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Old 11-18-2012, 05:05 PM #1
Hellf1ghter22
 
 
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What CFM and gas compressor should I get?

I am 3 to 4 weeks away from opening my paintball field, potentially even sooner. I built a solar array to power my electric compressor which is an 8.5 CFM heavy duty one, Unfortunately I don't have enough capacity in my solar array to get the giant electric motor started. I'm going to change out the electric motor and the pulley system so that I can run the compressor that I have, but it'll produce less CFM, but that's another story all together.

When I ran my numbers I could be getting potentially 2500 people to the field every month(that would be nice). My question is if I did get 2500 people to the field every month, how much CFM will I need? I want to buy a gas compressor to meet this requirement, and I wondered if any of you had any suggestions on what cfm and what gas compressor i should get to meet this requirement. I figured I should get both gas and electric in case there are rainy or cloudy days. I do have four giant bottles for a cascade system. Thank you for your help
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Old 11-18-2012, 07:46 PM #2
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Why not just drop a gasoline engine on that system you have now and use the solar panel to charge batteries for the auto features ... electric start, auto drains and auto shutdown?

As far as what size compressor you should look at, it really depends on how that 2500 number comes at you. If you are planning on them being spread out daily, you can get by with a small 7-9 CFM machine. However, if you are planning on weekend only, then you should really be looking at a minimum of 10 CFM with 14-20 CFM being optimal.

Just remember that it is important to work your compressor weekly. Any less and you may have moisture buildup in the crank case and that causes rust which leads to expensive and usually untimely repairs. But you really don't want to work your compressor at high load the full time either. Wear will end up costing you a bunch. So get something that is quite a bit bigger than you need right now but not so large that it costs you a month's pay to do the routine maintenance.
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:19 AM #3
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i would think you could get by less cfm if you have larger and more supply tanks.
BTW if you get 2500 a month bring electric to the compressor, what I am really saying 30,000 players seems unlikely I would like to hear more about that
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:43 AM #4
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We are using a 8 cfm bauer, and we can get 2500 in a month... and it does fine. And that is pretty much just on weekends. Now I do have a lot of storage, and that sure helps. With 3000 and 4500 fill stations, on very busy days the compressor kicks on for about an hour, then sits off for about a few hour, etc throughout the day. I have mine set to auto start at 4K and shut off at 4500. I've posted this before, but based on my experience, at our (recreational) field, we go through about 5 cubic feet of air per person, which translates to about 500 -600 paintballs per person per day. That means if you are running about 2000 people evenly over a 3 day weekend, your compressor will have to run for about 20 hours for the entire weekend... 6 or 7 hours a day throughout the day.

rcontrera can probably give you more technical exacting info, as it's what he does... but that's a pretty close ball park based on my experience.

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Old 11-19-2012, 12:44 PM #5
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Well everything I read said that you get about your player days by taking your population X 3% within an hour drive. I am on Maui so I did that for the local population and then played it safe and multiplied the 1.9m tourists (even though we get 2.5m tourist) by 1%. This paintball field sits on the highway with tons of traffic, I am a 10-35min drive from 95% of my population bases, and I will be advertising appropriately. Maui is an activity destination with lots of people in the key demographic 18-30, and there are no other fields here because of the very very very difficult zoning laws. So I think 2500 is a safe number. What do you all think?

And Larry, I was going to go with a nuvair brand, any problem with that? I don't have the same bulk storage, I have the 4 big takes like yours, just not the little ones. You think this is fine to start?
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Old 11-19-2012, 02:10 PM #6
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I blew up a nuvair... those things don't seem to have the longevity of a bauer. I guess a lot of the problem is they don't have an oil pump, but use some "sling" thing to try to oil them. Make sure you have auto drains, and auto start and stop.

but if you haven't pulled the trigger on the nuvair yet... I would definitely recommend going with a bauer instead. Now those "little ones" are 440 cubic foot tanks. So it's all how many cubic feet of storage you have.

