How To Pressurize / Revive Old Tennis Balls...

Discussion in 'Other Equipment' started by SeasonedNovice, Sep 19, 2011.

  1. SeasonedNovice

    SeasonedNovice New User

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    Well, building a pressurizer is great if you have the right blueprint, Time, Money, and don't mind having something bulking.

    But as far as the normal everyday tennis Player, the Pressureball does GREAT. Outa-the-box functionality.
     
    #51
  2. zorcy3

    zorcy3 New User

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    True. The tanks are smaller then the tennis ball machines. about 8 inches across and 3 feet high. toss it in the trunk or jack a car up with it, it will hold the weight.

    3 balls are ok to just play a match, but to practice with 200 balls, you can't keep buying them every couple weeks. That is costly.
     
    #52
  3. rjw

    rjw Professional

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    Pictures?

    thx
     
    #53
  4. SeasonedNovice

    SeasonedNovice New User

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    The Pressureball holds 9...
     
    #54
  5. rjw

    rjw Professional

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    People with ball machines need a much different solution than those without....
     
    #55
  6. tes

    tes Rookie

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    rjw, in your quest for info on building a DIY pressurizing tank you may find some useful ideas by searching for "build your own pressure test vessel".

    You will get hits on discussion boards of guys who are building similiar devices to test electronics to be used in scuba diving.

    I am pretty sure you have more engineering knowledge than the average TT poster here so I don't have to tell you to pay attention to the cautions regarding the potential burst energy of pressurized gases.

    Good luck with your quest and stay safe...
     
    #56
  7. rjw

    rjw Professional

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    Sure , I could build something either from scratch or modify an existing pressure vessel, but at the moment, I have a lot on my plate...along with a bunch of dying US Open balls...lol

    Tryin not to re-imvent another wheel

    thx
     
    #57
  8. Torres

    Torres Banned

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    The plastic bag / bicycle pump pressureball.com device seems tedious beyond belief. 50 pumps, flaps, bit, clips, checking gauges.......no thank you.

    I use the Tourna Tennis Ball saver which is just a hard plastic twist tube. I use 4 tubes in total and rotate 2 tubes (6 balls) at a time which the other 2 repressurise. Works pretty well: http://www.uniquesports.us/mm5/merc...ode=USP&Product_Code=RST-3&Category_Code=RKAC

    But at the end of the day, repressurising balls only really adds value if you're playing on non abrasive surfaces or doing alot of group coaching. Play on most hard courts or macadam surfaced courts and the felt gets chewed off in no time at all.
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2011
    #58
  9. rjw

    rjw Professional

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    I agree that the plastic bag thing looks awkward and a bit wierd...but if it works and you like it...then what the heck.
     
    #59
  10. Wilson 1986

    Wilson 1986 Rookie

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    as someone who always likes to save money, not to mention getting the most out of the money I do spend, I did show maybe a little too much interest in such subjects.
    even though it is annoying when you have tennis balls that still feel like new but have lost their pressure.
    I have over 60 tennis balls right now since I last bought some, that was nearly three months ago and I have only used 6 balls so far.
    each tube of balls cost me pennies compared to the usual sale price so I'm not really too fussed about saving them.
    maybe it would be worth it if you bought balls at full price, but who would be silly enough to do that?
     
    #60
  11. rjw

    rjw Professional

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    Me...tretorns at 1.53 each and a case of Wilson Us open for my ball machine.The word on the street is that the cheaper Penn, etc balls don't recharge very well
     
    #61
  12. Wilson 1986

    Wilson 1986 Rookie

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    I was told the same about prince championship balls.
    I heard that putting them in a microwave or a tumble dryer before playing with them can revive dead balls.
    but with the prince balls, it just makes the rubber go stiff and the balls can even explode.
    so I was told anyway.
    I have never tried this with any balls so I wouldn't know.
     
