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Although I don't post often, I follow religiously and have an opportunity to have my two worlds come together.
I am currently taking a class on product formation. Being a haunter, and specifically into Pirates, I am conceptualizing a self-contained pirate cannon as a product that can be taken to market. Realizing there is a niche group that would want this product, the goal is to create a operating private cannon developed for display purposes.

The cannon would be a molded item with a self contained fog machine. The machine would be connected to a electronic board that would also have components to flash internal LED lights to simulate the cannon firing, have a sound chip attached to allow for pre-programmed sounds to be used or possibly allow the user to program their own sounds for the unit, and a triggering mechanism that goes off simultaniously when the fog machine is triggered by its internal components. It is basically designed to get the person who cannot invest a lot of time into building one, but wants to have cannons in their pirate display.

Many of you have built awesome products, but I was thinking about the person who lacked the skill many of us possess.

So, for my class, I have to propose four items

First, What do you think about the idea?
Second, What might make it an even better product?
Third, How much would you be willing to pay for it?
Fourth, How long do you think people would be interested in a product like this?

Please help. I am turning to the people I know would value this idea in the first place (my instructor thinks I am a crackpot)
I need responses by next Friday, so that is about a week. ANY help would be great!!!

Daryl
 

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Your biggest challenge will be the fog machine. As I'm sure you know they run real hot and in a contained area this could be an issue (if you're using thin molded plastic) also having the fog machine empty into the cannon with create a lot of moisture. You'll need either a moisture trap/drainage or a design that puts the nozzle at the firing end of the cannon otherwise you're electronic components might suffer corrosion over time.
 

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I don't know if they even make them anymore, but I remember having a toy train set as a kid that was electric but was a replica of a coal engine. It had a small port on it to put 3 in 1 oil into it and it did something with the oil(dunno if it burned it or what) but it produced smoke out the stack from it. The engine never got hot or anything so if that's still a thing you might consider that for your cannon smoke. Again I dunno if that was just an 80s thing when toy safety was still questionable or if its still something usable.
 

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It will be very difficult to mimic a canon with a fog machine. Fog machines do not create an immediate "puff" of fog - it is more like a stream that starts from nothing and ramps up. You would almost need to create a "chamber" where the fog is stored for a moment under pressure and then released when the cannon is fired. The complexity of this is daunting. Before I invested time into something like that I would suggest you investigate something more along the lines that magicians use to create a harmless puff of smoke.
 

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Okay. My two cents.

Chauvet makes the Geyser RGB. It is a fog machine with a forced fog ejection, that simulates a flame with colored LED's to illuminate the fog.

https://youtu.be/dtfUwbO2xLE?t=16s

It blasts out the fog quite forcefully, which you want for a cannon blast. If you rig this up sideways it can look good. Then you program the lights to strobe yellow and red and white.

A concern I have is how the fog machine itself always "leaks" a little bit of fog. It will issue forth a small amount of fog at a low pressure. So. You can utilize that with the cannon's wick hole. Let the fog slowly emanate from the wick hole, but blast out the barrel when firing the cannon.

I could imagine a typical log stack base with the wheels, that would hide the fogger itself. Then rig the discharge nozzle up the bottom of the barrel at the back. Then just relocate the colored LED's near the barrel so the light really illuminates the fog/smoke.
 
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