Nerf blasters are a fun toy, often confiscated from children once they hit one too many precious ornaments around the home in the midst of battle. [Ivan Miranda] is bigger than most children however, and set about building a much larger blaster.
The bazooka-like design uses a several meters of 160mm PVC pipe, firing “darts” constructed out of foam yoga rollers and buffing pads. The build uses a littany of 3D printed components in its construction, both as part of the firing mechanism and as jigs to help machine the pipe. A large plunger is used to propel the darts, which is pulled back against the tension of thick rubber tubes before being released by the trigger mechanism.
It’s an intimidating device, to be sure. However, we suspect its short range, huge size, and slow reload time should stop it from breaking the meta-game at your local Nerf battles. That said, we still wouldn’t want to take a shot from this bad boy to the head. Hackers do love a good Nerf build, and they’re particularly popular in sentry applications. Video after the break.
Continue reading “Big Nerf Bazooka Packs A Wallop”
Traditional light guns rely on quirks of CRT technology, and thus don’t play well with modern LCD televisions and monitors. However, die hard retro gamers aren’t known for moving on from the classics, and have persevered to build new hardware to suit the games of old. In just this vein, [BrittLiv] grabbed some Nerf blasters, and built a pair of light guns that work with today’s hardware.
The build relies on Ultramarc’s light gun kits, which work in a similar way to the original Wiimote. A camera inside the blaster is used to triangulate an LED bar placed on top of the screen for clean and accurate tracking. [BrittLiv] combined the Ultramarc kit with some clever hacks to a Nerf DoubleStrike blaster, stealthily hiding the buttons inside to interface with the original trigger and cocking mechanism, as well as the locking tab in the rail.
There’s both a wired and wireless version, and the setup looks to be a great way to enjoy classics like Duck Hunt and Point Blank. The blasters work great with common platforms like MAME and RetroPi as the Ultramarc hardware emulates a standard USB mouse.
We’ve seen some wild light gun hacks before, like this build that uses cameras and maths to make things work without an LED bar at all! Video after the break.
Continue reading “Nerf Blaster Becomes Light Gun Controller”
For his final project in UCLA’s Physics 4AL program, [Timothy Kanarsky] used a NodeMCU to smarten up a carefully dissected NERF football. With the addition to dual MPU6050 digital accelerometers and some math, the ball can calculate things like the distance traveled and angular velocity. With a 9 V alkaline battery and a voltage regulator board along for the ride it seems like a lot of weight to toss around; but of course nobody on the Hackaday payroll has thrown a ball in quite some time, so we’re probably not the best judge of such things.
Even if you’re not particularly interested in refining your throw, there’s a lot of fascinating science going on in this project; complete with fancy-looking equations to make you remember just how poorly you did back in math class.
As [Timothy] explains in the write-up, the math used to find velocity and distance traveled with just two accelerometers is not unlike the sort of dead-reckoning used in intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs). Since we’ve already seen model rockets with their own silos, seems all the pieces are falling into place.
The NodeMCU polls the accelerometers every 5 milliseconds, and displays the data on web page complete with scrolling graphs of acceleration and angular velocity. When the button on the rear of the ball is pressed, the data is instead saved to basic Comma Separated Values (CSV) file that’s served up to clients with a minimal FTP server. We might not know much about sportsball, but we definitely like the idea of a file server we can throw at people.
Interestingly, this isn’t the first time we’ve seen an instrumented football. Back in 2011 it took some pretty elaborate hardware to pull this sort of thing off, and it’s fascinating to see how far the state-of-the-art has progressed.
It doesn’t take long after getting a cat in your life to learn who’s really in charge. Cats do pretty much what they want to do, when they want to do it, and for exactly as long as it suits them. Any correlation with your wants and needs is strictly coincidental, and subject to change without notice, because cats.
[Alvaro Ferrán Cifuentes] almost learned this the hard way, when his cat developed a habit of exploring the countertops in his kitchen and nearly turned on the cooktop while he was away. To modulate this behavior, [Alvaro] built this AI Nerf turret gun. The business end of the system is just a gun mounted on a pan-tilt base made from 3D-printed parts and a pair of hobby servos. A webcam rides atop the gun and feeds into a PC running software that implements the YOLO3 localization algorithm. The program finds the cat, tracks its centroid, and swivels the gun to match it. If the cat stays in the no-go zone above the countertop for three seconds, he gets a dart in his general direction. [Alvaro] found that the noise of the gun tracking him was enough to send the cat scampering, proving that cats are capable of learning as long as it suits them.
