How To: Make a Clothespin Pocket Pistol (AKA Mini Matchstick Gun)

Make a Clothespin Pocket Pistol (AKA Mini Matchstick Gun)

Clothespins are pretty innocent-looking, but with a mod here and a hack there, that innocence quickly turns into danger. Well, sort of. In this project, we'll be turning an ordinary spring-action clothespin into powerful matchstick and toothpick shooter that can shoot apples and lob fiery darts over 20 feet.

This project was inspired by Instructables author "Samarai" and his awesome tutorial on making a Clothespin Gun.

A matchstick gun is essential to your collection of desktop weaponry.

This little pocket pistol will shoot a matchstick with power, blast toothpicks into fruit, and lob fiery darts. The best parts is, it can be made fairly easily and for almost nothing!

All you need for this project is some wood glue, a utility knife, and a wooden clothespin. Just make sure it's the kind with the metal spring.

Check out the video above for step-by-step instructions. And if you liked this project, perhaps you'll like some of my others. Check them out here on WonderHowTo or over at

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personally i think that this machine is simple and amazing

So many great ideas here

I made hundreds of these when I was a kid back in the '60s. It takes no special whittling. Just turn the CP inside out & re-position the spring. The match is loaded between the 2 halves striking end first. When you release the spring, it strikes the match & shoots it at the same time.

You need half of another CP to use as a ram to re-cock the spring.
You kids nowadays...

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