    #62
  13. rjw

    rjw Professional

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    Plus my wife has laid down the law....no tennis stuff mixed in with kitchen appliances...hahaha.....bummer
     
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  14. Wilson 1986

    Wilson 1986 Rookie

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    always the way :)
     
    #64
  15. rjw

    rjw Professional

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    say what????
     
    #65
  16. zorcy3

    zorcy3 New User

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    to do what ever the wife says. If mammas not happy, no one is happy.:cry:
     
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  17. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    Yes, my microwaved balls got so hot the kitchen smelled like burnt rubber. Wifey didn't like that at all. Decided to wrap the balls with a hot, moist towel instead. Then my dbls partner did not want to use my warm, moist balls. May need to just use new balls.
     
    #67
  18. rjw

    rjw Professional

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    let the truth be told !!!
     
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  19. rjw

    rjw Professional

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    Unless she's your wife/girlfriend, I don't blame your partner....lol
     
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  20. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    Walking onto the court with my balls wrapped in a towel inspired a few unwanted comments. Especially playing mxd doubles.
     
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  21. rjw

    rjw Professional

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    the visual is too funny
     
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  22. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    Try to explain why. Because you and your balls are cold. You are too cheap to buy new balls. Why your balls must never be left on the court, always pocketed.
     
    #72
  23. zorcy3

    zorcy3 New User

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    ah, warm balls

    If your partner is carrying you, then get new balls when she tells you to, but if you are the best on the court that day, just tell them it has helped your game to get to this level. That will make them stop laughing!:evil: (to your face anyway)
     
    #73
  24. rjw

    rjw Professional

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    Finally this thread is getting good input.....:)
     
    #74
  25. Boxer

    Boxer New User

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    I got two of the refurbished pin lock kegs. These are rated to 120 psi and I believe it but I've never gone that high. The cunning part about the design is that the pressure inside pushes the lid into the rubber gasket improving the seal as pressure goes up (well, to a point, I'm sure).

    With experimentation I've discovered that long and low works better than fast and high when it comes to pressure. 30+ psi was enough to burst some of the balls I put in there. I've had better luck with ~25. The kegs will hold that easily for a week or two based on the gauge I'm using to measure. In some cases, like the Dunlop Grand Prix, it takes a couple of weeks for them to take on enough "new" pressure it seems.
    The pin lock corny connector set (one of those), one foot of corny tube (neoprene I think; could come from anywhere I guess but since they had the right dimension by the foot right there), and four corny clamps (again, generic but since they had the right size...). That's all I got from them in addition to the kegs themselves.

    It really was falling off a log easy to put this lot together. Good luck if you try it.
     
    #75
  26. zorcy3

    zorcy3 New User

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    Cold weather

    Did have some troubles over the weekend. 2 tanks of balls are about 9 months old. The felt holds up well, as you only hit it a couple times each practice. They are good as new still. Over the last week, the temps dropped. Since they are stored in the garage, they got cold, too. They not only did not take the pressure charge, they lost pressure. We are pressurizing them now at 10 C then moving inside after a few days. This should warm up the rubber to hold in what we have put back. I think we have to research winter balls and summer balls. Seems this will make a big difference on recharging. I will try nitrogen at a colder temp and see how that works too.
     
    #76
  27. rjw

    rjw Professional

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    Thanks for the response....I'm weighing my options.....but this sounds promising.
     
    #77
  28. ClairHarmony

    ClairHarmony Rookie

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    I have corny keg as well, it already came pre-fitteed for tennis ball recharging. It was I believe $60 or so on clearance from a fly-by-night tennis ball cannister charging company around 11 years ago. I did not know what the rebadged pressurized cannisters they were selling were called...but now I know! Learn something new everyday, corny kegs!

    BUUUT, the one to me FATAL problem with this execution was that the opening on the corny kegs used was obviously NOT designed with tennis bobo ball use in mind. Great for getting drunk, but not so much tennis. It's too small I tell you! Meanning in other words, you can't POUR your balls in and out of the thing...only one measely ball at a time, maybe two if I'm generously stretching my memory a bit.

