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Possible Idea

Posted: Mon Jun 01, 2009 2:41 am
by zeda.beta
Hey guys,

I have an idea to make the douchenator shorter, so that the pc and barrel are both 1' long
3" pvc. How far do you think it would shoot? And should I make any changes to the design?
Also I am thinking about using a slingshot as a water balloon launcher. What kinds are the best, or at least not very expensive.

Re: Possible Idea

Posted: Mon Jun 01, 2009 2:56 am
by Silence
A shortened water balloon launcher probably wouldn't be very practical – you may as well through the balloons by hand. Have you considered the "under-over" design, with the pressure tank and barrel parallel to each other?

You can already buy three-person (or maybe even one-person) elastic slingshots. Any brand is probably fine. They get respectable range, but the accuracy may disappoint.

Re: Possible Idea

Posted: Wed Jun 03, 2009 3:27 am
by SSCBen
Silence has some good points on the shorter design. I'd too suggest moving parts rather than shortening them if possible.

Most home improvement stores (such as Lowes and Home Depot) sell elastic tubing that can be used to make some slingshots if you want a DIY slingshot. McMaster-Carr sells the same latex tubing as well.

Re: Possible Idea

Posted: Fri Jun 05, 2009 1:53 am
by C-A_99
1 ft is acceptable for a pressure chamber if you want to compromise power for rate of fire. A smaller chamber will power up faster. However, you definately do not want a barrel shorter than 2ft for performance reasons. Also, you'll definately want an over-under setup as seen on the Havoc. If you go with a similar design style, you want a 3" diameter pressure chamber or larger instead of 2". This gives better surface area and is a better way of volumizing the air. For the barrel, 2" or 3" are common options, 3" being the most common, and 2" for if you want smaller projectiles for easier pressurization. 2" loads don't require as much pressure, but is less commonly used since the loads deliver a bit less water. (and maybe won't burst on impact, I'm not sure) Overall, 2" is better for direct fire (which isn't really safe in most cases, unless you load more balloons at a time) and 3" for indirect bombardment fire.

Valves. You want at least a 1" ball valve with a torque arm (I recommend a PVC valve with a custom torque arm, which will be longer and easier to operate), and don't want anything better than a modified sprinkler valve. (the balloons will pop to higher acceleration) The 3rd option in between these is the pull valve, which has to be manually built, and you'll need to find good ways to get it to seal. However, it is probably the best option to minimize popping while having a reasonable air release time.

The slingshot Ben mentioned is also an option if you prefer something less advanced, but still effective. Generally, slingshots are not as accurate and require a crew of 3 (while a crew of 2 or 3 is only recommended - not required for basic slow-loading air launchers) to operate. Ranges are probably a bit less as well, and you can only load one balloon at a time. However, you can obviously pull out more shots in a given time with a slingshot than with most pneumatic launchers.

Re: Possible Idea

Posted: Sun Jun 07, 2009 2:59 am
by zeda.beta
Expanding on the latex slingshots, I am probably going to mount one inside a fort to get a good range without requiring more people. How far do you think that a water balloon launcher with a 2' long barrel and
1' long pc. Both will be expanded to 3" diameter and the design might be over under.

Re: Possible Idea

Posted: Sun Jun 07, 2009 5:47 pm
by C-A_99
It certainly won't have the range of a Douchenator, but it should still shoot far enough for most purposes. With a modified sprinkler valve or a pull valve, it should perform well with a shorter barrel. Just beware of acceleration in such a short distance, which may pop the balloon. For this reason, 3' is generally recommended for barrels. If thats too long, try 2.5'. Other factors include the caliber of the barrel. 2' may be sufficient for 2" barrels, but beware there may be more performance impact with a 3", 2' barrel.

I'd suggest mounting a launcher with a 3' barrel and 1' PC in the fort. Make it breech loaded and connect a foot pump to it. Pull valve or modified sprinkler valve would be best but ball valve w/ torque arm would also work. A slingshot will require much more room to operate singlehandedly; the 2 mounts for it (which would otherwise be people) need to be spread apart considerably. If you go with a smaller slingshot, there may be a bit performance loss but it could still work.