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First take a look at my LAW,
that’s how NOT to do it. It’s too heavy, to slow, and overly complicated. I was going for looks, which is also important as I’ll explain later, and power, power is not necessary as most field limit the muzzle velocity to less than 300FPS.
Okay here are a few quotes that may sound random, but are good advice if you a paintball player and for making cannon:
“Rapidity is the essence of war” –Sun Tzu
“Fast is fine, but accurate is final, the trick is learning how to take your time when you're in a hurry.” - W. Earp
"All that is complex is not useful. All that is useful is simple." - Mikhail Kalashnikov
Now here are a few things that need to be considered when designing a “tactical” anti-tank weapon:
One, power is important, but too much power can make it illegal on some, if not most, fields.
Two, accuracy is essential, and the easiest way to improve accuracy is to lengthen the barrel, but if the barrel is to long it becomes unwieldy.
Three, everybody’s favorite ROF (Rate Of Fire) must be considered, an ultra complex automatic breach that yields a high ROF would be nice, until it brakes, which it will and at the least opportune time. And on the other end of this spectrum is muzzle loading, simple next to nothing to go wrong, but slow.
The very first thing you need to consider is how it will be used:
Will the cannon be used by a grenadier or an infantryman?
If used by a grenadier this will be his primary weapon and there for must have a high ROF.
If used by an infantryman it must be light and easy to carry, and allow him to use his main weapon easily, his life may depend on the cannon, or it may depend on the cannon being light.
I will tell you how to make both types
To begin we shall look at the barrel size:
I use caliber to denote the size of the barrel instead of ID or inside diameter, i.e. 150cal means one and a half inch inside diameter, to decide what size barrel to use we must first consider the projectile to be used, since most field require you to use NERF Pocket Vortex footballs (from here no out this will be referred to as “NERF rockets”) as ammo that’s what our cannon will be designed to shoot. Nerf rockets fit loosely in 200cal pipe, meaning they will require wadding, but fit tightly in 150cal pipe, eliminating the need for a wad. The grenadier’s arm should be 200cal so that he may also shoot small paint grenades. The infantryman’s arm should be 150 as it will only be used as anti-armor/anti-bunker and most likely only need one shot.
Let us now focus on the breach:
In order to be “tactical” our cannon must have a high ROF.
In order to achieve a high rate of fire we will use cartridges made from a piece of pipe of the same caliber as the barrel and at least seven inches long. You may consider breaches such as these:
Vern1’s paintball cannon
Both of these use ammunition similar to what we will be using, and most importantly both of these are simple.
For the grenadier’s arm both of those are ideal.
For the infantryman’s arm the BECC’s breach would be ideal as it’s small, or for a really small arm extend the case to form the barrel and have the breach end thread into the valve.
Let us look at the overall shape of the cannon before we go on:
For the grenadier’s arm an over-and-under is ideal as it keeps the overall length short, which is important, the inevitable gap between the barrel and the pressure chamber can be a handy place to put Co2 tank for filling, although I recommend you go remote (I will get into this in more detail later). And remember that just because it’s an over-and-under doesn’t mean that it can’t be shouldered like a Bazooka or an RPG7.
For the infantryman’s arm you could also so an over-and-under for the same reasons as the grenadier’s arm. Or you could use and inline as it will be lighter due to less fittings, and if you use inline you can have a take down for easy carry.
Coaxial is not recommended for ether as it prevents breach loading.
We will be using the over-and-under layout fired like the Bazooka for the grenadier’s arm and the inline takedown for the infantryman’s arm.
Now on to the valve:
The valve must be efficient, must not leak, and must open reliably and quickly, also for the grenadier it should be easily repaired. A piston valve, provided it’s properly constructed, fits the all the above criteria but can be complex to make.
A modded sprinkler valve fits the “no-leak” and “reliability” category, plus they are usually easily acquired.
The valve is entirely up to you, I recommend a piston valve, I’ll explain why later on, if you chose to use a piston valve you might want to get a Mauler valve from Sgort.
Next let’s look at the barrel length:
For accuracy the barrel must be long, for ease of use the barrel must be short, depending on its use the balance will be different.
For the grenadier’s arm, the barrel should be as long as comfortable; the overall length of the gun should not exceed the height of the grenadier. For the grenadier’s barrel we will use a length of between 36 and 50 inches, depending on what’s comfortable for the grenadier.
For the infantryman’s arm the barrel must be as short as possible well still allowing sufficient accuracy and range. A preloaded barrel of about 20 inches would be about ideal.
Let’s look at the pressure chamber before we move on:
The pressure chamber should be large enough to give sufficient power, but small enough to allow for a quick fill. To figure up pressure chamber volume I suggest you use the GGDT, which may be acquired, for free, here: Hall consulting.
