Articles, Blog

How To Make a Matchbox Rocket Launching Kit

October 19, 2019

These desktop rockets might be tiny, but they’re
impressively powerful, leave a cool trail of smoke, and shoot up to 40 feet away. Surprisingly,
they’re only powered by one single match head. In this project we’re using aluminum
foil and a box of matches, to make the ultimate in desktop weaponry. Homemade, Matchbox Rockets. All we need to start this project is a box
of matches, aluminum foil and a wooden skewer. I’m using these green “strike on box”
matches, but the red ones will work just as well. Ok it’s time to get to work, and the
first thing we need to do is grab a few of these matches and set them to the side, because
we’ll still need a bundle of those, for our kit when it’s finished. Now amazingly,
these rockets are only powered by one single match head. But they only work, if we get
rid of the stick first. Of course that’s not much of a challenge as long as you have
a pair of scissors. And if you try lining your container with something like a sock,
the match heads won’t bounce out. Instead they just collect conveniently at the bottom.
Here are all the match heads I got from this box, and to store them, why don’t we try
using one of these soda cap containers made in a previous project? These things have all
kinds of applications, so look for for how to make them in another project video. Alright,
to start making our assembly kit we’re going to need a single bamboo skewer, and this template
which I’m going to give you for free. Just look in the description for a link on where
to get that. Transfer the marks from the diagram onto the skewer, then carefully cut the ends
off, so when it’s modified, it looks like this. The next step is to tape the body template
to a piece of paperboard, like this one I got from a cereal box. Make sure to cut the
edges as cleanly as you can, because this is going to be our tracing template. The little
square I’m cutting out now is the guide for tracing the rocket’s fins. And for those,
I use aluminum foil tape I got at the hardware store. Each square will make one set of rocket
fins, so cut as many as you want, then fold them “point to point” from both directions.
Pinch them at the base and push your fingers together, so that when you crease them down
it looks like a little x-wing. When you snip off the point at the very tip, the rocket
fins are ready for application, and by now you should have an idea of how this is going
to work. Now I made a whole bunch more and loaded them into the other side, of the soda
cap container, so I have them on hand whenever I need one. Ok, let’s bust out the aluminum
foil, and tear off a sheet to start creating the rocket bodies. I’m laying a sheet of
paper towel overtop, then carefully folding the stack up 3 times, so it’s 4 layers deep
and just a bit larger than the cardboard template. You probably figured out already that we’re
going to trace around the edges, then cut the shape out of all the layers, at the same
time. Normally the edges would stick together after the foil’s been cut, but you can see
the paper towel solves that problem, and makes it super easy to separate. I tried making
13 pieces at the same time, and it actually worked, so you can see how quick and easy
it is to make a whole stack in no time flat. And check this out, the assembly station is
completely portable as well. I designed the patterns, and the template so they’d fit
perfectly inside the matchbox, and you can see there’s a little place for the skewer
in there as well. Now to finish our rocket factory the only thing left to do is make
a small hole in the top of the box, about half an inch from the end. Now if we bring
back any matches we saved from earlier, and add a candle, we’ve created a portable assembly
station, that you could take just about anywhere. Alright, let’s get to work and build some
rockets. Here you can see what the finished rocket will look like. It’s light as a feather,
but surprisingly stable in flight. You might have noticed there are two markings on the
template that indicate how to roll the body tube. With the skewer in position, place a
single match head on top, and make sure it’s pointing upward, without any gaps. Now slowly
and carefully roll the foil tube, as tightly and neatly as possible. When you get to the
end, pinch the tube right above the match head, then push the foil down flat. There
should be about half an inch of foil at the top, and this gets rolled toward the match
head. The most important part here is crimping the tip with something like a pair of pilers.
And you might want to crimp multiple times, and from different angles just to make sure
it’s completely sealed. At this point, let’s attach the rocket fins we made earlier, by
peeling off the sticky stuff on the back, then pushing the rocket body through the hole
in the center. Just work the fins around until they stick firmly in place near the bottom
of the rocket, and with that final step, you’re done. That’s how easy it is, to make a matchbox
rocket. So while you’re at it, why not make a few more? I just made 13 of them, in about
10 minutes, and you can see they fit perfectly into the kit as well. So now you have the
option of building rockets, on location, as you need them, or creating them all in advance
so you can just show up and start shooting within seconds. The rockets get loaded by
pushing the tapered end of the skewer into the nozzle, then twisting upward until it
touches the match head inside. Push the skewer through the hole in the matchbox, and now
if you push the box together, you can adjust the launch angle to whatever you need it to
be. Now if you light a candle and position the flame just under the tip of the rocket,
it will quickly warm the foil until the match head reaches its auto-ignition temperature.
Which, you can see, shoots it off with an impressive amount, of speed and power. These
rockets leave a satisfying trail of smoke when they blast off, but you do need to be
careful because they get hot enough to burn your fingers, and put scorch marks in your
carpet. Now of course the safer option is to launch your rockets outdoors. But you’ll
probably find the flame on the candle won’t hold still in the breeze. I use a wind resistant
BBQ ignitor to keep a steady flame, which you can see works pretty well. These rockets
shoot from the front porch all the way to the street, and in some cases up to 40 feet
away. So it’s important to use common sense, and avoid the temptation to point them at
people or property. Well now you know how to turn a box of matches and some aluminum
foil, into a fully portable rocket factory, so you can manufacture and launch, your very
own matchbox rockets. That’s it for now. If you liked this project, perhaps you’ll
like some of my others. Check them out at Man, I love playing with rockets. Hey guys
I’m really excited about this project. I’ve been playing with different prototypes for
matchbox rockets for over a year. So I’m really excited, and proud, to finally be able
to present this design. I’m also excited to give you the template I made, for free.
You can click right here to download the template right now, and if you try making some of these,
I would love to see you post pictures on my Facebook page at
The link for that’s in the description. Before you go I just want to tell you I think
you are awesome. I read your comments and I watch to see if you like my videos, because
it really means a lot to me when you do. Please have fun with this project, be safe, and keep
an eye out for my next project video. I’ll talk to you then.


