Steam powered spud gun

[robbtoberfest] put together this cool looking steam powered spud pistol. Made from household materials, like a lighter and some copper pipe, this spud gun builds pressure in its little bitty boiler to expel the projectiles. It seems as though he’s using a cork to supply a seal, so why bother with potatos? At roughly 2 minutes between shots, its not the quickest, but it sure is cool. Good job [robbtoberfest].


  1. NetCrash says:

    Realy cool!!!!

  2. wizzard1 says:

    he should use a layer or two of tin-foil as a seal, inside the device… tin foil, as well as being air-tight and water-tight, will rupture at a certain pressure in such a way as to remove itsself from the path of the volume of steam as it leaves the device… then there’d be no need for cork.

  3. ngth says:

    Cool idea, but the amount of time that you need to heat the water up is too great. How about hooking up a CO2 cartridge and having a trigger? NOW you can possibly win in a spud fight.

  4. What is the point of the potato if he is shooting the cork?

  5. fractalrock says:

    I love it…good job robbtoberfest.

    For the potatoes that refuse to seal well, maybe a dip in vasoline?

    @wizzard1 and chris mcdowell….he’s using the cork because it is easier/simpler/more reusable than a metallic seal.

  6. Dan says:

    Nice. I like the integrated design but the pressure buildup is because of the cork and not the potato. If you could build up the vapor pressure in a chamber, then release it all at once against the potato, then the potato would fire on it’s own otherwise you would just have a potato chunk slowly eject itself from the end of the gun as the pressure builds up.

  7. mike says:

    Thats pretty cool, I was thinking “what the hell?” when he only put in a few drops of water but apparantly that is all you need to get the steam.

  8. Blastar says:

    With this half Rotten Potato its twice as Lethal.. Well at least once.

  9. kabukicho2001 says:

    You can get the same effect shaking a bottle of Champagne and the cork blow out! Cheers! Happy new year 2009!

  10. Nathan says:

    It won’t take much water at all because when water flashses to steam it expands into 1600 times the volume it was before.

    1 drop of water = 1600 drops of steam. Neat project. Now it’s got me thinking of a way to vaporize all the water INSTANTLY. Then you’ll get a powerful gun.

  11. winsucker says:

    That’s fast…

  12. Dan Fekete says:

    I can’t remember the site, but a fast way to make steam is to use a capacitor bank to flash boil the water in a chamber. The nice thing about doing that is you don’t need a pressure seal as the water rapidly changes to steam. The downside is the capacitor bank needed can be large and deadly in and of itself.

    I believe it’s refered to as electro-thermal and you can find a bunch of videos on youtube.

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