    Does the thing work? Absolutely. I never had to overcharge the balls. I just left them at 15-17 PSI which was fine as I would oepn a new batch of Grand Priz balls and leave them in there. Basically, just take out 9 to play each time, then dump them when the felt was gone. Polayed like new the whole time.

    This said, I eventually soon found the thing pointless after that first case of balls. The tennis ball savers from Unique sports, bought three of them to hold a total of 9 balls. They work not quite as well, as for sure the balls don't feel good as new each time you play; but they're close enough to be more than useable...no need to ferment them in the trash can just yet. Same deal, use until felt is no good. Honestly, the mini tennis ball maintainers (they should be called this, as they certainly are not ball revivers as the corny kegs can be) are FAR more convenient, take up zilch space but in your bag, don't require a mini air compressor (sound like a bleeting pig for crying out loud, even the crickets in the cupboard, ceiling tiles, and my hair, shudder and complain!!! ...wheww, glad that's over), or high-quality, high-volume, bicycle pump...not cheap, btw. 'Bout 60 bucks. With a cheap K-Mart special pump...your arms will be tiring from the boring and monotnous pump, plus you'll be hunching over much lately? With the nice pump, it felt like it took a good 1 miniute 44 seconds or so while watching the boob tube in high-figh CRT to pump her up...then it was all over. I did not find the experience terribly satisfying, but it was better than the bleeting mini air compressor which took about 45 seconds of excruciating Casey Gag-Anthony!

    By comparison, it was an acceptable happy-medium solution to me, with the added benefit of getting in some nice tennis elbow therapy as well...and hey, that's boring as well. Double your pleasure, I guess.

    Really, two big problems to me. For these to be justfiable, A) you need to be able to hold 150 balls or so in a SINGLE container, and B) be able to POUR the balls in and out.

    I can't overstate the importance of B) especially, enough! To me, it's pretty freakin' important. The pump you up aspect honestly ain't all that bad, and like I said probably good for the ol' elbow as well; but I can't tell you how frustrating it is to buy something like this for hopper use mainly, and find that it's a no go. It's excruciatingly slowwww....to have to plop out one cute, adorable, baby puppy ball at a time! I mean I love delivering babies y'all in my other life as a baby deliverer...but this is too much time and hassle folks to be practical!

    With pressureless balls, yeah they stink like oversized golf ball nut sacks, but you can just take the dump them and forget them approach. Incidientally, I drove cross-country during the heat of summer with the corny keg, and it depressurized in the trunk like by half within three days....

    I believe the company said they were working on bringing a new and improved larger opening to market, but then they either went under from lack of interest, or simply stopped caring. The market for these is decidedly small pond...the only thing is, on TW you are liable to think this is a large spacious blue lagoon with a loving and committed, agless Brook Shields who just called me...no really, it's true.

    Beyond this board, no one really cares enough about these to mass produce and special order them with an *appropriately* sized opening to be useful for high-volume, DAILY use...as would be required by a serious amateur hobbyist, greedy pig, private tennis club owner...mua-ha-ha! Or, your friendly local neighborhood teaching pro/prviate eye and bounty hunter, named Skip McCallister at your service, I also do window cleaning.

    Honestly, I only really see that big green machine thingy or the tennis ball charger 150 being "worth" it in the long haul.

    I honestly don't think the corny keg is worth the trouble long haul, UNLESS you can get one with a large enough opening to pour balls. In that case, having to use two or even three of these wouldn't be all that half-bad. Corny kegs are robust like tanks, they look like giant, oversized fire extinguishers that sit in a corner. Picking them up and down and looking like you can hurl it out the window, makes you look and feel like an incredibly strong and masculine He-man in front of your woman. The feeling is just incredible! But that's where the endorsement ends for me.

