Arctic Blast modifications

Threads about water gun modifications.
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SSCBen
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Arctic Blast modifications

Post by SSCBen » Tue Jan 15, 2008 7:38 pm

Last year I bought an Arctic Blast solely for the purpose of modifying it. I've completed and documented a few modifications I did on it. I did Colossus (and later undid it), a custom pump handle, changed the flood nozzle into a real nozzle, and did a PC expansion modification.

Guides to all I did will be on the new website. The only one I need to write is the PC expansion one, which I did today. All the modifications were pretty straightforward. The Arctic Blast is pretty easy to modify, but you won't get great performance out of it because it's so small. PRVD is easy because you don't have to do any cutting. All you have to do is seal off a hole. Changing the flood nozzle is as easy as removing the case and sticking a 1/2 inch male threaded adapter onto the nozzle (this was too weird of a coincidence). PC expansion wasn't that hard, but it was more involved than the other modifications. I cut a hole in the case to let a longer clear PETG pipe stick out the end. This allows the PC to expand fully for once. The PETG tubing is clear, so it also acts as a PC gauge. Another side effect of PC expansion modifications is improved power. Here the PC can expand more in length, and a small increase in pressure will be seen. If I changed it so the PC expanded more in diameter, a more noticeable increase in power would be seen.

Another great thing about PC expansion is that I don't have to worry much about pressure cracks. Pressure cracks usually only occur in CPS water guns when the PC has expanded fully and has nowhere else to go. The PC can expand pretty long now.

I haven't tested the gun out yet due to the cold, but I'm sure it'll work nicely. The nozzle and PC expansion modifications were the most worthwhile, so much that I would like to see them become more common.

Some pictures are below.

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Silence
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Re: Arctic Blast modifications

Post by Silence » Tue Jan 15, 2008 9:29 pm

Nice expansion mod, Ben! The perfectly clear PETG tubing looks classy and clean, at least when compared to PVC. Now I want to research its price, weight, etc...

There shouldn't be (m)any worries about exploding bladders and cases now from overfilling. Still, I wonder whether PETG shatters like PVC, rips like ABS, or does something else when it breaks.

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SSCBen
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Re: Arctic Blast modifications

Post by SSCBen » Tue Jan 15, 2008 9:42 pm

The price for this tube was $6.06 on McMaster-Carr. That's steep compared to PVC, but PVC wouldn't fit and isn't clear. I'm not sure if McMaster-Carr is the best place for it too. And there are other clear tubes as well that would be worth investigating.

I remember reading on NerfHaven that PETG crunches/deforms when things are dropped on the smaller diameter ones, so it's more similar to ABS than PVC I suppose. This pipe is pretty hefty, but not as strong as PVC. It's definitely stronger than the original case though.

I'd like to see some homemade water guns with clear parts. You can make a rubber CPS water gun with a 3 inch PETG PC case for $7.07 per foot. That should be really cool.

Recently my homemade designs have been inspired by a lot of things I've seen and done more recently, so I'm incorporating more screws and such in them. I've already thought of a bunch of other easier ways to build a water gun than my THR one, so maybe THR2 could be in the works in a few months based on what I've learned. It's an exciting time.

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Silence
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Re: Arctic Blast modifications

Post by Silence » Tue Jan 15, 2008 10:07 pm

Looking through McMaster-Carr, I see the PETG tubing doesn't come in very large sizes. Transparent/translucent PVC is far too expensive at those sizes, and there's no need for pressure rating. Unfortunately, it looks like clear covers are limited to small rubber bladders.

Most Nerf homemades do look a lot nicer than homemade water guns, because people use materials like this for better aesthetics. And I take it you guys are majoring in engineering. It's nice to see Drenchenator's second homemade and the THR approach a more refined style.

sbell25
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Re: Arctic Blast modifications

Post by sbell25 » Tue Jan 15, 2008 11:14 pm

Nice job! I suppose it would take forever to fully pump now thanks to the AB's wonderful pump capacity. If I can find some tubing like that locally I'll have to get another Arctic Blast and try it.

Another question: does LRT wear out faster when stretched more? I'm curious because I was looking at building a CPS homemade, and was wondering if having a smaller pipe diameter and length would make the tubing last longer.

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SSCBen
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Re: Arctic Blast modifications

Post by SSCBen » Wed Jan 16, 2008 12:13 am

Looking through McMaster-Carr, I see the PETG tubing doesn't come in very large sizes. Transparent/translucent PVC is far too expensive at those sizes, and there's no need for pressure rating. Unfortunately, it looks like clear covers are limited to small rubber bladders.

Most Nerf homemades do look a lot nicer than homemade water guns, because people use materials like this for better aesthetics. And I take it you guys are majoring in engineering. It's nice to see Drenchenator's second homemade and the THR approach a more refined style.


