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How to make your own railgun...
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Old 28 Oct 2006, 17:50   #1 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default How to make your own railgun...

Well the title is abit false really because this is how to make your own gauss gun or 'Electromagnetic Linear Mass Accelerator' if you want to make it sound really cool.

Disclaimer: During the process of creating this Electromagnetic Linear Mass Accelerator I have succeeded in frying my fingers multiple times and regularly electrocuting myself. I urge caution when building and firing this device and I accept no responsibly for any hurt or injury you sustain during your construction of your device. Finally I warn you to be careful with capacitors as they can contain very large charges, which can be lethal to those with poor hearts or pacemakers. Please do not shock friends or family and choose your projectiles sensibly.

Reason: Physics is a very interesting subject and having access to the right equipment and knowledge it grew on my curiosity to actually use my grey matter to make some thing for a laugh.

Equipment list:
-The flash circuit from a disposable camera. You should be able to get a used camera from wherever develops the films;
-A lot of enamelled copper wire with a diameter of about 1mm;
-A good battery with a lot of charge, it needs to be about 1.5v otherwise you may blow-up the capacitors;
-A large drinking straw;
-Soldering iron and solder or crocodile clips and wires;
-A board to mount your Electromagnetic Linear Mass Accelerator on;
-A pair of washers which fit tightly around the straw;
-Some blocks of wood to fix the solenoid to;
-A hot glue gun or gaffer tape or strong wood glue.

Step one:
Remove the flash circuit from the camera. BE CARFULL THE CAPAICITOR INSIDE MAY STILL REMAIN CHARGED. Once you have removed the circuit discharge any residual charge in the capacitor by crossing the contacts with a metal conductor. When doing this wear rubber gloves or use an insulating material.

Step two:
Work out how to charge the circuit and how to make it flash the flash bulb.

Step three:
Make sure the circuit is uncharged. Remove the flash bulb and solder/clip wires onto where the contacts were.

Step four:
Create a solenoid (electromagnet) by wrapping your enamel wire round in coils around your straw. Use the two washers and glue gun to make sure the wire stays in place and the coils are tight and compressed. Your solenoid will need to be about 0.05m (5cm) in length and about 0.03m thick. Thatís a good 20m of enamelled copper wire. Your can find enamelled copper wire in electric motors or you can buy it from your local DIY store. Make sure the straw sticks out each side so that you can load the Electromagnetic Linear Mass Accelerator.

Step five:
Test your solenoid with a 12v battery. If it can pick up paperclips thatís good, and if it doesnít burn out thatís even better because you wonít set fire to stuff later. If it doesnít pick up paper clips, check the battery and wire you may have a short circuit. If it still doesnít work re-wind the coil and/or make it bigger. If the whole thing gets really hot and the coil melts you now know that the wire is the wrong gauge. Buy the next thickness up. If this happened during the firing you end up with sparks and fires everywhereÖbe warned!

Step six.
Fix up your firing board with your blocks of wood, glue gun and wires and assemble everything. Donít connect anything up until its all in place.

Step seven:
Connect everything together (electrically) and do a test fire without a projectile. If all is fine move up to using paperclips and other projectiles. You can increase the power of the Electromagnetic Linear Mass Accelerator with extra capacitors and larger coils. BE CARFULL CONNECTING LOTS OF CAPICOTIS IN PARRELL IS DANGEROUS. TREAT THE ELECTROMAGNETIC LINEAR MASS ACCELERATOR WITH RESEPCT.

Step eight:
Modify and improve as you wish. Do not fire stuff at people. Itís all fun and a laugh until someone gets hurt.

Note: you donít have to follow my plans. You can do a lot with the camera flash circuit and its capacitors. Have a mess around with one or two and see what you can do. But do treat them with respect.

Genmotty

NB: Please don't post 'thats so cool posts' Only post for more info or more detailed instructions.
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Old 28 Oct 2006, 18:49   #2 (permalink)
Kroot Warrior
 
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Default Re: How to make your own railgun...

That is pretty cool, but you should probably look up the term electrocute. Sounds funny for someone who can make a gauss gun to say they've been electrocuted.

Unless I'm wrong and you really are dead. That would be insanely cool.

BTW, can you elaborate on step 2?

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Old 28 Oct 2006, 18:57   #3 (permalink)
Shas'La
 
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Default Re: How to make your own railgun...

Very cool ( ;D) but as I'm not a native speaker of English, those technical terms aren't familiar to me at all. Maybe I should search for a online dictionary or something like that...

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Old 28 Oct 2006, 19:11   #4 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Re: How to make your own railgun...

Stage 2 elaboration:
You need to look for three things
1)Positive terminal for your powersource
2)Negative terminal for your powersource
3)The 'charge' switch's

The 'charge' switch should be a small button or two contacts which need to be pressed together to charge the capacitors. When you connect up a power source make sure its the right way round, otherwise you can screw up the circuit.

You will also need to work out how to make the flash, flash. This again will be a switch which needs to be closed. When testing this don't use your finger otherwise you get shocked. When you find all these things you will know where to connect stuff up. I can't give detail on the circuit board exactly, because the circuit boards can be diffrent from camera to camera.

"those technical terms aren't familiar to me at all." Just mess about a bit...Its not 'rocket science...' Yes, use an online translator or mess about.

As for the "electrocuting myself" indeed I'm not dead, but my fingers were for about ten minutes. Sorry, I'm just trying to make the point Be careful.

Hope that helps... 8)
Genmotty
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Old 28 Oct 2006, 22:11   #5 (permalink)
Shas'Saal
 
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Default Re: How to make your own railgun...

here is an interesting website on Rail Gun Tech and how it all works

http://www.powerlabs.org/railgun.htm
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Old 29 Oct 2006, 08:16   #6 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Re: How to make your own railgun...

Quote:
Originally Posted by xartus
here is an interesting website on Rail Gun Tech and how it all works

http://www.powerlabs.org/railgun.htm
Indeed...my gauss gun is much smaller and hardly as powerfull, but it can throw nails across the room...

...Anyhow railguns are different to gauss guns. I doubt I could make a railgun because it involves vapourising a thin strip of conductor, in order to propel a projectile between two conducting 'rails'....
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Old 29 Oct 2006, 08:49   #7 (permalink)
Shas'La
 
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Default Re: How to make your own railgun...

Any changes of you puttting some pics here? :P
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Old 29 Oct 2006, 10:10   #8 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Re: How to make your own railgun...

When I can steal a Digi cam from one of me mates...
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Old 29 Oct 2006, 12:10   #9 (permalink)
Shas'La
 
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Default Re: How to make your own railgun...

Nah, try build your own. Maybe a hybrid of a digital camera and a gauss gun. >
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Old 29 Oct 2006, 12:33   #10 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Re: How to make your own railgun...

Give it a cell phone feature and you're one up on the companies. Excellent, I will have to make one.
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