Lastly in the construction we will talk about fill:
We will run the grenadier’s arm off bulk Co2 or HPA (we’ll simpler refer to this as the bulk tank) you MUST regulate it down to a safe pressure of at least 125PSI. The bulk tank should be carried separately from the cannon to reduce the weight of the arm. I recommend a Schrader valve on the cannon, with a Schrader fill with a clip (that is, one that can be clipped on to the Schrader valve for continues supply) on the bulk tank, that way the arm may be filled and the bulk disconnected so there are no lose hose that could get snagged, but it still may be attached so that well it’ being filled loading can be done, and so that, when your defending an emplacement you could get multiple rounds off with out having to fool with the bulk tank. The bulk tank’s hose should be short enough to be easily managed but long enough to reach the gun easily.
For the infantryman’s arm 12 gram Co2 bicycle tire inflators should suffice, make sure you pressure chamber is small enough to be filled by the 12 gram cylinder.
Now on to tactics:
For the grenadier:
Nothing scares an infantry man more than seeing a tank roll over the hill, and nothing scares a tank crew more then a man portable anti-tank weapon. A tank, being large, and slow due to speed limitations, is an easy target for a skilled grenadier, were as the grenadier, being small, fast and nimble, makes for a hard target. Think of it as the difference between an elephant and a fox.
The grenadier’s biggest strength is psychological impact; the grenadier’s arm must be as intimidating as possible, consider things such as muzzle breaks, and barrel shrouds to make the barrel look bigger than it really is. Fancy optics look cool, but will only get in your way, instead stick with small iron sights that can’t snag on anything.
The grenadier must be able to move swiftly and quietly well in full battle gear. He must also be skilled with his armament and equipped with more than just the cannon, a small paintball sidearm is a must, and of course grenades.
The grenadier must stay calm in battle, his comrades will be watching him, if he’s scared and he’s got the big cannon, what hope have they with there small guns? To be truly effective the grenadier’s mere presence should strike fear in to the enemy, to achieve this you must look the part, guillie suites are nice for snipers, but for the grenadier you want to be seen, but only after it’s to late. Since the grenadier’s got his gear and cannon the guillie won’t help much, instead he must practice using natural camouflage.
For the infantryman:
The infantryman armed with an anti-armor device should be skilled with it of course, he should also relies, due to the smaller size compared to the grenadier’s cannon, he will not have much range and accuracy, and therefore must get close to his target, once again natural camouflage will serve you better than man made, so the infantryman must learn to use it.
If there are any questions regarding basic construction, please use the wiki, the link to which is located in the top right corner of the page. All other questions I will happily answer. And any comments are welcome.
For those of you who play paintball I highly recommend you read Sun Tzu, and if you have any questions regarding strategy fell free to PM me.
To any of you have yet to do so please read the spud gun safety rules. Thanks!
I hope you found this How-to informative.
Note: it’s late here and I’m tired so there are probably a few mistakes, tomorrow I’ll run through it and fix any and all that I find.
Last edited by judgment_arms on Sat Apr 14, 2007 9:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
That is a awesome how to, I want to make a anti tank launcher now but i don't know about any paint ball areas with tanks. I could sit next to a main road.
judgment_arms I salute you. Why do I salute you? Simple for a great How To: and accually contributing something helpful for others.
Go to a scenerio paintball game.
Geat how to man!!
I believe most paintballgames limit muzzle velocity from anti tank guns to 170fps but i might be wrong.
From_Hamsterdam, are you forgetting anti-bunker?
Recruit, what’s that supposed to mean, you saying I don’t help people much or what?
Scope, no the official rules say 230FPS.
I knew I was forgetting something:
More on strategy
For the grenadier’s arm it also needs to be loud, if combustions weren’t illegal and impractical I would say use them. But a pneumatic can be loud; a good piston vale will make a lot of noise, a not so go one will to for that matter.
This is where the Coaxial would be nice – intimidation; if you can scare the enemy into submission then it doesn’t matter how fast you can shoot. Plus, as it’s a tube, it easier to make it look like the real thing, which adds to the intimidation factor. Once again, the grenadier’s biggest strength is psychological impact.
And for the infantryman’s arm, it should be silent, as his life may depend upon stealth particularly in the heat of combat. One must be careful with the valve, a sprinkler valve has the annoying tendency to “honk” which has the same effect as blowing an air horn in the thick of combat: it causes all enemy fire to focus on your location. But a piston valve makes a loud “crack”, which will also give away you position. A muzzle break that directs the blast backwards may reduce the noise level; this is an area that I’m not clear on so I suggest you do a little looking on your own there are plenty of topics on muzzle breaks.
Now I’ve got a question for you all, would you like me to do How-to for paintball mortars/howitzers, or any thing else?
Ahhh it was 170 mph then cuz thats about 250 fps...
I knew it was something lowered!!
By anychance are you going to Invasion of normandy???
If you mean D-day then, I wish. But ether way I have no plans to attended any scenario game until I get a “tactical”, or at least fully functional, LAW.
Why do you ask?
He asks because you sound like a military tactician/strategist.
Not that that's a bad thing.
