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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As a matter of interest I was just wondering if any citizen has ever made a super-powerful air rifle in his garage or workshop which has waaaaaay more power than standard store-bought ones?
I should imagine it'd look like a mini-bazooka because it'd need a very big cylinder (say 3 feet long by 2 inch diameter) and heavy-duty spring which would make us grunt and sweat with the effort of cocking it, but if the reward is fantastic muzzle velocity it might be worth it in a SHTF world if regular firearms and ammo become hard to get.
It could use either regular .22 lead air pellets, or we could make our own pellets (or balls) in larger calibres.
In theory could such a weapon match the m/v and hitting power of regular firearms?
 

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I would Think you could come up with something maybe close to a 22 but I think that would be about as good as it gets. some of the air rifles you buy off the shelf are hitting 800 to 1000 FPS which are not to far off. with that said I don't think they would be as near deadly. I am sure they would hurt like hell or a supper precise shot in the ear or eye socket might be fatal.

I would think you would be better off with a bow or crossbow.
 

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FYI what you are talking about just might be considered a destructive device by ATF regulations(if bore is over a certain size, .50? or 12ga? 2inches i'm pretty sure would be over), so be careful if you undertake this project or do some research before jumping in.

I do know there are 'potato' guns out there, but not sure of the legality on them.
 

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Lucky Jim lives in jolly old England - he is not subject to ATF regulations.

Lucky Jim, here in the States we have the "pumpkin chunkin' contest" annually. When you say super powerful, would being able to hurl a pumpkin at 600 miles per hour qualify?

How it Works: The Artillery-Grade 600 MPH Pumpkin Cannon | Popular Science

There are air rifles that operate off of dual compressed air on-board tanks that you can hunt with. They shoot .50 caliber pellets.
 

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I do believe you could inflict some serious damage to some one with my Gamo .177 1000fps rifle. It's as good as a .22 for rabbits. Now the potato gun could be a very Intimidating weapon for intruders. I've seen stuff jacked up from potato guns at quite a distance.
 

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powerful,500fpe,air_rifle

Ive always thought it'd be so cool to have a business so good you could say sorry - no more orders.
This companies main page shows a bear, and several large game animals taken with their "pellet"
guns, but those one shot scuba style compressed air guns seem like a lot of burden?
 

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I recently looked into this issue on the internet. I can't recall any specific sites, but I did learn that there are extremely powerful air rifles out there. They are more than capable of killing large game (and man). One site had pictures of a bear and a buffalo killed with his air rifle.
 

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While I believe it "could be done" and know there are examples already manufactured: I'd put my money on the bow and arrow or crossbow first.

The reason being, I can take down a large animal that will feed me + for a while, . . . or I can take out an enemy, . . . hands down, no questions asked. An air rifle would have to be a super one to match my Browning 50# compound as it would complete either of these tasks.

May God bless,
Dwight
 

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Large caliber air rifles capable of taking big game have been made. I think the Lewis and Clark expedition used one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
Large caliber air rifles capable of taking big game have been made. I think the Lewis and Clark expedition used one.
A modern rifle has a chamber pressure of around 50,000 psi a full pressurized co2 tank is around 3000 psi.
The Girandoni mentioned above took 1500 strokes of a bicycle type pump to get it up to the 800 psi pressure.
In tests conducted in 2003 these air rifles produced a little over 200 ft/lbs about half the energy of a 45.

The Girandoni Air rifle - Far ahead of its time
Nice job, but for some reason air rifles never caught on with the military and every army equipped it's troops with regular firearms.
With that Girandoni, 1500 pumps compressed enough air into the hollow steel stock to provide 40 shots. So at a pump rate of say 2 pumps per second it'd take 12 minutes to charge up which is what must have put the generals off in case the enemy attacked while everybody was pumping like crazy.
 

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Take a look at the issue of shotgun news that is out now. The semi annual full color edition. They have airguns in there that are extremely powerful. The picture to open is a hunter kneeling next to his airgun kill...a water buffalo. Apparently there are or were airguns that shot up to a 5.5 ounce pellet. I didn't get a chance to read the whole article but it looked interesting.
 
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