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Cold-Fire Tracer Rounds (DIY)

Post about things you have launched or thought about launching. Also post about various materials used for building cannons. No posts about explosive projectiles!
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Cold-Fire Tracer Rounds (DIY)

Unread postAuthor: Mountain Storm » Sat Jan 01, 2011 11:37 am

Last night as part of the celebratory events I was launching some spuds. I found an ancient Glowstick in a drawer and decided to try out an idea that popped into my head: tracer rounds.


As always I sized my spuds using a piece of pipe same as the bore, a cutting board, and a sharp knife. The design of my co-axial cannon makes forcing taters into the double-beveled breach a little messy and difficult. So I pre-shape the taters before hand. This keeps a lot of juice and spud residue out of the chamber. I also like to slice each potato in half. This makes the ammo go farther...literally. Not only does it double the supply of "slugs" the flat seems to provide the ideal launch, and the lighter weight makes them really move out (compared to a full sized tater).

Then I used a knife and a small spoon to hollow out the tip of each round. I cracked and shook the glow stick, then pierced the end with a knife so I could dispense a few ml or glowing juice into the hollow point slugs. I then wrapped some plastic wrap over them to keep the fluid in place as I loaded them into the breach. The wrap or some way of keeping the juice in the hollow point is mandatory or the juice will just go everywhere before the cannon even goes off.


Pluses: 99% biodegradable, relatively cheap, fun to watch, allows for night shot tracking, leaves an awesome "smoke ring" of glowing mist in the air, leaves shards of "nuclear" plastic on the ground, one glowstick will make 8-12 rounds, impact with a hard target makes a nice mist of glowing creamed potato in the air.

Minuses: Glow juice is semitoxic and tastes horrible...nothing will eat those shot spuds...ever, plastic wrap is a mess to clean up (little shreds everywhere) cannon is mess to clean up, glow is fairly faint (compared to shooting a whole glowstick in a carrier) and you can't really make or carry made rounds into the field...porch activity IMO.
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Unread postAuthor: jrrdw » Sat Jan 01, 2011 2:46 pm

Couldn't see a thing. Nice try though, happy new year.
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Unread postAuthor: al-xg » Sat Jan 01, 2011 4:47 pm

I tried the same thing out of my 14mm airgun but using some high powered LEDs. It works really well, a bit of a starwars laser effect at the start and then a flare gun style descent.
I'm hoping the light will be bright enough to take a long exposure photo and see the whole trajectory.
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