    The tennis ball charger 150 has been around forever, in hindsight I think they got the right balance of attibutes. Niche market, so charge up the wazoo if you hope to stay in business. The people who REALLY gonna need, are gonna buy, and beech and complain all the way to picking up the phone; but yeah, in the end, they probably gonna still buy...muttering, bunch of nice smelling, freaking, paper money for a bunch of no good, stinky, smelly overrated hunk of plastic with a lid, valve stem, and boiling needle point, pressure gauge in it#@%#!!!!!

    But then? Yeah, you'll probably in the end be satisfied with it, and not complain no more after the first week. Then, you'll begin to compliment yourself in front of the mirror and flex for no good reason. The tennis ball charger has a built-in pump, can be poured, and holds the holy sweet spot of balls...150 or so, and it's *good to go*.
     
    #78
  29. ClairHarmony

    ClairHarmony Rookie

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    Honestly, ask yourself is it really worth it to you in the end? It's expsnive, but new rackets are a FAR bigger waste of money. That be a passing fad, that can be had on clearnace tomorrow. No money? Well then, what are you waiting for silly? Sell that puppy right this instance! Puppies depreciate overtime at an accelerated rate, make you play fetch when they should be fetching your paper, or at least making your morning coffee and scrambling your eggs without secretly slobbering in it like all the good tv dogs like Lassie do...so yeah, RJW show your wife this post, and she'll slap you silly. Convince her to allow you to do the right thing...DON'T allow her to exercise your manly inner, Tim "the foolish man" Taylor, drive...to build...! Where no man has before...unless you're an ISFP, in which case, you probably like working with your hands, 'cause doing man and craft projects on the side is a tactile feeling way of life, that brings you great pleasure.

    A ball machine lift works a treat, but there is no existing market for folding rolling carts from Harbor Freight that with 20% off coupon and on sale during every other sale weeks can be head for next to nothing. It's not as good, but sometimes the ready-there solution is not bad. In this case, logically speaking, the DIY options...though tempting, are not as good as the ready-made. Have yet to see, large-enough pracitcal container like the oversized, plastic gas container thingy Tennis Ball Charger rebadged...and probably, no doubt had to *special order* in bulk, available to the public at large. It seems like there should something out there, that's just the right size and dimensions to pressureize and hold 150 balls, and then you can say ha! world! Look at me, I did it, I really did it for less...and better too! But that's not really the case here, it's a simple job, that requires simple parts, but only Tennis Ball Charger has put it out there at a price that's not *quite* out of reach, but just enough to make you stop, and scream fooey! I protest! I think honestly in this case, you're just better off selling that puppy, he'll probably get sick and ask for veterinarian help and premium Alpo dog food before you know it. Whereas with the Tennis Ball Charger 150, you'll be able to go all pro in no time! Just...charge it, for plastic is your friend. And, no, I do not work for Tennis Ball Charger; but if I did? I would suggest they hire a good ad man, so they can sell more and lower prices; because, to be honest, their current marketing campaign is abysmall, an out-of-sight, and practically not even there. They have just about ZERO presence, and it's all their fault...NOT Tennis Warehouse's for not bringing them into the spotlight...hint-hint, hint-hint, bring them into the spotlight! Only then...perhaps, the MASS consumer will no longer buy balls in bulk, that go flat the second you open them anymore...and then? Gasp, the WHOLE TENNIS INDUSTRY collapses.

