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The Den of Foam

The Blowgun

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The Blowgun
 
The Blowgun is, without question, the easiest homemade nerf gun possible. For the basics, all you actually need is a piece of PVC pipe.  To be more precise, a piece of 1/2" pvc pipe no shorter than 1.25 feet and no longer than 2.5'.  If its too short, the dart will get to the end and hit the ground within another fifteen feet (and that's if you're blowing really hard.)  If its too long, it will be very cumbersome, and will take more air than its worth to fire.  Also, the longer it is, the more likely the weight of the pipe will pull the end down and bend it, diminishing accuracy.  In my opinion, the best general length is about 2' long.  This size PVC pipe is for micros.  I suggest you inspect and test your micros with your pipe as well, and mark the ones that fit best and fly best from your blowgun, because some darts are slightly thicker or fatter than others and will tend to get stuck.  When firing your blowgun, take a decent breath (don't hurt yourself trying to suck in too much air) and then place your mouth against the firing end.  This is also the end the dart should be placed in, and the end the dart should face away from.  Place your tongue up against the pipe an your teeth, and your air will be up against your tongue.  In the instant before you fire, your stomach muscles will involuntarily tighten, causing a buildup of pressure behind your tongue.  Now, simply pop your tongue to the bottom of your mouth and all of the air will be released, sending the dart streaking accross the yard/room/jail cell/Seven-Eleven/wherever you are.  When you move your tongue, it should feel like the equivalent of saying a very sharp, hard letter "T" without the "eee."  For those of you (such as myself) out there who play a wind instrument (ie. trumpet, saxophone, trombone, etc.) think of this tongue movement as a stacatto marking or a sharp ^ accent.  All of this explanation is for those who pick up a blowgun, put their lips over the end, and make a big "whoosh" sound as their breath is slowly released, followed by a moaning sound of annoyance as the dart lands straight up not five feet from them.  The technique is actually very simple, though I am sure I have made it sound quite difficult, involved and complicated to some.  For that, I am sorry.  However, just walk yourself through the steps, think about what your tongue and air are doing, and it whould click fairly quickly.  Blowguns are a joy to use, have an amazing rate of fire, are extremely easy to alter or make add-ons for, and have superior range to almost any other homemade weapon around.  My blowgun in particular, is my main sniper rifle, and has bested my vortex tornado for range on the most windless day of the year.  I have heard reports of firing ranges for crossbows, and my blowgun has beaten all that I have heard, save one, which was a crossbow with a CO2 bike pump attached somehow.  You can tape PVC pipe pieces to the sides of your blowgun for handles (do NOT use the "T-connectors" you find at hardware stores.  They make huge divots in the barrel that the darts will slide into every time you fire.  The barrel MUST remain as one piece.  I also made an ammo holder for mine with some styrofoam strips.  I sewed and glued one strip in big round loops to the other to make loops to slide darts into.  I then wrapped the main piece around the center of my blowgun and taped it on.  When it had a full load of darts, they spiral around it and it looks really cool.  I have an attachment with a wooden dowel on it for use as a ramrod.  When a dart gets stuck in the barrel, ecspecially during a war, I just pull out the dowel, shove it through, and load a differend dart.  Experiment with your blowguns, post descriptions in my guestbook, send pictures, etc.  I want to see how creative your useful alterations can be.  Enjoy your bowgun!  And remember, a blowgun is not just a nerf gun.  A blowgun is a work of art.