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Adding a longer barrel or a springier spring to your Nerf gun is cool, but I think inventor Rob Flickenger’s Nerf-inspired, 200,000-volt Tesla coil gun takes the cake.

Read all about it at Pop Sci.

The current flows into what Flickenger calls the “hockey puck of doom”—an end cap of PVC pipe filled with silicone. Inside the gun, a transformer from an old television and additional circuitry repeatedly doubles the current and then pumps it to a capacitor bank. When the six capacitors hold 20,000 volts, the gun starts firing. All that electricity still blew a few pucks, so Flickenger recently tested a mixture of silicone and hexagonal boron nitride that draws away the heat, preserving electrical components.

Stett Holbrook

Stett is a senior editor at MAKE with abiding interest in food and drink, bicycles, woodworking, and environmentally sound human enterprises. He is the father of two young makers.

He is also the co-creator of Food Forward, a documentary TV series for PBS about the innovators and pioneers changing our food system.

Contact Stett with tips and story ideas on:

*Sustainable/green design
*Young Makers
*Action sports



  1. Jeff Nme says:

    If it isn’t too much trouble, could you please link to a page that is viewable by people outside the USA as well?
    PopSci forces readers to a “localised” version which most probably does not have this story, as I can’t read it on (it just puts up a 404 error).

    1. owen says:

      that stinks

  2. owen says:

    will you speak human

  3. Skidd says:

    The point of modding isn’t to make something deadly.
    This is EXACTLY why we can’t have nice things.
    If I wanted to make a tesla coilgun, I wouldn’t attach “Nerf” to it at all. Nerf is slang for foam. This is not a foam launcher.