We like this build and appreciate any attempt to bring order to the chaos a cat can bring to a household. It also puts us in mind of [Matthias Wandel]’s recent attempt to keep warm in his shop, although his detection algorithm was much simpler.
Continue reading “Keep Pesky Cats At Bay With A Machine-Learning Turret Gun”
Gatling guns were an early attempt at creating a rapid-firing weapon, and were popular amongst armies in the 19th century. Today, the basic design remains in use as a heavy weapon for putting many rounds downrange very quickly. [Ivan Miranda] decided that the Nerf world was missing a piece of the action, and got started on his own design (Youtube link, embedded below).
As per most [Ivan] builds, this one is a glorious pile of 3D printed parts turned into something functional and fun. It’s an ingenious design that’s more a Gatling in spirit than reality as it lacks the multiple barrels of the original, and it uses smart ducting to allow a single electric fan to both fire the foam Nerf balls as well as suck them in to reload the next shot. In testing, it achieved a muzzle velocity of 60 mph, firing at a rate of approximately 10 rounds/second. The presentation is great too, with plenty of cable wrap, meaty switches, and glowing lights to add to the aesthetic. There are even a couple of bright LED lamps on the front to help dazzle your targets into submission.
Once again, [Ivan]’s work is a great example of what is achievable with a 3D printer and smart design. His water jet drive ain’t bad, either. Video after the break.
Continue reading “This Nerf Gun Is Terrifyingly Huge”
What is this world coming to when you can’t even enjoy sitting in your living room without some jamoke flying a drone in through the window? Is nothing sacred? Won’t someone think of the children?
Apparently [Drew Pilcher] did, and the result is this anti-drone sentry gun. It’s a sturdily built machine – one might even say it’s overbuilt. The gimbal is made from machined steel pieces, and the swivels are a pair of Sherline stepper-controlled rotary tables with 1/40 of a degree accuracy selling for $400 each. Riding atop that is a Nerf rifle, which is cocked by a stepper-actuated linear slide, as well as a Kinect for object tracking. The tracking app is a little rough – just OpenCV hacked onto the Kinect SDK – but good enough for testing. The gun tracks as smoothly as one would expect given the expensive hardware, and the auto-cocking feature works well if a bit slowly. Based as it is on Nerf technology, this sentry is only indicated for the control of the micro-drones seen in the snuff video below, but really, anyone afflicted by indoor infestations of Phantoms or Mavics has bigger problems to worry about.
Over-engineered? Perhaps, but it’s better than letting the menace of indoor drones go unanswered. And it’s far from the first sentry gun we’ve seen, targeting everything from cats to squirrels using lasers, paintballs, and even plain water.
Continue reading “Well-Built Sentry Gun Addresses The Menace Of Indoor Micro-UAVs”
Nerf guns are a great way to annoy parents. Simply give them as a gift to any child, and watch precious family heirlooms tumble to the ground as little Holly commando rolls behind the couch to avoid enemy combatants invading the loungeroom. Adults may find them lacking in stopping power and firing rate, but not to worry – there’s plenty to be done about that. [3D Printing Nerd] took a trip to visit the [Out of Darts] workshop, to check out some seriously hardcore blasters.
[Out of Darts] runs as a store that sells all manner of tools and components for hopping up Nerf blasters, but they also sell complete original builds as well. The video showcases all manner of hardware, from powered backpack ammunition hoppers, to drain blaster shotguns and multirocket launchers. The workshop also contains 22 Prusa i3 printers that run 24/7 producing parts, barring breakdowns. Injection moulding, eat your heart out.
Things have come a long way since the old days of swapping in big springs to Hasbro blasters and crossing fingers that nothing breaks. 3D printing allows the home maker to produce just about any part imaginable without requiring advanced machine tools or special skills beyond the use of garden variety CAD software. It’s not the first time we’ve seen 3D printed Nerf blasters, and we’re sure it won’t be the last either. As always, tip ’em if you got ’em. Video after the break.
Continue reading “Nerf Mods Via 3D Printing”