Pneumatic Tennis Ball Launcher – Mechanical Projects

Pneumatic Tennis Ball Launcher – Mechanical Projects

The purpose of this project was to design and build a fully functional, pneumatic powered tennis ball launcher that can be fired multiple times consistently without needing an air re-fill. The launcher consists of a 3000 psi paintball air tank, running through a paintball regulator to take the pressure down to 100psi. That 100psi coming from the regulator will be used to fill a 5-gallon Tooluxe tire air bead seater tool. The bead seater has a 3-foot-long custom-made barrel attached to the dump valve on the bead seater. The tennis balls are loaded into the bottom of the barrel. One the dump valve is opened, the air pressure from the bead seater propels the tennis ball. The project consisted of three phases: Design, Building, and Testing. Some of the milestones included gathering all parts and materials, and actually getting the launcher built and operational.

The project took the team 45 days to complete with a total of 277 hours spent between the two team members. The project has gone smoothly and is finished on time with a final SPI of 0.93. The total cost of the project was $5018 with a final CPI of 0.96. One of the lessons learned by the team would be to not leave things to the last minute as you cannot rely on orders to arrive exactly as planned.

Overall, the project was behind schedule for a short time but is now completed on time, fully operational and is actually exceeding expectations in regards to the firing of the launcher.

Project Description

The purpose of this launcher(figure ) is to project a tennis ball great distances with a light, portable, and consistent setup. The launcher can be fired multiple times consistently without needing an air re-fill or other inconvenient delays.

pneumatic tennis ball launcher
pneumatic tennis ball launcher

On the firing end of the bead seater is a 1.5-inch open/close pneumatic valve. Once this valve is opened, the 100psi stored in the 5-gallon tank will be released very quickly. This rapid release of air is used to fire the tennis ball. Attached to the end of the valve is a custom-made, 3-foot-long, 2.5-inch diameter barrel made from PVC tubing. A 1.5-to-2.5-inch reducer coupling is used to allow the 2.5-inch diameter barrel to be fitted onto the 1.5-inch diameter valve. The 2.5-inch barrel diameter is a perfect fit for the tennis ball, giving the launcher great firing power and accuracy.

To conclude, the Pneumatic Tennis Ball Launcher project has been finished on schedule and is working better than expected, as it is very powerful and surprisingly accurate. The project team is very pleased with the outcome of the project and has finished on schedule despite the delays. If there are any questions do not hesitate to contact the project team via email.

Kyle Jackson –

Nathan Sholtanuk –

Sachin Thorat

Sachin is a B-TECH graduate in Mechanical Engineering from a reputed Engineering college. Currently, he is working in the sheet metal industry as a designer. Additionally, he has interested in Product Design, Animation, and Project design. He also likes to write articles related to the mechanical engineering field and tries to motivate other mechanical engineering students by his innovative project ideas, design, models and videos.

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