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Cyclone Feed Problem/ Ball Breakage

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vector17 View Drop Down
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    Posted: 12 March 2008 at 9:18pm
So I just got my brand spankin' new A5 stealth package, and brought 'er out to play last weekend. Three shots in, I get a break. 15 shots later my
cyclone feed stops responding. I have to manually advance the balls- basically i was a sitting duck. This continues until i simply give up for the day.

Spent the next 2-3 hours taking everything apart, cleaning, checking, and restoring the marker to stock A5 configuration. Go out to shoot again,
and i break a ball 3 shots in, and the cyclone stops again after about 15 shots. Temperatures were pretty cold, about 30˚F, but my buddy's
98custom flatline was running perfectly (picked me right in the goggles at 40m 3rd shot). We both had CO2 hooked up via remote coil and the
same paint.

I brought the marker inside for an hour or so to warm up, then stepped back out, and my cyclone was stopping again after 15 shots, balls chopping
like none other. So i take a trip to the store, and $23.57 later i walk out with a 500pk of marballizers. I got less breaks, but still every 30 or so, and
the cyclone still wasn't working. By this time my gun is stock config, 8" barrel, and i tried all different velocity settings, still to no avail.

I guess my question is if the A5 has problems with the cold combined with the cyclone feed, or if it's just the CO2 in general. My other marker (pro
carbine) seemed to work fine on the same tank and coil. It just seems very odd to me that a warm maker would cease to function after just 15
shots. Any knowledge on this would be helpful. thanks

here's my setup FYI

A-5 Marker (semi-auto)
Flatline Barrel
20oz CO2 Tank
Remote Coil (connected to the under-handle threads)
Carb Stock


lets include a photo just for fun


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kingtiger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 March 2008 at 9:41pm
It's probably the cold weather plus the C02, C02 doesn't like cold weather very much. It could also be the Flatline, it's very picky about what paint you use. I suggest running HPA, and if that doesn't help, I recommend buying higher grade paint, but make sure it isn't tourny paint, that stuff will chop like crazy in a mech marker.


Edited by Kingtiger - 12 March 2008 at 9:42pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote vector17 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 March 2008 at 11:40pm
I'm actually more concerned about the cyclone "freezing up." Especially after
so few shots. Would it help if i kept my bottle warmer somehow? I really
dont have the $$$ for any upgrades like HPA, but maybe in the future that
would be a wise investment. Gets pretty cold here in MN.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kingtiger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 March 2008 at 2:04am
1 thing that might help you are the TechT upgrades. If you can't afford HPA, get a palmers stabilizer, or an L.P.K.(Low pressure kit). Palmers are very reliable, and very good for the price.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ace_Of_Spades Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 March 2008 at 2:27am

Originally posted by vector17 vector17 wrote:

I really
dont have the $$$ for any upgrades like HPA.

ebay my friend...ebay

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote vector17 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 March 2008 at 5:02pm
right, so if its just the cold, then i guess i can wait until spring :( just
seemed odd that it started to act up so fast, that's what made me nervous.
thanks for everyone's input.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote thejudge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 March 2008 at 11:26pm
Try shooting in your house with no paint.  If it doesnt freeze up then you will have your answer.  I have seen the cold cause it to freeze up before though. especially with CO2
Stay low, run fast, and hope that paintball doesn't hit your...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote vector17 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 March 2008 at 12:24am
psh. silly of me not to think of that. Will do.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote thejudge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 March 2008 at 12:42am
The simplest solutions are usually the ones overlooked.  Also when you took it apart did you make sure you lubed up the cyclone parts?  Too much is bad but you still need some in there.
Stay low, run fast, and hope that paintball doesn't hit your...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote vector17 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 March 2008 at 1:01am
yeah, they're good and lubed. Thought that might have been the problem at
first, so i tore the whole thing apart. Good learning experience really, at
least now i know the internals.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote thejudge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 March 2008 at 1:25am
Also I had a time when the screw holding the guide teeth (for lack of better term) inside the cyclone (where the balls go) was too tight and it froze mine up.  It may be to tight.  Just another thought.
Stay low, run fast, and hope that paintball doesn't hit your...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote vector17 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 March 2008 at 2:37am
pretty sure the "guide teeth" screw is ok, it cycles fine when its warm, and
manually. Does anyone know anything about the small hose going to the
cyclone banjo fittings? Any chance of that hose contracting and starving the
cyclone? I messed with those parts inadvertently and realized that there are
air feeds inside the banjo fittings that need to face a certain way. Am i
supposed to screw the banjo fittings in a certain amount, or just flush to the
marker. Also found out that the screw slots are in line with the feeds on the
banjos.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote motopsycho650 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 March 2008 at 7:46am
A trick that helps CO2 users in cold weather is to add an expansion chamber to your gun, and then wrap it with a instant heat glove warmer pack while you play.  I've  noticed much better shooting in cold weather that way.

