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Learn How to Make a Water Rocket

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Making a water rocket is not as complex as it sounds! Follow the given simple steps to prepare your very own water rocket.

Tools Required

  • Water
  • plastic tube
  • valve stem
  • soap (optional)
  • bicycle pump
  • wood board
  • plastic bottle
  • nozzles
  • screwdriver
  • nails
  • pen
  • wood glue
  • sandpaper
  • adhesive
  • saw
  • stopper
  • 2 inch flexible copper tube

Making the Body of the Rocket

  • Empty the plastic bottle if it contains water.
  • Now, use a pen to draw a fin shape on the wood board.
  • Cut the fin shape using the saw.
  • Use sandpaper to smooth the rough edges.
  • Put some glue on the fin and attach it to the bottle.
  • Make three or four fins.

Making the Launch Pad

  • Cut the wood boards into 2 x 2 sections.
  • Now, hinge the 2 x2 sections together.
  • It is time to make the chute. When you build a water rocket, this will serve as its base. Take another bottle. Cut it into two parts from top to bottom. Cut the neck area so it does not get entangled when the bottle goes up.
  • Use a screwdriver and nails to fasten it onto the board.
  • If you want you can paint it too. However it is best to finish making all the components before painting anything.

Making the Pump

  • Make a small hole in the stopper (1/4 inch should do).
  • Take the 2 inches of flexible copper tube and apply glue around it. Ensure that you do not clog the mouth.
  • Now, attach the copper tube within the stopper.
  • Trim the valve stem to make it fit within the plastic tube. Make sure that it has been fixed firmly. You can use glue in order to do this.

Preparing to Launch the Rocket

  • Fill the bottle with water.
  • Do not fill it completely. Half the bottle will be good enough.
  • Now, fasten the stopper on the bottle. Put the bottle upside down on the chute you just made.
  • The final step to build a water rocket is to connect the valve to the bike pump and pump in air.
  • Do this slowly. Eventually the bottle will blast off into the air. The typical air pressure would be 70 to 75%.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not touch the bottle while pumping gas. It might suddenly go up without warning. In rare cases, the bottle will not go off. Be patient when you build a water rocket.
  • The nozzles you use can make a big difference. A large nozzle means it will reach greater heights. But it will lose water more quickly. The opposite is true of smaller nozzles. You can also add soap to increase air time. Just mix it with the water before pumping in the air.
  • Replace the bottle after several launches. Repeated air pumping takes it toll on a bottle. Any kind of bottle will do. You can use soft drink bottles too, but plastic is most ideal.
  • Do not put too much air into the bottle. Also keep a safe distance, both when you are pumping air and afterwards.
  • Never try this indoors. The bottle could propel itself all the way to the roof and hit something. Do this outdoors. Stay away from buildings and homes.
  • Not only is this project fun, but you also get to learn something about air pressure and gas.

For more information on making water rocket, read Building a Water Rocket and Making a Water Rocket.

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