Used by NASA, Universities, STEM Programs, Museums, Science Classes, Scouts and at Maker Faires!

Grab a bicycle pump and this kit and send homemade paper rockets soaring hundreds of feet in the air! This is the newest version of the Compressed Air Rocket Launcher.

Blast reusable rockets hundreds of feet in the air with the Compressed Air Rocket Launcher v2.1! This launcher was first introduced to the world in Make: Magazine vol. 15 in 2008. Since then, individuals, groups, and Maker Faires all over the world have had a blast introducing rocketry to kids and adults with this launcher. 

The Compressed Air Rocket Launcher v2.1 has been completely redesigned and is now made entirely out of industrial compressed air rated metal parts and a precision cut wooden base. This launcher is designed for heavy use and many years of high flying fun. In fact, this launcher has been used at Maker Faires in both the Bay Area and New York City to launch thousands of rockets over the course of the weekends.

Key Features

  • Assembles in about half an hour using these easy to follow illustrated instructions
  • Sturdy design to withstand many years of use
  • Launch tube can be easily tilted to account for wind conditions by loosening a single wing nut
  • Includes storage for launch tubes
  • Includes a 3/8" launch tube to fire off the Air Rocket Glider from Make: issue #39.  

What You'll Need

  • Adjustable wrench 
  • Pliers
  • Masking tape
  • Bicycle pump or air compressor
  • Works with the Air Rocket Glider Kit, sold separately here or from Maker Shed

Important: The Compressed Air Rocket launcher operates at pressures up to 150 PSI. ADULT SUPERVISION IS REQUIRED. There are inherent risks in working with compressed air - this is a "put your phone away" project where you need to be present for launching. Never aim this device at people or animals. LLC and Maker Media Inc takes no responsibility for damages or injuries associated with the improper use of this device. 

Below, you can order one or two ARG's or a CAR by itself or with ARG's.  All prices include 2-day shipping in the USA and sales tax. Email us at: for information on international orders and quantity discounts.  All you need is a bicycle pump (or compressor), masking tape and super glue (for ARG assembly) and you're ready for some high-flying fun!

Compressed Air Rocket Launcher
Compressed Air Rocket Launcher

Air Rocket Glider

About, the Air Rocket Launcher and Air Rocket Glider!

The One-of-a-Kind Air Rocket Glider (on the right) - The Air Rocket Glider makes its world debut right here.  It's the brainchild of Keith Violette that combines a variation of the clever folding-wing design of Jim Walker from 1939 and the classic air rockets.  With wings folded back, it is launched from the compressed air rocket launcher blasting it skyward.  At apogee the wings pop open for a long and graceful glide down. (photo Jeffrey Braverman/Maker Media)

For a video of the ARG in action, click the link here.

For some cool info on how we helped launch and recover a real satellite, take a look here.

Check out our article in MAKE: Magazine issue 39 on the Air Rocket Glider and Air Launcher 2.0

With over 2000 rockets built and launched, Maker Faire Bay Area was a huge success.  See blog entry for details. Rick's talk on the MAKE: Live stage is here on YouTube.

Exciting things happening here at Air Rocket Works and we're glad to have you a part of the community!

Welcome!  AirRocketWorks is a newly formed online community dedicated to compressed air rockets for hobby and education.  While solid propellant rockets and water rockets have a significant following online, air rockets are not as well know - so join us and help spread the word.  We welcome you to the community!  Please sign in (upper right corner),set up a profile to post ideas, and stay connected.  

THANK YOU to all our 236 Kickstarter Backers!!! $31,502!!!



Scott Larson updated their profile photo
Scott Larson updated their profile
Scott Larson is now a member of Air Rocket Works
Are you looking for a way to get your paper fins on straight each time?  Recently Keith designed a fin guide that can be printed on a standard 3D printer.  If you line the fins up on one side, you'll get fins perfectly parallel with the body tube.  …
I recently came across this great paper rocket lesson from middle school teacher Tom Jenkins.  You have to sign into The Teaching Channel to be able to download the worksheets.  There is also a link below to a video on how he uses engineering design…
Jon Hampson is now a member of Air Rocket Works
Jeff is now a member of Air Rocket Works
Rick Schertle published an article
The following is a repository for files related to Rick and Jim's book Make: Planes, Gliders and Paper Rockets.

Chapter 1 - Helicopters

Template for Paper Catapult Helicopter (PDF)

Chapter 2 - Rockets


Chapter 3 - A…
Keith Violette published an article
Here are a few tips and tricks should you ever experience difficulty with your CAR v2.0 or CAR v2.1.
First understand how the launcher operates by looking at the 4 figures at this link.
Second, test for leaks.  Pressurize the system and feel for lea…
Here is how the CAR launcher uses air pressure to launch rockets:
Raul casares is now a member of Air Rocket Works
Peter Peters and Craig Fleming joined Air Rocket Works
This year we will be partnering with University of New Hampshire's STEM outreach team.  We will have templates and tape so anyone can make a rocket to launch on our new improved CAR v2.1 launcher, or with a home made "Stomp Rocket" launcher.  We wil…
The links below provide some instruction for middle and high school teachers to have a compressed air rocket competition.  Our launcher, the CAR v2.1 may be used, or you can build your own launcher either using our instructions or others available e…


  • Big Red Button (BRB)

    Missing hitting the Big Red Button to launch your rocket?  Here is one that you can print on a 3D printer and then adapt to use with the slide valve in our current kit.    1. Download and print the BRB .STL File. 2. You're going to need the following parts: Medium-Pressure Brass Threaded Pipe Fitting1/8 Pipe Size, Male x Female 90 Degree Elbow Push-to-Connect Tube Fitting for AirStraight Adapter for 1/4" Tube OD x 1/8 NPT Male (this part is needed if connecting directly to an air compressor…

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    Started by Rick Schertle in General 0 Replies
  • 3D Printed Fin Guide

    Download the following file and 3D print this handy fin guide designed by Keith.  Use one side for straight fins and the other side for slightly angled fins for a rifle effect. 3D Print File for Fin Guide (.STL)

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    Started by Rick Schertle in Paper and Tape Rockets 0 Replies
  • securing the ARG tail fins

    I'm wondering if anyone else is having this problem... The tail fins on my ARG keep detaching upon landing. 2 of the 3 times when I've lost a fin, it was due to crash landings during early test flights. But now that I've got a good glide and flight time, I still had a fin detach on landing gently in grass. I attached them with Gorilla brand super glue. I'm thinking of drilling a hole in each one, close to the body, and wrapping a zip tie around the body, through each hole, kind of clamping them…

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    Started by Matt Dittrich in Air Rocket Glider (ARG) 0 Replies
  • 24V electric sprinkler valve - trouble shooting

    Hi, I am still using the V1 and a 24V electric sprinkler valve. I use an air compressor and two 9v batteries for the energizing. It's been working for about a year now. but about half way though last year I have had trouble with the value releasing at any pressures higher than like 40PSI, it seems the solenoid can not click and only when we reduce the pressure can we get it to active. Does anyone know if any maintenance I should be doing on the valve, or other issues that I can fix that will…

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    Started by Mark G Peeters in Pressurizing Your System 1 Reply · Reply by Carl Plossl Apr 19, 2015