Boys and their highly explosive toys – again

Here’s another team with too much time on their hands.  They have a lot of fun with it, and with things that go bang!

(If the embedded video fails to play, click here to watch it on YouTube.)

Looks like a good time was had by all.

Bowling ball cannons are fun.  We had one at our annual Blogorado gathering one year, converted from an old gas cylinder.  It launched bowling balls to a very satisfying distance with a loud CRRRUMP!  (We had a reproduction Civil War-era M1841 mountain howitzer another year, which was even more fun.  I wonder if one could swage a bowling ball down far enough to fit the bore of a 12-pounder cannon like that?  Hmmm . . . )

Blogorado 2020 is coming up in a few weeks. I wonder what high-explosive mayhem the boys are planning this year?  I’m going to be taking a number of new toys with me, to function-test them and sight them in.  It’s going to be fun!



  1. Patching the ball with greasy painter's fleece would improve efficiency. The charge should fit the chamber better. Model rocket electrical igniters would be much safer than standing at the muzzle with a burning fuse. If one mounted the ball on a sabot one could install a camera on the front. It would need to be a robust and high frame rate camera and wireless connection….GoPro?

  2. In my misspent yout,i built a _CHEAP_ cannon, of sorts.. 3 tennis ball cans,bottoms cut out of 2 of them, duct-taped together make a barrel.punch a flash hole in the bottom rim, cannon fuse, and half to 3/4ths of a 35mm film canister of black powder, set in a mound of sand at approx.45° angle.drop a tennis ball onto the charge, light her up and get out of the way.
    Even rattling down the bore, we'd get 200-300 yds. out of it. THEN, cut a slot in the ball, stuff some paper and an M-80 firecracker (equivalent. of 1/4 stick dynamite, supposedly) tape it shut w/ the fuse sticking out. Drop down the bore with the fuse toward the muzzle, the flame washing around the ball from the propelling charge would lite the M-80, give a satisfying air-burst 100 yds out…fun times. 😁😎🤣

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