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My spark is unreliable.

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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My spark is unreliable.

Unread postAuthor: Kdmann64 » Wed Feb 01, 2012 9:20 pm

I have a standard gas grill igniter. First shot or two are always good, then the spark gets very weak. I'm using starter fluid as fuel. What should I do
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Unread postAuthor: SpudBlaster15 » Wed Feb 01, 2012 9:37 pm

How big is your spark gap? Are your electrodes pointed or flat? Does your starting fluid contain any lubricants?
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Unread postAuthor: Proxywars » Wed Feb 01, 2012 11:02 pm

What is the area inside your chamber and how much fluid are you putting in?
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Unread postAuthor: jackssmirkingrevenge » Thu Feb 02, 2012 1:17 am

Have you tried wiping off the electrodes? Are you venting the chamber properly after every shot?
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Unread postAuthor: mattyzip77 » Thu Feb 02, 2012 4:44 pm

Try using different electrodes, for example a few decent size screws rather than just the wire!! Good luck. Also, maybe try using different fuel. Aqua net hair spray seems to be the most popular!!!
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Unread postAuthor: evanmcorleytv » Thu Feb 02, 2012 5:03 pm

mattyzip77 wrote:Try using different electrodes, for example a few decent size screws rather than just the wire!! Good luck. Also, maybe try using different fuel. Aqua net hair spray seems to be the most popular!!!


NO. do NOT use aqua net. That stuff is horrid. Use starting fluid, or cheap spray cologne. NEVER use hairspray. I will cripple your cannon forever.
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Unread postAuthor: Kdmann64 » Thu Feb 02, 2012 9:32 pm

Spark gap is about 1/4 inch. Using super tech starter fluids. Chamber is 4 inch PVC about 16-18 inches long. I am spraying the least about I can possibly spray. I am doing nothing in between shots. What should I be doing
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Unread postAuthor: bmaher6 » Mon Apr 09, 2012 1:25 pm

Best thing to use is a bbq ignitor but when it comes to fuel, i swear by lighter gas, the sort of stuff thats used for refilling pressurized lighters, when held upside down and sprayed a nice dense propane/butane mix comes out, only use less than a second's worth though, and dont seal it up straight away! Good thing about lighter spray is that its all designed to burn as opposed to aquanet and it burns clean with no residue at all! Happy spudding team! From ben, british spud cannoner!
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Unread postAuthor: jackssmirkingrevenge » Tue Apr 10, 2012 4:36 am

bmaher6 wrote:Best thing to use is a bbq ignitor but when it comes to fuel, i swear by lighter gas, the sort of stuff thats used for refilling pressurized lighters, when held upside down and sprayed a nice dense propane/butane mix comes out, only use less than a second's worth though, and dont seal it up straight away!


You can go a step further and use a syringeto eliminate the guesswork ;)
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Unread postAuthor: jsefcik » Tue Apr 10, 2012 1:28 pm

bmaher6 wrote:Best thing to use is a bbq ignitor but when it comes to fuel, i swear by lighter gas, the sort of stuff thats used for refilling pressurized lighters, when held upside down and sprayed a nice dense propane/butane mix comes out, only use less than a second's worth though, and dont seal it up straight away! Good thing about lighter spray is that its all designed to burn as opposed to aquanet and it burns clean with no residue at all! Happy spudding team! From ben, british spud cannoner!



i disagree. bbq i think suck, i have a twist flint sparker from walmart(3.75)works everytime, and i use carb cleaner, and a chamber fan!!

chamber fans do wonders!!! i suggest adding one in
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Unread postAuthor: jimmy101 » Tue Apr 10, 2012 7:47 pm

jsefcik wrote:[
i disagree. bbq i think suck, i have a twist flint sparker from walmart(3.75)works everytime, and i use carb cleaner, and a chamber fan!!

chamber fans do wonders!!! i suggest adding one in
Been using the same BBQ piezo for about 10 years. Started with a flint lantern igniter and only used it a couple times because they are impractical for anything but a tiny gun.

Done correctly a piezo will last forever and is a lot easier to build into a pistol grip than is a flint based system.
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Unread postAuthor: jsefcik » Tue Apr 10, 2012 9:53 pm

jimmy101 wrote:
jsefcik wrote:[
i disagree. bbq i think suck, i have a twist flint sparker from walmart(3.75)works everytime, and i use carb cleaner, and a chamber fan!!

chamber fans do wonders!!! i suggest adding one in
Been using the same BBQ piezo for about 10 years. Started with a flint lantern igniter and only used it a couple times because they are impractical for anything but a tiny gun.

Done correctly a piezo will last forever and is a lot easier to build into a pistol grip than is a flint based system.


you can always have both =)all the bbq ignitors i had lasted only a little while

but it could have just been me, even try multiple spark gap!!
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Unread postAuthor: 8tonsemi » Fri May 04, 2012 9:47 am

You should try an electric grill sparker they are more reliable.
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Unread postAuthor: jsefcik » Fri May 04, 2012 4:13 pm

8tonsemi wrote:You should try an electric grill sparker they are more reliable.


then a stungun? i think not!!

read up this

http://www.advancedspuds.com/bbq.htm

look at this website, this guy is putting out 4 spark gaps which is alot better then a piece of $hit bbq ignitor
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Unread postAuthor: jimmy101 » Sat May 05, 2012 12:43 pm

jsefcik wrote:
8tonsemi wrote:You should try an electric grill sparker they are more reliable.


then a stungun? i think not!!

read up this

http://www.advancedspuds.com/bbq.htm

look at this website, this guy is putting out 4 spark gaps which is alot better then a piece of $hit bbq ignitor
Advanced spuds doesn't know his donkey from a hole in the ground. Flint are just about the most impractical of all ignition systems. Yes they throw lots of hot sparks but it takes 100% of one hand to operate, which leaves only one hand to control the gun and the recoil. That's fine for a small gun but impractical and unsafe, in a typical sized gun.

BBQ piezos (or hacked piezo lighters) cost about $2-$10. For a couple bucks more, say $15, you can get a stungun. For about the same price you can get an electronic BBQ igniter. All of these are more practical than a flint based system.
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