Build-it-Yourself Air Cannon Plans

Air Cannon Projectiles

Build it yourself ammunition you can use for air cannon projectiles to be creative and save some cash by building them yourself.

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Build It Yourself Air Cannon Projectiles

Air Cannon Tennis Ball Parachute Projectile

This is an interesting projectile that can be fun to use.

It is simply a tennis ball filled with pennies for weight with an attached parachute that was purchased at a Army Surplus store.

It is called a 'Flare Parachute,' and is used to drop flares from airplanes for a signaling device. Below is a simple diagram of how it is constructed:

Picture of the parachute inflated by a fan

Insert the pennies by cutting a small slit in the side of the tennis ball. Insert many pennies. It does not need to be totally full but make it somewhat heavy. Screw the "eye screw" in the tennis ball. Tie the parachute string through the "eye screw."

To launch the tennis ball parachute you must use a 2.5" barrel. Roll up the parachute (similar to a model rocket) and wrap it around the tennis ball. Insert it down the barrel and fire. The tennis ball usually flies through the air for a couple hundred feet then unravels. It should slowly drift back to the ground.

Air Cannon Finned Dart Projectile

Potatoes just aren't quite the ideal projectile for distance. Something that would be sleek and travel very far is ideal. These darts are 3/4" thin-walled PVC by 24" long. There is a nose cone (from a model rocket), and it has four Fins that are at a slight angle. This angle in the fins cause the dart to spin through the air like a bullet and maintain longer flights. For the fins I used a flexible plastic sheeting from a binder; the binder is the kind with the flexible plastic cover.

I cut the slits for the fins using a small dermal tool. Because of the light-weight design, the dart floats through the air, which makes the projectile achieve great distances. This dart is used with the P.A.C. 5 and easily can fire over 1000 feet.

Here are some various pictures of darts

(Picture of the fins. Notice the angle)

(The orange makes the projectile easier to see against the sky)

Air Cannon Paintball Cartridges

Below is a picture a paintball cartridge. Two paper cups are taped simply glued together. It is then cut down to fit the barrel size, and then loaded with paintballs.

Air Cannon Flares

These projectiles named flares are made to fit perfectly in a 1 1/2 in. barrel. The end of the PVC is flared by dipping it in hot cooking oil and then shaping it with a funnel. The end cap is then weighted. They fly straight and work quite well.