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My Thoughts on Spud Guns

A place to ask general spud cannon related questions.
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Unread postAuthor: TurboSuper » Thu May 29, 2008 11:46 am

That was a good read...I can see where you were restraining yourself to keep it to three pages, you weren't kidding when you said it could be elaborated into a book.

I do agree with most of it: That whole bit where with the abrasiveness of how we handle newbs is very true. I do, however, have to disagree with the part that you need to "pay with skills"(paraphrasing) to become a member of the forums. Honestly, I've never built anything spectacular. Heck, I never even reposted any of my stuff to this forum. Still, I hardly feel like an outcast.
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"If at first you dont succeed, then skydiving is not for you" - Darwin Awards

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Unread postAuthor: BC Pneumatics » Thu May 29, 2008 11:57 am

It was indeed a struggle to keep certain areas down to size. Thank you for noticing.

Thanks also for sharing your experiences on becoming a member, I am glad that you felt welcome despite having posted no cannons. It is a clear case of us not accepting someone based on their proven skills, but on their attitude and personality.

TurboSuper is a great example of how this behavior mutually benefits both new members, and the existing community. Its is also encouraging to hear that the situation may not be as dire as I had thought. :)
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Unread postAuthor: THUNDERLORD » Thu May 29, 2008 12:42 pm

Great write up there, (I had to get to library to read it because I had probs loading adobe at home).

Yeah it's the new sport of kings IMO. I also like your last sentence there, It would make a good sig.

Some stuff we do, by the time we get the knowledge no longer impresses us as much as it would the new people. So sometimes I forget that myself.

I really wanted to read in case of new expectations though but it was enjoyable and quick reading. 3 pages was OK. 8)

BTW Thanks, Atleast I got out of the house to go read it. :wink:
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Unread postAuthor: Davidvaini » Thu May 29, 2008 1:36 pm

"We also must be careful not to exaggerate certain dangers. While we want to get our point
across, making unreasonable exaggerations can lead to people undermining the safety suggestions and
regulations that are not exaggerated, leading to dangerous situations. Cannons are inherently
dangerous enough when used improperly, they don't need the help of trumped up warnings to get that
point across"


I agree we must not exaggerate curtain safety messures.

What im about to say will probably upset a lot of people but one exaggeration that upsets me is saying DWV PVC can only hold 10psi. I recently called Dr. Gene Palermo, PPI Technical Director and Chairman of the Hydro-static Stress Board which is in charge of the pressure ratings of PVC. The composition of DWV may not be labeled with the qualifications of NSF-PW; however both nsf-pw (pressure rated) and DWV both meet the same composittion of TR3. The size of the fittings are different between Pressure rated and DWV however the chemical composition are both classified as the same under the TR-3 requirements.

I agree that DWV fittings will not hold up to the same pressures as pressure rated fittings because of the increased size however I do believe that it will hold more than 10 psi. If a pill bottle can hold more than 10 psi I'm pretty sure DWV PVC that is way thicker can hold more than 10 psi.

It is unfortunate that Gene informed me there is no pressure testing done for DWV however I think stating that 10psi max for DWV is an exaggeration that is an "unreasonable exaggeration that can lead to people undermining the safety suggestions"
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Unread postAuthor: clide » Thu May 29, 2008 2:18 pm

Very nice paper BC.

I really like the last part and feel the same way. In many ways spudding has given me valuable skills and experiences. It has guided my education choices and will likely play a role in what type of job I end up going into. So it is not exaggeration to say that getting involved and staying involved in spudding has been a life changing experience for me.
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Unread postAuthor: MrCrowley » Thu May 29, 2008 2:52 pm

Unfortunately, I can't put my spudding skills to use. My parents are moving to Sydney and I still have a year of school left. I can't bring myself to live in Aussie (no offence) so i'm most likely joining to Army at the end of the year to become a field engineer.

I wanted to do Aerospace engineering at University and the Army could help me to achieve that goal on top of many benefits like accommodation, food, pay and a free degree.

