Turn a BBQ Lighter Into a Mini Cannon

You may have created miniature firearms from pens or paper clips at school (or even at the office) but this BBQ lighter gun offers a more sophisticated way to annoy people. Firing 6mm Airsoft ammunition, this “mini cannon” is created almost entirely from a BBQ lighter and its parts. It will take a fair amount of fiddling with small pieces, but if something like this is interesting to you, the project’s effort will certainly pay off. In his video, Nighthawkinlight details all the steps necessary in order to turn your ordinary lighter into a pellet-firing weapon of not-so-mass destruction.

BBQ Lighter Mini Cannon

For most of the creation, all that’s needed is to remove, modify (with a drill), and reconfigure various parts of the lighter, although for the barrel the designer recommends a 6mm Airsoft gun barrel or even a pen tube. A bolt and two self-tapping screws, along with some epoxy and hot glue, are the only other things you’ll have to buy in order to create one of your own. And, really, you might as well buy enough to make multiple mini cannons both in case you mess up or if you want to create extras for your friends. Once complete, a cotton swab soaked in rubbing alcohol must be rubbed through the inside of the chamber after the back bolt is removed; this provides fuel for the ignition.

With the bolt back in place and a pellet dropped down the barrel, one pull of the trigger is all it takes to create the spark and ignite the small amount of alcohol, firing your pellet. To reload, you must first blow the old gas from the chamber and then repeat the steps. You’re not going to get any sort of rapid-fire action going on, but most of the enjoyment comes from turning something ordinary into a working pellet-launcher, much like turning paper clips into a make-shift crossbow when you could be more efficient simply flinging rubber bands with your fingers.

Of course, while this gun may be tiny and seem harmless, you should take the same precautions (such as protective eye wear) that you would when using regular Airsoft guns. If you’re looking for more toy guns to enjoy, there are the less harmful Marshmallow Gun and Crossbow as well as our article on 16 Epic LEGO Weapons.