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Old 04-08-2008, 07:58 AM #1
socoj2
 
 
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PVC/ABS Posted Information

Since i have seen a lot of guys post some very blatantly WRONG information about PVC.

1. If you use PVC MAKE SURE its 1. Schedule 40 2. IT MUST HAVE NSF-PW
If it says NSF-DWV DO NOT USE IT even if it has a pressure rating, this pipe is NOT CERTIFIED FOR compressed AIR.

2. ABS can be pressure rated, and if you can find it with NSF-PW it is DEFINATLY preferable to PVC, because it DOES NOT SHATTER.

3. DO NOT use CO2 with PVC/ABS, there are to many riskes associated with using CO2, believe me i have seen it reference picture below*

4. Anytime you are using PVC to hold pressure a Saftey POP off Valve is a MUST! if you dont know what this is ask the old guy at a HARDWARE STORE. not at home depot. Norther Tool and Equipment sells these they are about $10. That is $10 that can save your life.

5. 2" PVC is rated for about 300ish PSI, you DO NOT want to get it any where NEAR THAT, YOU CERTAINLY dont want to attempt to see if it burst when it gets to double.

6. Regulated output of HPA bottles is 850/450, you can further drop this down with a Marker Regulator to find tune.

7. Nerfs are much better with High volume LOW PRESSURE launchers. All of mine run 50-60 PSI@240 FPS.

lastly, Heed my warnings about C02 and PVC. Scarface from the blackhearts was the victim of this discovery *not my cannon*

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Old 04-08-2008, 08:04 AM #2
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Figured i would add the ScarFace story.

2 guys 1 of which was working on the cannon, The C02 20 oz got knocked over, The Liquid ran into the regulator froze the spring open and caused a runaway pressure cascade, it blew when it hit about 600 PSI. There was PVC embedded in trees 30 feet away. It knocked people down 20 feet away. The other guy was unharmed. Though his ears still ring a little when ever he is glueing PVC
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Old 08-14-2008, 05:06 PM #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by socoj2 View Post
Figured i would add the ScarFace story.

2 guys 1 of which was working on the cannon, The C02 20 oz got knocked over, The Liquid ran into the regulator froze the spring open and caused a runaway pressure cascade, it blew when it hit about 600 PSI. There was PVC embedded in trees 30 feet away. It knocked people down 20 feet away. The other guy was unharmed. Though his ears still ring a little when ever he is glueing PVC
Holy crap! That's insane. Did the launcher not have a pop safety valve? Also, any Idea where to get pressure rated ABS?
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Old 08-18-2008, 03:43 AM #4
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There is no safe plastic to use as a pressure vessel. I have yet to see a single person talk about what effect temperature and impacts have on PVC and ABS. Just like pressure, neither were designed to handle it.
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Old 08-27-2008, 02:32 PM #5
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Originally Posted by dodeco View Post
There is no safe plastic to use as a pressure vessel. I have yet to see a single person talk about what effect temperature and impacts have on PVC and ABS. Just like pressure, neither were designed to handle it.

Pressure rated pipe is safe for pressure.

PVC should not be used Sub 60 degree weather PERIOD as it becomes brittle.
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Old 09-06-2008, 02:12 AM #6
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...so, no pop safety valve then?
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Old 10-28-2008, 07:03 PM #7
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Any plastic air chamber is dangerous don't use it!!!!

First I take no responsibility for what you are about to do.
I used a 1' X 2" aluminum pipe for the air chamber (rear) it needs to be thick enough to with stand 300psi and it needs to be tapped for the gauge, fill button and blow off valve I used a piece of aluminum pipe used for out riggers on a boat.
I threaded the back end and closed it with a black pipe cap (if you could it would be a lot lighter if you could close the end with a aluminum end and wield it. The black pipe cap is the heaviest part on my law.
On the pipe I tapped holes for the gauge, the adjustable blow off valve, and the fill button valve.

The front end of the pipe needs to have a 3/4" threaded hole. I had a friend of a friend do the wielding and I think he wielded a nut into the middle of an aluminum plug to give me a strong threaded end. (Do not try to use the reducers that are designed for aluminum pipe, you can't get them to seal properly).

I used a globe valve (rated 300psi) for the trigger you can get the globe valve, button valve and the adjustable blow off at Grainger and McMaster Carr they are catalogs and are on the web I forget where I got what but if your serious I will search and let you know the part numbers.

