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As kids we used to use model rocket motors, pvc pipe and black powder to make explosives.
Technically, they were rocket propelled grenades. Not very accurate, but lots of fun.
I think there were several successful flamethrower designs by twelve year olds in the pre-video game years as well.
Nope, ammo cost too much even 40 years ago.
Any 12 year old from the seventies could have given homeland security conniption fits.
I'll bet Chuck Norris was 12 once.