  • Reply Abo7meed Abo7meed August 1, 2019 at 11:54 am

    Rest In Peace my friend 😢

  • Reply SukhTej Crew August 1, 2019 at 12:20 pm

    Rest in peace!!!

  • Reply Jerry Seinfeld August 1, 2019 at 12:25 pm

    watching after i heard the news

  • Reply Ornob Mahmud August 1, 2019 at 5:33 pm


  • Reply Ajob Kotha August 1, 2019 at 7:31 pm

    Rip sir ❤️😊🇮🇳

  • Reply Freddy Fazbear And Springtrap August 1, 2019 at 8:01 pm

    Didn't think I'd hear about his death for years
    Taken too soon

  • Reply Apig August 1, 2019 at 9:56 pm

    Rest In Peace

  • Reply speXtra plays August 2, 2019 at 10:34 am

    This was my first vid
    R.I.P u were the best

  • Reply Aaron Cook August 2, 2019 at 3:46 pm

    Nate and the other one (idk her name) will never stand where you stood 🙁 RIP

  • Reply HEN-TIE studios August 3, 2019 at 2:27 am

    He was a legend.
    Im so sad that he passed away.

  • Reply Khaledx2 August 3, 2019 at 9:11 am

    Rip and thanks tor letting me know for some stuff

  • Reply Salim Ismail August 3, 2019 at 4:35 pm

    R.I.P. Mans

  • Reply Salim Ismail August 3, 2019 at 4:36 pm

    R.I.P. Mans

  • Reply Vimal Singh August 4, 2019 at 2:06 am

    RIP KING..😭😭😔😔

  • Reply Rother mayer August 4, 2019 at 4:20 am


  • Reply Daiv_ Play August 4, 2019 at 3:31 pm


  • Reply Daiv_ Play August 4, 2019 at 3:31 pm


  • Reply Shubham A August 4, 2019 at 3:33 pm

    nasa wants to know your location 🤣🤣

  • Reply Atulya Kumar August 4, 2019 at 5:13 pm

    Rip man ,😭😭😭😭😭

  • Reply Lincoln Robbins August 4, 2019 at 6:47 pm


  • Reply LG Ritz August 4, 2019 at 9:50 pm

    Rip man, you will be missed.

