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Bottle rocket launcher using PVC pipe

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Bottle rocket launcher using PVC pipe
PVC pipe has a lot of uses – you can use it for plumbing projects, sprinkler systems, water pipes, & drainage systems.. but what about for fun? What fun ideas are there using PVC pipe? I’m here to show you an idea that my husband and I have come up with!
Bottle rocket launcher!
Your Families will have hours of fun with this! I know because I have watched my grown up husband and his friends, my own kids and neighbor kids spend hours watching the bottles shoot 70 to 80 feet in the air!

Supplies you will need:
3 feet – 3/4″ PVC PIPE
2.5 FEET – 1/2″ PVC PIPE
2 – PVC TEES 3/4″ x 3/4″ x 3/4″
1 – PVC TEE 1/2″ x 3/4″ x 3/4″
1 – 90 DEGREE PVC ELBOW 3/4″ to 1/2″
3 – PVC CAPS
1- Bottle water resistant blue glue
Air compressor

(All supplies can be found at Commercial Industrial Supply so check them out!)

We took a 3/4″ PVC pipe (found at CIS Charlotte Pipe)and cut it (using a saw) into 6 sections measuring 6″ long (each). We took three PVC Tee’s (which can be found at CIS online) And glued them together using a water resistant blue glue. Lay each tee on the ground or on a table
then using the glue insert two of the 6″ pipes into the bottom of the Tee (using the third which is a 3/4″ x 1/2″ tee to connect them in the middle) Using the top of the Tee glue in the 6″ Pipes into the remaining openings the top of the tee. So it should look like the picture below:

Once those are all glued together you can glue PVC caps on the ends of the 6″ long 3/4″ pipes to make the base more stable. The caps can also be found at CIS on one of the ends we got a 90 degree elbow and glued it on instead of a cap. Inside the elbow we glued in a plastic barb fitting so you can attach the end of an air compressor hose to. (you can see it in the picture below)

Once that is all glued together add a 1/2″ pipe that is approximately 2 1/2 feet tall into the 3rd center tee. Let the glue dry overnight and in the meantime gather some 2 liter plastic pop bottles

NEXT DAY!!!
It’s launch time! You can use the bottle rocket launcher two different ways with or without water! No water for cooler days but Kids love using it with water on a hot day because they all get wet! Fill a 2 liter bottle 1/4 of the way full of water then turn it upside down on the 1/2″ stick push the bottle into place until it is sealed enough so water isn’t leaking out. then have someone else put the nozzle of the air compressor hose onto the hose barb and let the bottle fill with pressure. Once the bottle has filled with pressure let the bottle go and watch it soar 70 to 80 feet in the air! Sometimes mom’s and dad’s will have to fetch bottles off the roof or out of neighbors yards.. but once this launcher is out most neighbors join in the fun! If you have a lot of kids participating make sure you have a lot of 2 liter bottles on hand so you can launch one after another. The kids love watching them soar into the air then running after where they land to scoop them up and use them again.
I do advise to have parents monitor this activity! So head on over to Commercial Industrial Supply and get some supplies! It is a fast and fairly inexpensive fun activity that will last and give you many hours of enjoyment!
Check out the pictures below of all the neighbor kids having fun with this!

Don’t you love how they are all looking up in the sky once it launches?

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Comments

  1. I have seen bottle launcher projects in the past, but I must say, yours looks much more durable! That looks like so much fun!

    http://blog.denschool.com/egg-traordinary-drop/

  2. Now that is creative!

  3. My husband would LOVE to do this with our kids!

  4. Would this work with a regular bike pump, instead of a compressor?

  5. Jebbie, I don’t think hand pump would work. You need a lot of air pressure. If you have a pressurized bike pump it might.

    • I know this is a super late reply, but yes you can use a bike pump. It takes a minute or two but it’s the same effect. Our scouts loved this project!

  6. How do you hold the bottle on? On Studio 5 they had a string to release it. You have to hold the bottle on to get the pressure. What is the barb you are using?

  7. If you use a bike pump you are able to take these anywhere compared to using a compressor. I have always used a bike pump with this and it has worked just fine. I think i would be a little worried also about kids holding it while a compressor’s putting in so much air so fast…if someone isn’t paying attention…accidents do happen.

  8. This is great. We have built a lot of fun PVC structures, but this looks like something my boys would love.

Trackbacks

  1. […] Card are a favorite of my entire family. We built this for scouts, but bring it along… it probably drives some of the old crusty farts at the CG nuts. 2-liter bottle water rockets This isn't ours, but one just like it. Bottle rocket launcher using PVC pipe – craftyourself.com […]

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