You need to use 2"X 3/4" pipe nipples to connect the trigger (globe valve) to the air chamber and the barrel.
To make the barrel I used 2" PVC pipe that is used for under ground electrical wires, it is flared on one end and you need the flare to make a tight seal for the breach loader. (I think I cut some of the flare off I have a 1 1/2" long flare)
My barrel is 19" from end to end. You need to get the pvc fittings to reduce the flare end of the barrel down to a 3/4" threaded hole. (Make sure you check out the reducer fittings, some plumping store clerks will give you more than you need and it will not look good).
Attach the barrel and air chamber to the trigger using the nipples.
I had to cut the lever of the globe valve so it would make it pass the end of the air chamber (don't make it too short it takes a good pull to pull the trigger when it is filled with air).
I tapped a 1/4" hole on the top and towards the front of the air chamber for the gauge.
About 2" back from the gauge hole I tapped another 1/4 " hole for the fill button. (If I were to do it over I would of tapped the fill button hole for a 3/8" fitting it would be stronger). You need brass nipples to attach the fill button and adjustable regulator to the air chamber.
I bought a cheap adjustable low-pressure vertical regulator and 1/4" adapter that you attach the reg to the in put of the fill button.
The reg's intake is off set 90 degrees, I attached a 1/4" adapter to the reg in-take and use a remote to fill the Law air chamber (I use a remote with my marker and because where the reg is attached to the air chamber it is not strong enough to hold an air bottle).
Next to the reg and near the back of the air chamber I tapped a hole for the blow off valve. (Put the blow off valve away from where your head will be).
I drilled a 2" hole with a hole drill about 2 1/2" in front of the flare for the breach loader. I then slid a 2" fernco (it is a rubber sleeve that is used to connect two pipes together you can buy it at any plumbing supply house) over the barrel. This will seal the hole after you load the rocket into the barrel. I also cut a 1/2" off a 2" pvc coupler and glued it to the barrel about 5 1/2" in front of the breach hole so the fernco will not slide off the barrel. You get 2 hose clamps with the fernco slide them over each end of the fernco and tighten them down just enough to prevent the air from escaping out the breach hole but not too tight, you want to be able to slide it forward to load the law.

Now trust me the way I designed this is for safety.

The adjustable blow off is good in the way it releases air, if you fill the air chamber too much, it does not pop, it releases the air slowly (saving air if you fill it to much). Also you may have to adjust it for the field’s specifications. I set the blow off for 275psi and I fill the air chamber to 250psi.
The fill button (rated too 300psi) is used to fill the air chamber when your ready to shoot it, this way you are not running around with the chamber charged, you can charge it when you need it.
The aluminum pipe is light and will not explode like PVC, it will just split if some thing goes wrong.
I used a cheap low-pressure reg (Tippman that I bought on line for about $20.00). I had to take one of the washers out of the reg to get it to adjust properly to 250psi. (The reg adjuster was not sensitive enough).
The most expensive part is the globe valve and the aluminum pipe.
Also don't paint the fernco it will not dry.
If you are serious about this I will take better pics of my Law and post them on the site that I posted above.
With very little practice you can shoot reload and fire again in about 6 seconds.
At 250psi this thing will shoot a nerf over 100' straight at a slight angle it will go a lot further. You also don't need to cut the wings of the nerf.

Last edited by bruno v : 10-28-2008 at 07:15 PM.
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Old 11-14-2008, 10:34 PM #8
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yeah i use this as an air chamber.


and i still use a safety pop off valve
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Old 11-14-2008, 10:35 PM #9
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damn, pic didn't load, lets try again

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Old 11-18-2008, 05:46 PM #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by socoj2 View Post
Pressure rated pipe is safe for pressure.

PVC should not be used Sub 60 degree weather PERIOD as it becomes brittle.
Here's the biggest issue; While the burst rating on the pipe itself may be well above the operating pressure, there is absolutely no way for the people in charge at the event (event director, field owner, head ref, etc) to tell whether you;

* cut the pipe straight
* used a liberal amount of cleaner on both parts to be joined
* used a proper amount of the correct PVC/CPVC cement
* applied the proper cement evenly all the way around both joints
* inserted the pipe all the way into the joint until it seated
* gave it at least a 1/8 rotation to spread the cement

Therefore, even if the pipe was rated at 1,000,000psi, for temps from 350 degrees Fahrenheit to -60 and back again, if the joint isn't properly prepared, and will fail at at 80psi, then the structural integrity of the entire pressure vessel will fail at 80psi.

