Faster Than A Speeding Nerf Dart!

Geek Culture

Photo by Anton Olsen

As I mentioned in an earlier post, the folks at Pocket Radar were kind enough to loan me a review unit of their somewhat expensive, but cool product. Sized like a big-boned iPhone, the Pocket Radar claims to be the world’s only pocket-sized personal speed radar.

As i hunted around the office for things to clock, my eyes landed on my little arsenal of Nerf guns. Specifically my modified Nite-Finders. Both guns on the left are modified with the same springs, the top one has an added PVC barrel. The Nite-Finder and Maverick on the right are stock. After a few quick tests to see that it indeed was well within the 11-350 mph range of the radar, I devised some scientific tests for the next weekend. The goal was to find out which Nite-Finder mod was most effective, and we threw in the Nerf Maverick just to see how it compared.

Travis and I set up in the shade of the garage on a 100 degree day and shot dart after dart down the drive-way. We continued collecting data from all four guns with a variety of darts until my dart retriever got tired and insisted we go get some ice-cream. The data was surprisingly consistent with just a few odd darts. I’ll present the raw data and my conclusions about the mods after the jump.

Image by Anton Olsen

As is evident in the data above, a few guns had issues with some of the darts. The streamline darts were too thin for the stock Nite-Finder and they barely left the barrel. The obvious winner was the Nite-Finder with a strong spring and all baffles removed. The PVC barrel was actually a detriment. It is slightly smaller diameter than the others and the heads of the darts, especially the whistlers can get jammed in the barrel. What surprised me most was that the stock Maverick performed so well.

We also managed to get a couple test shots with the Nerf Law Bringer, the Nerf Titan that a coworker modified to shoot standard darts at 125psi. Three shots clocked in at 125, 220, and 350 mph. Extreme mods definitely produce erratic results. The top speed of 350 mph is about 500 feet/sec. The slower speeds were probably due to the difficulty of timing shots. I think the 350 mph speed is reasonably accurate since the gun is capable of putting a Nerf dart through double walled cardboard at 40 feet.

See also:
Clock Your Speed Demon With A Pocket Radar
Fixing and Hacking the Nerf Vulcan
Transparent Nerf Guns “Clear” the Way for This Year’s Coveted Blaster
Lo, the Nerf Stampede!
Pocket Radar on Amazon

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