Thingiverse user Gavilan Steinman, of Pennsylvania, came up with the original idea for his rubber band gun at the holidays last year when consumerism was beginning to grate on his nerves. Inspired by a friend’s blog about the level of over-consumerism going on — and most certainly not alone in wanting to get away from the spending and gifting gluttony often induced by the holidays — he decided to use his passion as a maker to create something of his own as a future idea for gift-giving.
With a number of designs on his to-do list just waiting to be finished, Gavilan settled on completing the 3D printed rubber band gun. The gun is semi-automatic and fires off up to six rubber bands (#32 rubber bands). This means a whole bag of ammunition for 67 cents! There is also a rubber band built into the gun, which Gavilan incorporated for style, as well as allowing for easier cocking of the gun.
Rubber bands are loaded onto the gun, fitting into the central groove, with cocking required after loading each one. When the last band is put on, you cock the gun one more time and then can start firing. The gun is composed of a total of six parts, including the 3D printed gun parts. The gray areas printed at 100 percent fill, and the orange at 30 percent fill with honeycomb to give the gun some extra flair. Also needed are:
- 8 ½” #6 screws
- 8 ½” #6 washers
- #6 thread rod
- 2 regular #6 nuts
- 2 #6 lock nuts
This is a concise design, and highly functional, demonstrated in the video below as Gavilan shows himself to be a crack shot as he knocks down each of the targets which he also designed.
Gavilan’s design then caught the eye of UK-based Nigel Johnson, who wanted to streamline and strip the design down further, removing the screws from the design. Nigel, describing himself as “just a fiddler and prototyper at heart,” has a preference for 3D printed items that can be produced all-in-one, without extraneous items, applications, or agents like glue. He points out that this is probably why he currently has so few items in his portfolio, as he seeks out austerity in design with little support required, and so far has produced two very cool minimalist lamps and a figurine.
In his preparation for the zombie apocalypse, Nigel not only removed all the hardware, but also shortened the barrel. In doing so, the gun was modified to work with #10 rubber bands, and for the trigger, he used a #16 rubber band. Glue is optional for those who want to use it.
Have you created any fun items like this using 3D printing? Tell us about it in the 3D Printed Rubber Band Gun forum over at 3DPB.com.
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