Versatile Hose System
Written by C-A_99
Last updated on 2011-05-21
Note: It has been found that the Super Charger nozzle can possibly be filled without a QFD by inserting it directly into the hose or faucet. If all you need is to fill up blasters, this is worth trying first, but often it may not work and even if it does, will likely be unreliable. On a side note, if you need to replace O-rings for SC blasters, the size is: 3/4" OD, 9/16" ID (3/32 thick).
Versatile Hose System v3.5
Description and purpose: A PVC hose attachment system designed for great versatility and muiltiple use, and able to quickly switch between functions during a game. The system should charge SC's, fill most blasters quickly and reliably, fill water balloons, and of course, shoot a high range stream. The VHS is far superior to using a standard garden hose nozzle because it can perform all of these functions in one unit at once. It can shoot better and fill blasters more quickly and is open to design improvements/adjustments that suit the user's need.
Originally, this article covered two older versions of the VHS. It has since been updated to include only the main version. If you wish to simplify the design, you can do so, but there will be issues to doing so, such as having to swap threaded parts in order to switch functions.
Most parts can be found from local home improvement stores. Additional parts, if necessary, can be found from local hardware stores. This applies to the U.S. only.
- NPT hose adapter (hose female to 3/4" male and 1/2" female
- 3/4" female adapter
- 3/4" slip tee
- 3/4" PVC
- (2) 3/4" male adapter
- (2) 3/4" threaded ball valve
- 3/4" male to 3/8" barb (or 3/4" male to 1/2" female adapter and 1/2" male to 3/8" barb)
- 3/4" nipple
- PVC primer and cement (both are required to be used appropriately for proper pipe connections)
- Thread sealant. Teflon thread sealing tape or non-sticking thread compound will work. (Teflon tape recommended.)
- Pliers for securing semi-permanent threaded connections
- Drill and/or Dremel may be required for additional tasks.
This is the trickiest part of the VHS to manage and is one where you'll have to get creative. The goal of an ideal SC adapter is to have one that is friendly towards filling standard blasters AND works for SC's all in one, and such an adapter should be able to thread into the 3/4" valve directly or at least to the nipple. If both tasks cannot be accomplished with one solution, then the SC adapter can be used as an attachment to be temporarily threaded onto the VHS instead.
My solution to this was to use a 3/4" plug (threaded) from Home Depot. This plug was shaped with an inset that happened to fit SC nozzles almost perfectly and worked very well. Once I bought them, I simply drilled a hole into the plug to allow water to flow through. This solution has a few problems; the plug needs to be grinded down considerably in order to allow it to work with standard blasters, or it simply will not fill them properly. Also, from what I remember, the specific plug required does not seem to be available at Home Depot any longer. You will have to experiment and find another solution that works if this is indeed the case.
If you have further issues with this, you can post in the forums.
Things to watch out for:
- Ball valve operation: doesn't close naturally nor automatically (which, if you're not used to, can end up soaking nearby players)
- Store indoors
- Obviously, don't use teflon tape on parts that need to be switched around often, and don't tighten parts too tightly
- Be wary of losing parts, especially when switching openings via threaded parts.
- At one point in time, one of my VHS's broke apart on a hot sunny day after the heat built up high pressure inside a long hose. The main cause of this was likely because I made improper tee connections in an effort to get things done more quickly. However, if this occurs for you, you may want to use metal (brass, copper, etc.) parts instead. CPVC may also be a viable option as it is specifically designed for hot and cool, whereas PVC is designed mostly for cool water.
- The current iteration of the VHS (version 3.5) is not perfect. In order to fill SC's, you have to attach an adapter first. Originally, I had the part for filling SC's threaded directly into the ball valve itself, but it became evident that this was not working well as the SC filler was incapable of filling standard blasters which was a major problem. The nipples were used instead to fix this issue as they do a much better job of filling blasters.
The SC adapter (a drilled 3/4" threaded plug) after being threaded on. This is a very roundabout method and involves an extra 3/4" threaded coupler I had lying around, but it is also possible to simply remove the nipple and replace it with the SC adapter. Ideally, the 3/4" plug should be drilled to 1/2" for maximum flow, and the edges should be grinded down in order to fit standard blasters.
Here are some photos of older VHS designs for reference.