  • Reply Amaury Forceville August 6, 2019 at 7:42 am

    rip ):

  • Reply fallout prop guy August 6, 2019 at 10:06 am


  • Reply Jmax August 6, 2019 at 5:05 pm

    First video of his I ever watched after a Slomo guys video about the rockets

  • Reply Daireen Ignacio August 6, 2019 at 6:36 pm

    Can it hurt someone

  • Reply SirFireball 3521 August 7, 2019 at 1:22 am

    He deserves a salute with a bunch of these at his funeral.

  • Reply AnneArundelWX / SPCpasadena2123 August 7, 2019 at 7:39 pm

    Anyone think it was Matchbox cars?

  • Reply Guardian Kipgen August 8, 2019 at 5:07 am

    Simple but awesome

  • Reply Willie Neckbone August 8, 2019 at 9:17 pm

    Rip bro

  • Reply Taylor Le August 11, 2019 at 4:19 am

    Be careful aluminum tape is very sharp parental supervision recommended

  • Reply Nelson Chien August 13, 2019 at 5:01 am

    RIP 🙁 you will be remembered in our hearts

  • Reply Nelson Chien August 13, 2019 at 5:03 am

    Why don’t some people in the present not know the news

  • Reply Anxietyprimev69 August 13, 2019 at 6:49 pm

    Imagine the chaos you could cause with this! You could snipe people across the room with moderately hot rockets, or light stuff from a distance, or something else entirely that I haven’t realized yet.

  • Reply Ashish Video Zone August 15, 2019 at 5:50 am

    I already knew it

  • Reply Ashish Video Zone August 15, 2019 at 5:50 am

    But not the launcher

  • Reply shiny emeralds gaming August 15, 2019 at 8:35 am


  • Reply Void Anims August 15, 2019 at 12:07 pm

    Worked like a charm, my grandma didn't stand a chance.

  • Reply johnny777857 August 15, 2019 at 3:36 pm

    First ever video I watched, was 8

  • Reply Channel 27 August 16, 2019 at 12:17 am

    That was awesome. Now I just need a box of matches.

  • Reply spekman games August 17, 2019 at 10:15 pm

    my favorite video from tkor, you will be missed

  • Reply Les Vegetables August 18, 2019 at 12:07 am


  • Reply Mark Sanchez August 18, 2019 at 2:43 am

    I cannot believe he’s dead this was my childhood hero

  • Reply Mister Mason August 18, 2019 at 5:54 am

    I’m gonna try it with multiple match heads for more power

  • Reply Warrior 55 August 19, 2019 at 10:37 pm

    he sounds like the how it’s made type narrator

    …. it’s soothing

  • Reply Mahkus August 21, 2019 at 11:52 pm

    Ant team rocket is blasting of again

  • Reply Pavel Bobov August 21, 2019 at 11:59 pm

    He was my hero sad

  • Reply 1000 sub Challenge August 23, 2019 at 9:01 pm

    This sounds best at 1.25

  • Reply Black Duck August 25, 2019 at 6:05 pm


  • Reply Johnston Steiner August 26, 2019 at 7:58 am

    Someone somewhere will do a "matchbox rocket bombardment" one day

  • Reply idk 123 August 28, 2019 at 4:43 am

    Rip king

  • Reply Nicks !! August 28, 2019 at 5:03 pm


  • Reply Jason O'Donnell August 29, 2019 at 11:18 pm


  • Reply Lucas Playz August 30, 2019 at 8:47 pm

    I’m sad hes dead and all but I wanna go to the comments and find something besides I really sad rip we’re all sad we know comments are for your opinion on the video now crying about how he’s dead

  • Reply AnteMudanta September 1, 2019 at 11:12 pm

    Rip best youtuber

  • Reply Jaeden Tsai September 2, 2019 at 8:03 am

    Who is still watching in 2019

  • Reply Liamgamer1125 September 5, 2019 at 1:01 am

    Rest in peace

  • Reply Shanthosh Ravi September 5, 2019 at 12:27 pm


  • Reply Mohammed Irfan September 9, 2019 at 10:26 am

    Can I use a single skewer for all the rockets??

  • Reply Cody Janssen September 11, 2019 at 2:50 am

    I have no intention of making this but I watched the whole video

  • Reply Linal De silva September 12, 2019 at 7:24 pm

    Wish he was still here

  • Reply Akila AGN Arthanari September 13, 2019 at 7:01 am

    please make elephant toothpaste

  • Reply Savagekid Productions September 14, 2019 at 7:04 am

    What happens if we burn are own houses down making this

  • Reply shopnoraj September 15, 2019 at 7:03 pm

    Palestinians rockets.