And while there are folks who I would trust when they say that they assembled everything properly, allowing them upsets those who claim to have done the same, but are prohibited from using their device.

The thing that you must understand is that most paintball field/event insurance does not cover these homemade devices. Commercially produced devices have product liability insurance that covers their products. (This is the reason the infamous "Scepter Launcher" was only sold as a kit. Someone else built it, so someone else is stuck with the liability, not them.

This means that the liability usually falls squarely on the field and event promoter, and they don't want it.

Therefore, launchers with plastic pressure chambers are not permitted for use at my events, nor most others. If I am going to shoulder the legal risk associated with players (who may or may not have any knowledge of physics or engineering) building dangerous toys in their garages, I need to do all I can to make sure they they, and the players around them, are kept safe. Not doing so is commonly referred to by ambulance chasing lawyers as "gross negligence" and many an unsuspecting soul has lost all they had to that.
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Old 11-25-2008, 10:59 PM #11
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another safe but fairly heavy dump chamber is a propane tank, they're rated for over 300 psi operating, and you can get the old ones on the cheap/free. even better if you can find one of the aluminum ones used for forklifts and the like. the tanks have a 1" npt opening at the top (dont quote the 1 inch its been like 5 months since I last filled one) and I am talking about taking the valve off.

also I've dropped 2" pvc from like 4 feet by accident and it was charged to 120 and it didnt break, I was more worried about the 3/4 inch pipe going into the valve (I had to do it on the cheap it was a school project capped at 25 bucks, and I needed to use my employee discount at that.)
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Old 01-30-2009, 02:12 PM #12
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Therefore, launchers with plastic pressure chambers are not permitted for use at my events, nor most others. If I am going to shoulder the legal risk associated with players (who may or may not have any knowledge of physics or engineering) building dangerous toys in their garages, I need to do all I can to make sure they they, and the players around them, are kept safe. Not doing so is commonly referred to by ambulance chasing lawyers as "gross negligence" and many an unsuspecting soul has lost all they had to that.
Now if we can get you to change that plastic pressure chamber to No homemade launchers you will make sense.

Because in that entire article were you give all the possibilities of someone assembling plastic wrong people can do that exact something with Metal.

Quote:
Not doing so is commonly referred to by ambulance chasing lawyers as "gross negligence" and many an unsuspecting soul has lost all they had to that.
Thinking there is some kind of more safety in Metal Vs plastic is just as negligent.

Just think little johnny assembles a metal air chamber. and doesnt put it together right. Aims it at Rickeys Tank, right before he shoots the End cap comes off and goes throught he mesh on the drivers side window and beans Rickey in the head... Think metal is safe? dig up that article were the woman is killed by a rocketing 12oz C02 canister.

Good think you didnt allow plastic.

If you dont allow plastic how about plastic covered in Kevlar or Carbon Fiber?
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Last edited by socoj2 : 01-30-2009 at 02:15 PM.
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Old 01-30-2009, 03:12 PM #13
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Well, as much as I love these kind of debates

1) You don't use "glue" on metal. Metal is threaded. If there are four inches of threads hanging out it is obvious that the pieces weren't threaded together well enough. I have never seen threaded 2" PVC pipe. You can glue on a threaded fitting, but that doesn't alleviate the original problem of assembly issues.

2) Woman killed by a rocketing 12oz C02 canister: I know that story well. I make my living in paintball, so I have to know these things. The insurance companies, who I have paid tens of thousands to over the years, are interested in them too. The thing that makes your example non-applicable is the fact that you aren't constantly unscrewing and reassembling parts of a launcher.

The CO2 tank incident was a matter of the youth not paying attention to what he was doing. You should always watch while you unscrew a pressurized vessel from anything. Instead of the valve unscrewing from the ASA, the vessel was unscrewing from the valve. When the vessel separated from the vale it took off like a rocket. Had he paid attention he would have seen the brass threads being revealed between the bottle and the valve and stopped, and the woman would still be alive.

