Since the coil is wrapped around the tube from a plastic pen, and the iron projectile is inside the tube, it will fly along towards the coil. As all the energy from the capacitors will be spent in a matter of milliseconds, the coil should ideally be turned off by the time the projectile passes its center and exits out the other side of the tube.
Simon's plans and walk-through are wonderful. I learned a lot reading the detailed but easy to understand instructions. He also selects parts and components that I am sure I can source locally and I love that he improvised brackets from a plastic drinking bottle.
I also learned that I will not be making a coil gun. That curiosity is now satisfied!
I asked Amy Parness, the co-founder of Sparkle Labs, maker of fantastic educational electronics kits, to write a Medium post about gender and the business of being a maker business person. Her terrific essay calls out the problems with “pink girly engineering kits.” From Medium:
Zero UI is the new term for “invisible interfaces”—what happens in the future when all the clicking and tapping and typing is history: “If you look at the history of computing, starting with the jacquard loom in 1801, humans have always had to interact with machines in a really abstract, complex way.” [Fast Company]
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