A Nerf Ball Turret Complete With FPV

Sentry turrets have long been a feature of science fiction films and video games. These days, there’s nothing stopping you from building your own. [otjones99] has done just that, with his FPV Nerf Ball launcher.

The system works on the basic principle of launching soft foam balls via a pair of counter-rotating wheels. It’s a remarkably simple way of electrically launching projectiles without a lot of fuss and mucking around, and it works well here. A blower fan is used to gently roll ammunition towards the launcher wheels as required. There’s a hopper-style clip which uses a servo to drop one ball at a time into the launching tube.

An Arduino Uno is responsible for slewing the turret, and handling the firing process. A joystick is fitted with an NRF24L01 radio module to send signals to the Arduino to aim the turret, while an FPV camera mounted on the turret allows the user to remotely see what the turret is aiming at. With a simple pull of the joystick’s trigger, the turret opens fire.

It’s a fun build, and one that shouldn’t do too much damage to anything given the soft pliable nature of the Nerf ammunition. Of course, if you don’t want to aim your turret yourself, you can always go ahead and build yourself an automated sentry gun. Video after the break.

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A Capable Nerf Launcher Robot

Nerf blasters are fun to play with, and it’s now possible to even get robotic Nerf launchers you can use to chase around your friends. [Engineering After Hours] wasn’t satisfied with the official hardware, though, so built his own remote control Nerf rig to battle it out in the back yard.

The rig is built around an earlier build from [Engineering After Hours], a skid-steer RC chassis that is nice and tough to handle rough and tumble driving. It’s paired with a trailer attached to the center of rotation of the chassis that makes the pair highly maneuverable.

In order to launch rockets, an air tank on the trailer is hooked up to some piping to launch four Nerf rockets. Charged up to just 40 psi, it’s capable of launching the rounds with plenty of power for play purposes. Paired with a elevation control and a servo to trigger the firing valve, it’s a complete system that can shoot on the go.

It’s a fun build that packs a punch, even if it doesn’t quite have the accuracy or range you might desire in an all-conquering Nerf combat platform.  We’d love to see a similar build hooked up to some AI smarts to stalk targets independently of human control. Video after the break.

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Auto-Aiming Nerf Gun To Give You The Edge In Battle

Ever wished for some robotic enhancements for your next nerf war? Well, it’s time to dig through the parts bin and build yourself a nerf gun with aimbot built right in, courtesy of [3Dprintedlife]. (Video, embedded below.)

The gun started with a design borrowed from [Captain Slug]’s awesome catalog of open source nerf guns. [3Dprintedlife] modified the design to include a two-axis gimbal between the lower and the upper, driven by a pair of stepper motors via an Arduino. For auto-aim, a camera module attached to a Raspberry Pi running OpenCV was added. When the user half-pressed the trigger, OpenCV will start tracking whatever was at the center of the frame and actively adjust the gimbal to keep the gun aimed at the object until the user fires. The trigger mechanism consists of a pair of microswitches that activate a servo to release the sear. It is also capable of tracking a moving target or any face that comes into view.

We think this is a really fun project, with a lot of things that can be learned in the process. Mount it on a remote control tank and you’d be able to wage some intense battles in your backyard. All the files are available on GitHub.

You are never too old for a good old nerf battle. Whether you want to be a sniper, a machine gunner, or a heavy weapons specialist, there’s a weapon to build for every role.

3D Printing A Long Range Nerf Blaster

The modified Nerf scene used to be about getting the absolute maximum performance out of Hasbro’s off-the-shelf foam dart blasters. The community quickly found the limits of plastic parts made down to a price, and an underground market for heavier springs and CNC-machined upgrades sprung up. Eventually, however, the advent of 3D printing and cheaper home machine tools led to a rise in popularity of bespoke blasters. [Zach] has long advocated for their supremacy, and has made a long-range blaster aimed at newcomers to the hobby. (Video, embedded below.)

The blaster is built around the popular Caliburn spring-powered design, originally created by [Captain Slug]. Modifications by [Zach] involve a longer barrel, relocated side-feeding magazine port, and other modifications designed to suit the long-range sniping role. There’s even a special “rifled” stabiliser on the end designed to reduce the effects of muzzle blast from disturbing the dart as it leaves the barrel.

It’s a design that very much builds on the efforts of the wider Nerf community, and is all the better for it. [Zach] has shared files and links to parts bundles to help get enterprising builders up and running with a minimum of fuss. We’d love to take the long blaster out for a round or three ourselves – it may just be time to fire up the 3D printer!

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A Nerf Gun Upgrade

A lot of us have nostalgia for our childhood toys, and as long as they’re not something like lawn darts that nostalgia often leads to fun upgrades since some of us are adults with industrial-sized air compressors. Classics like Super Soakers and Nerf guns are especially popular targets for improvements, and this Nerf machine gun from [Emiel] is no exception.

The build takes a Nerf ball-firing toy weapon and basically tosses it all out of the window in favor of a custom Nerf ball launching rifle. He starts with the lower receiver and machines a pneumatic mechanism that both loads a ball into the chamber and then launches it. This allows the rifle to be used in both single-shot mode and also in fully-automatic mode. From there, a barrel is fashioned along with the stock and other finishing touches.

[Emiel] also uses a high-speed camera to determine the speed of his new Nerf gun but unfortunately it isn’t high-speed enough, suffering from the same fate as one of the fastest man-made objects ever made, and he only has a lower bound on the speed at 400 km/h. If you don’t want to go fast with your Nerf builds, though, perhaps you should build something enormous instead. Continue reading “A Nerf Gun Upgrade”

Big Nerf Bazooka Packs A Wallop

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.

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Nerf Blaster Becomes Light Gun Controller

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.

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