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Old 04-21-2008, 08:27 AM   #16
mikeyi
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Default Re: Building a gun...

Ok guys, as usual, life got in the way, but the gun is now completed. I have two slight air leaks where my pipe thread is, so I'll unscrew, throw some new teflon tape on their and get it going again. I'll add some links to this forum trail.

I'll get the measurements of the unit, but the size goes from my calf to my chest for the body, and up to my chin including the filling ball valve. I'm 5' 9". This puppy has some weight to it, but that's ok. This is designed to be stationary on a boat. I need some design suggestions, but I'll get to that at the bottom of this posting.

I'm using a 1 in ball valve at the top for filling the tank. I built a torque arm out of 5 wooden paint stirrers as I wanted to keep weight to a minimum.

A pressure gauge on one end of a tee with a schrader valve on the other end. BTW this is where my air leak is, so I'll adjust that this week. Nothing horrible, but minor bubbles with soapy water, so I must fix that.

I went with the air muffler. I mean, it was only like $2, so I couldn't resist!

I'll get some close up shots, and a shot of the drain into the hose. That is a Tee as well that reduces from 1.5 to 1/2 threaded.

So I did a few tests, but only wrote down one of the results. I will perform more this week once I fix the air leaks.

Preliminary results:
1 gallon of water
45 psi
49 feet.
I didn't time how long it ran for, but man it was a good stream!

The original design plans I used as a guide was a bit smaller, and recommended 85-100 psi. Once I fix the air leaks, I'll bump it up the pressure a bit.


Design Suggestions...

I should have built a Tee at the bottom, so i could extend the tee into a pair of legs. Any suggestions on a stand of some sort? It can't rest directly on the bottom tee as that is where the hose connects, so I need about an 8 in stand or so. I was thinking a paint can turned upside down, with a hole through the side for the hose to come through, but don't think it''ll be sturdy enough to hold 2 gallons of water plus the weight of the PVC.

Also, does anyone know of good, cheap, not so lound air compressors? We're going to use it with a power converter on a boat. Nothing to bulky.

This was my first encounter with PVC, so I'm rather impressed with myself. Let me know what you guys think.


http://www.flickr.com/photos/25942674@N08/2431277660/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/25942674@N08/2430463853/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/25942674@N08/2431277576/
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Old 04-21-2008, 11:13 AM   #17
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Default Re: Building a gun...

Looking nice! Great job! This is a serious improvement over the RolandTower design, at least in my opinion. If you could make a guide/writeup that would be great.

Try varying nozzle diameters after you fix the leaks. You should definitely see an increase in range once you figure out what's ideal. Then increase the pressure and you'll see more of an increase (but you'll have to figure out the idea nozzle diameter again because it varies with pressure).

For a stand, you can make something out of wood that would hold this up great. Have a flat piece on the bottom and then have some elevated pieces with notches for the pipe. The put some wood stabilizers (I can't think of a better for for a piece that just prevents it from rotating) on each side. That should work great.

As for good, cheap, not loud air compressors, your main option is a bike pump. I don't know of any quiet air compressors myself, but I'm sure they exist. Maybe someone else could help, but you might have to do your own research into this. Alternatively you could bring a pre-pressurized air tank and a bike pump. The bike pump is for after you run out of the air in the pre-pressurized tank. If you're continually refilling your reserve air, then there's no problem.
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Old 04-21-2008, 05:52 PM   #18
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Default Re: Building a gun...

Wow, that is a massive soaker, even for a backpack-based one.

I'm also interested in the nozzle size you used. 3/8" would probably be a good starting size, but I would test everything from 1/4" to 5/8" to find the best fit.
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Old 04-21-2008, 06:29 PM   #19
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Default Re: Building a gun...

Awesome job! That's far superior to the RolandTower design in my opinion. And from the looks of the preliminary results, performs excellently.

As for the stand, I'd recommend just making something much like a chair--but with a hole for the hose to go through. In fact, you could take an old wooden chair and drill a large hole in the center of the seat to do this, but it still may not hold the tank up because it looks very tall. Perhaps just a specially-build holder is in order?

Great job again! I'd love to see some pictures of it firing once you get all the small things tweaked and what not.
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Old 08-03-2008, 02:54 AM   #20
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Default Re: Building a gun...

So Mikeyi, how's your RolandTower gun? Did u test it with more pressure and water volume?
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Old 08-05-2008, 12:41 PM   #21
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Default Re: Building a gun...

Hey guys,

Sorry for being a deabeat on this posting. I still have to post my instructions, but I took most of them from Roland's and went with a few modifications.

The gun worked extremely well. It is very heavy when filled up. I put about 3 gallons of water in it, but it takes about 4.5. I had the pressure up around 100psi.

