcher (combustion and pneumatics) with interchangeable barrels for various projectile types So the design is pretty simple, in the back of the gun launcher thing (we’ll call it ‘the weapon’ for now) will be a propellant chamber measuring 2.5” wide and 1.5’ long. On one end of the propellant chamber will be an unscrewable coupler. On the other end, a 2.5” ball valve. Attached to the ball valve will be the female end of a 2.5” coupler (without cap) From here will be the interchangeable barrels, which are simple. The barrels would consist of the male end of the 2.5” coupler and a 2.5” width converter, converting the width from 2.5" to various different sizes for the different projectile sizes (this would have to be one piece for durability, idk if such a piece exists, I hope it does, if not, i can make one) the barrel itself would measure 3’ in length A Shrater valve (bike tire valve) will be installed on the propellant chamber (for pneumatic power). A bike pump would be mounted on the weapon (like a shotgun kinda) An ignitor will be installed on the back of the chamber, mounted on the unscrewable coupler.  

Question by ishmal1103    |  last reply


Spud Gun Ammo!

Hey guys I'm going to make a pnuematic spud gun soon, but I'm going to use something besides potatoes. I figure it'll have a 1-inch diameter barrel, so what can I shoot that's plentiful? Ideally, it would be bio-degradable or otherwise unharmful to the environment. Cork perhaps?

Topic by Jackhole    |  last reply


Air ride bicycle suspension

So i've been interested in pneumatis for quite some time and recently I came across a small air cylinder (6 inch travel), 12 volt air compressor, 12 volt valve, and misc fittings. I got really excited and without thinking twice I grabbed tools and started hacking up my old beach cruiser (it was quite a mess anyway after 3 trips to burningman). So this is the outcome... I can control the up/down with a momentary on switch out back. Now just looking at this mess its easy to see that well i obviously can't weld. Never tried... Anyway it rides really sloppy as you can imagine, much like an old Lincoln with the shocks blown out, but it is so much fun! Now i pose the question to you community members, how would you have done this different? Looking forward to your responses!

Topic by prototype27    |  last reply


Problem with compressed air, ping pong turret

Hello all, I am in the process of making a ping pong ball turret powered by an air compressor, I’m using a solenoid valve to trigger the air electronically.i have had some exact diameter steel pipe milled out which is 250mm, so the diameter of the balls are 40mm and the diameter of the pipe is roughly 40.5-41mm. And I’ve sealed off one end with a tapped out hole for a nozzle fitting. My compressor goes up to 7 bar -around 100,psi -. Do finally to the topic 0f my question, i have tested the firing of the balls by firing 7 bar through an compressor gun, and to my surprise it didn’t fire across the garage like I expected, instead it made a very high pitched noise and the ball vibrated inside the tube, eventually the ball would rise up the tube and eventually speed up towards the end of the tube but still only launched at most 1 meter. Any help on how to fix this problem would be excellent. As I expect 100psi through an exact diameter tube would fire the ping pong ball very far. Feel free to ask any questions if I haven’t been detailed enough. Cheers

Question by bashmore00  



Is there a way to have a hammer for a battle bot with out using pneumatics? Answered

 Im building a battle bot (i know, there old) and i wanted to have a hammer as the weapon, i dont want to use a pneumatic hammer, so is ther any way to make a hammer for a battle bot with out pneumatics.

Question by GianniMora    |  last reply


Safe, efficient, breech-loading pneumatic tennis ball launcher?

I was interested in building a tennis ball cannon, and have seen breech-loading ones in videos.  Does anyone know of free plans for one?  I was also wondering if there is a disadvantage to ABS other than the slight cost difference.  I'm looking for safety and an efficent barrel-to-tank ratio.  How would one make a resettable pressure release in the case of some sort of accidental over pressure?

Question by nlaluzerne  



how to install permanent air jacks on each tire side operated by 12v compresor system to lift car and change a tire.?

The idea is to install pneumatic jack on each tire. to lift the car when a flat tire occurs. one side at time, the system need to include security system to avoid unintentional or accidental operation when the car is moving. also the system could be hydraulic operated by 12 volts pump

Question    |  last reply


best chamber to barrel ratio

Okay I have not built a cannon yet as such, as I am going to make my first one awesome but I've done some research and found the golden ratio for efficiency for chamber-barrel size, assuming the chamber is always the same volume a chamber is 1.6, now I'm guessing a bit from now on but it seems that that maximum efficiency is approximately 1.61803399 or the golden ratio that keeps appearing in our world, I just thought you guys would like to know for the design stage as this is what I'm going to be using when I make my gun. also is it worth spending extra for a high flow blowgun over a normal one for the pilot valve to my 1" sprinkler or wont it make a noticeable difference P.S. if my calculations are wrong please, if you know more ( I'm only 13) please correct me. I have worked this out from pneumatics, not combustion's or hybrids. expect to see my gun soon!

Topic by cheeseboy    |  last reply


What should I need to know before I buy an air compressor? Answered

I understand that one advantage of air compressors is the number of tools that you can adapt to them. I would like to know the difference between an oil free air compressor and another. What size air compressor is perfect for home shop use? Thank you in advance for all your help.

Question by blkhawk    |  last reply


How can I turn pnuematic muscles into hydraulic muscles?

Hi everyone, thanks for taking the time to read this Recently I've become interested in these pnuematic muscles: https://www.instructables.com/id/How-to-make-air-muscles!/ I wondered if it would be possible, and what sort of pump I'd have to use. I wanted to make the pump fill the muscles as fast as they can, and I wanted it to be fairly portable (running off 12 volts or something).  Thanks for your answers!

Topic by WarrenP2    |  last reply


pumatic airsoft gun help ? Answered

Ok so heres my situation. About 6 months ago I made my own pneumatic airlift sniper but even though I could get about 80 lbs of pressure stored up before I pulled my trigger my sniper only shot as far as my 300 fps gun. My question is why cuz I had a lot more force in my pneumatic sniper then my other gun and it doesn't seem to matter. My sniper was made of a metal nipple about 9 inches long and 2 inches in diameter. I then put a cap on one end and a reducing coupler on the other. I drilled a hole in the cap and inserted a valve that allowed me to attach the chamber to a bike pump. On the end with the reducer I then added a ball valve that worked as my trigger. After the ball valve was another reducing coupler that brought the size down from an inch to 1/2 an inch. Into this coupler I screwed a break line about 50 cm long(sorry about the unit change I don't remeber its length in inches) and it fit the bb very nicely. I also added a little contraption I made from paper clips that allowed the gun to be tired downward without the bb falling out. However I don't believe this was the problem as I fired the gun when their was just a wire across the back of my breakline ,to keep the bb from falling into the gun ,and the distance seemed the same. I made sure every connection before the ball valve was sealed well except that the gun did leak at a rate of 20 lbs for minute because of a bad connection with the valve that connected with the bike pump. If you need more info just say so in the comments but I don't have the gun with me right now so all i have to go off of is my memory. Thanks for your help I really appreciate it. : )

Question by inconceivable1    |  last reply


Is there a tutorial for a piston valve or a quick exhaust valve? Answered

 Does anybody have or know a tutorial to make a piston or quick exhaust valve for a pneumatic device

Question by 1337f0x    |  last reply