Elephant Elastic Launcher

Introduction: Elephant Elastic Launcher

About: I'm loving this site! Most of my 'ibles will be of birthday parties and Halloween costumes. I absolutely love planning and running birthday parties and Halloween is the best holiday ever! If you like those as …

We are the Instructables Club at a local after school program. We browse Instructables, choose cool projects and make them. This is our first Instructable.

We wanted to make a rubber band gun but weapons are not allowed in our program so we brainstormed ideas for the look. We needed it to look like something that's not a weapon and still work the same. 

We were considering a snake, dragon, turtle, bird, and several other animals. We decided to do an elephant because it had a trunk that would let the rubber band shoot farther.

 We learned the mechanics from this instructable: https://www.instructables.com/id/Rubber-Band-Gun-Cardboard/

For this we will need:
The template
masking tape
dumdum suckers
rubber bands

Step 1: The Parts

Print out the template.
Cut out the template pieces
Trace the templates on cardboard. we need 2 elephants, 3 trunk pieces, 3 leg pieces, and 3 triggers.
Cut out all pieces.
Cut out notches on back of elephant, the trunk of elephant and all 3 trunk pieces.

Now we need to punch holes for the trigger to swing to make it fire.
Use a pencil to carefully punch a hole through the dot on both elephants and all 3 triggers.

Step 2: Stack and Tape

Stack all 3 like pieces together. We should have a stack of trunks, legs, and triggers.
Tape each stack together. Now we have 3 stacks taped together.

Step 3: Assembly

Now lay down one elephant piece.
Align the stacked pieces as shown in the photo. The leg stack aligns with the back leg, the trunk stack aligns with the head and trunk and the trigger stack aligns with the long end toward the back of the elephant.

Insert a dumdum stick through the holes of the trigger stack and through the hole in the elephant as shown in the photo. (enjoy eating the sucker first :p)

Tape all the pieces to the elephant when you have them aligned properly. Do NOT tape the triggers. The trigger needs to swing freely when pushed.

Put the other elephant on top, pushing the dumdum stick through the hole.

Align the elephants and tape together around the back leg, the trunk and the upper back.

Trim the dumdum stick down and tape over it to keep it in place.

Step 4: Load and Launch

Now the launcher is finished.

Grab a rubber band and stretch it from the notch in the trunk to the notch in the back.

Pull on the front leg (trigger) and watch it launch.

Decorate it if you want.

Do not aim at people.

This works because the trigger is one long piece that swivels on the stick so when you push on it, it spins around the stick and the long end comes up, pushing the rubber band out of its notch and since it is stretched, it shoots forward.

This allows the potential energy in the rubber band to be converted to kinetic energy. The distance the rubber band travels depends on its stored energy, so the farther you stretch it, the more potential energy it has. This is why we chose the elephant as we said earlier, the long trunk lets us stretch the rubber band farther.

Step 5: Credits

Ms. Megan
Other members of our club who weren't here today

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    7 Discussions

    That is the most adorable rubber band shooter I have ever seen! I would love to learn more about this Instructables Club :D


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    Thank you! The kids really enjoyed it. In our after school program, during the last hour of the day, we have club time. There are 4 choices for clubs ,each run by a staff member, and the one I chose to run is Instructables since I'm addicted. We usually spend a day browsing and chose a project to do and then the next meeting we do the project. We have done the smores cupcakes, the pop rock chocolates, and lava lamps. My club members range in age from 6 to 14. The majority of them are 1st to 3rd graders. The younger ones in particular are really interested and excited about the club. I catch them browsing the site in their free time and they are always verifying that we are meeting even when they know we are.

    Penolopy Bulnick
    Penolopy Bulnick

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    That is wicked awesome! I never seem to find time to make stuff from the site, I need a club :)


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    We should all join an Instructables club!