Air-powered Launcher!

Project Summary

This is another fun project for the Young Engineer Series subscription box!  Have you ever wanted to mod your Nerf guns?  Ever wanted to launch mini rockets on special missions to acquire exotic metals from a nearby asteroid belt?  Even if you’re not as weird as we are, we think you’ll love this project box.

BE SAFE and provide appropriate SUPERVISION!  It is possible to build a powerful launcher with the parts in this project box.  A powerful launcher can shoot the included Nerf-style darts at DANGEROUS SPEEDS!

Activities and Challenges

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Design Files

Find all the files in our public (and open-source) Git Hub repository here:

Want to help with the design?

Great!  We’re trying to get more students actively participating in design and our ultimate goal is to have the Young Engineer Series be fully student led and designed!  Exceptional students will also be given the opportunity to complete a resident training program at our facility and join our team as paid designers!  First step?  Request to join our Young Engineer Series project in Autodesk Fusion 360!  (Email us at

Air-powered Launcher!

Project Journal

April 2, 2019

We're done!

We had a couple of last-minute part orders for the boxes show up on Monday. With the last parts in-hand, we were ready for a final push on Tuesday to get the boxes done and out the door. We did it! Now on to the next 77 things on the must-do-now list! 🙂

March 23, 2019

Final Stretch!

With Andy moving to a new opportunity (We still love you Andy!) and the move happening now, we're filling up every available moment with design, ordering, making....who's crazy idea was it to do a product development cycle every two months!!!

As busy as it is, things are moving in the right direction. I'm excited about how this project box is coming together. Fun times as we race to get this done by the end of March!

March 9, 2019

Fun little launchers at STEAM day!

We had a fun opportunity to test some simple air launcher ideas at Garrison School for the Arts in Savannah, GA last Thursday! We had a blast! (I borrowed this clever pun from Ty Donaldson at Maven Makers). I was experimenting with simple ways to force air through a tube to launch something and figured out that it perfectly fits my son's Nerf darts. Needed to design 1 simple 3d printed part to make it work well and it worked better than I hoped! Bonus: This makes a very cheap and quick demo kit that will be great for all kinds of events!

March 2, 2019

Need to design this QUICKLY!!

Wow. With all the moving prep and extra happenings around here lately, we're so far behind! This will need to be a swift design-build process and there will no doubt be some late nights involved! We can do this! Hey...if you have ideas to share, you can always click that "Share an Idea" button on the right side of your screen and then let me know what you're thinking!