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Cleaning my cannon up...

Post questions and info about combustion (flammable vapor) powered cannons here. This includes discussion about fuels, ratios, ignition systems, safety, and anything else relevant.
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Cleaning my cannon up...

Unread postAuthor: tauschung » Tue Nov 24, 2009 10:06 am

I finished my first cannon, and it looks kind of ghetto. I wanted to see if you guys had any suggestions for improvements.

Currently:
Inline spray and pray launcher
3''x14'' to 1.5''x60'' (C:B .85:1)
3'' computer fan
BBQ Sparker
Chamber-Short for two gaps

Going to add:
Going to redo the wiring - aesthetics
Camlocks
Ball-Valve for easy venting
Propane...via Schrader valve
Propane Meter that is a side component.

I had a hard time getting the wires to stay put in the inserts..so I epoxied them in place. Another limitation I had was with the size of the sparker. It's hard to make something that big look nice.

Attached are the pictures. Thanks for the suggestions.
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Attachments
IMG_1244.JPG
IMG_1245.JPG
tripthunder2008063smgx2.jpg
This is the meter I'd like to figure out how to make.
tripthunder2008063smgx2.jpg (23.42 KiB) Viewed 674 times

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Unread postAuthor: vardas » Tue Nov 24, 2009 6:23 pm

holy crap that is a big sparker ! could you maybe take the components out & install then into a smaller box? i use the same exact metering setup that you do .i just drilled , tapped another female quick connect into my chamber but with a 90 degree elbow so it lays flat against the chamber ,, also a paint job goes a long was for looks
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Unread postAuthor: tauschung » Wed Nov 25, 2009 9:21 am

Lol. The size of the sparker was my biggest problem..but it runs off of one aa battery, and can throw down some good sparks.

I thinking that I will do away with the box, and hide everything in a handle I make...it will cover all of the wires. Then, when I paint it..it will look awesome.
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Unread postAuthor: sgort87 » Thu Nov 26, 2009 3:36 pm

If you're gonna make a handle, make it so everything can fit in there, and hide all the electrodes under the tee/saddle. Also instead of strapping it on, just use 2 nice wood screws.

If you decide to use a box, get a smaller one from Radio Shack and mount it with 2 machine screws in the bottom of the box through the chamber wall. Giant hose clamps - or any for that matter - are ugly. Here's the fun part: Send your fan power through those 2 screws to eliminate visible wires. I suppose you could actually do that with the spark leads too.

Be sure to use crimp-on connectors to keep the leads in good contact with the screws.

Plug the old lead holes with small screws. Make on of them into your propane injection port. Hide one or 2 more by mounting the box so it hangs over it.

Paint it.
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Unread postAuthor: SpudBlaster15 » Thu Nov 26, 2009 4:05 pm

sgort87 wrote:If you're gonna make a handle, make it so everything can fit in there, and hide all the electrodes under the tee/saddle. Also instead of strapping it on, just use 2 nice wood screws.

If you decide to use a box, get a smaller one from Radio Shack and mount it with 2 machine screws in the bottom of the box through the chamber wall. Giant hose clamps - or any for that matter - are ugly. Here's the fun part: Send your fan power through those 2 screws to eliminate visible wires. I suppose you could actually do that with the spark leads too.

Be sure to use crimp-on connectors to keep the leads in good contact with the screws.

Plug the old lead holes with small screws. Make on of them into your propane injection port. Hide one or 2 more by mounting the box so it hangs over it.

Paint it.


I second this, though hose clamps may be preferable to screws in cases where you can't thread them through a double layer of pipe.
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Unread postAuthor: sgort87 » Thu Nov 26, 2009 4:15 pm

People seem to live by that double layer rule, but throughout my adventures, I've found that a well-drilled and tapped hole through a single layer is nothing at all to worry about. When practical, I will mount anything I can through a double layer, but when ergonomics or even aesthetics come into play and suggest for a different positioning, I find that those parts mounted through a single layer can be more than secure enough for everyday use if done right.
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Unread postAuthor: SpudBlaster15 » Thu Nov 26, 2009 5:16 pm

I drill and tap through double layer pipe whenever possible, simply because a threaded hole in the side of a cylindrical pressure vessel significantly increases the stress concentration around that area. Since I have had a cannon fail, I just don't feel right compromising the integrity of something that could potentially burn me quite badly.

It's actually possible to put all threaded fasteners through double layered pipe, and still maintain aesthetic appeal. This cannon has 2 spark gaps and a chamber fan, yet all you can see from a normal vantage point is the wiring linking the 2 sets of electrodes under the handles. All connections are passed through double thickness ABS.

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Unread postAuthor: sgort87 » Thu Nov 26, 2009 5:30 pm

Of course it's possible with some designs, and it's good practice.

I've seen failures, but actually none because of single-layer drilling. I've actually had chambers crack in cold weather - nowhere near the holes! Luck maybe?
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Unread postAuthor: SpudBlaster15 » Thu Nov 26, 2009 5:48 pm

My failures also did not originate at the holes drilled through a single layer of pipe, though some of the cracks did terminate there.

I suspect a well constructed cannon built with sufficiently strong materials will be fine with components threaded through a single layer, but IMO you can never be too safe when working with high temperature pressurized gases. It's also a bummer when the launcher fails and you have to spend more money and time to replace it. This alone makes the extra precautions taken during the construction process worth it in my mind.
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Unread postAuthor: tauschung » Fri Nov 27, 2009 3:35 pm

If you're gonna make a handle, make it so everything can fit in there, and hide all the electrodes under the tee/saddle. Also instead of strapping it on, just use 2 nice wood screws.


That is the idea.

If you decide to use a box, get a smaller one from Radio Shack and mount it with 2 machine screws in the bottom of the box through the chamber wall. Giant hose clamps - or any for that matter - are ugly. Here's the fun part: Send your fan power through those 2 screws to eliminate visible wires. I suppose you could actually do that with the spark leads too.


Can't do that. The box I'm using is the smallest I could find that would work. Besides, I am going to put everything in a handle.

Be sure to use crimp-on connectors to keep the leads in good contact with the screws.


That is what I am using.

Plug the old lead holes with small screws. Make on of them into your propane injection port. Hide one or 2 more by mounting the box so it hangs over it.


Took me a second to understand what you were saying. But, no. I am going to put my propane injection by my fan, through two layers. I am thinking of doing away with the box..it's really ugly.

Paint it.


Yes. Maybe an olive green, with black lettering.

The only thing that is not tapped through double layer is my spark electrodes. I didn't put them through double layer because I have them set on even spacing through the chamber. We seem kind of split on the double layer thing. I understand that you can never be too safe. As a first edition, if it fails, no biggy. I'll learn my lesson, and take what I can.

That is a nice cannon SpudBlaster15
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