Shooting .22 Pellets Using Nail Gun Blanks

Taofledermaus, known for some interesting YouTube videos well before Demolition Ranch made it highly entertaining, has embarked at creating a firearm out of construction equipment, a 22LR rifle, and some air rifle pellets. Using “powder activated tool” rounds, the media channel seated .22 pellets in the chamber to create some seriously high-velocity shots.

It is not recommended you try this yourself. But if you still insist, please read the precautions below.
We load up some .22 firearms with Crosman .22 pellets and drive them using “powder activated tool” rounds. (calling them guns would cause the masses to soil themselves in horror) These are used to drive nails into concrete or even steel. The lead Crosman pellets are about 14 gr. and fit nicely down the barrel of a .22 rifle or pistol. Snug enough to engage the rifling. This is really a hybrid round using 3 normally incompatible components.
This is just a demonstration on how well this hinkey and potentially dangerous combination works. Although it worked VERY well for us — your results may vary. 

I do not want to green-light this idea to you. However, my telling you NOT to try it never stopped anyone from trying something. You need to understand the dangers if you do decide to try it. You are on your own if something bad happens. Don’t come back and post how your gun blew up and you lost some fingers. 
+++ I believe it is important the pellets are seated IN the barrel rather than the chamber. This is because when the round is fired, the pellet probably will not enter the barrel from the larger chamber smoothly and will likely NOT enter the barrel at all, resulting in a barrel-obstruction. If this happens in a non-blowback style gun, the gun is likely to blow up. +++

The powder charges were MUCH louder than using standard .22 ammo. If you have a chrono and wish to attempt this, I think we’d all like to know how fast these are capable of going. I’ll put a link to your video in this one.

I say “great idea”.

Nathan S

One of TFB’s resident Jarheads, Nathan now works within the firearms industry. A consecutive Marine rifle and pistol expert, he enjoys local 3-gun, NFA, gunsmithing, MSR’s, & high-speed gear. Nathan has traveled to over 30 countries working with US DoD & foreign MoDs.

The above post is my opinion and does not reflect the views of any company or organization.


  • worldwideREB

    this is the most useful prepper video I have seen all year

    • Zachary marrs

      Nah sootch00, learn how to hide a fn fal in a teapot

  • Cymond

    Interesting. I’ve thought about buying those to use as blanks. It’s surprisingly hard to find 22 blanks in stores, even stores that sell blank-firing guns (like the traditional way to start a race, or train a hunting dog to tolerate gun fire).

    I wonder if this would work in a break-barrel design, like a H&R Handi Rifle. It would be nice to be able to seat the pellet from the breech. However, the blowback action helps reduce the risk of over-pressure, since the pressure will just open the bolt.

    • BryanS

      Overpessure could still damage the frame and bolt though.

    • gb7

      I worked at a zoo that had a dart gun powered by 22 blanks. we used construction blanks in it. it was built like a break open shotgun with a swing out cylinder. it also had an adjustment screw to regulate the pressure. I think it was a Remington.

      • Cymond

        I bet the pressure-adjustment was something simple, like a gas port that could be opened to vent excess gas or shut for low-pressure rounds.

        • gb7

          exactly. if I remember correctly, the cylinder portion had a vent hole with a simple screw marked with numbers. it worked just like a valve. check out Cap-Chur. they build a tranq gun based in the H&R action.

  • Tyler Horne

    Now I understand how Jason Lee died.

    • Ed

      You mean Brandon Lee?

      • Tyler Horne

        Lol. Yes.

        Egg on my face.

        Those blanks have some power.

        • sianmink

          I thought most movie blank-firing guns were chambered for 8mm.

          • Giolli Joker

            If I remember correctly it was a real .44 revolver; loaded first with a powder-less round that once shot, thanks to the primer, had enough force to lodge the bullet in the barrel; nobody noticed it and when the gun was shot again, this time with blanks, that very bullet flew out of the barrel to Brandon Lee’s chest.

          • Jow Blow

            A freak accident with absurd odds of it happening, but occurred none the less. A live primer was in the shell casing in a supposed to be dummy/inert round. that failure of checking for the removal or firing pin strike cost someone their life. iirc it was a revolver and they looked at the cylinders and forget to check the barrel. the sound of the primer was loud enough to alert people something was wrong but the energy just moved the projectile just enough to be out of sight in the barrel.

            The film/entertainment industry already has strict firearm/weapons safety rules(including non firing or dull edge weapons), and yet with the standards followed an accident still occurred. Which blanks can’t be fired close to anyone. For the risk of force and discharge from a barrel(people have been injured and died). Now they even require the weapon to be aimed off to the side of the person as another safety factor. Cameras are protected with Lexan safety glass/plastic to stop anything from hitting the camera and/or crew. Used with pyrotechnic , and explosive effects also.

