Cork guns, sometimes known as pop guns, are a popular toy that relies on air pressure to fire a small cork or plastic foam projectile. The toys are harmless, since the maximum velocity of such a low-density projectile is very low. The toys also make an entertaining and characteristic “popping” sound when fired. Cork guns can be made from parts found around the house.
1. Cut the dowel and the PVC pipe. The dowel must be longer than the pipe; it will act as a plunger. Ideal lengths are 16 inches and 12 inches respectively.
2. Bevel the inside of one end of the PVC pipe. This can be done by using the scissors to shave down the inside of the pipe.
3. Use the beveled PVC pipe to punch circles out of the foam board. In total, the circles should have a cumulative height of about an inch.
4. Stack the foam circles so that the wider ends are facing upward and screw them into one end of the dowel. Tape a 12-inch string near the “handle” end.
5. Back the dowel through the PVC pipe. The end with the foam screwed on should back through the pipe last.
6. Tape the free end of the string to the base of the PVC pipe. This will keep the plunger from being taken out of the pop gun.
7. With the plunger fully extended, place a cork into the beveled end of the cork gun and depress the plunger rapidly to fire.