Perfect spiral, every time

[Carmine] let us know about his team’s Automated Football Launcher. Their goal was to combine a football launcher with motion tracking, to allow a player to practice running and catching with the perfect throw. Unfortunately, and we’re not quite sure when, they ended up changing out the Jugs machine for an air cannon, which resulted in the use of foam footballs and the loss of throwing factors such as spiral. Somewhat defeating the purpose but we’ll let it slide; only because we know its going to be shooting potatoes eventually.

The project comes together by using two cameras giving distance and color tracking, combined with a rotating platform (and the best use of garden hose ever), an accurate set-top for their launcher. As seen in the video after the jump, it works out quite nicely. Continue reading “Perfect spiral, every time”

Fully-automated golf ball gun

If you get in the line of fire this golf ball launcher is gonna leave a mark, or worse. It’s based on the same premise as the sausage gun, but now everything is automated and no meat products are used.

A hopper stores a row of golf balls. When it comes time to load, a ball falls into the chamber, starter fuel is sprayed into the combustion area with the aid of a fan, and after both chambers are sealed the propellant is ignited.

We’ve embedded two videos below for your amusement. It looks like [Chrille] and his friends are being careful with their creation. We’re glad for that because this is about as dangerous as the high-velocity ping-pong ball launcher. Continue reading “Fully-automated golf ball gun”

Ping-pong launcher your wife can’t know about


Sometime the projects you see at the local hacker space are better left a secret when you return home for the evening. Case in point, this ping-pong ball launcher that can put holes in a sheet of OSB. The projectile is made more lethal because the ball has been injected with water to dramatically increase the density. Compressed air is used to propel it from the 14 round magazine with devastating effect.

We’ve embedded a video of the gun being fired after the break. The creator, [Ron Kessinger], demonstrated this at a Denver hacker space called Club Workshop. We’re hoping there’s no plans for turret automation because this thing’s dangerous! Either way, the significant other who usually watches out for our safety would never approve. Continue reading “Ping-pong launcher your wife can’t know about”

SpiderBot emulates spider-man

Spiderbot moves with four magnetic grapplers that it can launch, detach, and aim according to it’s path planning algorithm. While the robot is definitely not a final product and is quite a bit away from moving with the same grace and speed as our friendly neighborhood Spider-Man, it is definitely one of the more interesting locomotion experiments out there. The video has some nice slow motion footage of the main mechanisms as well as screen captures of the path planning.

[Via BotJunkie]