  • Reply Adolf Hitler September 21, 2019 at 12:17 pm


  • Reply Sander Schuurmans September 23, 2019 at 12:35 pm

    Question what brand matches did he use

  • Reply Kamal chand Patodi September 23, 2019 at 3:38 pm

    In hindi it is matchis.

    And in English🔤 it is matchstick

  • Reply Kaioluis Silva September 25, 2019 at 3:19 am

    I am gangster man

  • Reply Humanoid Player September 25, 2019 at 1:42 pm


  • Reply Kankan Malakar September 28, 2019 at 12:18 pm

    How to Make Tic Tac rockets. 1:05

  • Reply Silenced September 29, 2019 at 10:41 am

    Before his death: (Comments saying cool things)
    After his death: (Comments saying R.I.P.)


  • Reply Cuahutemoc Tellez de dios September 29, 2019 at 5:36 pm

    What if you had 10 of these in a lime it will be a fire work show

  • Reply nadeem ahmad September 30, 2019 at 11:01 am

    Its complicated then its usual

  • Reply Kelli Barker October 2, 2019 at 11:52 am

    Rip he was the best person on earth 😭

  • Reply Timothy Morrison October 3, 2019 at 3:05 pm

    Or you can have a v2 by using a sled

  • Reply Yusril Bagas October 6, 2019 at 2:38 am

    Hmm, i have knew this trick when i was child.

  • Reply Book Worm October 6, 2019 at 5:23 pm

    He sounds very much like Jerry Rig Everything

  • Reply 100K Subscriber Without Video Challenge October 8, 2019 at 5:55 am

    Who's watch this on OCTOBER

  • Reply Muhammad Akmal October 8, 2019 at 12:50 pm

    R.i.p thank you you have made myself feel better every day.

  • Reply ankit mishra October 9, 2019 at 11:28 am

    Pakistani missile

  • Reply Ninadh venkatesh October 9, 2019 at 12:15 pm


  • Reply Fluterra October 9, 2019 at 5:36 pm


  • Reply ruffe .R October 10, 2019 at 6:04 pm

    You remind me of a person that drinks a beer with a straw

  • Reply King Inevitable October 12, 2019 at 3:50 am

    Even in death you still help me with assignments at school

  • Reply THE MANDARIN HACKS October 12, 2019 at 4:07 am

    I love rocket s too

  • Reply THE MANDARIN HACKS October 12, 2019 at 4:09 am

    If you guys like rockets too like here x

  • Reply Bob Evens October 12, 2019 at 8:57 am

    I think this how North Korea does it

  • Reply mugiwara pirates October 12, 2019 at 12:08 pm

    Pakistani missile's 😂🤣

  • Reply Poano Lee October 12, 2019 at 1:41 pm

    Heaven bound. Rest well

  • Reply Truth Tella October 13, 2019 at 10:53 am

    I'm surprised he didn't use all his aluminum foil when he was tweaking

  • Reply General Zucc October 13, 2019 at 8:17 pm

    Now make a life sized one

  • Reply Taking L’s October 14, 2019 at 4:56 pm

    These are stronger than Kim jong uns nukes

  • Reply Cthulhu Hoops October 15, 2019 at 2:28 am

    "As you need them."

  • Reply Marksmanmatthew October 15, 2019 at 3:00 am

    I miss him

  • Reply BEEP The Robot October 18, 2019 at 9:33 am

    Leaked Video of African Space Program

  • Reply Mamun Hossain October 18, 2019 at 11:40 am

    When I was a child, I made them a lot once in year . We called it , one seconds hope .

  • Reply Somy Jacob October 18, 2019 at 1:47 pm

    Will anyone do this

  • Reply patchris07 October 19, 2019 at 12:03 pm

    Now I scale that up big time! Lol

  • Reply bryant wilson October 19, 2019 at 12:48 pm

    That was pretty cool
    Can u do fire arrow with these

  • Reply Calvin Watterson October 19, 2019 at 4:53 pm

    “Avoid the temptation to point them at people or property”. Hahaha. Not gonna happen. You know your video is going to cause injuries and fires for sure.

  • Reply Shanky_ индусски October 19, 2019 at 6:47 pm

    Palestinian rockets which they use against Israel.

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