    No, seriously, think about it for a second. The effects would be pretty catastrophic if someone tried to mass produce a tennis ball charger for less money...why? Because, no matter how cheap; once you buy a tennis ball charger that "fills" your needs...why would pray-tell would you ever "need" to buy another one? They're not exactly sexy things, or collector cards like Pokemon. Exactly. It's NOT that the big bad ball manufacturers don't have the buying power to EASILY mass churn out a tennis ball tub for less...it's just that they'd go out of business, and enter the hot dog street selling business instead if they did. No one's thought of that yet, but I'm sure *they* have. It HAS to be true. They've been ripping you off with tennis balls that go dead before you know it for years, and they know it! And why? Because everybody knows you can't play tennis with a dead ball anymore. Much better to churn out more tennis balls, than oversimplify production with a tennis ball charger, that'll put everyone out of business. It's just a bad move all around, some "inventions" come with unfortunate consequences...tell me about it, I know this all too well. What's good for the individual, *hobbyist* consumer...can also put a small niche industry out to pasture, out of work. It's something to think about, for there are those to whom tennis is a hobby, and those to whom tennis ball sales is how...just as one example, how tennis boutique shops at your local club make ends meet. That and stringing rackets, 'cause with the Tennis Warehouse's of the world, ain't no one gonna buy rackets from ol' emaciated grandma and pop anymore. It's an oversized, global world we're living in, where Walmart and online, mean the little boys go extinct for good without wonton, excessive, tennis ball sales to help keep them afloat. It's not all greed, it's responsibility to your fellow little man in this case. As it is, the tennis ball charger is priced *just right* imo. If you REALLY want to get it, it's within reach, no more than a crummy celeron processor in a Dell. For a coaching program with some fiskal sense? It's a no-brainer. For everyone else, it's out of sight, out of mind, buy a sody pop, some grip tape, and a tennis ball can or two, the next time you're at your local friendly, ma and pop, tennis shop. And make sure to smile, and tell them Mr. Smith, the mormon, sent you. Then wink, at ma's daughter...ah, you're looking pretty fine there, ..."Ma...! The middle-aged man is creeping me out, like make him leave!" "What? Can't a man look at the latest tennis mini skirt in season these days anymore, without being harassed? I am so misunderstood! There's TW babes, on Youtube; I don't need this anymore..." "No, wait, come back!" sayeth Ma, like my daughter, was just kidding you know, giggle-giggle, tee-hee, flashing smile in the recycled, air conditioner wind."
     
    #79
  30. PrinceMoron

    PrinceMoron Hall of Fame

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    OK so what I want is a way to pressurise a ball so much that when I serve it just explodes. Must be a way.
     
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  31. rjw

    rjw Professional

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    Clairharmony...whatever you're on, you need to share....:twisted:
     
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  32. Boxer

    Boxer New User

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    Glad to help with the identification :)
    Yep -- as I mentioned in post #47 above...bit fiddly. Not, IMHO as bad as you make out though -- I upend the keg in one arm and put my other hand in the opening and use it to "deliver" the balls as you put it. I can more or less pour them into the pratice bucket in a matter of seconds...fast as upending a 5 gallon paint bucket full of balls?? No, but not fatally tedious.
    Doing that is a lot more expensive if you need enough balls to fill a decent size practice hopper or worse yet a ball machine. It probably comes down to what your usage model is...if a smaller number of balls is good, the keg is probably overkill and more trouble than its worth, I agree.

    Regarding pressure delivery, I should perhaps state that I had a light duty compressor to hand (air power tools) before I started on the tennis ball science experiment. That takes all the "work" out of it for sure ;)
    No further qualification required, I'd say...this is clearly into mad scientist territory in my book and although I get good results I got at least as much fun out of treating it like a science fair project with my kids as anything else -- cheapish engineering and physics lesson with a dash of entertainment and I get a "green" attaboy for recylcing as well ;)
     
    #82
  33. zorcy3

    zorcy3 New User

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    Don't say I didn't warn you, but yes. There is a way and it can still go off in your hand. You will loose lots of balls trying to get just the right pressure, too. You will need a tank that will go high enough to charge the balls with enough pressure to explode. Yes the stainless steal tanks. Stay with all new ball, same make, model and production run. Over charge them. Start at say 50 PSI for a week. When you open the tank, if one does not explode right away, put it back in. Charge to 60PSI. Do this ever 10 PSI till the first one pops, explodes or pfisses out. Then take your balls out, in a black ball bag to increase the pressure in the sun. Gently set them next to you, and pull them out one at a time. Serve.

