Potato Cannons Used To Be Grenade Launchers

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by Dwayne Hoover

Oh man, we love potato cannons. Maybe you didn’t know that because we’ve never built one or two or mentioned it before, like, ever. But we do. And we’re not the only ones -- a simple Google search tells us that people are asking glorious questions like: “Is it illegal to have a potato gun?” To which the answer is: “Maybe?” You should definitely check with local law enforcement, or your state’s laws, because these things are no joke.

 
 
 
 

The rad thing is: Potato launchers were, in fact, an actual weapon used during wartime. OK, so they didn’t fire potatoes -- they were hurling grenades at those dick Nazis’ enemy aircraft. But the principle was the same: Build up some sort of pressure or combustion, and just fire whatever the hell you want to out of the barrel. Even Winston Churchill thought it was a cool idea when he checked out a demonstration where beer bottles were used as projectiles.

Oh, and they did, in fact, also fire potatoes. Sailors used to use them as sort of a training exercise, raining down spuds on their comrades because the All You Can Eat buffet hadn’t been invented yet. That’s ... maybe not historically accurate, but we can’t imagine they let all of that potato goodness go to waste. Perhaps that’s where we got the idea for tater tots. Ore-Ida claims they invented them, but are you telling us that nobody thought to scoop up a bunch of potato leftovers and mold them into some crude shapes, then bake them, before 1953? Come on.

Wait, is that web page really called “Fun Zone?” We see precisely zero mention of any spud-launching or cannoning, which is pretty much the opposite of fun. There’s not even a tank, you guys.

 
 

Like this article? Check out “5 DIY Weapons That Are Completely Insane” and “VIDEO: Building a Solenoid-Triggered Air Cannon”.

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