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TTAG reader VBird sent us this heads-up on the Bug-A-Salt. Note: TTAG has reached out to for a T&E sample. The lack of response may have had something to do with my suggestion that they should make one with a shoulder thingie that goes up.

“Cool concept, kids, but buy one, first. I purchased two– one for me and one to gift. The rifle does not hit hard enough to kill a typical housefly. It will knock them down, momentarily, but they get back up unharmed. I’ve shot flies at point blank (3″–4″) range. It simply doesn’t hit hard enough. Do not plan on killing bees or larger insects, obviously…. I haven’t given the second rifle away. It’s a funny conversation piece but it simply doesn’t work. It turned out to be a big disappointment. I’m a guy who’ll buy some crazy, eccentric gizmo like this, but after waiting a month for delivery it was a big, expensive flop. Save your money, folks.”

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  1. I beg to differ. Mine kills flys just about every time, my ceilings sometime will be too high and it will knock them down but that just sets me up for the Double Tap. I’ve taken down a bumble bee and 25% of the wasps I’ve shot, a couple mid air, and easily kills black widows. I modified mine to disengage the safety so I can load and fire at a much higher rate.

    • KILLING SPIDERS? Spiders are your friends! They kill more insects than anything man can or will invent. Capture and release please.

      • Spiders and snakes are beneficial to man and I don’t kill either without reason. Having said that, I freely admit that snakes give me the heebie jeebies. No hips, what is that all about?


      • When I got it, I shot anything and everything, it was open season. I also killed a praying mantis, a butterfly, a catapiller, a lady bug… Kidding. I just wanted to see its killing power and I’m pretty sure there are 50 more Black Widows to replace the single one I shot. In my defense, I though it had something in one of its 8 hands!! Lol.

      • STFU F@#KSTICK.!! I hate spiders just as much as I love them because besides the fact that they’re engineering marvels you’re right without them we wouldn’t be here.!! With that been said once they start growing hair & when u look @ 1 & u can see the “Primal Intelligence” & u can tell that it’s calculating ” it must die of its in my habitat.!! There’s plenty of room elsewhere 4 it 2 do it’s bidding..!! IT MUST & WILL DIE.!!!

  2. I beg to differ as far as black widow spiders go, I like ’em dead! Might need coarse salt instead, you know, like shot sizes in shotshells

      • I agree that Brown Recluse Spiders are the Devil.!! We have them here in relatively small numbers here in The Lower Hudson Valley NY but 2 say that they are worse than a Spider that can kill a small child or an adult in some occasions is just nuts.!!! So if u had no choice but 2 get bitten by 1 or the other you’d rather get bitten by a Black Widow..!? Please help me understand your “SENSELESS” rational please..!!?

  3. Now I’m confused and worried. I was planning on sending one of these to my brother-in-law for the holidays, since I got his name in the family gift exchange this year.

    VBird headlines the article with “it don’t work”.

    Tony responds with “hells yeah it does, killed me LOTS of stuff with mine”.

    Who to believe?

      • The guy who developed it had great videos on his Kickstarter (or equivalent) page, very convincing. I tend to put more weight on “Amazon reviews” type content, i.e. feedback from people who paid their own money for the product, but damn those videos made it look great.

        I’m just worried that the production units might either produce an inconsistent air pressure charge, or (like recent Nerf toys) got watered down with a restrictor to reduce product liability.

  4. Anyone know how it works? Spring-operated? Pneumatic?

    As for shooting spiders, there are a handful of species that are shoot-on-sight villains: brown recluse, black widow, and where I live, hobo spiders. Otherwise, it’s (mostly) live and let live.

    There’s a particular spider — the “giant house spider” is its official common name, I think; it’s dark brown and gets to about the size of a quarter — that’s everywhere in houses and basements in the western US and gets killed because it looks scary, but in reality isn’t venomous and doesn’t tend to bite. Their favorite victims: hobo spiders. I *hate* spiders in general, but I’ve actually let a few of these freaky little monsters go free in the house on purpose, figuring if they’re crawling around then the poisonous hobos probably aren’t.

    But shooting bumblebees? Come on, man… They’re great pollinators, they don’t swarm like other bees, they’re perfectly harmless if left alone, and on top of that they’re actually a threatened species in several parts of the West (not endangered yet, but if you keep Bug-a-Salt-ing them…).

    Where’s a salt weapons ban when you need one? 🙂

    • It’s just like most modern Nerf weapons: muscle power cocks a spring, which then drives an air piston down a plastic cylinder, driving a high-pressure air charge through a restrictive aperture.

  5. Every morning, there are about 10-15 flys that post on the roof of my front porch to get away from the cold and I usually have a nice field of turd munchers. I’ll try to get a pic and send it to the propped authorities.

  6. I think we’re overlooking the very obvious intended target of a salt projector, garden slugs. And nothing sucks more than stepping bare foot on a slug. eeeyew!

  7. I winder if it can be taken apart and modded like Nerf Guns. Stronger springs come to mind. I would love if these do work as they would make a most excellent gift and addition to home defense

    • Well I just saw this post & noticed that it’s from 2012..!! Well it’s 2015 now & I just picked up the Bug-ASalt 2.0..! IT’S EPICALLY AWESOME..!! I live in New York & this year is the 1st time that I saw it advertised here.! Hmmmmm…!? Anyway I didn’t know what the 2.0 meant until now.!! My guess is that the 1’s that everyone ordered in 2012 were GARBAGE.!!? Hence the 2.0..!!? MUCH BETTER..!!

  8. I invented a new bug-killing device that I call The Rolled-Up Newspaper. I’m willing to sell them at the low, low price of $17.95 each.

    And you guys thought that The New York Times was useless.

  9. I use mine on scorpions. I made the salt fluorescent it’s great fun. The Scorpions and the salt show up under ultraviolet light. That way you can see your spread pattern.

  10. I have a bug-a-salt 2.0, it kills flies just fine from 24″ or so. Anything more than that and it will knock them down and only occasionally kill them. It will put a hole in a sheet of tin foil at about 12 inches.
    Mine shoots slightly high so I take that into account.

    It REALLY destroys mosquitos, no evidence of them after! Awesome.

    I too need to modify mine for fast action. Sometimes the cheap safety sticks open and I can rapid fire these zica virus carriers!

  11. I own two of these, and I can absolutely promise you that they kill house flies without any problem. Sure, if your angle isn’t great or you’re too far away (beyond 3 feet) it may not on the first hit, and quite often it will seem to just ‘stun’ them but even those that have just been ‘stunned’ typically will die within an hour due to the salt penetrating their flesh. I have killed two and even three with a single shot! It doesn’t seem to make a dent in the overall fly population where I live in Ewa Beach, Hawaii – those things are EVERYWHERE – but it sure makes me feel like I’m getting some measure of revenge for all their harassment! I highly recommend these to anyone and everyone.


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