Frequently Asked Questions
In this section, we try to anticipate answers to questions you might have about our PRODUCT / SERVICE. It also includes answers to some of the problems our users have encountered with their launcher. If you have questions or need additional information, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 1-208-425-3410.
1. There seems to be an air leak from my EZ-Launch Bottle Rocket Launcher. What should I do?
A. Most air leaks occur where the black launch pipe screws into the threaded insert at the base of the launch tube. To correct this problem, tighten the launch pipe with a set of pliers. If the problem continues, remove the black launch pipe, add additional teflon tape to the threads and then screw it back into the threaded insert. Use a set of pliers to tighten it more if necessary.
B. All units are tested before being sent out to make sure there are no air leaks. If the air leak is not coming from the black launch pipe, it may come from the plumbing on the underneath side of the launcher. Pressurize the bottle, place the unit upside down in a bucket of water and see if any air bubbles are surfacing from the various connections. If this is the cause of the air leakage, call EZ-Launch LLC at 1-208-425-3410, or send us an email at email@example.com and explain to us the problem. If you need to send it to us for repair, we will repair it for you immediately and return it too you. If it is still under warranty, we will also reimburse you for your shipping costs.
C. You may have an o-ring that is not tight enough when the bottle is inserted. Send us a request by e-mail or telephone and we will either send you a replacement o-ring or a new black launch pipe free of charge. A quick fix to this problem is to take thread or preferably some fine dental floss and place a half a dozen or so layers in the o-ring groove and then replace the o-ring. If you have placed the right number of layers of the thread, you will notice the o-ring fits tighter when the bottle is inserted and you don't lose air pressure.
2. Is there any way to adjust the launcher at time of blast-off so two liter bottle will go in the direction I want?
Yes, there are several ways.
A. For launchers with just one stake hole. When inserting the stake to stabilize the launch base, hook it in the center hole from the inside instead of the outside. When the stake is securely in place, notice you can rotate the launch base by lifting it up on the side of the tire valve stem. Maintain its position by inserting a piece of wood or something similar under the base.
B. For newer anchors with three stake holes. Insert the hook on the two stakes into the holes on the two tabs that are located on the bottom, back side of the launch base. Drive the stakes into the ground, using a hammer if necessary. With the stakes firmly in place, notice that you can rotate the base 90 degrees. Place an appropriate piece of wood under the launch base at the correct angle for firing.
C. It is possible to hold the launcher in your hands, above your head, and push on the tab that is on the opposite side of the launch tube from the normal release tab. It takes quite a bit of pressure to achieve release, using this method, and the more air pressure added, the harder it is to achieve release. However, with practice, release can be achieved. Using this method, you can direct the bottle to go any direction you may want.
3. Are there any other useful purposes for the pop bottle rocket launcher?
On one occasion I found a neighbors dog on my lawn, preparing it for a shovel ready job. I quickly pressurized a bottle, pointed it at the dog, and released it by pushing on the tab mentioned above. The bottle scared the dog, it let out a (@*&%$) sound and quickly retreated to its home base. I haven't seen it on my lawn since then.
4. Is there a way to prepare for launching a two liter bottle partly filled with water without losing any water?
A. For launchers with just one stake hole. The best way to do this is to insert the hook on the stake on the inside of the launch base and then securely insert the stake into the ground. This lets you to rotate the launcher 90 degrees from horizontal. and allows you to insert the bottle onto the black launch pipe without losing any water.
B. For newer launchers with three stake holes. Insert the hook on the two stakes into the holes on the two tabs that are located on the bottom, back side of the launch base. Drive the stakes into the ground, using a hammer if necessary. With the stakes firmly in place, notice that you can rotate the base 90 degrees. You can now insert the bottle filled with water onto the launch pipe without incurring any loss of water. Place an appropriate piece of wood under the launch base at the correct angle for firing.
5. Is it possible to purchase additional o-rings or the black launch tubes?
Yes, it is. You can purchase a packet of five o-rings or two launch pipes for $2.50 plus S/H. If your launcher is still under warranty you will receive these at no charge.
6. What is the best way to fill the two liter bottle with air?
. You can use either a bicycle pump or an air compressor. With the bicycle pump you can enter only 25 to 35 psi. With the air compressor, you can enter up to the maximum recommended amount which is 100 psi. The good news is that at 25 to 35 psi. you can still send the bottle a long ways into the air. With 100 lbs of air pressure, you can send the bottle over 200 feet into the air.
7. I seem to be having a problem getting the bottle to release properly, even when it is locked in properly and there is adequate air pressure.
I have found two reasons for the problem listed above. They are as follows:
A. Be sure the two liter bottle you are using will freely slide up and down the black launch pipe. I have found that in todays market there are many bottles that have a narrower opening than is ideal and they may fit too tight on the black launch pipe to allow for a smooth release. Find a bottle that will freely slide up and down the launch pipe and you should have no problem with an excellent release.
