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Are you tired of Big Brother tracking your every move by scanning and logging the RFID chip secretly embedded in your carry pistol?  The one-off electronic ‘rfiddler’ EMP gun (pictured) might just have the firepower, er, wattage, you need to beat The Man at his own game . . .

It’s cobbled together from a pile of batteries, a copper coil, two huge capacitors, an .mp3 player and a working Nerf dart gun.  You can build it for about $100 if you’re as handy with a soldering gun as with a six-gun.

As an anti-materiel weapon, it can deprogram RFID chips out to an effective range of, maybe, six inches.  As an anti-personnel weapon, it can fire foam Nerf darts and disorient government agents with a dazzling muzzle flash.  Recoil is reported to be mild.

Full review to follow, as soon as someone builds one for us.

(Full details at


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  1. Chris, give up on the IT/EE stuff, please. Your an attorney, not a tech.

    First off, this is illegal, it violates numerous FCC rules. As an attorney I would have thought you would have known this. Secondly, its expensive, everyone all ready has a microwave oven, and if they dont, you can get one for really cheap at a garage sale or a second hand store. This also has several microcontrollers and numerous other components you neglected to mention. And most people dont have programmers for microcontrollers. And if it doesnt work perfectly, you’ll need hundreds of dollars worth of additional tools to troubleshoot it (DSO, Logic Analyzer, multimeter, etc).

    Please give up on the IT/EE related stuff, you have no clue what your talking about. What would you think if I began publishing my opinions on the law as sound legal advice? Do you bother to fact check before you post an article, or forward it to other TTAG contributors for an editorial review? You know theres a reason why the real world media does things like that.

    • @matt

      I’m starting to get an impression of you…

      Anyway, I think that you might want to check your attitude at the door and maybe get a sense of humor. I’m pretty sure that Chris posted this in jest and your taking it to seriously.

      Oh, and I don’t appreciate you assuming that everyone who reads TTAG is a doofus. I could build this device if I wanted too.

    • This is illegal only because it’s a passport, and who knows, maybe it’s de-listed and legal. You can do whatever you want to an RFID tag you own. It’s that passports aren’t your property.

      What “violates” the FCC regulations is the tag itself, after it’s been zapped. Once it’s been zapped it no longer complies with their standards as an intentional radiator. That being said it also ceases to be operational, and won’t function as an intentional radiator, either, so you’re cool.

      Lastly, dude’s German, doin’ shit in Germany. While I don’t doubt it’s illegal there, it’s certainly not susceptible to FCC regulation.

      On another note, posting comments is half-broken with Firefox. I’d comment more if it worked right.

      • “This is illegal only because it’s a passport, and who knows, maybe it’s de-listed and legal. You can do whatever you want to an RFID tag you own. It’s that passports aren’t your property.”

        It’s only illegal if they can prove that you did it, and that it didn’t happen in the course of normal use.

        “OH, I don’t know how that happened; Maybe the full-body scanner was irradiating more strongly than usual…”

      • @Max Slowik

        The FCC violations that Matt is referring to has to do with the gun emitting a radio frequency, not the destruction of the RFID tag.

        I’d have to look at the device more in more detail and the specific feq it’s using and the FCC rules regarding device such as this but if it’s range is limited to a few inches then I don’t imagine that you’d have the FCC knocking on your door.

        • It’s still OK, since it’s home-built (as long as it doesn’t interfere with other signals):

          “Subpart C: Intentional Radiators (15.201–5.255)

          “…Here there is no lower limit to operating power below which FCC authorization is not required. Most devices require certification, though verification is permitted for tunnel radio systems (Section 15.211), cable locating equipment (15.213), and low-power AM transmitters in the 525–1705 kHz band using either carrier current or “leaky” coaxial cable transmission (15.221). FCC approval is not required for home-built devices, but such devices must not cause interference.

          And if it /is/ capable of interfering, then use it in a Faraday cage. The device itself is kosher. (IANAFFCL)

        • In your own link it says it’s not illegal to build.

          “Home-built transmitters, like all Part 15 transmitters, are not allowed to cause interference to licensed radio communications and must accept any interference that
          they receive. If a home-built Part 15 transmitter does cause interference to licensed radio communications, the Commission will require its operator to cease operation
          until the interference problem is corrected. Furthermore, if the Commission determines that the operator of such a transmitter has not attempted to ensure compliance with the Part 15 technical standards by employing good engineering practices then that operator may be fined up to $10,000 for each violation and $75,000 for a repeat or continuing violation.”

          It’s not the device that can be fined, it’s the interference that’s a violation. I also doubt it’s capable of that; in the technical details they point out its effective range isn’t more than a few inches and the spectrums set aside for RFID are particularly narrow. It would have to interfere with them from across the street or something notable. That takes more than a flashbulb capacitor and half-inch coil.

          It’s like a firearm; owning one isn’t illegal, even using it isn’t. But in some circumstances, firing a gun is a crime. The gun’s not, some use is.

      • “On another note, posting comments is half-broken with Firefox. I’d comment more if it worked right.”

        This is my experience. Whether I’m in Linux or Win 7. I compose in OpenOffice WP and then paste. Not sure what the problem is.

      • The entire device is illegal under FCC Part 15. Part 15 is the most commonly quoted FCC requirement (you can probably find it listed on the back of some home devices), but essentially it states that a radio emitting device may not cause interference with other radio sources. The FCC considers maliciously destroying or killing passive or active RFID tags to violate FCC Part 15. In any case, as soon as you turned it on it would interfere with other RF readers in the area (even if they aren’t any around, the potential is all that matters), and would be illegal for interference. This is why even cheap, small RF readers and emitters must be certified FCC part 15 compliant.

        Anyway, that’s a huge overburn of time and effort to kill an RF tag, and probably wouldn’t even work with modern chipsets, they’re shielded enough that you would need an actual reader to issue a kill command. If you wanted to do this right, you could order a $30 USB reader off the internet and have it issue a kill command when you pull the trigger. This would be cheaper, easier, and have much greater range (up to 3 feet or so with UHF), plus it would be legal.

  2. Gee, it LOOKS like it will work. It’s got flashing lights and stuff, even cool noises. Looks official to me.

  3. “Are you tired of Big Brother tracking your every move by scanning and logging the RFID chip secretly embedded in your carry pistol?”

    There’s a solution: Get a CNC mill, a few chunks of billet stainless steel, a barrel, appropriate springs, and make your own damned pistol.

  4. Matt seems to have some kind of chip on his shoulder, perhaps we can zap it with the nerf machine and restore him to normal.

  5. As someone who holds a license from the FCC, I just have to comment.
    A) Why bother, an AC/DC stick welder works better. *
    B) Quoting the law doesn’t give you the expertise to judge the technical part.
    (See: Inverse Square Law about RF emission)
    C) There is ALWAYS someone reading who does know.

    * And after you’ve fried the chip,the welder works great on fixing De-Mil receivers!
    (Just kidding!)

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