Original Author; Gatorade from the UMS Forums
Gatorade@The UMS said:
How to time your cocker
This guide addresses the mechanical side of timing. Some of it is relevant to electro cockers (hammer lug and LPR), some is not (adjusting the 3-way). I'll write a guide to finding the best settings for your (what works on someone else's gun may not work on yours) electro cocker when I get the chance.
First off: There are dozens of other resources out there to help you understand this. Cockertech.com is one of them. I also highly recommend the Air-Powered forums and the tech articles at Moody Paintball Products.
Now, before we get into the meat of timing, it's important to understand how a cocker works. Here's a .gif that should help (red is important or moving parts, blue is pressurized air, yellow is non-pressurized air):
I believe that image originally came from WGP. I picked it up off some forum or another a while back. It's important to note that the image shows a slider frame, whereas most mechanical cockers now use a hinge. The concepts are the same in a slider and a hinge, the hoses are just reversed on the 3-way (front of 3-way to front of ram, back of 3-way to back of ram).
Now we're ready to time. The things that you're adjusting in timing are: when the hammer is released (controlled by adjusting the hammer lug, also called the timing lug, which is the thing sticking out the bottom of the hammer), when the 3-way switches to re-cocking (controlled by adjusting the timing collar, which is the bulge on the timing rod behind the 3-way), and how much pressure is used to re-cock the gun (controlled by adjusting the LPR, which isn't shown, but is found on the left side of the frontblock on most cockers - some put it in the middle of the block)
Adjusting the hammer lug:
DEGAS YOUR GUN BEFORE DOING THIS
This is relevant to all cockers, mechanical or electronic (except those running mQ valves). Be sure your gun is decocked before doing this - you can't get to the timing lug of a cocked gun. Depending on the bolt you have, you may have to take your bolt out first. Most cockers have a hole in the top of the frame a little ways behind the feedneck. Stick the long end of a 1/8" allen wrench in this hole, then pull back slightly on the cocking rod until the allen wrench engages the lug below. If you want the hammer to drop earlier in the trigger pull, turn the wrench counterclockwise. If you want the hammer to drop later in the pull, turn the wrench clockwise. Once you've made an adjustment, take the wrench out, cock the gun, and test the trigger pull to see if the hammer drops when you want it to. Your hammer should drop sometime in the first 1/3 of the trigger pull. I have mine set to drop almost immediately (about 1mm into the pull). If you have an electro cocker, you will want to have the lug backed out as far as you can while reliably catching the sear. Sear solenoids burn a lot of battery power, so you'll want it to do the least amount of work possible (but you still need it to catch the sear).
Adjusting the re-cocking point:
This is only applicable to mechanical cockers, and differs whether you have a slider frame or a hinge frame, so pay attention to which one I'm discussing. This is an exception to the "never work on a gassed-up gun" rule, because if the gun isn't gassed, you won't know when the 3-way has passed its activation point. It may be helpful to take the cocking rod out when doing this though - it wastes less gas and makes a lot less noise if you're not firing every time you test an adjustment. The timing collar on your cocker is threaded onto the timing rod and locked down with a small grubscrew. Be careful not to lose the grubscrew when working on this. It costs about a dime to replace it, but that's not the point - if you lose it, the gun won't stay in time until you replace it. You want your activation point to be sometime AFTER the hammer drops, since it wouldn't do any good to re-cock the gun before you fired it! Of course, you can achieve a shorter trigger pull if the re-cocking happens very soon after the hammer drops (called "tighter timing")
On hinge frames: The further FORWARD the timing collar is on the timing rod (ie the more threads are exposed) the earlier in the pull the activation point will be, and the earlier the re-cocking action will take place. If you set it too far forward, you can pass the activation point. You'll know if you did this because the backblock is always back. If you set it too far back, you may not have enough trigger pull to pass the activation point. This would mean no re-cocking action takes place anywhere in your trigger pull.
On slider frames: The further BACK the timing collar is on the timing rod (ie the fewer threads are exposed) the earlier in the pull the activation point will be, and the earlier the re-cocking action will take place. If you set it too far back, you can pass the activation point. You'll know you did this because the backblock is always back. If you set it too far forward, you may not have enough trigger pull to pass the activation point. This would mean no re-cocking action takes place anywhere in your trigger pull.
Adjusting the re-cocking pressure
This is relevant to mechanical and electronic cockers, but electronic cockers must be in Classic mode to do this. This is only relevant to cockers with adjustable LPRs. Pre-2004 WGP Pro-Stocks did not have adjustable LPRs, so this is not relevant to those using the stock LPR. Like adjusting the re-cocking point, your gun needs to be gassed up when doing this, but be sure you put your cocking rod back in. Pull the trigger and hold it back. The backblock should stay back. Look down the feedneck for the bolt. You should be able to see the tiniest sliver of the top of the bolt. If you can see a lot of bolt, then your re-cocking pressure is too low and your gun may not cock or load after shooting. Turn your pressure up (usually by adjusting your LPR clockwise). Cycle the gun between adjustments so you know where you're at. If you can't see any bolt (much more common) then your LPR pressure is higher than it needs to be. While there's nothing inherently wrong with that, it increases your recoil, increases wear and tear on your gun, and most importantly, increases the likelihood that you'll chop paint due to shortstrokes or roll-backs. Lower your LPR pressure (usually by adjusting your LPR counter-clockwise). Cycle the gun between adjustments so you know where you're at.
If you're adjusting your LPR at the field you compensate for changes you made to your HPR while chronoing, it may be easier to do it this way: With your hopper in place, goggles on, marker pointed in a safe direction, etc., turn your LPR all the way down, then turn it up slowly, cycling the gun every 1/4 turn. Once it cycles enough to cock the gun and load a ball, go 1/4 turn more and stop.
Congratulations, you've timed your cocker!
This post has been edited by SWATORNOT: 02 February 2006 - 04:08 PM