And lets be honest here... if you have so much business that you need more storage... buying a few more tanks won't be a problem! I'd rather see you have to buy 2 more storage bottles a month in, than have 8 too many because you don't have the business.

I will also warn you... although I don't have personal experience with it, but talking to other owners in "tourist areas", tourists don't play paintball. 7 - 14 year old birthday parties play paintball. Keep in mind, if you have that 3% number, and I don't get that (DFW population is about 6.5 million. 3% would be about 200,000 players a year. I get about 10% of that, and even if then you consider there are about 5 fields around here, some do a bit more than me, some less... I would estimate 100,000 play days a year, so closer to 1.5% split amongst all the fields.)... but non the less, your demographic population is there 365 days a year. Your tourist population of 2.5 million are probably there for only 1 or 2 days that they don't have something pre booked to do. So take your 2.5 million / 365 you are down to 6849 max potential days. Now take that times your 3% and you will see 205 tourists a year. Then probably cut that in half as I'd bet a large number that can afford to do Hawaii vacations are old farts with bad shorts and black socks... like me. So maybe 100 tourists a year at your field.

People want to experience a tourist location for what it offers. I can play paintball in Dallas... but it's really hard to go scuba diving in clear water, climb a valcano, sit on a great beach (with my bad shorts and black socks), go para sailing, go jet skiing, go surfing, etc....

I just would not put a lot of faith in the tourist numbers if I were you. Any other field owners out there in tourist areas that can tell me if I'm way off base here??
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Last edited by GatSplat : 11-19-2012 at 02:17 PM.
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Old 11-19-2012, 07:57 PM #7
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I just would not put a lot of faith in the tourist numbers if I were you. Any other field owners out there in tourist areas that can tell me if I'm way off base here??
We're in a tourist town, but it's a different kind of tourist. People come here to smell the flowers and ride in double-decker buses with a Union Jack painted on it. Many of the tourists only come for 2-3 days. We get zero tourists at our field.

The thing about paintball is that most people see it as an activity to do with their friends. Maui is going to get a lot of couples and families. I know if I'm going vacationing in Hawaii with my wife or family, chances are I'm not going to see a paintball field, even if I have the desire to . I have a feeling there aren't many large groups of friends vacationing in Maui. But there will be a few for sure.
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Old 11-20-2012, 01:43 AM #8
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Actually, the average length of stay differs from month to month, and their length of stay averages from 7-10 days, probably because of the long flight. Our age demographic tends to be younger, more activity driven people, which is probably why you have to book zip line tours 1-2 weeks in advance at 4 out of 5 of the zip line places, a month or more in advance if its the last two weeks of december. We do have older retired people come here but there is a much larger percentage that go to Oahu for its WW2 museums and shopping. It varies from month to month, but we have 1k-4k people visiting for corporate meetings each month, I obviously plan on targeting them. Then we have 2k-15k people per month that are here for conventions, i'll look into targeting them. We do have incredible snorkeling but you can only do so much of that. 65%-70% are repeat visitors and I pulled a very small sample of about 40 people in the key demographic and asked if they would be interested in paintball, a little over 60% said yes. We do get group tours, about 9k a month but that age demographic is a tad spread out more to the older. If the want a double decker bus I have one of those, it does not run but they are welcome to play paintball in it I don't know, honestly I will be stoked if I get 1000 people a month, we will have to wait and see.

Also, I will be getting a Nuvair with those features. I am kind of amazed you had that bad luck with them. I called a few fields and suppliers and for the ones that had used both, they preferred Nuviar and actually said it was more durable.
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Old 11-20-2012, 02:10 AM #9
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Quote:
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Also, I will be getting a Nuvair with those features. I am kind of amazed you had that bad luck with them. I called a few fields and suppliers and for the ones that had used both, they preferred Nuviar and actually said it was more durable.
I have been selling and servicing both compressors for years and I think you will find people on both sides of the brand "fence". The mid size and larger Bauers do come standard with a third stage oil injection system while the Coltri compressors(Nuvair) are splash lubricated and the oil pump is optional on the mid sized ones and standard on the bigger ones. I have customers that have had trouble with both brands and for a very good reason ... it is machinery and stuff breaks!


