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Beginners' guide to air

Hidden Hippo

Member
Feb 15, 2011
57
4
18
London
I'm getting back into the sport and am considering getting some air. I'm hoping that at my next walk on (Mayhem in a couple of weeks) I can try a couple for fit and get an idea of sizes. I used to have a Dye Throttle 1.1l but found that with the reg it was a bit too long.

Anyway, purpose of the thread to stop me rambling - I couldn't spot anywhere on a quick search that really answers the basic questions I've got bouncing around my head in one convenient place. So, here goes:

  1. Bottles - how significant is the size difference (in terms of length) between a 0.8 and a 1.1l?
  2. How many more shots will I get out of a 1.1l compared to a 0.8l (roughly)?
  3. Regulators - what's good? What's considered long/short?
  4. Brands - any recommended or to avoid?
  5. Buying second hand? Recommended or stay clear?
  6. PI marks - what do I actually look for to tell if a cylinder/reg is PI certified?
I have heard of aluminium bottles with a curved base - are these available in the UK? I've so far only been able to sseeflat ones. Hopefully someone can out a a relative beginner's mind at ease.
 

Dusty

Don't run, you'll only die tired....
May 19, 2004
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  1. Bottles - how significant is the size difference (in terms of length) between a 0.8 and a 1.1l?
Not very, the main thing is capacity. If you're getting shot loads the likelihood is that it ain't your bottle length at fault.
  1. How many more shots will I get out of a 1.1l compared to a 0.8l (roughly)?
Depends on the market but expect a 1.1 to be giving you 1300-1700 shots. If you take an average of 1500 shots for a 1.1 then the 0.8 litre will give you just shy of 1100
  1. Regulators - what's good? What's considered long/short?
Meh, they all work the same. Don't get too hung up on regs. Dye, ninja, basically anything sold by a reputable shop will be good.
  1. Brands - any recommended or to avoid?

Super light bottles are worth it. Bit more spendy but definitely a noticeable difference.

  1. Buying second hand? Recommended or stay clear?
If you know the buyer or they have a good rep then no worries.

  1. PI marks - what do I actually look for to tell if a cylinder/reg is PI certified?
It will be the mathematical pi symbol printed on the bottle


I have heard of aluminium bottles with a curved base - are these available in the UK? I've so far only been able to sseeflat ones.

No idea, better to splash out and buy a fibre wrap as soon as possible. You'll end up buying one eventually.
 

Tom

Tom
Nov 27, 2006
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www.TaskForceDelta.co.uk
image.jpeg image.jpeg image.jpeg

  1. Bottles - how significant is the size difference (in terms of length) between a 0.8 and a 1.1l?
  2. How many more shots will I get out of a 1.1l compared to a 0.8l (roughly)?
  3. Regulators - what's good? What's considered long/short?
  4. Brands - any recommended or to avoid?
  5. Buying second hand? Recommended or stay clear?
  6. PI marks - what do I actually look for to tell if a cylinder/reg is PI certified?
I have heard of aluminium bottles with a curved base - are these available in the UK?
1). Actual length / thickness varies, but see picture for some

2). Scuba toys used to have a relative shot calculator
1.1litre is 37% more shots at equal pressure

3 & 4 - can be opinion
Size should fit you to be comfortable

5) second hand fibre saves you good money if the time to next test isn't too long

6) look for the pi gate symbol in the label or stamped on the neck

Guerilla air have a 48/3000 curved base, I've seen it in the uk, can't find one for sure at the moment
 

Hidden Hippo

Member
Feb 15, 2011
57
4
18
London
Thank both - I honestly thought it was "PI" mark, not Pi and was very confused at mathematical symbols being stamped on bottles.

How regularly would someone wanting to eventually get into tournament paintball need the full 1.1l? When I used to play recall I'd rarely use more than a case a day. Perhaps 1.5 if I felt trigger happy. Do you start to notice drop off in shots as the tank empties, or is this not a thing thanks to modern marker design? Essentially, I'm a relatively small stature chap - 5'9" with a generous tape measure. I'm thinking might do well with a 0.8l slightly shorter bottle and tuck in a bit more.
 