The design of this gun was to be stationary, as we were on a boat in a boat parade. I went to Michael's Craft Store, and purchased a small 7 inch wooden stool. I cut a hole out of the center of the top, and placed the super soaker on it. The bottom Tee of the super soaker fit in the stool perfectly.

I then had the issue of the state cops in boats. To get around this, I just through a poncho overtop of the supersoaker, and it was smooth sailing from there on out.

The gun worked perfectly. People were very suprised. With the wind resistance (not a very windy day, but a descent breeze), the gun shot a good 30 feet or so. I used a 1/4 in nozzle because I didn't want to have to refill constantly. It was definitely strong enough and allowed me to have an ample supply of water. Next year howerver I'll go with a larger nozzle, possibly the 5/8 in. I have a 3/8, and it suprised me during my testing. When I opened the valve, it actually threw the gun back in my hand. I wasn't expecting that at all.

We also had a small aircompressor on the boat, hooked up to an inverter, which was hooked up to the batteries, so power wasn't an issue.

If I did it again, I would build the stand into the gun ie, the bottom 90 degree turns would actually incorporate tee's so that the gun could stand on it's own. Live and learn right?

I'll get the instructions together as well as the sites where I ordered PVS from that Home Depot and lowes didn't carry!

-Mike
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Old 08-05-2008, 01:33 PM   #22
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Default Re: Building a gun...

Why would anybody care if you had a water gun? A boat parade sounds fun and I think people would be happy to see a soaker up there. And finally, do you have any pictures of the event? Or is there a site for it? Sounds fun.

What size was the ball valve? If it's 1" (as opposed to 3/4" or smaller) you could buy a small fire hose nozzle from McMaster-Carr for a more efficient stream.
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Old 08-05-2008, 11:33 PM   #23
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Hm... 30 feet is not so much for Roland. (u test with 1/4 nozzle, right?). I'll use 3mm and 4mm nozzle for longer shots. (i hope so).

Btw... can u post some pictures of Roland shots? Or video

PS (about your modification of gun): Why u use a pvc tee to connect muffler? U can open 1'' valve to release the air pressure.

Last edited by Silence : 08-06-2008 at 08:27 PM. Reason: double post
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Old 08-07-2008, 05:22 PM   #24
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Default Re: Building a gun...

my friend made one so once school starts i can ask him. my guess is 50-65 usd
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Old 08-19-2008, 02:03 PM   #25
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Ask him about range, power and some pictures of shoots or movies if it is possible
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Old 08-19-2008, 02:23 PM   #26
mikeyi
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Default Re: Building a gun...

The state cops would care about the gun, possibly take it away, and give us a ticket for having it. What the ticket would be for, who knows, you know how cops can be. The problem is, if you get a ticket in a boat, it transfers to your drivers license, so we weren't taking any chances.

I think I opted with a 3/4 in ball valve as opposed to the 1 inch, but I'll let you know. I chose a 1in for the water intake into the gun. If it is a 3/4, I wonder if mcmaster-carr has a 3/4 fire nozzle. That would kick A$$!!!

I don't have any shots of Rolands gun other than what i found on this site. My pics are lower in this posting on flickr. I don't have any videos, yet, but I will. You're going to have to wait a few weeks-the gun is at my folks house, but I'm going to pick it up, and i'll make a video for you guys.

This gun ended up costing me close to $160 usd. 4 inch PVC is heavy and costly. It's also not the easiest to cut. My reccomendation is go a little smaller to save weight, and cost.
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Old 08-19-2008, 10:54 PM   #27
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Default Re: Building a gun...

McMaster-Carr has a 3/4 inch conical nozzle meant for gardening but the inside is very rough. The nozzle was likely made through sand casting. It probably could be smoothed out with sand blasting.

I hear you on the 4 inch parts. 4 inch parts get expensive and heavy fast, so I try to avoid anything using a lot of 4 inch pieces.

I'm looking forward to some videos too. If I remember tomorrow I'll add some links to your stuff on the article so others can look at the changes made, but I'm getting tired and am going to sleep.
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Old 08-20-2008, 10:24 PM   #28
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Default Re: Building a gun...

That seems really expensive to make that gun. To get 10 feet of 4 inch pvc isnt it only $20 at home depot. God, $160 sounds like alot of money for a simple gun like that. I would guess that it would cost no more than $100
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Old 08-21-2008, 06:39 AM   #29
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Default Re: Building a gun...

Was the PVC you saw pressure rated?
Also maybe the fittings are costly.
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Old 08-22-2008, 01:21 PM   #30
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Default Re: Building a gun...

4 inch diameter bends can be $15 depending on where you go. So I'd imagine the fittings could add a lot to the cost.
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