D-day is in oklahoma, Invasion of normady(ION) is in pensilvania... im going to ION...
i was asking becuase im building a coax just like yours for hte game... and i was wondering if i would see you there
Thank you this post is very helpful. I will reference this post in other places in the forum as necessary.
I’ve been teaching my self strategy and military tactics. Why? Well my friend, used to play paintball a lot at a local wood/speedball field, got me into paintball and he kept wiping the floor with me, so I taught my self the basics of strategy, and how to use natural camouflage and know I wipe the floor with him! Or did until he decided that he didn’t like paintball and switched to airsoft, which I kick his but in when we play beck in the woods but he’s scared and insists we play in the open field and around our houses… coward. Sorry, got off subject. Any who, does anybody know of a scenario field in North Carolina in the RDU area? I’d like to go and at least watch a game, if not participate.
Hey, should make a thread on strategy? And what section would I put something like that, off-topic I suppose?
Scope, sorry, no, I wish I was but unfortunately I can’t make it.
A coaxial? Can’t you read? Unless you’re skilled, I’m talking hitting a tank at the maximum range of your cannons with at least three out of five shots, the coaxial is not the best choice. But if you got it built, or stated, go ahead with it, you still have intimidation. Just learn to use it, be one with the gun let it be an extension of your self. Okay seriously now, you need to learn where the round is going, get a target about 5 foot square and shoot it at 50yards when you get to were you can hit it 100% of the time take it back fifty yards, when you get to where you can hit it 80% of the time move it back another 50 yards when you can hit it 75% of the time move it back another fifty yards. After you can hit that 50% of the time move the target back up to 100 yards and practice till you get 100% accuracy, then go out to 150 yards then the full two hundred. Now don’t take this all at once, do it over time, it’ll stay with you longer if you learn it over 5 day than 5 hours.
AmYisroelChai, you are quite welcome.
Great write up Judgement.Couldn't agree more on the nature of the Grenadier.
As the crazy fool who goes out there and shoots tanks here are a few of my suggestions(field experience wise)
I have found it more beneficial to build a LAW more or less like a rifle.By and large most tank crews search for a shoulder fired launcher when assessing threats.My rifle allows me to sneak in close. Most of the time a tank crew will assume that I am another infantryman and not give me the time of day .
Tactics:My personal favorite. Get a guy to play the bait.Have him shoot a couple of rounds at the turrets viewport.When the gunner turns to the bait(they always do) run out of hiding get close and fire.Works every time.Like judgement said confidence is key.Get used to standing up the whole time and watching paint come at you.But beware, lower your LAW when you see a tank.If the tanker doesn't know you have a Anti-tank weapon he will take more chances and allow you a better shot.Don't take extreme range crap shots.Nerfs are notorious for turning just before hitting the target.90% of my tank kills happen within 25 yds. Getting close and aggressive always pays.Keep your head, blind charges are useless. Instead use the terrain and blend in until you charge. A LAW guy is the most valuable player on the field don't get shot or you sign the death warrant for your team.
Cannon construction:Build something with a second shot attached on the gun.A second fast reload is indispensable.Don't bother with a schrader valve they clog with dirt and your out of the game for a while,instead use a female quick disconnect on the gun.A tire gauge/blowgun and a the male adapter works great to fill.I've found it beneficial to have the ability to change pressures dependent upon wich projectile you use.Barrel length is a bit tricky.You want a short barrel but not to short or else your accuracy suffers.At 16" my barrel is junk.28-30"max for any gun,mine is a 22".Anything bigger than this gets caught in the brush and makes you slower to shoot.Remember you are in a race against the tank gunner.Don't bother with pre-loaded barrels.They are way to much bulk,build cartridges instead,more labor intensive but you'll thank yourself in the long run.
Projectiles:Nerfs like lower pressures in the 70-80 psi. range, smoke grenades like 90 psi. and shot gun loads(24 and 12rd.)prefer the 140's.Here is my supreme tip:When shooting a 1.5" barrel wrap the nerf in a strip of 2" wide computer paper then load the LAW(decreases drag on the barrel).Make sure you first crush and then smooth the paper before wrapping the nerf. This is done so that the paper does not stay wrapped around the football as it exits the barrel.
A parting shot to those who are considering this fine tradition of risk takers.Intimidation can be your best friend before a game.Show off your gun(build shot gun loads for it,these are the Mac Daddy of intimidation) but carry it in a proffesional way.Keep an edge on your personality when talking cannons with your opponent.Confidence,superiority,and danger will scare the junk out of your opponent.Make the best of it.And finally be nice.This mix really jumbles people and will make them run when they see you on the field.Good luck and happy hunting.
No i understand where your coming from... i have other cannons that i use for paintball... i just dont have any coaxials... this ones mostly for looks...
i might makeit magazine fed by use of a tee then cleanout but that is gettin complicated..
Scope, go big man! If you can dream it, try building it.No harm in trying. Take a look at the Alias JKX launcher(google it).They are coaxials.Might be something to try.I plan on building one for my next project.
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