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Tippmann FVA velocity and consistency test

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#1 Lord Odin

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Posted 27 April 2009 - 02:23 AM

This was a test done on the front velocity adjuster (FVA) of Tippmann marker's. The FVA, as seen below with the silver allen screw, protrudes into the powertube (PT) extension. The further it is screw into the PT, the slower the ball's velocity becomes. Due to the behavior of FVA, the further it is screwed in, the more backpressure it creates. That increases airflow to both the Cyclone and RT and resetting the hammer. So if you run into problems of Cyclone undercycling or your hammer is going full auto on you, turning in the FVA should help alleviate those symptoms by directing more airflow towards them.

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Here was the setup I used:
A5 receiver halves (newer style) w/ polished internals and both ports plugged
stock powertube w/ packing tape over RT/Cyclone hole
Orange Howitzer front bolt
X7 valve
Maddmann blue spring
AKA 2-Liter Plus Dual w/ HP spring and 7/8" extension cap
Lapco ION barrel adapter
12" Freak front
ION threaded Freak back
Reball insert
HPA on remote line
Metadyne folding stock
Gold cup oil
F1 shooting chrony

I performed this simple test by shooting with the FVA flushed with the inside of the powertube as my control and adjusted the FVA 1 full revolution at a time. I was quite proud of this experiment as it finally put my recent study of Calculus to use through integration. So for you naysayers of Calculus saying there will never be a use for it, here's a practical example for you. BTW, if I messed up at any point in my math, please let me know as I want to make sure it is correct.

Here's the data I obtained:

As you can see, the velocity drop off obtained is exponential and non-linear. In other words, it's rate of change increases for every turn instead of it being constant.

For those interested in where the Calculus aspect comes into play, it involves where the FVA screw meets the curvature of the powertube. To find the cross-sectional area is takes up, although very small, involves integration.

Here is the formula for the powertube.
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And here is the integration to find the cross-sectional area of the FVA screw in the powertube.
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The area marked a1 is the cross-sectional area that the FVA screw takes up when the contact area with the PT is wider than or equal to the width of the FVA screw itself. The striped area is the cross-sectional area of the FVA screw fully exposed when its width is maximized.

In the equation sheet, Area1 is equal to a1 or smaller. Area2 is cross-sectional area of the screw when it is exposed beyond the when the sides are the only contact points to the PT. Area3 refers to the cross-sectional area of the FVA screw when it crosses the X-axis.

As you can see from the data, after a certain point, the cross-sectional area the FVA takes up is pretty linear and does not take up an exponential area of the total powertube area for gas to flow through.

I've talked with Cockerpunk slightly regarding flow rates but both volumetric and mass flow rates don't appear to have a correlation to the performance shown. I don't know much about gases and their behaviors, so if anyone is able to help show a relationship between the velocities and cross-sectional area of the FVA in the PT, it would help out a ton. I'd really like to be able to illustrate the relationship.

In more practical terms (and based on other tests I've conducted), the FVA is almost 4 times as effective at adjusting the velocity than drive springs or hammer weights. It must be noted, though, that adjusting the FVA creates a balancing act of ball velocity and Cyclone performance and should be taken into consideration.

Edited by Lord Odin, 29 June 2009 - 09:44 PM.

#2 Troy


    What... is the air-speed velocity of an unladen swallow?

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Posted 02 May 2009 - 09:53 PM

Lord Odin, I wouldn't mind seeing an efficiency test comparing an A5 using a FVA to adjust it's velocity verses an A5 using an RVA and an inline reg. I'd like to know inefficient the FVA really is.

#3 Spitlebug


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Posted 03 May 2009 - 04:41 AM

Yes this would be good for those who use Tippy's as markers. Perhaps it might help those who are considering future upgrades.

So tempted to suspend Kitty just so I can say I have....
Okay, fuck it....I just banned Kitty, that's going in the sig.

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#4 Lord Odin

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Posted 06 May 2009 - 10:49 PM

Has anyone else noticed in the consistency that it is pretty erattic at first and then gradually improves until the powertube is nearly completely blocked? When the FVA was flushed, I put the flat tip of the screw tanget to the edge of the powertube, which created two pockets on either side. Also, the tip of the screw is tapered. So it probably isn't until the 3rd or 4th screw that the pockets were completely filled. I would like to think that that is the explanation but am not sure. Wouldn't an obstacle in the air flow cause more inconsistency than a pocket?

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