I feel it's the best way I can achieve something I've wanted to do since I first started this hobby, and there is always an option of contract engineering overseas. Whether or not it's aerospace (nautical) doesn't bother me as much.

A few examples of how spudding has effected my school life...

I knew how to use a lathe and what everything did even though I only saw one in person for the first time the other day.

I was the only one in my chem class to know about stoichiometric mixtures, which helped me pass one of my exams. When my physics teacher asked the class about one pressure unit, I gave him 6.

I understand physics far more and have an upper hand because of some background knowledge I have read from this site, that isn't taught in class just yet.

When I first joined the site, I was intimidated like hell. I was 14 and this was the first forum I had joined. Ironically it was the intimidation and fear of being flamed, that made me search. I went through every single cannon on the site at the time. I saved the interesting ones, wrote down some questions and looked them up.
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Last edited by MrCrowley on Thu May 29, 2008 2:54 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Unread postAuthor: BC Pneumatics » Thu May 29, 2008 2:52 pm

Davidvaini is right about the DWV pvc thing. While I would encourage everybody to use pressure rated parts, and think it is good policy to tell people their DWV creations are not rated for pressure, telling they they absolutely cannot physically hold it is not the right thing to do. What if someone was to hear that a DWV cannon is only safe for ridiculously low pressure, say 10psi, but has already pressurized it to 60psi with no catastrophic results? It would not be a stretch to imagine the same person, who obviously does not have much experience with these devices, assuming they can also charge their pressure rated pipe to 6 times the limit they were told.
We should stress that while DWV can usually hold a fair amount of pressure, it is not rated, that is, not guaranteed my the manufacturer to do so. For the extra cost, it is obvious that this bit of insurance pressure rated pipe offers is the proper way to go. After all, the reason companies do not rate the DWV pipe for pressure is because they do not do the same quality control and testing that is required for a pressure rating. This means even if the chances may be low, (I am not sure if they are low or high) DWV pipe is more likely to have a dangerous fault in it than pressure rated pipe.
It should also be pointed out that in some cases (like cellular core) even though the material is the same, the manufacturing process may be different in a way that effects a pipe's ability to contain pressure.
We must teach people to make the proper choices for themselves, we cannot try to scare them into conforming to our standards. Besides, light a man a fire, warm him for a night. Light a man afire, warm him for his entire life. Erm, maybe I should have gone with the fish one...
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Unread postAuthor: daberno123 » Thu May 29, 2008 4:09 pm

Excellent paper BC, I didn't mind the length at all.

I agree with your views, especially the one about the treatment of noobs. They need to be treated in a way that doesn't "spoonfeed" them, but points them in the right direction.

I'll use myself as an example. When I first joined, I posted a pneumatic cannon that used DWV bell reducers. I was told several times, in ways I didn't think were "nice", to replace them, without offering any explanation on why. I had pressurized the gun numerous times to 100 psi without incident and wondered what all the fuss was about.

So I searched, and I learned about DWV and how they aren't rated for pressure. Since then, I haven't built a gun using DWV parts.

I also got a fair number of comments on ways I could improve the gun, make it more efficient and so on. I appreciated their feedback and took it all into consideration for future builds.

I hope noobs will be treated more like I was, with a mixture of comments and criticisms, instead of just screaming at them to search or use the wiki. Really, if you don't have something worth saying, just don't make a post. Some people seem to feel the need to have to post in every topic they read. I know I don't, seeing as I'm on the forum (almost) every day, and still have below 300 posts after being here since November of 2007.
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Unread postAuthor: psycix » Thu May 29, 2008 4:20 pm

I went through every single cannon on the site at the time. I saved the interesting ones, wrote down some questions and looked them up.


Though you may have overdone it, THAT is how I appriciate it. Me too, lurked around for about a month reading and reading every bit of information I could get and I was amazed by the amount of information stored in the wiki and I spent weeks to learn all of the basics of spudding. And THEN I joined, without "can sum1 give me plans" posts.
BC, in some manner, I completely agree with you, being nicer to people is a thing that may be improved, and due to this topic, I will be more helpfull to uber-noobs in the near future. You are right, the noobs dont deserve to be bashed like that.
At the other hand: as you see how I and MrCrowley did it, there are multiple ways of joining up, we lurked instead of noobed!