Not sure on anything else, I just installed a cyclone feed on my 98C and have not gotten to test it yet.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote StormyKnight Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 March 2008 at 11:10am

Whenever I hear anyone applying a glove warmer or electric sock on a C02 tank or Expansion chamber, I get a sense of unease.  Instead of getting shootdown, I would imagine you'd run the risk of velocity spikes which could cause the marker to fire over 300fps which we all know is not a good thing.  Not only is it dangerous for the other players you're shooting at, you also increase the chance of ball chopping or barrel breaks.



Edited by StormyKnight - 14 March 2008 at 11:11am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote vector17 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 March 2008 at 1:21pm
oh man, the days where we just cranked up the guns as far as they would
go! haha, prob wasnt a good idea, but we all still have faces so no harm
done. I'm going to check that cyclone screw this weekend. Maybe i'll throw
my co2 in a big old wool sock or something like that.

Edited by vector17 - 14 March 2008 at 2:59pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beachhat2 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 April 2008 at 7:23pm
hmm... I play in S. Cal so weather not _that_ much a factor, but I did notice a significant difference between an 80 degree day and a 60 degree day w/co2.
My A-5 fired perfectly when new. Then I added a Tech-T feeder cylinder for the extra exhaust ports. It still fed perfectly, emptied full hoppers at default rate-of-fire in full auto no ball breaks. Then disaster...
I installed the aluminum Tech-T feeder upgrades for the ratchet and axle. I got ball breaks on every ball. I upgraded paint and got not much better results. Still broke balls in the feeder.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beachhat2 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 April 2008 at 7:29pm
My local paintball store speculated that the timing was off. But if you look at the paddles and feeder, there's no timing adjustment cuz the axle has a flatted side and there is only one way to slide the paddles back on. I compared my gun feeder to the one they had in the store and the position of the paddles on my feeder were about 1/4 inch ahead of the position on the one in the store. So I removed the Tech-T ratchet and axle but havent had a chance to check it out yet. I don't think this is a problem between HPA and CO2... ... ... yet, because prior to my ratchet and axle upgrade, I'd played in hot to medium temps w/o any probs and nearly zero ball breaks.


Edited by beachhat2 - 02 April 2008 at 7:31pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beachhat2 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 April 2008 at 8:27pm
I found the following suggestions in the archives, I'm going to try loosening the paddle screw.

