CO2 Cartridge Rocket Launcher

CO2 canister powered rocket launcher, because why not

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There have been a few projects online that use 12g CO2 canisters as projectiles, but very few that use them as the propellant as well. The new design with shear of the canister end, allowing a fast release of the compressed CO2, launching it out of the barrel, with a lever action styled reloading system with a falling block styled breach.

The body is made out of machined 6061 aluminum with the same aluminum for the barrel and loading tube. The loading system will be a lever actuated (old school Winchester style) falling block breach. The lever forces the block up, allowing the spring fed loading tube to slide a cartridge into the block. Then the lever is pulled back into place causing the block to return to the firing position so the firing pin can be hit, launching the canister.

Here is the finished product!

  • It is finished!!!

    Alex Anderson01/20/2017 at 19:03 0 comments

    Here is the final project for you all! Cheers!

  • Check Out this Action!

    Alex Anderson09/09/2016 at 16:38 0 comments

    Here is a quick updated video on the pump action for the CO2 canister launcher!

    Our new channel is up and running and can be found here:

    So head on over and subscribe for when the full video is released!

  • Reworked Receiver is Smooth as Silk

    Alex Anderson08/30/2016 at 21:51 0 comments

    There as been lots of progress in terms of getting the pump action to activate the falling block breach. This new linkage system smoothly moves the breach up to receive the next canister, and then reset when the pump stroke is reversed.

    Here are some other pictures of the assembly in general.

    This project is being worked on as part of a new partnership between myself and a friend of mine, Ivan Owen (the gentleman with the beard in the videos) and we are going to be posting the final video and many more crazy builds on our Youtube channel (formally Ivan's channel) Danger First. If you like this sort of project, please follow us there to get updates on our bigger projects and give us feedback!

  • That Moment When Things Start to Take Shape...

    Alex Anderson08/15/2016 at 20:35 0 comments

    In every project there is a moment you start to realize that the end is in sight. When after putting in countless hours you can see the light at the end of the tunnel. The canister launcher has reached that point. There are still a few kinks to work out, namely the cam system to move the falling block and the spring system for the firing pin, but otherwise it is just superficial stuff like making a stock and tuning.

    This Is the barrel, loading tube, pump handle and receiver all assembled. The long barrel (which is a new pipe with much tighter tolerances, is need to allow the canister to release all of its CO2 before it leaves the barrel. This will hopefully allow for the best energy transfer as well as the straightest flight since the canister will not have a jet after exiting the barrel.

    The pump action will actuate both the falling block system as well as resetting the firing pin system.

    This shows the follower spring end cap as well as the shotgun style loading tube and door. The block with the brass tube is the falling block system that will be moved by the pump action.

    And a quick show off of the pump action ;)

  • Loading Tube Test

    Alex Anderson08/05/2016 at 18:49 0 comments

    Finally added block gate to loading tube so canisters can be inserted like a shotgun shells into the loading tube, then the tube is emptied as the falling block breach. Sorry again for the vertical video.

  • Test Fire Part 2

    Alex Anderson08/02/2016 at 22:44 0 comments

    Testing of firing system outside. Currently the system is fired using a hammer to strike the firing pin to puncture the CO2 canister, but that will be replaced with a spring powered hammer in the near future. It is hard to tell in the video, but we were playing with different levels of friction to hold the canister in place for the puncture to occur. This allowed for a more solid puncture which in turn allowed for a more rapid release. Future modifications will include mounting the loading tube, replacing the barrel with tighter tolerances, and adding a hammer, stock, lever action, and trigger.

    Sorry for the vertical video :)

  • Working Loading Tube

    Alex Anderson08/01/2016 at 22:18 0 comments

    Loading tube now has a return spring and fits 4 canisters. Check out the video to see how it works.

  • Progress: Two Steps Forward, One Step Back

    Alex Anderson07/25/2016 at 21:22 0 comments

    Long overdue update! Lots of progress has been made with some important testing and redesign. The loading tube has been designed to hold additional canisters and is spring loaded to push the next cartridge into the breach when the lever action is used. Solid and final progress on that front.

    The first idea to empty the canister was a spring loaded chisel on the back to sheer the end of the canister off, hopefully releasing all of the CO2 and once, but the chisel was not able to provide enough force to sheer the canister. This means the chisel needed to be removed and the addition of a firing pin style mechanism. This allows for a solid puncture and repeat-ability which will be needed for the lever actuated system. Here are are some pictures of the previous chisel system and a test video of the new firing pin setup. PLEASE NOTE: the video is of a very dangerous setup. We were wearing eye protection and recognize the risk of high energy projectiles. In future tests we plan to have a more safe setup, but this served as a proof of concept.

    Test Video:

  • More pictures!

    Alex Anderson06/17/2016 at 15:26 0 comments

    As promised here are more pictures of the launcher. This shows the barrel and falling block assembly and how the canisters will be loaded. The aluminum parts were milled on a manual milling machine and that center pocket took over an hour and a half!

  • Changing Directions

    Alex Anderson06/16/2016 at 17:50 0 comments

    So after much design work and lots of milling on a manual milling machine, we are starting to have results! The design is going to have a lever action, Winchester 1873 look to it. The receiver is being milled out of aluminum blocks, with a drop block receiver design. The lever will push the drop block up and out of the firing chamber to load a cartridge, fall back into place and have the canister ruptured by a wedge. This new design will make the action almost semi-automatic and the use of mills and lathes has made the design far more precise and ambitious. More pictures in addition to these are coming!

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Enjoy this project?



joelavigueur wrote 08/03/2017 at 23:18 point

This project is really cool I love the pump action and the rising breach block, it really adds to the "hodge podge" aesthetic. One thing that disappointed me about the whole project was how inaccurate it is. I was wondering if it's possible to make it more accurate by adding rifling or making the gun a bullpup design allowing the barrel to be longer. In your experience with building the gun do you think these changes make difference?

  Are you sure? yes | no

Brian wrote 04/10/2016 at 21:26 point

You could also make a mortar that uses these same projectiles. Drop it in the tube, and when it gets to the bottom, a pin punctures the cartridge end. 

  Are you sure? yes | no

Alex Anderson wrote 04/10/2016 at 21:27 point

Yep! I have found a few of those online, but nothing that had a "bazooka" sort of setup, so that is what I went for.

  Are you sure? yes | no

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