I really like members joining this great community, but I just appriciate it extremely much if people take the "lurk-way" instead of the "noob-way".

:lurk:
Lurk, just do it! :D
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Unread postAuthor: BC Pneumatics » Thu May 29, 2008 4:47 pm

Psycix, what you, MrCrowley, daberno123, (and myself) did is in my opinion the best way to go about joining the forums, hands down. It is just that not everybody's mind is built in a way that will cause them to go about joining in this manor, and we need to be tolerant of them too.
Your last posts shows that you fully understand this concept, and know where I am coming from with it. I really appreciate your commitment to try and be more tolerant of the uber-noobs in the future; this alone makes me feel like the time and effort I spent writing this paper were worth while.
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Unread postAuthor: Carlman » Thu May 29, 2008 11:42 pm

I did not have time to read this before but now that i have i am glad i took he time to do so. It sums up what spudfiles is for spudders and what needs to be done to give it a more home feel for newer members.

I too was a lurker for about 3 or 4 months before i joined and posted on here. It gives you a great introduction into spudfiles and saves the mods coming down on your ass or the DWV police arresting you for not doing your homework.

Thankyou for writing that BC, i really enjoyed the read.

PS: i posted here too late, all my points have been said :( lol
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Unread postAuthor: ammosmoke » Fri May 30, 2008 12:21 am

I think the first thing I did was post asking if a coke bottle mini combustion chamber would work for airsoft. :lol: And I remember MrCrowley replying to me, and saying that it probably would work, but coke bottles get hard after a while, and can burst. That was a good first impression. So I stayed on. If people had said, "Duh, you idiot, of course it will," I would have been less inclined to stay on. I remember posting about a marble gun concept that would have multiple tanks for many shots, and would have been rediculously large. Again, nothing too harsh. MrCrowley replied to that one too, saying, "How is that portable?, I am using two fire extinguisher tanks for my next project...." Why am I saying this? Well, all of us probably posted some dumb ideas starting off, or questions with obvious answers. Maybe we should have a FAQ? Another point. I still remember that! I posted 2 YEARS ago about that, and I still remember! First impression is a big deal. And I'll admit I haven't always been the best, but let's not ruin it by acting elitist.
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Unread postAuthor: kablooie » Fri May 30, 2008 12:32 am

Lurkers UNITE!!! Seriously, I lurked for a long period of time, and (this is good and bad) I was was so intimidated of being flamed for screwing up, I didn't post much (if anything, I don't remember every post) that wasn't a contribution. I guess what I am saying is that while flaming is bad, I certainly learned not to repeat other people's mistakes by posting stupid things.

This whole noob containment plan reminds me of a teacher dealing with someone who hasn't done the homework. Only the homework in this case is actually pretty interesting and the curriculum can be very dangerous. That's my kind of school.
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Unread postAuthor: BC Pneumatics » Fri May 30, 2008 12:43 am

ammosmoke, believe it or not, I remember that as well. Not in nearly the detail you do, but I remember the "How is that portable" part, as he had taken the words right out of my mouth.
I never would have remembered it was you that had posted that; you sure have come a long way. Then again, I guess we all have.
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Unread postAuthor: MrCrowley » Fri May 30, 2008 1:00 am

Haha I don't remember that, just looked it up and I still don't recall it. :)

I remember one of my first topics was about a butterfly valve, and many after that were about if I could use DWV in a pneumatic and if I HAD to use primer... :roll:

Wow there was a time when even I didn't understand piston valves :shock:

yeah but its difficult to make a piston valve, well i looked at one on advancedspuds and i couldnt understand it very well

:lol:

Though smart talking SpudStuff came second nature to me very early on...

SpudStuff wrote:have you ever heard of the internet.


MrCrowley wrote:how do you think i posted this without the internet
:D
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