Tech

YouTube engineer has created an incredibly accurate throwing gun

In the context: Throwing a knife and sticking it blade first into a target is not as easy as it seems in Hollywood. Navy SEAL Casey Ryback, played by Steven Seagal in Under Siege, is an expert at putting his blade where it’s needed. But it takes a lot of mental math to do it in real life, as this YouTuber points out in his latest project, a knife-throwing gun.

The concept of clincher guns is not new. Ripper from Unreal Tournament and Ripjack from Unreal Championship 2 come to mind. Other video games have had similar weapons as well. However, finding the real version is difficult.

Youtuber Quint is an engineer who has implemented a lot of crazy projects on his channel. Quint builds – BUILD stands for “Better Understanding Requires Learning and Action.” His latest knife-throwing machine (above). It was partly inspired by Ryback’s skill in Under Seige, and partly by Quint’s desire to understand the mechanics of it all.

From an engineering point of view, this is nonsense. It uses a laser pointer for aiming and a LiDAR sensor measures the distance for computer algorithms. The laser pointer even adjusts to compensate for different distances. It’s so accurate that if you even half aim with the laser, you can stick the knife in exactly the same place as the previous throw. With a 10+ blade magazine, Quint had to aim away from previously fired shots to secure a hit. We can say that his goal was regular knife party.

Quint had three goals in creating his machine. First, he had to consistently stick 10 knives from different distances. Secondly, it must be mobile, not tied to wires. Finally, since it needed to be portable enough to be carried around, it needed to be lightweight. He aimed to gain 20 pounds or less, but he ended up in his 30s.

It all sounds relatively simple, but there were a lot of calculations and mechanical hurdles to overcome. While Quint did most of the math on paper, his teenage son programmed all the computer algorithms. It also required a lot of machining. In addition to the motors and servos, Quint custom made all the steel parts, including the knives, and 3D printed the necessary plastic parts.

After a few bad starts and at least two disastrous failures, father and son had a bazooka-like weapon that would hit where they were aimed. During his last test run, the machine landed ten hits in a row at two different distances, completing one of his goals. There was another knife in the magazine, so he fired it and it ricocheted to the ground.

If you’re interested in the layman’s synopsis, check out Quint’s hat video. For those more technically minded, we’ve included a more detailed engineering video above. However, as cool as it is, please don’t try this at home.

Found is a feature of TechSpot where we share smart, funny or other interesting things from all over the web.


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