    The idea is that they are right at the limit of bursting, the hot sun will increase it further. The sudden impact will burst them..... Ever hold a balloon in your hand and it hurt when it popped? 100 times that, so it will hurt. Damage to your racket, use an old one that needs restrung.


    Good luck, and you were warned.....:shock:
     
    #83
  34. zorcy3

    zorcy3 New User

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    Not so, I DO make them. And I do sell them.

    The main draw back, is that once you have the 1 or 2 you need, you don't buy anymore. They are stainless steal, they don't break, they don't need much for repairs and you can use it as a jack stand for your car. It's not like the electronics industry, you have to keep updating. I find they only sell for so long, then the business dies down. Was thinking about doing ****, open up the field. Once the pros in one area are done, most of your customers are done too.

    Maybe I need a time release that will deteriorate the tank after 2 years. Like MS Windows does.:mad:
     
    #84
  35. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    ClairHarmony, I own two Pro-Bounce canisters to pressurize balls! Chose not to buy the ball washer as my balls are clean.

    http://web.archive.org/web/20021127163826/http://www.pro-bounce.com/
     
    #85
  36. zorcy3

    zorcy3 New User

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    Wow, I just got a letter from reBounce asking me information about my tank. Did anyone else get it? They must be afraid I will infringe on their idea.
     
    #86
  37. leroy_sunset

    leroy_sunset Rookie

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    Thread revival!

    A while back, there was a TT thread that had pics of a repressurization chamber for tennis balls using a corny keg. I wanted to try this, as I have a basket of very decent (but flat) Penn balls that I would like to use for serve practice.

    First, I got a $30 used corny keg from craig's list of goodness. It's a Pepsi-style keg, and I got a tap and gas fitting for the keg from my local homebrew supply store ($9 each). The keg holds roughly 60 balls.

    Next, I got a length of 1/4" ID plastic tube that's reinforced for pressure ($2) and two hose clamps ($3! for tiny hose clamps?) from my local hardware store.

    Last, I got a Schrader valve (bike tube valve, basically) with threads from an auto supply store for $2.

    I heated the tubing up on one end with a hair dryer to make it soft, and then inserted the Schrader valve, then clamped.

    I pressurized the keg to 30psi. I heard some thumps inside the chamber - either popped balls or collapsed balls. We'll see in a week or so what's up.

    One last thing - eye protection! Pressure vessels + DIY = explosion risk.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    #87
  38. Torres

    Torres Banned

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    #88
  39. leroy_sunset

    leroy_sunset Rookie

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    OK, I gave it a week. I checked the balls after 3 days at 30psi to see if any popped, but they were all fine. I pumped the keg back to 25psi for the remainder of the week.

    Of 60 balls, 9 weren't giving me the bounce I wanted to see. 1 of those 9 was totally dead.

    I would also say 3 of the balls were "over-inflated."

    I am giving the 9 sub-par balls another week in a keg at 27psi. I will serve with the 51 graduates tomorrow night.
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2012
    #89
  40. goran_ace

    goran_ace Hall of Fame

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    Btw, I love your Rebel With A Cause poster.
     
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  41. leroy_sunset

    leroy_sunset Rookie

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    Thanks, I've had it since high school. Turns out it's a pretty rare poster. I thought about trying to get JMac to sign it last year at an event I attended, but I was too lazy to elbow my way through a sea of children and pro autograph hunters.
     
    #91
  42. jrxl

    jrxl New User

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    Did you have any noticeable pressure loss over the week in the keg?
     
    #92
  43. beernutz

    beernutz Hall of Fame

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    I built a similar system using 3 corny kegs about a year ago and keep about 150 balls pressurized in them for use in my ball machine (a Silent Partner Star). I already had the kegs and tubing from my old homebrewing days as well as a nice car tire pressurizer so I think I spent less than $10 in additional parts to complete the system. The only downside I've found is that it takes a bit of time getting the balls into and out of the kegs between uses.