FAQ:  Cyclone Feeder Problems
A relatively common post in this forum is the "my Cyclone isn't feeding," or "my Cyclone is breaking balls." Usually these are actually the same problem. Most Cyclone breaks are from partial or slow turning.
Hopefully this thread can be a collection of suggested checks and fixes. I'll start.  The following is mostly a collection of things I have read, and certainly not all my own wisdom.
First: Option B, with any Tippmann gun, is to send it to Tippmann for repairs. They WILL fix your gun, and their interpretation of their own warranty is so liberal that they almost certainly won't charge for labor, no matter how old your gun is, and won't charge for parts either for newer guns. But since it takes some time for the gun to go from here to there and back - time for you without your gun - you should try the hints below first.
Parts references are to the A-5 parts chart.
General Trouble-Shooting: Whenever you have a problem (of any kind), you should first try some basic de-bugging to isolate the source of the problem. Try some different paintballs. Try a different tank. Take off your upgrades and try the gun stock. Mix and match different elements, and before you know it, you will know exactly where the problem lies.
Air Supply: Most Cyclone problems, in my experience, are really an air supply problem. The Cyclone needs a fair amount of air to work, and if it gets starved it won't be happy. The Cyclone is usually the first thing to go, so your gun might be working just fine otherwise, but your Cyclone will skip if it doesn't get enough air.
- Tank. Make sure your tank is full. If you have HPA, make sure the tank has output pressure of at least 750 psi. Make sure the tank valve is fully functional and not obstructed.
- Drive spring/RVA/Stock. If your drive spring is weak, not enough air will get to the gun, and the Cyclone will be starved. Try a different drive spring. If you have a rear velocity adjuster or a stock, or anything else that replaces the endcap, take it off. Some of these don't put enough pressure on the drive spring, which gives the same result as a weak drive spring.
- Regulators:  If you have a regulator, make sure you don't have the pressure turned down too low.  As with all air problems, your gun might fire fine, and your Cyclone might even keep up, to a point, but insufficient pressure will cause problems.  Also remember that the perfect regulator setting for one tank might be too low for another tank, or too low for that same tank when it isn't full.
- On/Offs. Some drop-forwards or ASAs with on/off valves can leak or obstruct air flow if they are opened too much. Dirt and crud can also get caught in on/offs. Make sure the valves are clean. When opening the valves, only open until you reach full pressure, and then another full turn.
- Remotes:  There are many places a remote might have a small obstruction or leak.  Check each connector, and your slide check if you have one.
- ASA Pins:  Some regulators/x-chambers/remotes/adapters push too far into the ASA so that the ASA pin strangles the air.  Some ASAs on the tank end of remotes create the same problem.  If this is the case, an extra o-ring stuck into the ASA (or remote adapter) will create the extra space needed.
- Leaks: Check hoses, connectors, o-rings. Remember, a small leak might let your gun shoot but still impede the Cyclone. Make sure to check the cup seal 02-63) on the piston (02-54) inside the Cyclone manual advancer.  Make sure all o-rings are well oiled.
Friction: The Cyclone needs to be able to turn freely. Make sure your gun is well oiled. Oil in the ASA will make its way into the Cyclone and help it along, but some oil directly in the manual advancer won't hurt either. A little lithium grease under the ratchet (19, 02-53) might also help if the ratchet is not moving smoothly. Make sure that the feeder screw (8, PL-42A) is not tightened so hard that it keeps the ratchet from turning. This screw should be tightened just enough to keep the sprockets in place.  To see if you have friction problems, try the manual advancer slowly.  There should be some clicks and different degrees of resistance, but the Cyclone should still turn smoothly, and there should be no "hangs" - the Cyclone should keep up with the manual plunger.
Updates: Two updates have been issued for the Cyclone.  Both are available free from Tippmann - just call and ask.  To check for the first one, take off the bottom plate of your Cyclone (02-44).  If the ratchet is black plastic, you do NOT have this update. The updated ratchet is clear plastic. To check for the second update, take a look at the bottom plate itself. The second update is a new bottom plate, and the new bottom plates have an "A" stamped on the outside. Pretty hard to miss. No "A", no update. The first update was intended to stop initial problems with Cyclone breaks resulting from the Cyclone hitting the balls too hard - hence the softer clear ratchet. The second update was intended to keep the first update from backfiring, by stopping "overtravel" of the piston, which the first update parts might allow, which leads to breaks. Tippmann also offers an optional flow control (like the RT flow control), for $15. Not usually required, it may give additional assurance when using brittle paint, by allowing you to limit the amount of air to the Cyclone.
Worn Ratchet: A common problem, mostly for people with the first update but not the second, but not impossible in other situations. If your Cyclone starts increasingly skipping shots (and you are shooting blanks), you might have this problem. It might turn normally with an empty hopper, and the manual advancer will work, but fully loaded it will skip and/or chop. The problem here is that the softer clear ratchet is, well, softer, and therefore more prone to wear and tear. Take a close look at the ratchet. The edge that catches the feeder axle (20, 02-49) should be crisp. If the edge is rounded, worn or torn, you have this problem, and you need a new ratchet. Call Tippmann. Try holding the sprockets in place while pushing the manual advancer. The ratchet should hang on the feeder axle. If the ratchet slips off, you have this problem. I actually carry extra ratchets to guard against this problem.
Ratchet Spring:  Another recent problem is the spring that holds pressure against the ratchet and keeps it from turning back (11, 02-50), has rusted through, or somehow gotten bent out of shape. The obvious way to look for this is to pull the bottom plate off and look to see for a broken or wrongly bent spring (the spring should have a slight bend).  Sympoms are similar to a broken ratchet, except with this one the Cyclone will be able to turn backwards.
Poor Paint:  The Cyclone requires good paint, as it does manhandle the paint a bit. Don't use Wal-Mart paint, don't use old paint, don't use brittle tournament paint.
Other Sources: Of breaks, that is.  Clean your Cyclone. Crud in the Cyclone will cause breaks. And make sure that the break is actually in the Cyclone. A breech break or barrel break might splatter back into the Cyclone, making it look like you had a Cyclone break (and the splatter might actually cause Cyclone breaks).  And check for other obstructions in the breech that could stop a ball from fully entering the chamber.  Some barrel adapters, for instance, extend too far back into the breech, and can cause breaks in this manner.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Enos Shenk Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 April 2008 at 7:08am
Putting your tank in a sock or other insulator will have the opposite effect, after all. CO2 tanks get cold in rapid fire no matter what temperture it is outside, because the CO2 is stored as a liquid inside the tank. When gas CO2 is removed to fire, the liquid actually boils and releases more, thats why your tank gets cold, it absorbs outside heat to change from liquid to gas.

