This is my first instructable and in this instructable I will teach you how to make a water rocket nozzle using metal Orbit quick connects from home depot. This will be made of aluminum and will be much more durable than a plastic gardena nozzle.
With enough response I will post an instructable on how to build my launcher i feel as though it will help many people. The first launchers that I built didn't work due to an issue with the seal on the bottles. I built them out of pvc and used a guide rod but always managed to get them to leak. This instructable will ensure that you build a rocket that has no leak on the nozzle or on the launcher due to the system being built for no leaks.
ALWAYS wear safety glasses when working with tools.
I am not responsible for any injury or death that occur from you using water rockets or tools. Water rockets are dangerous and you should launch and pressurize them at a safe distance while wearing eye protection and other protective items.
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Step 1: Supplies and Tools
For this project you will need:
An empty windex bottle
A Metal male hose quick connect (Orbit Brand)
A machine screw that fits inside your quick connect or is close to it
Sandpaper: 100 and 400 grit
A flat file
A vise preferably wooden
Feel free to substitute any of the materials but we found that a windex bottle works much better than glass plus due to not having to sand the lip on one side of the cap. any cap with a removable seal that threads on to your bottle should work but may need some modification, more threads are better it is much harder to release at pressure that way.
Step 2: Prepare the Quick Connect
Remove the quick connect from packaging and take off the black rubber piece it just popped off on all of ours.
You can throw out the rubber piece you will not be needing it.
Step 3: Remove the Threads
For this step you will need:
your quick connect
A vice with wood sides or rubber around the quick connect so you don't damage it during this step
A hack saw
Place the quick connect securely in the vise and take your hack saw and cut along the second metal ridge, the one closest to the thread. Stay as close to this as possible down the entire quick connect when you are cutting. This will be HOT when you finish cutting so let it cool before touching it.
Notice the bottom of the quick connect on the side the treads were is fairly rough from the hack saw and most likely not level, we will fix this in the next few steps.
Step 4: Leveling the Base
In this step you will level the base with a file so that a proper seal can be created.
Place the quick connect in the vice but this time so that the base is on the top and level.
Take your file horizontally and file until it is level you can see where it isn't level if you see some gold on the edge on one spot but the gold is not there on another spot, it doesn't need to be perfect but it should be close. file until it is uniform and level.
You can then move on to the next step.
Step 5: Sanding and Polishing the Base
For this step take your 100 and 400 grit sandpaper and place it on your bench. First get rid of all of the deep gouges and scrapes that the hacksaw left, and survived the file. Do this by sanding evenly on the 100 grit sandpaper. It should look a bit scrated at the bottom but they should be very shallow scratches all over the base when you are done with the 100 grit sand paper.
Then polish with the 400 grit until it looks like brushed metal, and feels smooth. You are now done with this part for a few minutes, go and get your empty windex bottle for the next step.
Step 6: Getting the Cap and Seal From the Windex Bottle
I apologize for no pictures of this process I had already done this part before I decided to make an instructable on this, and didn't have another bottle to use.
Take the windex bottle and unscrew and remove the cap and pump mechanism.
while holding it on the table or in the vise whichever you feel more comfortable (clamps may be helpful take your hacksaw and cut above the cap but slightly above and be sure not to hit the cap this will make it look bad it won't destroy it and it will still likely work but try not to hit it. the tube that goes into the bottle will fall out first and with it should be the seal. The seal will be a circular disc of foam or rubber covered in a thin layer of rubber or plastic. It will have a square or circular hole on the inside of it. this will allow the water to flow through your nozzle we didn't enlarge this hole but if or when we do I will update this instructable.
Step 7: Making the Nozzle Fit in the Cap
You can try putting the nozzle in the cap right now but will realize that it doesn't fit this is what you need that screw and tape for.
Wrap the tape around the screw until it is snug on the nozzle and the nozzle doesn't spin on the screw and tape.
Now place this in the drill and grab your file. You NEED to wear safety glasses during this step, you could get metal filings in your eyes if you don't. You should only have to wear down the ridges until they are flat but it should still be lower between them. continually check to see if it will fit otherwise you could end up with one that is too small.
Put the drill on its highest speed and start it. carefully touch the ridges with the file until they wear down slightly. check if it doesn't fit continue otherwise you are done.
Step 8: Assembly
Now all that is left is assembly of your nozzle.'
Take your nozzle and place it into the cap,
now take the seal and place it over the nozzle inside the cap
screw your nozzle onto your rocket and launch
Step 9: Conclusion
Now that you are done you can build an launch a rocket from your launcher that uses metal quick connects.
With launchers that use quick connects please use a guide rod if you are just testing with a bottle otherwise it wont go straight and will go everywhere. It can be very dangerous.