3) You need to go back and read some more. The issue isn't the possible rupturing of the plastic. The issue is that someone may only insert the pipe 1/4 inch into the fitting. Under pressure this will, ultimately, fail and turn the fitting into a projectile.
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Last edited by ViperScenarios : 01-30-2009 at 06:24 PM.
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Old 01-31-2009, 02:58 AM #14
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Viper nailed it! Its ALL about liabilities, bottom line.
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Old 03-19-2009, 09:25 AM #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by socoj2 View Post
Since i have seen a lot of guys post some very blatantly WRONG information about PVC.

1. If you use PVC MAKE SURE its 1. Schedule 40 2. IT MUST HAVE NSF-PW
If it says NSF-DWV DO NOT USE IT even if it has a pressure rating, this pipe is NOT CERTIFIED FOR compressed AIR.

2. ABS can be pressure rated, and if you can find it with NSF-PW it is DEFINATLY preferable to PVC, because it DOES NOT SHATTER.

3. DO NOT use CO2 with PVC/ABS, there are to many riskes associated with using CO2, believe me i have seen it reference picture below*

4. Anytime you are using PVC to hold pressure a Saftey POP off Valve is a MUST! if you dont know what this is ask the old guy at a HARDWARE STORE. not at home depot. Norther Tool and Equipment sells these they are about $10. That is $10 that can save your life.

5. 2" PVC is rated for about 300ish PSI, you DO NOT want to get it any where NEAR THAT, YOU CERTAINLY dont want to attempt to see if it burst when it gets to double.

6. Regulated output of HPA bottles is 850/450, you can further drop this down with a Marker Regulator to find tune.

7. Nerfs are much better with High volume LOW PRESSURE launchers. All of mine run 50-60 PSI@240 FPS.

lastly, Heed my warnings about C02 and PVC. Scarface from the blackhearts was the victim of this discovery *not my cannon*

Hey socoj2, porkchop here, very good information as always.
I would like to add to #4 pop off relief on your list.

You know I have been in the gas industry for 20 years, drawing upon this experience, I would like to add the following.
A pop off relief valve will pass only X amount of gas, a failed regulator will pass more than the relief(pop off) will pass, allowing excessive pressure to build, eventually to bursting pressure of air holding device (said PVC)
To remedy this, I install a small diameter orifice in line between the regulator and pop off. Yes, this increases fill times, but safety first. The orifice reduces the amount of volume the failed regulator will pass to below the max amount the pop off will pass.

Side note: I am looking for and have found some alternatives to the PVC holding chamber. Weight and price seem to go hand in hand. Heavy is cheaper, light is more expensive. If I find something more suitable for the poor boys (me included), I'll post on it.

I also bond my pvc in cloth (double sided outdoor carpet tape heated and pressed to the LAW and cloth, if you call that bonding). I have not tested it, but a breech in the chamber should not schrapel, but split. It also protects the PVC from the sun, a big enemy of PVC.

Remember PW NOT DWV.

SOCOJ, see you on the field, & I already ate my deer.
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Old 03-19-2009, 10:56 AM #16
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I don't trust anything that isn't made of aluminum, steel, or other thick walled metal for the pressure chamber and trigger mechanizm, and then it must have a pressure relief and connections which are brazed/soldered and/or sealed with a bonding material.

I've heard of, and seen pictures of, the results of waay too many PVC failures. I'm surprised they are even still allowed on fields. If I see a PVC constructed pressurized launcher I stay FAR away from them. All it takes is one flying piece of PVC to slice your jugular and that's all she wrote. That dude in the pic was DAMN lucky!

You can never go simply by the pressure rating on the PVC alone. This rating only applies to specific conditions in a STATIC environment (IOW mounted in the walls of a building protected from the elements and impact). I'm sure that the manufacturers of PVC pipe never intended their product to be subject to the dynamic conditions of the paintball field. After the first 100 or so pressure cycles you can bet that PVC is beginning to weaken. Obviously, under the right conditions it will fail suddenly, without warning, and violently.

I'm sure there's a LOT of anecdotal evidence which will conclude that PVC is safe for this environment. And I'm equally sure there are a lot of guys that have build PVC launchers that have never had a failure or a problem using low pressure systems. But until a PVC manufacturer comes out and specifically states that their product was made and rated for high impacts, dynamic loading, and repeated temperature cycling, I would stay away from it for constructing launchers.

Now if you wrapped the PVC in carbon fiber or fiberglass mesh, and coated it with epoxy resin then it might be safer. But I would still want to see that tested on a bench long before I put it up next to my head.

Stay Safe!
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