Lightning Review: The $500 Rubber Band Gatling GunS

Landing a well-aimed rubber band—in the coffee, in the hair bun, in the ear—is one of the great pleasures of working in an office. So, how about about 100 of them?

Lightning Review: The $500 Rubber Band Gatling GunS

Specs
Rubber Band Gatling Gun
Price: $500
When: Now
In the box: About 20 pounds of aluminum gun, custom inscription, Maglite, bag-o-bands (size 64)

If you saw our first post on this thing, you get the gist. It's an absurd concept with an absurd price; an incredibly impractical piece of hardware overkill. Of course, this is exactly why we posted it. The guys who run the company that makes this thing told me its apt creation story: They had this idea for a rubber band mega-shooter, and also had some buddies with a machine shop. So they made a call.

This actually explains a lot about the device, which is a hulking assemblage of machined, painted metal. This thing must weigh like 20 pounds, though once you've got your arm threaded between the grip and armrest, it just feels satisfyingly beefy. Shooting is triggered by means of crank, and happens about as fast as you want it to. It's a pretty subdued experience from where the shooter stands, but taking 25 rubber bands to the face (the maximum is 100, though I experienced occasional malfunctions past about 40) is no joke.

Lightning Review: The $500 Rubber Band Gatling GunS

So, this is a $500 dollar thing! And it's not that the gun feels cheap or anything, but it's hard to see where all the money went. (I'm guessing to the guys at the machine shop, who have meticulously carved dozens of variously sized holes and curves out of what were one fairly huge chunks of metal.) Though the string-based shooting mechanism works well once you've got the hang of loading, it feels a bit flimsy compared to the rest of the gun.

And yeah, loading takes a while, but t's not so bad once you've had a little practice, and I can't think of any way it could've been made much easier, really.

Lightning Review: The $500 Rubber Band Gatling GunS

Honestly, this isn't the kind of product you can issue a buy/don't buy verdict on. If you perk up at the words RUBBER BAND GATLING GUN, or need some way to up your "cool boss" cred, or are looking for a good icebreaker to mount above mantle, then sure, why not. You'll have fun breaking it out to show to people for as long as you have it, and might even find a few opportunities to use it. (Just keep it loaded.) If this sounded cool to you when you heard about it, then hey, guess what! It's as cool as you thought, more or less. Gadgets and Gear also just announced a half-size, four barrel take on the same concept for half the price.

That said, if the first thing you thought after seeing this thing was that $500 sounds like a ridiculous amount to spend to shoot rubber bands across a room, then I have nothing to tell you that'll change your mind.