Steampunk coilgun pistol

Steampunk coilgun pistol

Nick Thatcher’s compact coilgun uses a coil of copper wire along the barrel to launch its projectile. It’s powered by 15 photoflash capacitors juiced up by 2 AAAs. Of course the power of this gun is very much in question, the super dark video on the site doesn’t show a whole lot. It appears, however, to be able to punch through cardboard at a very close range.

Regardless, this is a nicely executed design with a beautiful finished product.


6 thoughts on “Steampunk coilgun pistol

  1. Rob says:

    At the risk of starting an argument, why is this steampunk? Is anything made out of brass considered steampunk? This isn’t even “Victorian Era” design, it’s just brass. I’m completely confused by the steampunk art movement.

    1. rahere says:

      Steampunk recalls production standards of a bygone age, when predominantly manual finishing produced items of a degree of quality which at least rivals modern plasticised and metalicised products when new, and which age considerably better than these over time. There can be a certain degree of humour in retrofitting modern machinery, but it most certainly takes considerably more than replacing some of the plastic casing with battered and ill-fitted brass sheet, as here. The large amounts of aluminium, and particularly the rivets, further detract from the product: the Victorians would have used rosewood, which is admittedly a highly environmentally unfriendly solution these days.
      “Be nice”? Yes, we are: but that doesn’t necessarily mean accept any cheating tat.
      The closest this comes to anything is approximately 1946, when utility production cou;d come up with something like this. Now then, a steam-powered coilgun might be something to fear: a linear-charging rod driven by a flywheel and piston gear embedded in the butt (a bit like the linear motor of the gun itself running in reverse) charging a set of glass-covered capacitors along the sides, fitted with brass discharge nodes and bare wiring should make anybody’s hair stand on end.

  2. machright says:

    Not quite Steam Punk but it is a cool looking toy.

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My interests include writing, electronics, RPGs, scifi, hackers & hackerspaces, 3D printing, building sets & toys. @johnbaichtal

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