How To Build A Tnt Cannon In Minecraft Xbox 360, Minecraft T

A TNT cannon is a mechanism that uses TNT or minecarts with TNT to launch primed TNT or other entities.

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Here is a video covering some general types of TNT cannons and is a good introduction to them.

1 General2 Naming standards3 Building materials6 Charge condensing9 Cannon tutorials9.2 Reloading cannons9.3 Short-middle range cannons9.3.7 One-button defensively ranged cannon9.5 Automatic cannons9.6 Specialized cannons9.7 Launcher Pads9.7.3 Aim-able T gun9.8 Dry cannons9.9 TNT catapults


Note: these (as the whole article) talk mostly about the classical TNT cannons that work by shooting TNT by using other TNT blocks as charge. As of 1.8, it is also possible to build a TNT cannon that works with pistons and slime blocks.

Main components

Body, or housingWiringCharge wiringCondensing charge wiringShot wiringOther wiringExplosivesChargeCondensing chargeShotExplosion housingMounting block

Basic concepts

The charge is an amount of TNT used to propel the shot.The charge (if you are just playing or testing) should land (TNT will fall when activated) and explode in water, otherwise the explosion will destroy nearby scenery and damage nearby mobs.To properly fire an active shot (and avoid destroying your cannon), you need to be sure that your charge activates before the shot is activated. Since the charge is housed in water it will not destroy your cannon, but the shot is not housed in water when activated, so it will destroy nearby blocks and injure nearby mobs.Redstone is used to activate every charge TNT simultaneously with the exception of compressor charges, which are discussed in the appropriate section.TNT cannons can also fire up to 12 pieces of TNT with a cannon made by Creeperface_33.For maximum range, you want there to be an about 30 degree trajectory but with the least possible amount of matter (blocks) in between the charge and the shot, that way more of the charge”s explosion reaches the shot.So it”s best for TNT cannons to be elevated off the ground depending on the wanted range of the cannon.For shooting arrows, sand/gravel, anvils, or mobs, a piston might be needed to drop the said ammunition.

Naming standards

There are 2 types of cannon names: The “common name” gives a picture of what the cannon can do and how easy it is to build. The “technical name” gives the specifics of the cannon, like how much delay the redstone repeaters have.

Common names

The common name of a TNT cannon is a short numerical description followed by the cannon”s nickname. It is useful for comparison of two cannons and gives the reader an idea of what the cannon can do at a glance.

The common name of a cannon consists of five parts: the damage value (DV), the ergonomic value (EV), the TNT amount (TA), the maximum range (MR), and the nickname. They appear in this order:


Example: 40.86:8.104 Basic.

Damage value

Damage values show how “good” a cannon is, the higher the value, the better it is. It is calculated as the average of three values: accuracy, power and speed.

The accuracy value is calculated from the accuracy input, which is the average of the distances from the explosions generated from the shots to the average of their positions.


In the image to the right, the accuracy input is the average of the lengths of the blue lines. The red dot is the average of the positions of the explosions, and an endpoint of each of the blue lines, the others being the explosions. The accuracy value equation is (45-A)*2, where “A” is the accuracy input.

The power value is the number of TNT in the shot times ten.

The speed input is the distance between the front of the cannon to the average position of the centers of the explosions. The speed value equation is S/5, where “S” is the speed input.

The damage value is calculated using this equation: (((45 – A)*2) + (P*10) + (S/5)) / 3.

Ergonomic value

Ergonomic value tells how hard a cannon is to build, higher values signifying easier build. It is the average of the construction, redstone, and TNT values.

The construction input is an estimate of the number of blocks in the cannon, excluding fire, water, air, and TNT. The construction value is (1000 – B)/10, assuming “B” is the construction input.

The redstone value is ten minus an estimate from one to ten of the complexity of the redstone, times ten; (10-R)*10, where “R” is the estimate.

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The TNT value is (50 – T) * 2, and “T” is the number of TNT needed to operate the cannon at maximum capacity.

The whole equation to calculate the EV is ((1000 – B)/10 + ((10 – R)*10) + ((50 – T)*2)) / 3.


TNT amount, maximum range, and nickname are pretty self-explanatory, but to clarify, the TA is the same as the TNT value of the EV, and the MR is the distance from the front of the cannon to the farthest explosion.

