Sound Effects Box
(Guns! Guns! Guns!)

  Now that I have your attention with the title, I'll explain. The Sonex is basically a little fighter plane, right? So, it just wouldn't be right without appropriate armament! Since I can't mount a couple of Browning .50 cals without going to jail, I'll settle for the next best thing: Fake guns!

The idea goes like this. Make a small electronic box with a sound recording of some machine guns firing. Then, rig up a trigger switch to the control stick, and patch the audio output into the intercom, and presto.....I can deliver a crippling blow to any unsuspecting target that crosses my gun sight. If I want the other guy to hear his fate, I simply key my PTT switch and broadcast hot lead over the airwaves :-)

Some of you may think this cool. Great! You can fly my wing anytime. Everyone else, watch your six!

NOTE:  photos link to full size image

The project began with a suitable sound recording of machine guns. There a multiple ways to tackle this, from building a custom circuit board with a chip on it that can be encoded with my sound file, to modifying a digital voice recorder, to "harvesting" an existing sound chip. I chose to harvest. It took a bit of shopping around to find a toy with a suitable electronic sound, but this hovercraft is what I eventually settled on. It has 4 sounds (the 4 gray buttons on the side), but only one is suitable.
After playing with the toy for a good 10 minutes or so :-) I set about to reducing it to it's electronic components.
The electronics have been completely removed now. They consist of the circuit board, a speaker, battery case, and flashing LED.
Here is a close-up of the board. The gray rubber boots are remnants of the manual switches on the original toy. They will be removed, and wires soldered onto the contacts. These will go to a 1/8" microphone jack for the trigger switch. Next, wires are attached to the speaker output and again terminated on a 1/8" mic jack.
The whole shebang is closed up in a small project box from Radio Shack, finishing off the assembly. Total cost: $15. Here is the end result.
With the sound box complete, it was time to make a suitable gun sight. I fabricated a ring and cross hairs sight using some 3/16" brass tubing soldered to a 2" brass diving ring.
The tubing is hollow, and will serve double duty as the fuel tank vent line. The gun sight is left long until the correct height can be determined in flight.
This is what the pilot will see...but preferably as you roll in on your foe!


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Updated: 11 Feb 06