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Discussion Starter #1
Well I've decided to buy a 30 gallon compressor and need some help. I'm going to run it from the backyard and 100 feet of 3/8 hose. This will go into a manifold and split into 4 props. I am thinking of getting 3 5 gallon storage tanks and put them "in line" running right before the solenoid of each prop. Also adding check valves on the tanks. Is this overkill? I only ran 1 prop off of a 6 gallon and it refilled every 10 or so times last year. The compressor was next to the prop. I'd hate for everything not to work right the big night.
 

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Scarhead Brain Tumor Guy
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There are a lot variables to think about, the size of the cylinders, the work load of each cylinder, and is there a possibility of all three firing at the same time. The 30 gallon tank should easily handle all three but I would add a tank at the largest cylinder or heaviest work load just in case because of the distance.
 

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Well I've decided to buy a 30 gallon compressor and need some help. I'm going to run it from the backyard and 100 feet of 3/8 hose. This will go into a manifold and split into 4 props. I am thinking of getting 3 5 gallon storage tanks and put them "in line" running right before the solenoid of each prop. Also adding check valves on the tanks. Is this overkill? I only ran 1 prop off of a 6 gallon and it refilled every 10 or so times last year. The compressor was next to the prop. I'd hate for everything not to work right the big night.
First let me say that I am a field service technician for a compressed air solutions company, which means I install, service and repair pretty much anyting having to do with compressed air. From what you have written this is a very well designed system the individual tanks will provide plenty of storage for each unit, while the check valves will allow one prop to replenish its tank while the other still have full pressure and the 100' of tubing will allow you to place the compressor out back where it may not be a noise issue. The weakest link here is the size of the tubing, what you can do to help without increasing the size is create a loop, where the tubing goes to the first prop then on to the second etc., when you reach the last instead of ending it goes back to the compressor this allows twice the flow capability as well as giving the air two paths to the devices. Good luck.
 

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Hauntless
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With you there. I have a 17 gal and 5 props (including an ankle tickler and an air cannon). Just in testing, this is running a lot. I'm thinking of doing the additional air tanks too.....
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Holy smokes just got back from Harbor Frieght...and man I went nuts. Just need the 30 gallon compressor. Here is what I bought:

3 5 gallon air tanks (on sale for $20)
4 8 feet air line
4 25 feet air line
1 50 feet air line
1 100 feet air line
1 Manifold
2 in line regulators
Quick connects up the wazoo
Regulators

I am waiting for some check valves they should be here later this week

Think this is enough :)




 

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It seems like your on the right track. There's enough there to keep the air flowing.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Ha ha most are bright colors like red, blue, yellow. I'm guessing it's so you don't trip over it while working with tools in normal use. Who said we were normal. At least Harbor Frieght had us fellow haunters in mind.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
It's going to be run on 110V. Trouble is I'm really not going to know how things are going to run until the big day. I do not put anything out until halloween. ::fingers crossed::
 

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Psychomaniac
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Instead of starting a new thread I figured it was better to post here since my question is along the same lines.

I'm going to be running three pneumatic props this year... an air cannon and two cylinder based sit-up/pop-up rigs. I have a high horsepower 12 gallon compressor that I used with just the air cannon last year. The cannon was connected to the compressor via fifty feet of 1/2" line and it worked perfectly.

I was worried it wouldn't be enough this year with the added props so I recently picked up a 30 gallon auxiliary tank. My plan is to set the compressor to the maximum air cannon pressure (100 PSI if I remember correctly) and feed it into the auxiliary tank. That will essentially give me 42 gallons of high pressure storage. I'll feed the cannon directly off the auxiliary tank and the two cylinders (which will not be going off at the same time) off a single regulator. The compressor will be placed on the side of the house and connected to the air tank (which will be in the garage) via a 1/2" hose.

So, first off, I'd love a critique of my setup. I'm also wondering about regulators and flow rate. Would I be better to run a regulator at each cylinder prop or go with a single one at the tank? The cylinders will be running at 60-80 PSI. What about check valves? Do I need one between the compressor and auxiliary tank? What about between the air cannon and the tank since it could fire at the same time one of the other props is in motion?

Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I install regulators on all my props only because I bump up the PSI on the main tank. I will install check valves right after the manifold output with a small 8 foot hose then tee it off and continue my 25 foot run. You should use them so the pressure doesn't enter your main tank. Once you get into multiple props it can get confusing so it's a fail safe. You can still run the main tank at a higher pressure then your aux tanks and not install them though. Get them here

Valve,Check - Pneumatic Check Valves - System Components - Pneumatics & Hydraulics : Grainger Industrial Supply

The tanks I use have a 1/4 opening just buy a tee.

Here is my tee setup

manifold->8 feet hose->check valve->tee^to aux tank->25 feet->regulator->to prop
 

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Hauntless
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I install regulators on all my props only because I bump up the PSI on the main tank. I will install check valves right after the manifold output with a small 8 foot hose then tee it off and continue my 25 foot run. You should use them so the pressure doesn't enter your main tank. Once you get into multiple props it can get confusing so it's a fail safe. You can still run the main tank at a higher pressure then your aux tanks and not install them though. Get them here

Valve,Check - Pneumatic Check Valves - System Components - Pneumatics & Hydraulics : Grainger Industrial Supply

The tanks I use have a 1/4 opening just buy a tee.

Here is my tee setup

manifold->8 feet hose->check valve->tee^to aux tank->25 feet->regulator->to prop
Thank you, I had the same questions as OpenTrackRacer.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Well i overlooked something where you can just more activations per tank. You really should have the aux tank as close to the prop as possible so you don't waste air in the long line. So I switched the 8 foot and 25 foot sections so it is now:

main tank->100 feet hose->manifold->25 feet hose->check valve->tee^to aux tank->8 feet hose->regulator->solenoid->prop

I tried it with last years pop-up trauma zombie(80 PSI) and originally it was 7 activations on a 7 gallon compressor. Now the new test was a charged up compressor(150PSI) set to 80PSI same with the 5 gallon aux tank I got 21 activations before compressor kicked on again. Now I did fix an air leak I didn't have time to fix last year so that accounts for the triple score.

All in all I'm pretty damn impressed with these in line aux tanks and you can't go wrong for the price. $21 for a 5 gallon and $39 for a 11 gallon. I'll still get a 30 gallon main compressor because I'm paranoid. This will give me 52 gallons total.
 

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Put the tank as close to the prop as you can and put a check valve where the air goes into the tank so it can not go back out that way and put the regulator coming out of the tank on a different port. That way you are storing full pressure for maximum storage.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
For those interested here are a few more pics. The second shows the check valve and the order I placed them

25 feet hose->check valve->tee^to aux tank->8 feet hose->regulator

Keep in mind that the pic show it in the opposite direction



 

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Psychomaniac
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I've been doing some tests and I'm getting good activations even with my cylinders at the end of long hoses. They don't take much air at all to operate and that probably has something to do with it. My setup is going to be:

Air compressor to 30 gallon tank via 3/8" hose and check valve. Coming out of the tank will be three lines on two regulators. One for the air cannon and a second pair going to the cylinders. I may add a check valve on the run to the air cannon to prevent pulses. I'll have some time to do full up testing before Halloween so I can see how everything runs and made adjustments as needed.

Something that I was thinking about. Don't most regulators have check valves internally? That would eliminate the need for one on many setups.
 

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Psychomaniac
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Followup on my last... none of my regulators have check valves and I'm guessing that's the norm.

I just did a test with my TCT. First I set the compressor regulator to 60 PSI and connected it to the prop via the hoses in my garage (75' of 3/8" line). I ran the prop through several cycles to get an idea of the speed. Next, I increased the pressure on the line to 110 PSI and placed a regulator set at 60 PSI just before the prop. I ran it again to see the speed. Lastly, I connected the prop to a 110 PSI tank placed right next to it with a regulator in between set at 60 PSI and ran a few more cycles.

My results? No difference between any of the configurations, which I find very interesting.
 
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