This massive cannon fires dead chickens at high speed in the name of airplane safety

Originally published at: This massive cannon fires dead chickens at high speed in the name of airplane safety | Boing Boing

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The Royal Canadian Air FARCE, however, has traditionally used it to ring in the new year.


Chicken McFlying Nuggets!


There is a story that I believe to be true about such a gun. Details are hazy.

An aircraft operator/manufacturer/tester or whatever in need of one of these devices, duly ordered one.

Upon installation, the new chicken-gun owner contacted the manufacturer to inquire about securing a supply of dead chickens. The chicken-gun manufacturer suggested using chickens obtained at a local supermarket.

The chicken-gun owner duly did this only to discover that upon first use, the chicken-bullet unexpectedly not only completely destroyed the aircraft windshield, but did substantial damage to the rest of the aircraft.

An investigation was instigated by the chicken-gun manufacture the result of which was a one-line recommendation.

Defrost the chicken.


Smarter Everyday: We built a cannon that fires baseballs faster than the speed of sound!

Canada’s Aerospace Research Centre: Hold my Molson.


Did they at least credit Mythbusters? That’s was old school, season 1 materiel.

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Are they sure it was a flock of geese that took that plane down?


The birds — always dead ones only


A Weapon to Surpass Metal Gear

With sufficient accuracy this device could be used to resupply chicken stores across the country - direct from the farm.

What did you do in the trade war granpa? I was a chicken gunner.


A tale as old as time itself. Or Tim himself. I can’t recall.


Cut to CHICKEN sitting in the barrel of the CHICKEN CANNON.

CHICKEN turns to camera and shrugs.

“Braaaawk! It’s a living.”

CHICKEN puts on helmet and slides down into the barrel of CANNON.

laugh track


Chicken cannons in airplane testing go back as far as 1968.
(Not that I would put it past a 12 year old Jamie Hyneman to come up with something like this.)

The version I heard in 1984 had the Air Accidents Investigation Branch at RAE Farnborough giving the advice to Americans.

I would like to offer some carcasses of certain feral chickens in my neighborhood. to whom may I speak at the NRC?

with that out of the way, may I say that a 17.25inch barrel could shoot a gotdam butterball turkey!

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I remember hearing that story as an undergrad Aerospace Engineering major in 1987. I suspect it is apocryphal.

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May I present…

The Great Gonzo debuts Cirque du Poulet - an act that attempts to make chickens fly (using rocket technology and gun powder); however Crazy Harry gets carried away and blows the chickens up.


Keep an eye on those people. That’s how Gerald Bull got his start.

One day they’re firing chickens, the next someone says “what it we use a sabot around the chicken with a base bleed to cut the rear drag?”, and the day after some other country’s hypersonic missile gets taken out by a bird strike – from behind.


I was a cow gunner… Used a cattling gun
(out I go)


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