LF1 - Foam Dart Blaster (NERF Compatible)

by Landru, published

LF1 - Foam Dart Blaster (NERF Compatible) by Landru May 8, 2012

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Don't get left behind in the printable NERF arms race! Print this state-of-the-art dart blaster today, and show your coworkers and children you mean business.

The LF1 has a flat range of close to 50ft, and is a very solid addition to anyone's office arsenal.

Printed on a Fablicator using KISSlicer.



Print a copy of each part except for the piston rod. Only one rod is necessary, and should be chosen based upon the desired power of the blaster (high, mid)

The piston and piston rod should ideally be printed in ABS due to high impact loading, and the catch should be printed in PLA to improve friction and wear. The other parts can be made from either material, though ABS generally works better with support material.

The blaster shells, piston rod, piston head, and catch should all be at 100% density. The trigger and barrel can be printed with sparse infill and 2-3 loops.

Total print time is around 12 hours.

Most of the printed pieces need some amount of support material. With good settings, it can be easily removed with a pointy pliers, razor blade (careful!) and some sand paper.

Non-printed Components:

Most of these parts come in multiples from mcmaster. One pack of each appears sufficient to make 6 blasters)

Qty, McMaster part number, description

(1) 9657K434
Primary Spring 3" long, .660 OD, .062" wire
(9657K428 or 9657K432 can likely be substituted for a less powerful and more child friendly blaster, though this is currently untested)

(1) 9657K51
Catch Spring 1.375 Long, .187 OD, .02" wire

(1) 9657K51
Trigger Spring (same as catch, cut to .75in long)

(8) 90380A110
1/2in long #4-20 plastic screws

(1) 9452K26

114 Buna-N O-ring

(1) 1378K31
PTFE Grease (or similar)

(1) 48925K92
3/4" Sch 40 PVC 4in long

Assemble as per the pictures, and try not to let the springs fly across the room during assembly. The o-ring and piston will need to be lubricated.

Do NOT fire the blaster without the barrel fully installed. Without it, the piston rod can impact the rear of the blaster, causing mayhem.

Foam darts will need to be acquired. Nearly every toy store has them, and usually under the brand name NERF. Velcro or suction cup darts are highly recommended.

SAFETY NOTE: Do not fire darts at people's faces. This blaster can be substantially more powerful than the store bought NERF blasters.

SECOND SAFETY NOTE: The LF1 has no mechanism preventing non-foam items from being propelled from the barrel at high speed. Therefore, it's not a good idea to give this to a 5 year old.

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I placed this into Cura and it says that it will take 16 hours just to print one shell... What are people using for layer height, wall thickness, etc that it is only taking a total of 12 hours?
Thanks for the help!

Would you be able to provide the instructions in a more common format? For example, put the text (and images, I presume) into a pdf document? If you can, that would be great.

This thing is awesome! With new darts its more powerful than any of my nerf blasters and has gathered alot of interest at work. I did have to sand the plunger down a bit to fit the pvc pipe (it seems that the ID of PVC pipes isnt consistent across stores / brands).

I like this idea a lot and it's given me an idea on how to improve it some.

Do you need to resize the objets when you want to combine ABS and PLA because of ABS shrinking? And also the darts fit very very tightly into the barrel. Is it supposed to be like that?

I'm having the same issues, soo much sanding but I made it fit. And I need to remodel the barrel, because my nerf darts are too short here in Europe.

Would printing it at 0.966 scale still work?

(Crosses fingers)

Waiting for some extra money to upgrade to a Lulzbot Taz 5 instead of my Printrbot Simple. This thing almost fits on my 150x150x150 print bed. Sighs.

Comments deleted.

i noticed that the file for the barrel is not included do you have to buy a barrel

The barrel is 3/4" diameter PVC, 4 inches long.

Do I have to buy my own springs?

Hi! I'm new to 3D printing, and CAD, but I want to make things like your Nerf gun. What program did you use to create the blaster?

Will this be the Thing that forces me to upgrade from my TOM and get a Replicator? Or build a Reprap with a bigger platform? Want!

Great design, I'm building one right now and can't wait to finish it.

BTW does anyone have any videos of this blaster shooting?

I'm printing four of these blasters and just finished one yesterday. This thing delivers on the advertised range, it also delivers a very satisfying pop when fired. I shot this five second movie of the blaster firing a whistle tip dart at my office.


How did it go together for you? Any improvements you can think of?

Do you think having an extra o-ring/gasket would help between the barrel and the screw-in-barrel? i would imagine air is escaping there, but I am not certain.

It went together pretty well, I had a little trouble with getting the trigger to operate smoothly but a little sanding took care of that.

It was also a little difficult to get the two halves of the housing together once the catch spring was installed, I would think about moving the features from one half of the housing over to the other so you don't have to try and press the spring down while closing the two halves together.

I woul
d also like to add one more screw in the middle of the top of the blaster to close that up more.

Other than that they are great!

Awesome model. Here's an online 3D view for anyone without SolidWorks that wants to view the assembly...


(click for 3D View)

Hi Landru -Awesome design, Thank you! I printed on my Replicator and all worked perfect! Except regarding the 4" PVC pipe - I had to use 3/4" PVC Sched 40. The Inside Diameter measures approximately .814" or 20.69mm - this fits the Piston and and O-Ring assembly. Did I miss something or is the Mcmaster part possibly listed incorrectly? The mcmaster part comes up as 1 1/4" Pipe Size - 5 ft. Length with an Inside Diameter of 1.360" 370psi 48925K94 ?

I just want to make sure that others get the right PVC piece.

Sounds like I messed it up. Will be fixed asap.

All fixed. I copy/pasted the wrong info originally :P

Having the trigger directly manipulate the sear like that is very clever.

Well done! Thank you for sharing

How does KISSlicer compare to other slicers (Skeinforge, Slic3r)? Are you using the pro version?

It is better in almost every single way. I am using the PRO version (which lets you put different parts on a tray and use multiple extruders) though the free version is plenty capable for most users.

It's also being improved on a daily basis, and the GUI will be overhauled soon to make it even simpler to get started.

I downloaded it and I must say, I appreciate the 3d view of the print bed, but I think it's not essential for a skeining engine. That said, the options are very poorly laid out,and I think Slic3r is simpler and has always gave me excellent results with minimal hassle with settings. The one thing KISSlicer appears to have implemented well is support material, while Slic3r has pathetic support material.

The difference is Slic3r is open source, and I've personally dug into the code and by changing the infill density from 20% to ~5% it's a big improvement. That's something that you'll never be able to do with KISSlicer due to the closed source nature of it.

Very impressive software - fast, clean UI, very impressive.

But can KISSlicer Pro work with the Replicator to print dual color prints? It looks like it can use two extruders to print one extruder for the print, the other for support, raft, etc., but not for printing two color objects. Am I reading that right?

Multi-material parts are not currently supported, but I hear rumors it will be a feature in the coming months.

Well, I've downloaded and tried KISSlicer, and I have to say... once you figure out the slightly odd settings, it prints very well! For the first time I made a thing that had almost perfectly smooth layers (I always thought it was my belt tension or my z axis wobble that was the problem).

That being said, it's still missing some key features such as bridging! And it isn't open source, unfortunately :(

I am a fan though.