Making My Own Snow

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Aasnider
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Mon Nov 14, 2016 12:45 pm

Wow those are some real compressors there. I want to make more snow in less time and have done some research and it seems that this style of gun that you use and I just made is the most cost effective. Even if I have to get 2 compressors to run 3 guns and 3 seperate pressure washers, it still comes out significantly cheaper and easier than making a single gun that will spit 5 to 6 gpm. I am thinking I will make 2 more guns over the next year or so. If I get 2 more pressure washers and 2 of the harbor freight compressors I think that will accomplish what I want. The only issue I will have then is having to run drop cords so that I don't blow the breakers to any of my outlets with that many things running at once. I still need to check my well pumps GPM flow, I can always bring in water as I stated earlier in this thread. I made a write up on how to make the gun. Not sure if it is 100% complete or all that clear, but it's something...
Aasnider
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Tue Nov 15, 2016 11:40 am

I tested the water flow on one of my outdoor spigots. It took roughly 12.5 seconds to fill a gallon with water (already turned on full flow, put gallon under and timed fill). That means I can push about 4.8 gpm, which should be enough to run 3 guns simultaneously! As long as no one needs to flush a toilet anyway! I need to start collecting pressure washers and air compressors! Now I'll have something to do all winter when I can't make it to the slopes!
Wanakenatransplant
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Fri Jul 07, 2017 3:53 am

Aasnider, how did your snow guns work out the rest of the winter? Where are you located - I believe you said you are outside Greensboro, NC? I am in Salisbury, I would have interest in checking out your snow guns sometime. I am thinking about making some this fall myself.
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marzski
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Sat Aug 05, 2017 7:21 am

Missed this last fall. Check out how it's down in a backyard in Australia.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com.au/2017/0 ... u-homepage
2019-20: Bryce. Plans: Cataloochee, Massanutten; Taos, SLC using Ikon, Steamboat, Alta in April
Aasnider
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Tue Aug 22, 2017 12:07 pm

I only ran them two other times, they did well, about the same result as the first run. I still haven't had a marathon snowmaking session. I really need to invest in a larger compressor I am afraid of destroying mine, because it runs pretty solidly during operation. We are in the process of moving now, but I still will not have a decent hill. We are however going to be on 20 acres, so it's nothing a week and a dozer can't fix! Once it cools off and I fire it up again I'll post on here, your more than welcome to come check it out!
Wanakenatransplant
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Thu Dec 28, 2017 12:08 am

Aasnider and TSI,
I followed AAsnider's plans and built a snow gun a few weeks ago. I bought a Harbor Freight cheapo pressure washer and 26 gallon air compressor. I tested it a few weeks ago for a few hours, seemed to work okay. So, I built a second snow gun and bought another pressure washer. I am running both guns on a single stand (7 feet high, welded frame , spaced about a foot apart). I want to make a lot of snow in a smaller area for my daughter and friends to play. I just started up both snow guns this evening about 45 minutes ago. Temps are marginal right now (32 and 50% RH), but supposed to get to around 20 tonight. Even with the current marginal conditions, I have a good covering of frozen, slushy snow. A couple questions for you guys:
1. I notice my air compressor is running constantly with the 2 guns, even when my outlet pressure is only 40 psi. Do you see this as well? Should each gun have its own compressor (especially since my tank is only 26 gallons and is 115V)?
2. TSI you mentioned something about a holding tank for your air. As I understand it, the air from the compressor is coming out at higher pressure (I assume around 120 psi) and then goes to this holding tank which helps to collect moisture and there is a pressure regulator on the tank set to 40 psi. Is this all correct? What are you using for this tank? I am having trouble locating this tank, so I can purchase one. Any recommendations of where to buy one and if any parts are needed to modify the fittings? Is the tank absolutely necessary?

Any help is appreciated and any other suggestions to make this successful would be great. I am planning to make snow the next 5-6 nights. Right now, I am just concentrating in one area (so I don't have to get up during the night), then move to another area for the next night. Thanks again for the details from the articles.
TSI
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Sun Dec 31, 2017 11:11 pm

I make my own holding tanks with a 5 or 7 gallon portable tank, tractor supply sells them for about $30, I drill and weld a fitting about 12" from the original inlet fitting, the purpose is to collect moisture and give the air a chance to cool down stream, I run about 80 PSI to the holding tanks, then a pressure regulator set at 40 psi to the nuc. A 115v compressor is good for one external mix gun, you'll need at least 40psi at 4-5cfm and that's honestly maxing your compressor out, it might say 7-8cfm at 40psi but I have yet to see a 115v direct drive compressor do that. I use 2 compressors that are 60 gallons each to run 3 guns, requiring a total of 12-15cfm they are 220v and rated at 15cfm at 40 psi each. They run off of one pressure switch which is set to come on at 80psi and kick off at 100psi, this gives them a nice duty cycle run for about 2 mins off for 3 mins, they where original set from the factory to come on at 125 psi and cut off at 145psi, the higher pressure is not needed to make snow, and takes a lot of engery, builds heat, and added wear on the compressors to build that higher pressure. You have to make sure you have nucleation, the formation of the ice crystal or you will not make snow.
18/19
Beech Mtn 1
Wanakenatransplant
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Sat Jan 06, 2018 9:03 pm

TSI, thanks for the information. I have a similar holding tank with the outlet about a foot from the inlet. I will try to back down my cutin and cutout on the compressor as it currently runs almost all the time. I think I may have an issue with my snowgun, possibly a bad tip. Any chance you can add a few close-up pictures of one of your snow guns? I want to make sure I have my tips set-up correctly.
TSI
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Mon Jan 08, 2018 7:59 pm

Will get a pic buried it this weekend, 18hrs of blowing
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Beech Mtn 1
Wanakenatransplant
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Mon Jan 08, 2018 9:11 pm

Your pics make me jealous!! I have tried at least 4 times with temps as low as 15 degrees and always with similar slushy results. Your snow looks good. A few close-up pics of the snow gun may help me out. Thanks
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