            Nothing can change the horrible accidents but in world where time is massive money, people work long hours days back to back and without days off , the fact accidents don’t happen more is a testament to commitment of safety. Brandon lee’s death still is used as lesson to triple check every prop weapon. This is in addition to hiring weapon experts and the items being in a sole(or special limited chain or handling) person custody until handed to the actor(refers to all genders). Sadly we know another accident will happen and all we can do is try to think of the what if’s and add in extra safety and counter measures. Meanwhile workers are often pushed to bend and fore go safety for the sake of he clock and costs by producers and budgets. Which workers have to trust everything was done and cleared properly or you have an accident like the recent one on “Midnight Rider” from February 20, 2014, while shooting a scene on an active railroad trestle bridge, high over the Altamaha River in Wayne County, Georgia, second camera assistant Sarah Jones was struck and killed by a passing CSX freight train, and seven more were injured. because the proper clearence and closing down the tracks section wasn’t cleared. The train engineer now has the girl’s death forever on his conscious due to no fault of his own.

          • Joe Blow

            No they aren’t. there is a move because of the NFA regulations and hassles to use propane powered guns. Which presently by pass the “machine gun” laws for modern looking weapons.

  • Ben

    So they’ve essentially just invented 22. AP wadcutters then 0_0? Damn.

    • Fred Johnson

      AP wadcutters. Pure awesomeness. Lol.

  • Ron Fox

    Now the neckbeards can go to Lowes after cleaning out Walmart.

    • Andrew

      Have you seen how expensive those nail gun blanks are? You’d be better off buying .22lr from the neckbeards’ gun show booth at 500% retail.

  • Ken

    My friends used to do this when they had a bunch of leftover blanks from work.

    • Unistat76

      No, he tried that first. Take a look at Taofledermaus’s blog.

      • Ken

        Ah, it caused them to overpressure and blow out the case heads. That’s the one weakness of rimfire cases. For the .17 Winchester Super Mag, they had to use thicker brass.

  • Blake

    I’m guessing the velocity is similar to a similar-weight bullet from the beloved belated 17 HM2, which used 17gr .17cal v-max bullets in a necked-down Stinger case: around 2100fps from a rifle bbl.

    Unfortunately, crappy rimfire case quality causing kabooms in hastily-converted blowback 22LR actions pretty much killed this wonderful little cartridge, as the majority of the guns on the market were recalled until everyone figured out that it was the ammo at fault. In its heyday, Eley target 17HM2 ammo wasn’t much more expensive than Stingers, & significantly more accurate.

    • ed

      17HMR semi-autos suffered the same failures. Blowback actions just don’t seem to work well with bottleneck rounds, either have to stick with bolt action or delay extraction until the chamber pressure has reduced substantially. Of course delayed extraction requires a more complicated mechanism, a large investment for a somewhat limited market.

      • gunsandrockets

        Is bottleneck the issue? Plenty of blowback SMG in 7.62×25 seem to work okay.

    • ed

      Raises curiosity as to using 17 caliber pellets in those barrels, paired with blanks. Probably a bad idea…

      • Blake

        yeah, but a more interesting option than not being able to source ammo anymore…

        I guess with the various “powder-activated fasteners” available in different power grades, you could sort of “work up a load”…

  • me ohmy

    buddy of mine bulged the stainless steel cylinder of his 22LR S&W kit gun.. using the PURPLE power loads (MAX CHARGE at the time) and JACKETED Center fire .224 bullets.. never said he was smart.. but he did it and survived. S&W makes a strong ass revolver.. and yes folks, he *is* an idiot

  • jandbj
  • jandbj

    Hammond Game Getter makes adapters to shoot a variety of sizes of swaged shot pellets using these blanks for centerfire chambered guns up through .44 or .45 caliber, IIRC.

  • Mystick

    I smell a breach or barrel overpressure failure in the future….

  • ghost


  • Makarov

    Converted nail guns + pellets used for hunting in China:

  • Fred Johnson
  • Fred Johnson

    You know, all it takes is seeing something once and then you run across a similar thing that you never knew existed.

    Check out this Mendoza rifle that uses pellets over blanks.

  • Alex

    I would like to see a revolver preloaded with the pellet seated at the front of the chambers

    • Jonathan Wright

      dammit, the wife is going to hate me if i ruin her revolver.

  • gunsandrockets

    Interesting. Would sure like to see this combo clocked for velocity.

    I would also like to see this tested in a variety of different .22 rimfire firearms. Would it work in a derringer?