I'll keep looking elsewhere and at other possibilities. There's always the possibility of a box shaped container made from only sheeting now that I think about it.

Yep, both Drenchenator and I are mechanical engineering majors, which is exactly what water guns needs. And you bet I'll put that knowledge to use here. ;)

I think I'll start a thread about structures in water guns to continue a discussion along these lines.

Nice job! I suppose it would take forever to fully pump now thanks to the AB's wonderful pump capacity. If I can find some tubing like that locally I'll have to get another Arctic Blast and try it.

Another question: does LRT wear out faster when stretched more? I'm curious because I was looking at building a CPS homemade, and was wondering if having a smaller pipe diameter and length would make the tubing last longer.


Yeah, the pump capacity leaves a lot to be desired. I considered replacing it and using a homemade pump, but that's a more risky modification, so I didn't do it. I'm a huge fan of big CPS chamber capacity because the power stays about the same regardless of the capacity. With this I now can pump up fully before a battle and worry a lot less about running out of water in the PC. Combining a big CPS bladder with the tap-pump method and you have a winner all around. That's what I did on my CPS homemade.

LRT is the same material as the normal chambers, so it will wear out more if stretched more. In my experience that's not a problem. You usually will buy more than 6 inches of tubing, allowing you to replace the chamber if needed. The increase in pressure is worth the thinning in my opinion. It's a good idea to make the PC easily replaceable to repair it too. I've had my first CPH's chamber pop from a friend using it, but it wasn't a problem because I replaced it.

There will be a lot of information about LRT on the new website, but not much about that. Let me know what questions you have and I might make an LRT FAQ page with those questions. That's one page we don't have that could help out a lot.

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Aqua_Flash
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Re: Arctic Blast modifications

Post by Aqua_Flash » Wed Jan 16, 2008 1:41 pm

After seeing this, that has just made me buy two Max Infusion Flash Floods (one I'm just keeping as a spare).

When I receive them (a few days) I'm going to get to work on doing this to them, although my version will most likely not be the same. The PC expansion means the most to me, as now if it works I'll have a Flash Flood that has an acceptable firing chamber capacity similar to old CPS guns. I plan to drill the main nozzle bigger (to around 4-5x) and leave the Flash Flood nozzle as it is (sorry, but that is my style really).

On the Flash Flood I've also noticed that I can increase the reservoir volume to support this bigger firing chamber volume. The front of the reservoir on the gun is the perfect place for sawing off and adding an extension, which from the way I see will balance the gun out rather well.

All I'm worried about is finding a big piece of PETG pipe like that what you used, I guess I'll find some, I know they do big piping like this over here and even if it is not transparent I guess there's a simple way around it as I can just cut bits out and make a pressure gauge, although I would prefer to get some clear pipe if I can.

I don't mean to sound rude here either, but the way the Flash Floods CPS chamber is being straight unlike the Arctic Blast which is a restricting due to not being straight, I'm guessing this may work better on the Flash Flood?

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SSCBen
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Re: Arctic Blast modifications

Post by SSCBen » Wed Jan 16, 2008 2:14 pm

I originally considered a cardboard tube before I realized it would be a bad choice for a water gun. You can use anything you roll up too. Don't feel restricted to PETG. I just wanted something solid, and I got something solid and transparent.

McMaster-Carr ships worldwide and has warehouses worldwide from what I know too, so check them out still. The tube I used was part number 9245K57 .

When I receive them (a few days) I'm going to get to work on doing this to them, although my version will most likely not be the same. The PC expansion means the most to me, as now if it works I'll have a Flash Flood that has an acceptable firing chamber capacity similar to old CPS guns. I plan to drill the main nozzle bigger (to around 4-5x) and leave the Flash Flood nozzle as it is (sorry, but that is my style really).

On the Flash Flood I've also noticed that I can increase the reservoir volume to support this bigger firing chamber volume. The front of the reservoir on the gun is the perfect place for sawing off and adding an extension, which from the way I see will balance the gun out rather well.


Be aware that the main nozzle is a poor candidate for modification. The pipe leading up to it has a rather small diameter, but on the Flash Flood it is better than the Arctic Blast. 4-5X sounds reasonable, but don't expect any more water flow than that. ;)

The Flash Flood does seem to be a good candidate for reservoir expansion, unlike the Arctic Blast. Please do that and make a guide. That's a good modification you don't see often (if ever).

I don't mean to sound rude here either, but the way the Flash Floods CPS chamber is being straight unlike the Arctic Blast which is a restricting due to not being straight, I'm guessing this may work better on the Flash Flood?


I don't think the angle is restricting. The PC on the inside is angled as well, so there's no problem. The modification should work the same on both the Flash Flood and Arctic Blast.

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Aqua_Flash
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Re: Arctic Blast modifications

Post by Aqua_Flash » Wed Jan 16, 2008 2:29 pm

Thanks for the information.