The nickname is whatever you name it, assuming it”s not profane, and nobody else has already named a similar cannon.

This is how the 40.86:8.104 Basic cannon was named.

Damage value = (((45 – 0)*2) + (1*10) + (104/5)) / 3 = 40Ergonomic value = ((1000 – 50)/10 + ((10 – 2)*10) + ((50 – 8)*2)) / 3 = 8640.80:8.104 Basic

Technical names

A cannon”s technical name should give its readers a complete picture of its function, use, and method of operation. While it is impossible to anticipate every innovation in TNT cannon technologies, most cannons will benefit from using these standards in their technical names.

The first number in a technical TNT cannon name designates how many horizontal rows(layers) of TNT it has for the charge. The example cannon has 1.The next number is the amount of shot TNT. Again, the example cannon has 1.Next, the number designates how many charge blocks of TNT the cannon has.If there is a TNT condensation system, after the charge number, write a decimal point, then the amount of condensation charge TNT. If there is no such TNT, write 0 instead.A list of how many repeaters there are, and how much they are set to. E.g. If you have 10 repeaters set to 4 (which is the maximum setting), you would list R4.10. If there are no repeaters, you would write an M for manual.The mounting block is designated by a code: 0 or 1 for no block, 2 for full block, 3 for slab, 4 for ladder, glass pane, or iron bar, 5 for trapdoor, 6 for fence post and pressure plate, 7 for piston.If the cannon does something special, like shoot vertically, or does a spread shot, write that after the mounting block code.The nickname of the cannon goes here.

The featured TNT cannon above would be named 114.0R4.4M2.

Building materials

Survival mode

As discussed in basic concepts, there are many parts of a TNT cannon.

BodyConsider using a common material, such as cobblestone.In multiplayer, when firing against another cannon, try to use materials with higher blast resistance. (For more on TNT cannon defenses, look below)Another factor is visibility, which is one commonly overlooked. When making a cannon out of obsidian, it is hard to see redstone, and that can lead to fatal errors. On the other end, when setting up an ambush in the jungle, it is best not to make your cannon out of orange wool or lapis.WiringThere are two main sets of wiring in a cannon, the charge wiring which activates the charge, and the shot wiring that activates the shot.Without any repeaters, which can be hard to get, a cannon is designated as manual, with 2 redstone power sources/blocks, such as buttons. For a manual cannon, the materials are simple, just a redstone wire that connects the charge to a redstone emitting item, and a wire that connects the shot to a redstone power source. However, this requires skill so as not to misfire, you must know when to activate each button.With repeaters it is a different story. The maximum amount of time between the charge activating and the shot activating is ten repeaters set to 4. That will also bring you maximum range, will only require one redstone power source, and will require no skill to fire correctly.Mounting blockMounting blocks (described below) are only certain special blocks.Explosion housingUnless it”s a dry cannon, this must be water or lava (in the latter case, only source blocks). The liquid prevents the cannon and any other surrounding blocks from being destroyed.

Creative mode

In creative mode, there is no reason to build a TNT cannon for warfare, but is the optimal mode for testing and developing cannons.


In factions raiding with TNT cannons is the most common way of getting into a base. There are two main methods. The first (on servers where enabled) is to airburst. This only works on obsidian with water outside. The cannon shot must have a delay so the explosion reaches the obsidian but the primed TNT must not be in the water. These cannons will not work on other walls. The other method is with hybrid cannons which are explained below. The basic hybrid is one of the most commonly used raiding cannons.

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Limitations, and ways to possibly get around them

The five big, main limits to TNT cannon engineering are:

That no matter what you do, a TNT will explode approximately 4 seconds or 8 flashes after being primed. The way to sidestep this is to make the TNT fly faster, but that leads us to limit 2.TNT has a 7 block detonation radius, so just making a large cannon is a waste of time. Beyond 9 charges, the TNT is wasted. However, this can be sidestepped by either adding more vertical rows of charge to your cannon, adding a charge condensing system to your cannon, or a combination of them both.TNT flows with the water while in it. This can be good or bad, depending on the situation. The way to sidestep this is to use water source blocks, and don”t place any TNT inside it.If you make a vertical cannon too powerful, it will fly up too fast and high meaning it will crash your game. This can be sidestepped by decreasing the power of said cannon, or making it semi-vertical. That way you can go up and sideways.

Cannon sizes and special features

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