Make a DIY Bottle Rocket

This fun project uses recyclables and will be hours of fun for the kids.

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On June 21, summer is officially upon us, so it's time (or maybe past time!) to start whipping up some crafts and activites to keep the kids occupied. Happy Kids, Happy Summer is Made+Remade's way of saying "Welcome Summer!" to the days-to-come featuring old-fashioned fun, time outdoors, cool crafts and all of the things that make this season enjoyable for young and old.

Bottle Rocket

Bottle Rocket

It’s easy to create a bit of backyard fun with recyclables. The kids will get a blast out of these simple bottle rocks that they can modify, decorate and launch in less than half an hour from start to finish. Get ready to create fun summertime memories in 3, 2, 1…

Bottle Rocket

Bottle Rocket

Supplies

  • empty two-liter soda bottle
  • wine cork
  • playdoh
  • duct tape
  • utility knife
  • cardboard
  • bike pump
  • paint
Bottle Rocket

Bottle Rocket

Make the Nose Cone

Bottle Rocket

Bottle Rocket

In its simplest form, a regular two-liter bottle can be lauched as is. But, why have a boring rocket? Let’s make this bottle look like a real rocket. Start off my making its nose cone. Use a plate or low bowl to trace a circle about 8 inches in diameter. Cut away a 1/4 of it so you can roll it into a cone shape. 

Wrap the cardboard cone around the base of the two-liter bottle. Secure with duct tape.

Bottle Rocket

Bottle Rocket

Make the Fins

Bottle Rocket

Bottle Rocket

This part can be adjusted to your liking. We chose to use four fins, but you can use just three if you like. Cut out a 6 x 6 inch square and cut it evenly in half to get two right triangles. Make another set.

Tape the fins to the sides of the bottle, spaced evenly apart.

Bottle Rocket

Bottle Rocket

Add the Ballast

You need to add a ballast to give the rocket some weight. Without it, the bottle will fly erratically. Mold about half a cup of Playdoh to the ridges on the bottom of the bottle. Form a rounded end on the outside of the bottle. Cover it with duct tape to keep it secure.

Bottle Rocket

Bottle Rocket

Make the Cork Stopper

Bottle Rocket

Bottle Rocket

Make a very small hole through a cork. This will allow the air to be pumped into the rocket. On one end of the cork, make sure the hole is the same size as the valve of your bicycle pump valve.

Stuff the cork into the bottle opening. Place the valve of a bicycle pump into the opening of the cork. Make sure it fits into the cork tightly. Remove the cork and paint the rocket if you want.

Launch Time!

Bottle Rocket

Bottle Rocket

Before you launch the rocket, make sure you are in an open, outdoor area. The rocket will shoot up very fast and high. Remove any obstructions and warn anyone around you before you launch it. 

Bottle Rocket

Bottle Rocket

Fill the bottle about 1/3 of the way with water.

Insert the cork and bike pump valve.

Bottle Rocket

Bottle Rocket

Use rocks or bricks to help keep the rocket upright on the launch pad.

Slowly pump air into the rocket. The rocket will go off when the cork can no longer withstand the pressure building up in the bottle.

Launch away!

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