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Please don’t spend $10K on this flamethrowing robot dog

It may be legal in 48 states but your HOA might be a different story…

thermonator flamethrower-equipped robot dog in action on a snowy field
Image: Throwflame

If your dreams include flames, a creepy robot army, and thoughts of world domination, it’s probably time to find a good therapist. It absolutely isn’t time to purchase this flamethrower-equipped robot dog.

The $9,420 Thermonator is the brainchild of Ohio-based flamethrower company Throwflame, and it’s every bit as terrifying as that sounds.

It consists of the company’s new ARC flamethrower mounted on a robotic dog, which is controllable via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi from any smartphone.

It can throw laser-guided flame for up to 30 feet, either from gasoline or napalm.

It’s also not the only mobile flamethrower the company produces, joining the TF-19 Wasp kit that fits on “most cinema/industrial drone platforms,” which was released almost five years ago.

This terrifying robot dog is an irresponsible waste of money

Throwflame says the robot dog has around an hour of battery life, and the flamethrower on top can run for around 45 minutes. That’s a lot of barely controlled chaos in the hands of anyone with $10K to burn.

What’s more, only two of the contiguous states have specific laws around flamethrowers.

Maryland requires a Federal Firearms License to own one, and California says they can’t throw fire further than ten feet (Throwflame modifies any flamethrower sold to Californian buyers to comply).

That leaves 48 states with loose regulation. Sure, liability and criminal law still apply if something happens (and it’s a flamethrower, something will happen), but it’s still worrying.

The website doesn’t mention which Bluetooth variant is used. The remote trigger for the flamethrower has a 350ft range, but with the Bluetooth range of the average smartphone being 30 feet, it may not matter.

This is a movie prop, really, with limited real-world applications. It’s probably best left to the professionals, even if the general public can buy one legally.

Have any burning questions about how this thing is legal in 48 states? Wonder if it’s subject to leash laws? Drop us a line below in the comments, or carry the discussion to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Maker, meme-r, and unabashed geek with nearly half a decade of blogging experience at KnowTechie, SlashGear and XDA Developers. If it runs on electricity (or even if it doesn't), Joe probably has one around his office somewhere, with particular focus in gadgetry and handheld gaming. Shoot him an email at joe@knowtechie.com.

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