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Science Fair

A place to ask general spud cannon related questions.
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Science Fair

Unread postAuthor: pizlo » Tue Jan 29, 2008 10:40 am

Last year before I really knew much abut spudding I used my friends gib ass spray and pray, with a flint lantern sparker to test at which angle a potato will go the farthest. we got third, becasue science teachers abviosly dont care about all the inacuracies in power. This year I would like to do something with a pnue, At first I thought this imposible due to my lack of compressor hardware, but I rememberd the tech lab is all hooked up to a big assed copressor, with blowguns on the ends. I already have plans for a piston valve. If i can swing using this outside the school with the tech teachers, does anyone have any good Ideas of what to test?
Thanks, and I think I have a chance since they let is bring the 7 foot spray and pray in.
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Unread postAuthor: paaiyan » Tue Jan 29, 2008 11:44 am

You can test the optimum firing angle. If you know the mass of the object and the initial velocity, you can test the effects of friction on a real shot vs. an ideal shot. You could take that further and test the drag coefficient of different materials.
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Unread postAuthor: locksmith » Tue Jan 29, 2008 12:52 pm

could see how many of the schools windows you could take out before they got the compressor shut down.hahhahaha.For real you could make your own chrono and a gun two projects in one. chart air pressure and feet per second or something like that.
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Unread postAuthor: judgment_arms » Tue Jan 29, 2008 1:01 pm

I liked Paaiyan’s idea of real vs. ideal ballistics.
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Unread postAuthor: paaiyan » Tue Jan 29, 2008 1:04 pm

judgment_arms wrote:I liked Paaiyan’s idea of real vs. ideal ballistics.


Yay! I had a good idea.
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Unread postAuthor: judgment_arms » Tue Jan 29, 2008 1:09 pm

paaiyan wrote:
Yay! I had a good idea.


Yup, here’s your prize: :spam1:
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Unread postAuthor: paaiyan » Tue Jan 29, 2008 1:13 pm

Sweet action!

Also, you could make the project not about the spudgun itself. You could use it to test the ballistic impact-resistance of materials. You could make and test small structures for impact performance, everyone knows buildings need meteor protection.
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Unread postAuthor: judgment_arms » Tue Jan 29, 2008 1:17 pm

You would suggest testing structures for impact resistance…
first three things that came to mind are: hardened steel slug, hardened steel slug filled with “magic powder” with “magic cap” on nose, and KA... building go by by... :)
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Unread postAuthor: paaiyan » Tue Jan 29, 2008 1:33 pm

Yes... Yes I would suggest it. But seriously, say you want to invent a new riot shield for police or something, test the ballistic impact resistance of possible materials. You should cast one out of epoxy for jack.
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Unread postAuthor: rcman50166 » Tue Jan 29, 2008 3:42 pm

You're going to have to do something more scientific to get first. Trust me I know. I got first place in the Connecticut Science Fair. Look at the complexities of my project.

Hints:

Use a complex title.

Look into new and relatively unkown theory or technology.

Spruce up your vocabulary for presentation day.

Know your experiment inside and out. (Every Detail, Every Step)

Have knowledge of things that surround the technology. (In my case I had to know the math and theory behind particle acceleration and laser systems just to explain the idea behind high voltage power supplies)

If the judge has a confused look at asks to explain again, you're in the clear because he probably doesn't understand the theory behind you're experiement.

If your experiment isn't uber complicated, make it applicable for a solution to global warming (a hot button issue surley to get you secondary, and usually huge, monetary awards i.e. The efficiency of windmill turbine blades)

Show evidence of months of research and new things learned.

Document EVERYTHING. (like a journal of your progress)
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Attachments
mytesla.jpg
This is essentially a particle accelerator power supply
mytesla2.jpg
The project name: Various Acceleration Techniques As Applied To Economic Particle Acceleration and FEL Laser Design
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Unread postAuthor: Fnord » Tue Jan 29, 2008 4:19 pm

Heh nice... Any pictures of it lit up?

Also, What exactly is your capacitor bank made from?
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Unread postAuthor: daberno123 » Tue Jan 29, 2008 4:34 pm

I agree with rcman about using a complicated title. Don't call it a spudgun, that sounds hillbillyish, use somethin like "pneumatic particle acclerator" or something that uses words that have at least 8 letters in them.

Actually i'm doing sort of the same thing for my science fair, i'm testing the chamber to barrel ratios using a fixed chamber volume
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Unread postAuthor: rcman50166 » Wed Jan 30, 2008 7:58 pm

_Fnord wrote:Heh nice... Any pictures of it lit up?

Also, What exactly is your capacitor bank made from?


I don't have pictures of the coil lit up because it's static field throws off the autofocus on most camera. The capacitor bank is a custom homemade capacitor using over 70 plastic disposable plates layered with heavy duty aluminum foil.

daberno123 wrote:I agree with rcman about using a complicated title. Don't call it a spudgun, that sounds hillbillyish, use somethin like "pneumatic particle acclerator" or something that uses words that have at least 8 letters in them.

Actually i'm doing sort of the same thing for my science fair, i'm testing the chamber to barrel ratios using a fixed chamber volume


A particle accelerator deals with atomic and subatomic particles. I'm pretty sure your not recording those. A proper "sciency" name for a potato gun would be a "pneumatic accelerated mass driver." (That's what I would use anyway)
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Unread postAuthor: Hotwired » Wed Jan 30, 2008 8:05 pm

Going digital has its drawbacks :wink:

However it's still excessively expensive to sell disposable digital cameras that can produce the image quality of simple film so you could always grab one of those to take snaps of it :)
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Unread postAuthor: fretmelter » Wed Jan 30, 2008 10:10 pm

lol i had science fair this year and i thought a bout doing a spud related thing but. when i asked my schence teacher for suggestions all she said was "So i know that morr pressure equals mor distence" OR "you need to test something that is not proven" SO i went with what kind od car wax is best :)

you guys make the ideas seem very scientific and like they would work.
All i can say is make sure you have ways to measure things like graphs lol
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