    What I do is try is use the balls during a three day period, for example I unload them on a Friday and then leave them unpressurized until after using them the next Sunday when I put them back under pressure. This cuts down on the time spent just moving balls into and out of kegs. I timed it once and it takes about 1.5 seconds per ball grabbing them three at a time, and since a keg typically holds about 65 balls it takes a little under two minutes per keg to load or unload or about 5 minutes total for all the balls I want to use, which is really not that big of a deal.

    To jrxl, I'm not leroy obviously but I don't see much pressure loss even over an extended period of time in the keg. I don't use as much pressure as leroy does (mine was determined through trial and error) so his results may be different. I did spend a good bit of time getting the kegs to seal properly by replacing old gaskets and using a keg lube/sealer product on them.
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2012
    #93
  44. dak95_00

    dak95_00 Professional

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    I've got that poster and another which lists his match record from ......I think.....1984. I was a big McEnroe fan back in the day. At least, I think I have them around here somewhere.
     
    #94
  45. leroy_sunset

    leroy_sunset Rookie

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    No measurable pressure loss whatsoever.

    By the way, these were flat balls. If it's just pressure maintenance, then 15psi is fine. But I needed to "recharge" these balls, so I went with a higher pressure. Seems to have worked.
     
    #95
  46. txt858

    txt858 Rookie

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    #96
  47. retrograde

    retrograde Rookie

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    If you read the customer feedback, there are comments about the pressure chamber being very small, so the sprayer needs to be constantly re-pumped. Not sure if this would affect ability to pressurize balls? I also wonder how long it would hold pressure, Harbor Freight doesn't always have the highest quality products (sure are cheap though).
     
    #97
  48. retrograde

    retrograde Rookie

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    Just wanted to give a shout out for the excellent photos and description. I followed your lead and am now fermenting my first batch of balls :)

    I got a used 5-gal Cornelius keg from Beverage Elements with ball locks on the gas-input and liquid-output fittings (those shiny round "posts" on top of the keg). Also bought the necessary plastic quick-disconnect for the gas fitting.

    The gas fitting internally has a spring-loaded pressure valve (a "poppet") that lets air into the keg from your air pump. Normally both the gas and liquid fittings are shut tight when there isn't a disconnect attached.

    Most ball lock kegs have a manual pressure relief valve on top of the lid and this comes in handy when it's time to pull the balls out. Pin lock kegs usually don't come with that kind of lid, although they can be retrofitted easily and are sometimes sold that way.

    I used the same air tank schrader valve shown in leroy_sunset's photo. Instead of using the high pressure hose (usually rated to 200+ psi) I used regular vinyl hose that's good up to 50 psi). The tip to heat the 1/4" ID hose before inserting the schrader valve is a good one since its a very tight fit. The hose clamps are stainless steel, 5/16" wide, 7/32" to 5/8" OD.

    After pumping air into the keg, I attached a tire pressure gauge to the schrader valve to check the pressure, then removed the disconnect and its hose (the poppet seals the gas fitting).

    I'm pressurizing at 28 psi right now (150 strokes with a bicycle floor pump). Like others, I also heard a few "popcorn popping" sounds from inside the keg when pressure went over about 25 psi.
     
    #98
  49. leroy_sunset

    leroy_sunset Rookie

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    Hey all, I just wanted to give an update about my repressurization. After about a month at 25psi, I sorted through all the balls and tossed the ones that weren't giving me the bounce I wanted. About 10% were duds (these are all regular Penns). I then pumped the keg back to 25psi and left it for about a month. I took my wife out for some practice last week and about 1/2 of the balls were "overinflated" such that they actually bounced a bit more lively than even out of a brand new can. These old balls (some are well over 1 year old) hit almost like new. I am very pleased. I will be storing them at 15psi from here on out.
     
    #99
  50. IdrinkYourMilkshake

    IdrinkYourMilkshake Rookie

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    I have two kegs with my ball machine. I never had any luck with Penn balls. But US Opens are awesome and work great.
     

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