Building a full-auto Nerf Demolisher Part 2: The Demolisher Tear Down and The Build Plan

You gotta break eggs to make an omelet… Welcome to part 2 of my retrospective on building my prototype full-auto Nerf Demolisher. Hopefully by now you’ve enjoyed the disassembly video I made for the tear down – and if you haven’t then why not? – so we can look at some of the research, planning, and prep I did for my first blaster build – that’s right this is the first blaster I’ve built.

Everyone could use a little inspiration.

I think all credit here should go to the fellas at Make Test Battle it was there that I first saw what they affectionately called a Nerf Uzi. Click-baity?, yes, effective because I clicked on it?, yes. I’d been trolling on Nerf Blasters for years with minor flirtations in recent months but I had yet to find anything that met the (unrealistic) expectations I had in my mind. Enter the boys at MTB:

You are not alone.

Thanks to the YouTubes It didn’t take long for me to stumble across even more full-auto blaster goodness. I’ll make a short list here of what I found to be the most helpful, insightful, and well done examples.

In no particular order (maybe in the order that I ran across them in):

pSykSG: PWND Episode #138
pSykSG: FULL-AUTO NERF DESOLATOR
Tungsten EXE: {Mod} Nerf Doomlands Desolator – Going Full Auto
Tungsten EXE: {Mod} Full auto Stryfe with adjustable Rate of Fire (ROF) – Part One
Tungsten EXE: {Mod} Full auto Stryfe with adjustable Rate of Fire (ROF) – Part Two
Daniel Okada: AutoStryfe
Daniel Okada: AutoStryfe V2 Machine Pistol

Suffice to say, making a Nerf Blaster full-auto without hacking a Rapidstrike to death is possible – sensible?, that friends is highly subjective.

All of this has happened before and will happen again.

So the stage was set, I was gonna build me a full-auto Stryfe. All I had to do was buy a Stryfe, locate the full-auto kit the MTB boys featured, boom boom bang full-auto Nerf Blaster – simple as that… famous last words. I am, as you might expect, inclined to take things way further than necessary.

See the thing about the Stryfe, this kit included, is that its just tough to get anything in that very compact shell. When you factor in the tragic allure of select-fire, the situation becomes even more daunting. Select-fire is overrated anyway right? I say to hell with that, I’m gonna figure out a way to control the firing mechanism with a micro controller, it certainly can be done just ask Tungsten EXE, I’m sure the most prudent among us would encourage me to move on to a Rapidstrike and call it a day. Again, I should remind you that I am inclined to take things way further than necessary.

Everybody has a soft spot.

For the dragon Smaug it was a single missing scale on his underbelly, for Anakin Skywalker it was the power to save the one he loved from certain death, for me it was the $200 3D printer that was not garbage. That’s right folks an excellent, not just a’ight, 3D printer can now be had for roughly 2 Benjos. I’m talking about the Monoprice Select Mini, I’m not segueing into a review so let me just say this, that thing works very, very well. Now since I’ve jumped ahead here just a touch, let’s take a half-step back in my story. Before getting the printer I’d located the XSW Stryfe kit, ordered up some canted flywheel cages from DrSnikkas, and snatched up some MTB Honeybadgers – and no MTB Rhinos were not available at the time. When the XSW kit finally arrived how should I say this nicely, I was not impressed.

The Big Hammer and XSW full-auto Stryfe kits.

Fast forward after a week of having the XSW kit in hand, I had already convinced myself that I could make my own parts I just gotta get me a 3D printer. So with my own self-fulfilling prophecy in place I had completed the mental gymnastics necessary to go from want to need. I need that printer now. See what I did there? My wife was ecstatic.

If you want something done right.

So I gotta stuff a micro controller – an Arduino in my case – into a Blaster shell, along with all the upgraded wiring, other things like Mosfets, and I’d rather it wasn’t a Rapidstrike. A gearmotor has been successfully made the center of a rack and pinion pusher system so that means every semi-auto blaster besides a Stryfe is on the table. So I do the most logical thing, I base my decision on aesthetics. Really it’s a toss-up between the Modulus ECS-10, the Demolisher, and the Desolator – one of the three has been done, twice that I know of. So I’m off to watch blaster reviews.

It is damn near impossible to search for a review on a blaster and not see one of Coop772’s reviews, impossible I tell you. [REVIEW ] Nerf Elite Demolisher 2-in-1 Unboxing, Review, & Firing Test. It was good endorsement from a dude who has seen ALLTHEBLASTERS, and besides I preferred the way it looked over the ECS-10 – I was sold and the Demolisher would spend the next 3 or so weeks by my desk as I continued my research and solidified a plan.

Electrical circuits for dummies.

DC circuits are very fortunately relatively easy to understand. Don’t ask me how to wire a 4-way light switch in your house because I will more than likely fail but a DC circuit I can understand, after watching some videos. That’s the beauty of this particular hobby I suppose, the veritable cornucopia of how-to content available. I highly recommend How To – MOSFET’s For Nerf from Foamdata Services and if you want to know how a Mosfet works there is no better explainer than the one by Afrotechmods, and maybe the guy at Real Engineering.

Armed with my newfound knowledge on the simplicity of DC circuits and transistors I finally made a drawing.

My initial circuit diagram for my auto dart pusher.

In theory the addition of a limit switch or some kind of dead-center logic indicator would address the issue of releasing the trigger while the pusher is extended, I did say “in theory” right?. More on that later. Then out came the breadboard to check my work.

A little breadboard action to make sure I didn’t cross my wires (you see what I did there?)

Next time.

Building a full-auto Nerf Demolisher Part 3: Getting that gearmotor in there and getting my 3D printing on.

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