Tom

Tom
Nov 27, 2006
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www.TaskForceDelta.co.uk
Thank both - I honestly thought it was "PI" mark, not Pi and was very confused at mathematical symbols being stamped on bottles.

How regularly would someone wanting to eventually get into tournament paintball need the full 1.1l? When I used to play recall I'd rarely use more than a case a day. Perhaps 1.5 if I felt trigger happy. Do you start to notice drop off in shots as the tank empties, or is this not a thing thanks to modern marker design? Essentially, I'm a relatively small stature chap - 5'9" with a generous tape measure. I'm thinking might do well with a 0.8l slightly shorter bottle and tuck in a bit more.
Not that many tournament players are going to need 1.1 at 4500psi
If the event is supplying at 3000psi then they are down to 2/3rd capacity

With the main tournaments going to the M500 format this year then the amount that can physically be shot is less again (though the team can swap pots and give one player more paintballs)
A back support player will have the most need

If you can shoot the paint you're carrying then you have enough air, and then it's down to your pit drill and how long inbetween games/points


Drop off from the cylinder won't be noticed until the pressure drops to the regulators output - the cylinder will have 4500 or 3000psi and the regulator supplying probably around 400-650psi, (not more than 850psi), a regulated gun again dropping the working pressure


I'm not highly experienced in tournament, with just some games and training as I prefer to photograph, in scenario I'm shooting less at a time and my little peanut bottle happily shoots the paint I carry at any game even at 3000psi
 

Hidden Hippo

Member
Feb 15, 2011
57
4
18
London
Digging up an older thread as I'm still looking at this. After playing on Sunday, I'm definitely going with something light. I was using a 48 steelie and the weight at the back of the marker made the balance feel very off. With that in mind I'll get either a Fuel 1.1 or a Safer 1.2 (if I can find the latter).

My next question though is on regs. I see a lot of choice of output pressure and some, like the Ninja Pro v2 which seems to be offered a lot on the Fuel bottles, with adjustable pressure. I'm currently using a Dye DM6, but have my eyes on an Eclipse LV1 if I can track one down. Would I be better off with an adjustable reg? What performance difference is there between a tank at 800psi and one at 450psi, assuming the marker can operate on an input that low? If the pressure going in is higher than the LPR operating pressure, is there a downside?

Sorry for all the newbie questions - with hindsight this light be better suited in that forum!
 

Tom

Tom
Nov 27, 2006
3,680
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Salisbury
www.TaskForceDelta.co.uk
What performance difference is there between a tank at 800psi and one at 450psi, assuming the marker can operate on an input that low? If the pressure going in is higher than the LPR operating pressure, is there a downside?
The 'performance' of a regulator is less based on its output pressure but more with regard to its ability to 'refresh' - you fire a shot, and then it's the time taken for the regulator to drain air from the cylinder back to its output pressure.
It would generally be more of a problem if the cylinder regulator is low then if it is high. If the gun is operating at 200psi then the guns lpr will regulate down no matter how high the cylinders regulator pressure is.

Original paintball air regulators ran at around 800 to 850psi as that aligned with the gaseous state of co2.

If you have a cylinder regulator running at the guns operating pressure then when you fire a volley of shots then you can find the regulator cannot refresh quickly enough and you will lose pressure when shooting

If the cylinder regulator is higher than the guns operating pressure and you have the lpr taking it down then you have spare air sitting ready and won't notice a drop in pressure if the cylinder a regulator is slow

Eg 4500psi in the cylinder, 450psi output from the regulator and 200psi from the lpr feeding the gun
As long as the lpr refreshes then you always have air ready to shoot

The lower the output though, the less air required and the quicker it will refresh

Having said that it shouldn't matter how high the cylinder regulator outputs, there can still be problems with true high pressure 800-850psi output, this is less often found now, and for example with the dye dam I had leaks when trying to use my normal cylinder, switch to my stubbie with probably 600-650psi (off the top of my head) and it was fine.

Unless using specific guns then these days a regulator pressure in the region of 400-650psi should do, but an adjustable regulator gives you the option to change pressure as you need
 
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Hidden Hippo

Member
Feb 15, 2011
57
4
18
London
Thanks Tom, that makes a lot more sense now. Essentially what in taking from that is a reg running at 600psi will have no issues, but an adjustable one is a "nice to have" just in case.