B. In addition, you may have an o-ring that is too large in diameter and has too tight a fit when the bottle slides onto it. Because it fits so tightly on the inside of the bottle, it will restrict proper lift off. We are currently supplying a white envelope with 3 o-rings with each launcher purchased. One o-ring is larger than the one that is inserted on the black launch pipe. One is the same and one is smaller in diameter. Insert the smallest o-ring on the black launch pipe. If you need additional o-rings, call us at 1-208-424-3410 or e-mail us at blastoff@ez-launch .com and we will send you either a new o-ring or a new launch pipe.
8. What do you do when one end of the spring gets caught in the space adjacent to the release tab and prevents the EZ-Launch from achieving a satisfactory release?
First, find a small flat bladed screw driver. With it, press against the spring that is sticking out and push it back into the interior of the launch tube. Once properly located, it will snap into its proper place. This should solve your problem.
9. Explanation from user on why a bicycle pump would not add air to the 2 Liter Bottle Rocket Launcher.
Greetings from Seattle,
The problem I experienced was not being able to get air into the valve stem, the rocket launcher and ultimately the bottle rocket. It was extremely hard or impossible to even push the pump down. At first I assumed that my pump was broken but when I tested it, I found it worked fine on my bike tires. After much effort, I finally discovered what was wrong. I believe other customers may have experienced the same issue. I am glad to report that there are simple and easy ways to remedy the problem or prevent it in the future for your customers.
I took my pump and the E-Z launch 2 Liter Bottle Launcher to a neighborhood bicycle store. I tried numerous pumps there with the launcher. The results seemed odd at first. Some air pumps worked and some did not work on the launcher. However all worked fine on bicycle inner tubes. I finally concluded that some bicycle pump heads were not fitting far enough down on the valve stem, and therefore not pushing on the pin that opens the valve so the EZ-Launch can receive air. This was the problem with my bicycle pump.
Upon looking at my bike valve stem and comparing it with the one on the launcher, I could see why this was happening. The Launcher uses a thicker, sturdier, auto & light truck valve stem. The problem is that some air pump heads (like mine) don’t fit over the thicker diameter of this type of value stem. The easiest solution to this problem is to find an air pump that has an opening wide enough to accommodate this studier valve stem.
Many (not all) of the pumps at the bicycle store worked. I did not wish to purchase a new pump, as good ones are not cheap. My pump was high quality, so instead I took a slightly more invasive step and slightly widened the entrance to my bicycle pump head, sort of counter-sinking it with my drill. So that was the problem, the heavy duty valve stem (appropriately) used on the EZ-Launch plastic bottle rocket launcher does not work with some air pumps. After a month of mysterious problems my science classes got some glorious water rocket launches.
10. Suggestion for a good air compressor.
My brother in law, Alan Schultz, brought an air compressor to a family reunion for me to use with my bottle rockets. I was very impressed with it and later bought one of my own. It is called a "PSX2" and I bought it at Costco for $69.95. It has a number of features that include:
1. Cables to jump start a vehicle.
2. A light fixture.
3. Can be plugged into any 120 Volt power source for recharging.
4. Its air hose has an attachment that can be locked onto the tire valve on the launcher and with a push of a button, you can have it fill the launch bottle with up to 120 psi, It makes the filling the bottle so quick and easy. I daresay it could handle up to 50 or more launches on its normal power supply.
5. It can energize any appliance that depends on 12 volts of power.
6. It allows you to go to any location, lock the launcher in place, attach its air hose to the tire valve on the launcher, and have unlimited power to continually pressurize the EZ-Launch bottles, release them, pressurize the next, release it, etc. It makes you totally independent of having to have an electric cord that you must plug into an electrical outlet.
11. Information about using EZ-launch Bottle Rocket Booster with the EZ-launch Bottle Rocket Launcher.
We have begun marketing a set of fins that screw onto the threads where the bottle cap is located. Properly installed, the fins will insure that the bottle will go straight up and then straight down. The fins are to a launch bottle the same as feathers are to an arrow. We have been interested in obtaining a set of fins that could be added to the EZ-Launch for some time. However, to design our own fins and have them injection molded using an ABS plastic was too expensive to make it feasible. I saw advertisements for fins from another company and ordered a set. I found that they did not function properly with the EZ-Launch system. After considerable effort and with assistance from my chief engineer, Dave Pristupa, we were able to come up with a design that enabled the fins and the EZ-Launch to work together. What we found was that instead of achieving a maximum height of 200 feet when using the EZ-Launch bottle rocket alone, we were able to send a bottle 500 feet or higher when the EZ-Launch and the Booster Fins were used together.
See the "Getting Started" page of this website for more information about using the EZ-launch Bottle Rocket Booster. It is our desire at EZ-Launch LLC to have the EZ-Launch Bottle Rocket Launcher among the finest launchers available. We receive comments from many of our users and appreciate their suggestions. With your help, we are able to continually improve its design. Currently, we are marketing a third generation version of the launcher. This version has an injection molded base made of ABS plastic. It has two tabs with holes in their center at the bottom and back of the base. They also come with two 9" stakes that have a hook on one end. These hooks are inserted into the holes in the tabs and then driven all of the way into the ground. We think that having two stakes holding the launcher in place at liftoff gives it more stability than just the one stake we previously used. We anticipate periodically adding improvements to the EZ-launch system as we become aware of them.