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Simple Water Injector for Buoys

Ed_ObermeierEd_Obermeier Posts: 1,339 Crazy Baller
edited April 2012 in News & Other Stuff
Credit to Thomas Wayne for putting this tutorial together, I just happen to have a copy of it and it's posted here with permission. Hope you find it helpful.
Ed Obermeier - owner, EZ-Slalom Course Systems
www.ez-slalom.com
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Comments

  • WishWish Posts: 7,892 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    I'll throw this in here too as an alternative. It is more expensive but it holds the water and enough air to fill the buoy with both off of one pump priming. Also you can place both buoy and pump on the work bench (do to the hose), pump up the sprayer and walk away as it takes a little while to pee the water out of the tiny needle hole and then it will add the air. It's basically the smallest pump sprayer with a hose you can buy (I think). It's 1 gallon. Holds half gallon of water and the rest of the air needed for the ball. Not necessarily a better mouse trap but a different one. Need some plumbers putty to seal the needle and stabilize it as the hole in the end of the hose fitting is slightly larger then the needle itself. You can disassemble the hose end at the store to see how it could work before you buy it. It does works.image
    >>> 11.25..a different kettle of fish. <<<
  • Ed_ObermeierEd_Obermeier Posts: 1,339 Crazy Baller
    Both excellent options. Thanks Wish for the post and the info.
    Ed Obermeier - owner, EZ-Slalom Course Systems
    www.ez-slalom.com
  • A_BA_B Posts: 4,181 Mega Baller
    The key is to measure what you are putting in all of them so if you need to add or take out, you can do the same for all.

    The new orange polyforms from Ed worked great with water in them, and the color held up as good or better than any skier ball I have used. (unsolicited plug).
  • WishWish Posts: 7,892 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    edited February 2012
    I took a half gallon milk jug, filled and dumped it in pump. Easy measuring.

    BTW I'll pay for shipping if anyone plans on throwing out faded buoys. Just deflate and send them my way. Also if your getting rid of any air filled boat guides that are faded I'll pay $ plus shipping.
    >>> 11.25..a different kettle of fish. <<<
  • PhilPhil Posts: 62 Baller
    Brian, contact me i have some stuff you can have, you can most likely collect them from me.
    Phil Hughes Champions Lake Clermont FL.
  • PhilPhil Posts: 62 Baller
    I was shown, and now have an even easier way to get water into bouys, you buy a small air/blow gun from Home Depot, get a female/ male adaptor to fit on where the air hose would connect, the male end will take the normal hose pipe fitting, take out the blow nozzle and your needle inflator screws straight in, connect to the hose and squirt the water in, we also made up a homemade scale to weigh the same amount of water being put in to each bouy, if someone explains to me how to get pictures from my I phone on to the page i will post pictures.
    Phil Hughes Champions Lake Clermont FL.
  • WishWish Posts: 7,892 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    @Phil Can't post pics from phone. Email pic to yourself, save it as a file on your computer and drop it in that way. Very intrigued to see what u have. Speaking of phone (not to hijack) when's BOS app coming out? Will we be able to post pics from IPhone then?
    >>> 11.25..a different kettle of fish. <<<
  • Ed_ObermeierEd_Obermeier Posts: 1,339 Crazy Baller
    Since TW has been banned from posting here I'm posting this on his behalf because a) it's designed to be helpful and b) because I'm in agreement with the information provided here. Would have posted it myself had I come up with it.
    I was waiting for someone to sing praise about the buoy filler version of a garden hose attached to a compressor fitting with an air needle screwed on. This is one of the things I tried BEFORE I came up with the garden sprayer mod. FYI, there are two glaring problems with that method:

    1) you have to carefully monitor the water flow - with someone on the hose valve - or you can easily overfill the buoy (with water); trying to "yank" the needle out at the right time is not a very precise answer for that problem.

    2) a garden hose won't inject any air into the ball, meaning you still have to have some sort of air pump handy - meanwhile, the garden sprayer does double duty, since it will also inject just air.

    The garden sprayer makes it child's play to put the exact same amount of water in each buoy, and works exceptionally well for an air pump - even better than the typical bicycle pump. You can't do either with a garden hose.

