Thread from the WWn wiki - originally developed by Andrew
2.1 Pump Reinforcement
2.2 Trigger Reinforcement
2.3 Firing Valve Reinforcement
2.3.1 Ball Valves
2.3.2 Pull Valves
3 Improving Seals
3.1 Pump Seal Improvement
3.1.1 Seal Replacement
3.1.3 Other Methods
3.2 Internal Seal Improvement
3.2.1 Seal Replacement
3.2.2 Permanent Sealing
4 External Links
In general, reliabilty modifications are carried out to prevent future problems which may affect the strength or performance of the blaster. Many of these modifications can be performed as repairs after parts of the blaster have broken, but are usually perfomed beforehand to ensure that the blaster works when you need it most.
Reinforcing parts of a water blaster prevent them from breaking in the future. The most commonly reinforced parts of a water gun are the pump and the trigger.
 Pump Reinforcement
Stock water blasters usually have a hollow PVC pump rod. While this reduces weight, it can be prone to snapping under excessive pumping. The most common method for pump reinforcement involves finding a plastic, wooden or metal (listed in ascending order of strength) dowel with a diameter equal to that of the pump rod's internal diameter (ID). Once such a dowel has been found, it is a simple matter of cutting it to length and inserting it into the PVC pump rod, to strengthen it.
 Trigger Reinforcement
Most stock water blasters use a thin plastic trigger, with a return spring. In some older water blasters, this trigger was connected to a pull valve behind the nozzle. Due to the design of the pull valve, a lot of force is required to open it at higher pressures, resulting in a high level of stress on the trigger. Reinforcing a trigger involves cutting a metal strip, the same width as the trigger, and gluing it to the area of the trigger above where the index finger sits when firing.
 Firing Valve Reinforcement
 Ball Valves
Some ball valve systemsare prone to breaking over time. The most notorious ball valves for unreliabilty are:
Super Soaker Max-D ball valve system
Water Warriors lever arm ball valve system
The problem with the Max-D ball valve tends to be it's spring, which eventually snaps rendering the trigger useless. Replacing the spring, with a better spring or strong elastic bands, before it breaks prevents this.
The Water Warriors lever arm tends to snap at the hinge point, through which the most force is transmitted. Reinforcing this with epoxy resin or a metal strut, or even replacing it completely with a metal lever arm will prevent this from happening.
 Pull Valves
Although generally very reliable, the Super Soaker pull valves do jam open when they get older. This is because the spring inside the pull valve gets weaker over time. Adding an elastic band will allow the valve to work for longer.
Another option, which can be used in addition to the first, is to cut a slit in the side of the blaster, and attach a thin metal bar to the end of the pull valve which protrudes throught this slit. If and when the trigger sticks open, this bar can be used to assist the pull valve forward to close it, allowing you to finish the battle before having to repair the valve.
 Improving Seals
Good seals ensure that minimal pressure is lost, preventing the water blaster from underperforming. This can include seals inside the blaster, aswell as the pump seals.
 Pump Seal Improvement
If the pump has a good seal, then the blaster will generally require less pumps and less effort to pump.
 Seal Replacement
If the pump leaks water, then the seal may well need replacing. If the blaster uses o-rings to seal the pump, then it is a simple task of removing the old o-rings and replacing them with new, possibly slightly larger, o-rings. If not, then replacing the seal is unlikely to be feasible.
Lubricating the seal reduces friction between it, and the inside wall of the pump housing. This prevents damage to the seal, and makes pumping easier. The lubricant itself can also aid in sealing the pump.
 Other Methods
There have been successes in improving seals using teflon tape below the seal (when o-rings are the primary seal), and using PVC tape beside the seal. The PVC tape can also straighten the pump rod, making it easier to pump.
 Internal Seal Improvement
By improving the internal seals, the blaster can reach higher working pressures without leaking. Some internal parts of blasters are metallic, and ensuring there are no leaks prolongs the life of such components as they are less likely to rust.
 Seal Replacement
In some water blasters, the reservoir and pressure chamber are connected to the rest of the internals using o-rings. Replacing these o-rings can improve the seal and prevent leaks under pressure.
 Permanent Sealing
Areas which are connected with o-rings, such as the reservoir and pressure chamber, can be connected more permanently using epoxy resin. This does however mean that it is impossible to remove these parts later, without the possibilty of causing damage to other parts of the blaster. Epoxy resin can also be used to seal any existing joints which leak under pressure.
 External Links
SSCentral Reliabilty Mods - http://www.sscentral.org/mods/reliability.html