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Mythbuster Air Cannons

Post questions and info about pneumatic (compressed gas) powered cannons here. This includes discussion about valves, pipe types, compressors, alternate gas setups, and anything else relevant.
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Mythbuster Air Cannons

Unread postAuthor: mark.f » Thu Mar 31, 2011 7:21 pm

Yes, I know they've built them already.

Looking through the sneak-peak photos for next season of Mythbusters, and saw the photo below.

Can't really tell what type of valve they use, but the shop air hoses obviously give away the general fact.

Coaxial maybe?
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Unread postAuthor: Gun Freak » Thu Mar 31, 2011 7:25 pm

Looks like there could be a spring loaded ball valve on it.
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Unread postAuthor: mark.f » Thu Mar 31, 2011 7:33 pm

Actually, if you look really closely, it looks like the bottom side of of a sprinkler valve, which the hidden compartment seems to suggest (room for the pilot).

Don't know though. It seems that after how far we've come in terms of bandwidth, people still post photos 640x480 or less. :roll:
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Unread postAuthor: clemsonguy1125 » Thu Mar 31, 2011 7:43 pm

Definatly a sprinkler valve, looks like possibly a switch as a trigger with electronics concealed.
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Unread postAuthor: mark.f » Thu Mar 31, 2011 7:47 pm

Guess I'll have to start watching again. That looks suspiciously like DWV towards the rear as well.
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Unread postAuthor: Technician1002 » Thu Mar 31, 2011 7:48 pm

Too bad they keep building air cannons with no proper air chamber and a fast high flow valve. Maybe someone should introduce them to this site.

A couple of years ago, they did make one decent cannon using a commercial valve and chamber from Martin Engineering. I think that one was used to launch a car.
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Unread postAuthor: mark.f » Thu Mar 31, 2011 8:09 pm

They certainly have the equipment to do amazing things, there's just no demand for it.
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Unread postAuthor: saefroch » Thu Mar 31, 2011 8:38 pm

mark.f wrote:Don't know though. It seems that after how far we've come in terms of bandwidth, people still post photos 640x480 or less.
Last time I tried to post a high-resolution photo, I got complaints from users that it took too long to load (which is very true, especially when there are multiple pictures on a page).

I think the reason they don't have QDV cannons or even piston valves is because they don't see the performance benefit as worth the extra cost to build, since they can probably just crank up the pressure to compensate, without paying for parts and labor.
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Unread postAuthor: mark.f » Thu Mar 31, 2011 9:01 pm

If you use the uploader, the server generates a smaller view from your larger photo. :wink:

You can also do it with tinypic by appending _th to your file name (before the extension) to load a thumbnail.
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Unread postAuthor: Hotwired » Thu Mar 31, 2011 9:18 pm

It's a sprinkler valve, you can see the necking in of the space between the two connections for chamber and barrel and its the right size for a sprinkler.

What it's triggered by is likely to be electronic since pneumatic triggering requires modding and is of no apparent use in this scenario - appears to be a basket of corks there...

I doubt they'll be using any significant pressure either for the same reason.
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Unread postAuthor: jor2daje » Fri Apr 01, 2011 10:17 am

I think that picture is actually from the "slap sense into someowhen episode when they test hand eye coordination to see how effective slapping someone is at making them recover from shock. if I remember the guns where not terribly impressive when firing the corks that they loaded them with. I'll try to find the episode and watch it again cause its been a while.

edit: quick google showed the episode is called "Operation Valkyrie" if anyone wants to check it out.
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Unread postAuthor: boyntonstu » Fri Apr 01, 2011 10:27 am

jor2daje wrote:I think that picture is actually from the "slap sense into someowhen episode when they test hand eye coordination to see how effective slapping someone is at making them recover from shock. if I remember the guns where not terribly impressive when firing the corks that they loaded them with. I'll try to find the episode and watch it again cause its been a while.

edit: quick google showed the episode is called "Operation Valkyrie" if anyone wants to check it out.



"...how effective slapping someone is at making them recover from shock."

Be careful, be very careful on Spudfiles.

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You don't see my cork comment, do you?


It was against the 'rules".

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It had more to do with then just a cork!

Edited by jrrdw.
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Unread postAuthor: jor2daje » Fri Apr 01, 2011 10:35 am

They slapped the presenters then had them attempt to shoot targets with a those cork guns. If they hit more targets after being slapped then their coordination was better.
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Unread postAuthor: boyntonstu » Fri Apr 01, 2011 10:40 am

jor2daje wrote:They slapped the presenters then had them attempt to shoot targets with a those cork guns. If they hit more targets after being slapped then their coordination was better.


Were they slap happy?
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Unread postAuthor: Labtecpower » Fri Apr 01, 2011 12:10 pm

@the Mythbusters cannons:

The guns and cannons they have made (without explosives) are very unimpressive. With such a nice machine shop you would expect a lot more :?

Edited by jrrdw.
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