    We use a cheap plastic planter about 6" or 8" diameter at the open end, and rest a buoy in it with the rope-eye down in the planter (this steadies the buoy, so is also an excellent holder for painting buoys). Fill the garden sprayer to a known level, screw shut, then pump 100 - 150 times. Put needle into buoy, pull trigger and lock open. Walk away if you want. After a minute or so the buoy will have the right amount of water AND be inflated with air as well. May have to add (or bleed off) a little air, but that is very quick too.
    Ed Obermeier - owner, EZ-Slalom Course Systems
    www.ez-slalom.com
  • WishWish Posts: 7,892 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    edited March 2012
    I gotta say, I'd be tired if I had to pump the sprayer 100-150 times for each ball. Not sure the size of the garden sprayer used in the above description, but with the 1 gallon sprayer, I've never had to pump it that many times. Not even close. It's been a while but maybe 10-15 times. I liked the idea of the plastic planter. I was using a duct tape role laying on its side. Planter-better idea. Also it's way more than a minute or so do to the pressure inside the tank decrease and the peeing of the needle slows. But, it will fill it with water and air both. Setting it up to where you can walk away and do something else is key. Or your gonna get bored watching your balls grow. Ya, I said it.
    >>> 11.25..a different kettle of fish. <<<
  • Ed_ObermeierEd_Obermeier Posts: 1,339 Crazy Baller
    That's funny! I wish I could watch my...

    Aw, never mind...
    Ed Obermeier - owner, EZ-Slalom Course Systems
    www.ez-slalom.com
  • DustyDusty Posts: 315 Baller
    Hey guys- Share with me the theory behind putting water in the buoys? I know several that do it- one even adds rubbing(?) alcohol to the water because it doesn't freeze or is leass dense or whatever?... To me it seems to be adding mass to the ball and if it is still at or maybe above the diameter out of the water, can't move out of the way as fast?... Does the added water just allow the buoy to submerge quicker when struck?
    As a chief judge or tech controller, I take pains to ensure that every buoy is at the bottom of the tolerance for height. Really important I think for early/late year tournaments with cold water that makes the buoy plastic harder. The ski then has at least a fighting chance of riding/sliding over a ball and not stopping too suddenly.
  • WishWish Posts: 7,892 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    The buoy displaces easier in every direction IMHO. Someone did an unscientific test side by side with air filled. Then did a little writeup. Not sure where that is. One of the math wizards here I'm sure will chime in. The water filled buoys for dummies version (cause I'm dumb) would be this: I look at it this way. Line tension. It took 16lb to hold an air filled buoy 1/2 way under water. Water filled 1/3 of that, maybe less. So the line tension is significantly less. So the buoy is easier to displace. I used to use a cinder block as weight on a float course. Now I use a little 3 hole red brick. Bonus is with so little line tension, hardly any come off when hit by boat, ski or tuber. That's worth it alone if your on public waters. If you try it, and replace one of your air filled, you'll notice immediately the difference in how it feels when you knock it around just with your hand. After that, you won't go back to air filled.
    >>> 11.25..a different kettle of fish. <<<
  • A_BA_B Posts: 4,181 Mega Baller
    Are you guys putting water in skier gate balls?
  • WishWish Posts: 7,892 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    yes. just as important. especially right hand ball
    >>> 11.25..a different kettle of fish. <<<
  • RichardDoaneRichardDoane Posts: 4,235 Mega Baller
    we don't put water in the gate buoys, only the turn balls. The water filled buoy is a safety thing to help prevent ankle injuries, usually not the case at the gates
    BallOfSpray Pacific Northwest Vice President of Event Management, aka "Zappy"
  • BigblueBigblue Posts: 10
    What would you suggest if I do this to my turn balls which are full of air now? Totally deflate and start the process?
  • WishWish Posts: 7,892 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Yep. Won't get all the air out. I deflate most of the way just by pushing on it with my fist.
    >>> 11.25..a different kettle of fish. <<<
  • A_BA_B Posts: 4,181 Mega Baller
    We only put water in the skier turn balls. I know I have run over gate balls many times (all in practice) ;), but seem to get through it without a problem. I have bent my wing a few times though.
  • BroussardBroussard Posts: 385 Crazy Baller
    Made the one in the first post, can anyone tell me how much water and how many pumps for a polyform buoy? They changed the graphics so I have no idea how much water to put.
    Andre Broussard - Louisiana
  • RichardDoaneRichardDoane Posts: 4,235 Mega Baller
    I first put in just enough air to make the ball round, then fill to the 1/2 point with water, then inflate the ball the rest of the way to size (7.8"), that way they end up about 1/3 full of water. The important thing I learned is to only insert the needle once, switching between the air nozzle and the water injector sprayer, and then back to the air nozzle. That way they always seal up and last. If you push the needle in a bunch of times, there's a greater chance of leakage.
    BallOfSpray Pacific Northwest Vice President of Event Management, aka "Zappy"
  • Ed_ObermeierEd_Obermeier Posts: 1,339 Crazy Baller
    @Broussard I fill the Flo-Master sprayer to the 1250 ml line (around 44 oz water), then pump it up as much as it will take (90 - 100 pumps) and let it go, then add some more air if required. If memory serves I usually end up putting about 120 pumps total on it to fill the buoy to where I want it. My buoys are closer to half full of water cause I put a bit more in than called for and I don't blow them up full size, I quit at about 7 inches diameter. Not quite AWSA spec but on a portable course for practice who cares?