If you insulate the tank, it cant get ANY outside heat. Even if its 30 degrees outside, thats still better than nothing.

I just dont trust third-party cyclone parts. Its a patented system, so other companies dont have any real engineering data to go off of. Rule of thumb for any upgrades or parts, if it aint broke dont 'fix' it.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote OZZY-YD Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 December 2008 at 3:31pm

Hello All,

I had the same issue with the cold weather play with both a A-5 and X7 and their cyclone feeders.  I notice that the cyclone feeder was not spinning, and feeding maybe every 3 balls and then come to complete stop. Yes I am using a high pressure HPA Crossfire 4500-88Ci tank and a remote line.  The guns are completely tricked out with the Tech T products and JCS valve bodies and such.  No leaks either.  But the question is what can be causing the cyclone feeder from not spinning or being very intermittent?  Well, come to find out two things.  First is your 1/16 hose that goes from barb on the body of the gun to the barb on power tube for the cyclone.  If moisture gets inside that hose it then freezes causing a block of ice-sorta of like a block artery.  Therefore Air is not being able to pass through pushing the lightening rod back and forth. I then decided to conduct experiment.  After the game, I brought the two guns back home due to this malfunction, and left them out in the cold for a while-about an hour with the air on, and remote on. Notice the same symptoms. Then I took the guns out of the cold and put them down in the basement where is was warm-BUT NOT DIRECTLY CLOSE TO A HEAT SOURCE.  As the guns gradually warm up, (about an 1hr) I test fired them back outside again and worked great!  There is few things that is causing this.  Condensation in that hose forming a ice block, HPA fill with condensation inside the tank (from a bad fill), and the 1/16 hose is just not big enough to pass through air-and is restricting air flow to the cyclone. So the question is what did I do as a permanent fix?  Click on this link to find out.  I swear by this thing and it works GREAT!  http://www.palmer-pursuit.com/cart/index.php?main_page=produ ct_info&cPath=56&products_id=764

I went with a 1/8 diameter hose to the QEV allowing more air flow to be passed through, eliminated the possibility of a freeze up in the line.  Give it shot, it will set you back about 30 bucks, but if you’re into cold weather play, I highly suggest the following above.

Ozzy
Tippmann A-5 AR-15
Tippmann X-7 MP-5
Tippmann X-7 Phenom UMP 45
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