Below, is a picture of a pair of AirHog 88 cubic foot carbon fiber, 4500 psi tanks, and the portable, 9.5 cubic foot carbon fiber, 4500 psi AirHog Pigmee tank. The Pigmee tank is no longer available. I believe it has been replaced by a larger version. PCP airguns run on high pressure air, and these tanks are what I use to supply HPA to my PCP's.
Like how to use carbon fiber high pressure air tanks, hoses, fittings, and adapters. This really hit home with me the past year or so. I've gotten quite a few friends into shooting the Benjamin Discovery, or Marauder PCP rifles, and invariably, I get a lot of blank stares when we get into tanks, hoses and adapters.
I thought I would put this blog story together, so that folks who have little, or no knowledge of these items, might get a better idea as to what we are talking about. It's not really as involved, or time consuming as some folks would have you believe. This is going to be a picture intensive story because as they say, "a picture is worth a 1000 words."
Above is the AirHog 88 cubic foot, 4500 psi carbon fiber tank, complete with the valve, and gauge assembly. The large black knob at 6 o'clock, controls the main valve, and this is the one you use to control the air flowing into your gun. The gauge will indicate the air pressure in the gun as it is filling.
The smaller silver knob at 9 o'clock, is the bleed valve. After the gun is filled, and you have closed the main valve using the black knob, you need to bleed the high pressure air that remains in the hose, that goes from the tank to the guns fill port. Turning that silver knob will open the bleed valve and let the air left in the hose escape. The gauge will drop to zero. You can now safely remove the fill adapter from the gun.
Below is a picture of a DIN fitting, with male Foster fitting on the end, waiting to be installed on the tank.
We need some way to get the air from the tank to the various types of guns. There is no industry standard for fill adapters, connectors, probes, or fittings. It seems that every manufacturer has a different idea of what works. To help simplify the situation, I've taken the following approach.
Instead of an individual DIN fitting, hose, and adapter for every individual gun, I've gone with one DIN fitting with a male Foster fitting on the end. (pictured above) This screws into the valve assembly on the tank, and looks like the picture below.
Next, I have one three foot section of micro-bore hose, with a female Foster connector on each end. It is pictured below with an Air Arms fill adapter on the left, and an FX fill probe on the right. Notice that both the FX probe, and AA adapter have male Foster fittings screwed on to their ends. I put those on, they do not come that way from the factory.
The female Foster connector on the end of the hose, is all that I need to fill my Discovery, and Marauders. Those three pieces, female Foster, FX probe, and AA fill adapter, are all that I need to fill all of my different PCP's.
First up, I'll show how to put air into a Benjamin Discovery. There is no probe or adapter needed. The female Foster on the end of the hose just snaps onto the male Foster fitting on the end of the Discovery's air tube like this. (see pictures below) Make sure the female Foster connectors are securely attached to the male fittings. If they aren't, and you open the main valve, they will pop off and may flip around and possibly hit you. Not good. Also, make sure that any gun you are filling is not loaded.
I VERY SLOOOOWWWLY, fill the Discovery to 2000 psi, shut off the main valve, open the bleed valve using the silver knob, and when the air is vented from the line, I simply remove the female Foster connector from the gun, replace the cover on the Discovery's male Foster fitting, and I'm ready to hunt. You want to fill slowly, so that you do not over heat the seals, and damage your gun.
The first thing I do, is to snap the FX fill probe onto the end of the hose using the female Foster connector. When connected, it looks like the photo below.
I open the main control valve, and VERY SLOOOOWWWLY, bring the gun up to 3000 psi. The Discovery runs on a 2000 psi fill, but the FX 2000 runs on a 3000 psi fill. When the gun is filled, I close the main valve, and just like with the Discovery, I open the bleed valve to let the HPA out of the hose, so that I can safely remove the fill probe from the gun. With the probe removed, I'm all done, and ready to shoot. This takes a whole lot longer to describe than to actually do.
I've popped the FX fill probe off of the end of the hose, and the hose is now ready to receive the AA 410 fill adapter, as seen above. I simply snap the male fitting on the AA fill adapter, onto the end of the hose, using the female Foster connector, and connect the fill adapter to the rifles fill port, as shown in the photo below.
I use the same routine as I did with the FX 2000. I slowly fill the gun to 3000 psi, close the main valve, bleed the hose using the bleed valve, remove the fill adapter, replace the cover on the air cylinder, and I'm ready to hunt. Nothing to it.
I have a Dillon gun rug, that I store the hose and adapters in. The hose gets coiled up and goes into the main compartment. The probe, or fill adapter goes into the pocket on the side. Gun rug shown below.
That's it folks. Nothing much to using a carbon fiber tank. It takes me a minute or less to put the hose on the tank, and connect a probe or adapter to the other end. If I'm shooting my Discovery, or one of my Marauders, I don't even have to do that.
Lots of words and pictures to show how to do something that only takes a minute or two, to actually accomplish.
I get a kick out of the lame excuse, that the reason some guys don't get involved in shooting PCP's, is because there's just too much stuff to deal with. Nonsense, it involves a tank, a hose, and a few fittings or adapters. Way less stuff than when going fishing.
"Yeah but, you have to stop and get the carbon fiber tank filled." Yep, you're right about that, and I have to stop and get gas, and go to the laundry, and get groceries, and get the car serviced, and go by the hardware store, eat dinner, and lots of other things in this life.
Getting my 4500 psi tanks filled a few times a year, is more than worth the small amount of time involved, especially considering the great pleasure I get from hunting with my PCP's.
If you would like more info about the AirHog carbon fiber tanks, they can be reached at, 505-281-4242, or 888-871-1722.