    Ed
    Ed Obermeier - owner, EZ-Slalom Course Systems
    www.ez-slalom.com
  • 6balls6balls Posts: 5,204 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Just did this w/the 56HD flomaster sprayer after the modifications to the device...worked great.
    Dave Ross--die cancer die
  • DWDW Posts: 2,057 Mega Baller
    The water filled buoys work based on buoyancy, removing some of the air and replacing it with the same fluid the balls are submerged in allows them to be displaced downward or in to the fluid (water) with less force than if they were only air filled as they are now less buoyant. The mass of the buoy has little effect on the displacement velocity of the ball when hit by a ski as the mass of the surrounding fluid (water) is the controlling fluid in this case, but as noted the buoyancy of the ball has a significant effect on it's ability to be displaced.
  • jackskijackski Posts: 263 Baller
    Maybe a silly question, but, if the ball displaces so easily when water fillled, does it move around a lot when there is a little rough water or wind ?
    Jack
  • RynoRyno Posts: 252 Baller
    edited April 2012
    @jackski It stands to reason that as more of the buoy is under the water it would be more susceptible to movement from current, but any buoy will move to the max extent available from the securing line with current, so it's probably a non-issue.
    However, as less of the buoy is exposed above the water it would be less affected by the wind.
    Ryan McGill - South Coast, New South Wales, Australia
  • jackskijackski Posts: 263 Baller
    edited April 2012
    I worded that badley. What I'm concerned about is, I have 2 courses on a medium size lake. Each is protected from one side. During foul weather, the waves and wind get pretty big and pound from the unprotected side. I'm wondering if there is a greater possibility of damage to my floating course due to the weight of the ball ? Ed?
    Jack
  • WishWish Posts: 7,892 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    There will be significantly less damage IMHO. The waves if large will roll over the tops of the balls. There is substantially less line tension needed to hold them down. I have a float course and ocational wakeboarders (big boat) on my small lake. Before waterfilled buoys the air filled would ride the 3' monster wave to the top and down the other side causing the PVC to move that much if not more. With a very heavy weight holding the air filled at appropriate levels, the line tension was generally so great that this extreme movement would pop several off. Now with water filled and little line tention I get to watch the buoy disappear as the wave goes over reducing travel of PVC and the bouy itself. Have not lost one to a wave yet. Skiers hitting them yes but no waves. That's been a huge bonus to the H2O filled.!!
    >>> 11.25..a different kettle of fish. <<<
  • jackskijackski Posts: 263 Baller
    That's what I was looking for, thanks Wish !
    Jack
  • 6balls6balls Posts: 5,204 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Same experiment for us this year @jackski as we have a very similar set up. Can ski in glass even if 35 mph SE wind but the NW protected course takes a white cap beating on those days.
    Dave Ross--die cancer die
  • RynoRyno Posts: 252 Baller
    edited April 2012
    I thought the idea of this thread was for a simple water injector!

    Well this is what I just used... 10 squirts of water in each buoy seems to do the trick!

    A narrow ball pump fitting screwed straight into the end of the 60ml syringe.

    Ryan McGill - South Coast, New South Wales, Australia
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