At least McMaster Carr ships worldwide, so if I can't find anything I'll buy from them as a last resort for the tubing.

I've drilled the Flash Floods main nozzle to around 4x before and it performed well, at least good enough for the stream to be respectable.

For now all I can really do is wait, again when the blasters arrive I can start and make some progress.

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SSCBen
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Re: Arctic Blast modifications

Post by SSCBen » Wed Jan 16, 2008 2:52 pm

I might have to try drilling the main nozzle to see how well it works then. The tubing looks tiny leading up to it (smaller than the Flash Flood), so I was reluctant to modify it. I have a coupler on the flood nozzle because of that, but I would prefer to have a real trigger.

Edit: I just realized that there's an easier way to attach the PETG tube to the Arctic Blast. Instead of making a small aluminum bridge, you can drill through the case and through the PETG and then put a screw through that. It's easier and uses less parts. Do that instead of what I did, Aqua Flash. ;)

Edit #2: I just tested my Arctic Blast. I could get more water in the PC than it could normally, but I wasn't sure where to stop pumping. The larger ID tubing here worked a little different than the small ID tubing I am used to. Perhaps Hasbro has a different type of latex here, but it looks and feels the same. I got about 30 to 35 pumps in before I stopped, which would be about 600 mL of water in the chamber.

The range with the new nozzle was pretty good. I got 15 strides until the end of the puddle, which would be about 45 feet. That's a great improvement, especially without Colossus.

Having a pipe as long as I had isn't necessary. I'd cut the pipe off two or three inches after it leaves the gun. I don't know how long of a pipe that would be for those who want to buy a shorter one. It would be about 7 inches from my guess though. I'll have to measure.
Last edited by SSCBen on Wed Jan 16, 2008 8:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Silence
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Re: Arctic Blast modifications

Post by Silence » Thu Jan 17, 2008 3:00 am

Wow, those are definitely good results coming from a small, underpowered commercial blaster! How much range did the large and small nozzles get in relation to each other? (Unlike the FF, the Arctic Shock generally gets worse range with the blast nozzle...)

A colossus and perhaps a nozzle selector on the blast nozzle should definitely improve range even more. You might even be able to beat the range of an unmodded CPS 2000.

Aqua Flash, good luck with your modification. The Flash Flood does seem to have a lot of things going for it, namely a more efficient blast nozzle and probably a larger, cleaner stock PC.

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SSCBen
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Re: Arctic Blast modifications

Post by SSCBen » Thu Jan 17, 2008 10:44 pm

I didn't get range figures for the small nozzle, but it shot about 35 feet as expected. When it warms up a bit (if it does before I leave for college again), I might test it out again. I did not try the flood nozzle as is because I never liked 10X riot blast. That just seems to defeat the purpose.

As you said, these are promising results. I think this year modifying Arctic Blasts and Flash Floods should become more common because they can be decent little blasters when you do the right things to them. I'll have to experiment with Colossus to see what can be done and what can't be done. Right now I'm thinking about trying what Killer said for layering LRT. That combined with the rolling Colossus method could be the winning combination.

I'm very interested in how the reservoir expansion Aqua Flash does works out. If you can indeed cut a hole in the Flash Flood's reservoir and stick a pipe in there to expand the reservoir, that's great news. A highly modified Flash Flood should actually be a good weapon then, despite what some might have thought initially.

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Aqua_Flash
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Re: Arctic Blast modifications

Post by Aqua_Flash » Mon Jan 21, 2008 7:42 pm

Received my Flash Floods today. I did the usual test, statistics and stock pictures for the review so I could get on to modifying it when I was ready.

The Main stream was expectedly small, weak and limiting, so I'll be working on that. The Flash Flood nozzle gave a pretty focused and straight stream even with the mesh on, so thankfully for me this pressure chamber modification is going to be worthwhile.

I plan to order the clear tubing within a few days using my international forwarding service which means in the meantime I can at least open it up and work on the nozzle and also look at how I can do a few other things, notably the reservoir expansion.

EDIT: Sadly, I can no longer continue with the modification. I hope others try it though.
Last edited by Aqua_Flash on Wed Jan 23, 2008 5:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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SSCBen
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Re: Arctic Blast modifications

Post by SSCBen » Tue Jan 22, 2008 12:28 am

You might not want to order the full foot of tubing that I did. 8 inches should be plenty, so when ordering, get 0.667 feet of tubing. That should save on the pipe cost and shipping. ;)

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Re: Arctic Blast modifications

Post by mr. dude » Mon Jan 28, 2008 3:37 pm

EDIT: Sadly, I can no longer continue with the modification. I hope others try it though.

Why can't you continue with the mod? There's very little that can go wrong, especially when you have 2 Flash Floods.

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