The biggest difference between the two compressors is the cost per cubic foot and the distribution network.

Either way you go, change your oil regularly and keep your compressor clean and cool.
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Old 11-20-2012, 09:25 AM #10
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It's good thinking to go after the conference & convention crowd. I was a keynote speaker at a business conference in Australia a few years back and in the middle of the 5 day conference, they had a 1/2 day break where you could either play "skirmish" (what the ozzies call it....) or play golf. A large majority picked golf, but there were about a dozen that went and played paintball.

Let us know how it all works out!
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:43 PM #11
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Another cool trick is to offer a free photographer service to your group/players.

Take good pictures of them, put said picture on your facebook group/page. The players will be giving you free advertisement by liking & sharing your pictures.

Edit: Posted this in the wrong thread... Oops !

Last edited by pbamike : 11-20-2012 at 06:26 PM. Reason: error
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Old 11-20-2012, 01:26 PM #12
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Originally Posted by rcontrera View Post
The mid size and larger Bauers do come standard with a third stage oil injection system while the Coltri compressors(Nuvair) are splash lubricated and the oil pump is optional on the mid sized ones and standard on the bigger ones.

Either way you go, change your oil regularly and keep your compressor clean and cool.
I talked to the Nuvair guy and the Oil pump is an option as you mentioned, gear driven instead of belt which is nice. I worked on car engines a bit so I actually understand the "splash" lubrication and its reliability. Does the Bauer also have a splash system? That would suck to only have a belt driven pump.

I can get the oil pump option with the extra moisture extraction option but thats about a $2000 upgrade. Do you think I should get it as I am in Maui and it averages 87 degrees here and while I am in a dryer area but it can be humid.

I was thinking about getting the Mini Tech Honda Gas 8.4 scfm with the upgraded electric start 9 hp honda motor upgrade.

Oh and there is no auto start for gas compressors unfortunately, just auto stop

Last edited by Hellf1ghter22 : 11-20-2012 at 01:32 PM.
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Old 11-20-2012, 02:13 PM #13
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Okay, So I don't think I am going with the extra oil pump and the "tropical" package with the extra moisture extraction as it is dry enough where I am at.
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Old 11-20-2012, 08:03 PM #14
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Do any of you have a link to some statistics about population and or that 3% rule, or what % plays paintball?
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Old 11-20-2012, 09:24 PM #15
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Its in this book: http://www.prostarsports.net/field_guide.htm
You can call Guy any time too, very helpful.
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Old 11-21-2012, 09:14 AM #16
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Thank you, iirc he charges a lot for that book.. Ive been looking for a used copy or ebook version with out luck
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Old 11-23-2012, 01:55 PM #17
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Well my new compressor is on order, but what do you think I should sell my Electric one for? I have it listed for $7500, maybe over priced?

http://honolulu.craigslist.org/mau/spo/3428329708.html
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Old 11-23-2012, 02:44 PM #18
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You can get a base model 7 cfm machine that runs on home rated electrical systems (220 instead of 380 volts like yours) for less than what you are asking. While yours does come with some very nice to have options, you should still look at 1/4 to 1/2 or your original cost.


But I always say to get what you can get for used stuff. There is always someone out there that has no idea what stuff is worth.
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Old 11-23-2012, 04:28 PM #19
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Lol, okay I will drop the price to $4500
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Old 11-24-2012, 02:17 AM #20
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If you don't need the money from the sale of the old compressor you could always keep it for backup. You may need backup at some point.
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Old 12-17-2012, 10:30 AM #21
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Back up Air is sooo important.

better to have 2 X 7.5 cfm units or a 7.5 and a 3.5 then a 15cfm

it takes a week to get a compressor fixed. at 2500 players a week, that pays for your back up.

Another great back up is having CO2 ofr the rentals,, just in case, cheap and easy
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