View Full Version : Air cannon question

03-23-2007, 04:11 PM
I just got my air cannon from Midnight Evil, thanks Midnight Evil it is so cool. I have a question for anyone in the know, I have a 20 gal. air compresser and can get about 4 blast before it kicks on to charge back up.
Is there anyway to get more blast before the compresser has to turn on? Would hooking up a larger tank in between the compresser and the air cannon help any? Can I hook a larger tank to the air cannon or would it need a larger valve if I did that? Theres nothing worng with the air cannon, its very cool. I'm just trying to make it so my compresser does not kick on so meny times. Thanks for any info and thanks again Midnight Evil. :D

03-23-2007, 04:25 PM
Yes, hooking up a resovoir tank will allow you more shots before your compressor has to recharge. You will still be using the same amount of air though.

One way to use less air would be to use less pressure. If you can turn down the pressure on your cannon to say, 40psi vs running it at 80, you will save a lot of air usage.

03-24-2007, 09:20 AM
Aaaah! So, you took my advice -- RIGHT ON! :D
I've got two of his cannons and I'll be getting reserve tanks, as well.

03-24-2007, 04:33 PM
Thanks gadget-evilusions and yes Empressnightshade thanks for the post pointing it out to me. I printed it and just now got around to getting it, it really is a nice air cannon and I bet it scares the he// out of everyone.

03-26-2007, 10:46 PM
Another way of getting more blasts is to limit the time the valve is open. If I’m looking at the right web site the air cannon you bought says it comes “w/ actor operated hand held trigger”. I’m not sure how this system works, but if the hand trigger opens the valve the whole time you have the button pushed, you could let all the air out of your tank with one shot if you have a heavy finger.

From the picture it looks like it is using a cheap sprinkler valve which uses low voltage, you could replace the hand trigger with a controller that pulses the valve for a few msecs. The actual time may very depending on the valve and how loud/long you what the blast. Once you have the controller you could still use a hand trigger or change to a motion sensor, mat switch, etc...

Feel free to contact me off list if you need help making a quick controller. The ones I have made have a switch that you can fire a single shot or rapid fire with strobe light, triggers can be PIR, ultrasonic, or any switch type.

Empress, the new FlashFright Motion Controller could automatically turn your FlashFright off when your guest walks by and after a set time, fire your air cannon too. Just a thought...

03-28-2007, 12:16 AM

Glad to have you on board. I saw your booth at the show...very original and very unique! Ben was probably your best salesman, while at IAAPA he was running around with some monster he bought from you popping out of this chest.

I tried to talk to you at your booth but man you where slammed!

Nice stuff!!!

Great job!


03-28-2007, 09:40 AM
Thanks Larry! You are definitely right about Ben. We provided the moving roots to his existing Harvestman costume and after he wore it to the costume ball at Hauntcon and had one of his actors wear it at a haunt and ball at MHC, we had people coming to our booth in groves asking “ Are you the ones that.....” Ben is the king of costuming and a great guy as you know!!!

At our web site there are pictures of Ben in all his glory in the Testimonial section and a short movie of him at Hauntcon in the Gallery if anyone would like to check it out:

If you liked our stuff, we’ll have a few new things to show at Hauntcon but wait until you see what we’re concocting in the Monster-Labs for next year!!!

03-28-2007, 12:45 PM
I have to agree, your booth was on of my favorite at the show....very unique items! Love that mask with the remote control finger/webbing thing, and you have me intrigued about your bass tube thing-amajig!


Jolly Pumpkin
03-30-2007, 12:08 PM
I've had many times where an air cannon shoots me in the ear and I start hearing a ringing noise. Now that's scary!!

03-30-2007, 12:30 PM
Joel, I really appreciate your comments and I had said this before but I was truly humbled by many of the things that people said to us at the show.

The finger/webbing thing is the Creeper and is my favorite too. I’ve worn it to many haunts in the last two years and it makes them drop like flies. Here is a picture of me at my good friends (Jerry, Jamie & Ty) haunt Phantasmagoria:


The Infrasonic Fear Generator thing-amajig is what I believe is one of those next gen haunt products (like CGI) that can take your haunt to the next level. Think about what it is worth to subliminally heighten your guest emotions (fear-fun) with-out doing anything but flipping on a switch. New studies are showing that infrasound does heighten good emotions like fun and joy too. Wild stuff man!!!

Keep an eye out for a new announcement coming soon about the Fear Generator.

Thanks again!

Noah, we had this conversation on another board about using high noise products wisely. I’ve been shot in the face with air cannons too, and was not very happy. What are people thinking when they do that kind of stuff, it just kills me!!!

03-30-2007, 01:09 PM
Story in the JBCorn books concerning the use of ultrasonics and why he will not repeat that experiment.

03-30-2007, 01:45 PM
Sorry I don’t have the Corn books, was he using ultrasonics or infrasound? Ultrasonics are high frequencies above human hearing and infrasound is low frequencies below human hearing.

If it has anything to do with the Brown Note Myth that is totally busted.

Check it out:

153 dB is like sticking your head inside a jet engine. If you did not see the show, they interviewed some of the staff after the testing and many of them said they were feeling “strange” some said they felt wierd feeling like “anxiety”.

03-30-2007, 02:53 PM
I always remembered infrasonics under the name of subsonics. JBCorn's experiment was ultrasonic with nausea and vomiting as the result. Or was it the subsonic experiment there? The ultrasonic is a trick used for spirit contact point as well.

If you are an IAHA member, you get the JBcorn books for free or you can download them from my website at www.nightmarepark.com and click on the JBCorn CD link. About 200 megs worth.

I have plans going for both frequency ranges. As is, my CD seems to cause much fear with the low basslines, even though I didnt put any subsonics in there knowingly.

03-30-2007, 05:29 PM
Wow! This is a very interesting topic and one I would SERIOUSLY like to pursue. But, we are WAAAAY off topic, Guys. 8)

Can either one of you start a brand new topic about infrasonics and all it's other "onics" ? This would be something all of us should know about. I've been here a few years (I think) and I've never seen it discussed.

Okay...back to Air Cannons which are awesome things to talk about within themselves.

PS -- I KNOW I'm acting like the "Thread Police" right now. Sorry. Just indulge an ole' lady.....okay? :wink:

03-30-2007, 06:12 PM
k, back to air cannons then.

One set of toys I got for the cornfield set is two redneck outhouses, full sized.

The idea being a sound controller with an air cannon. It would be set up to blow at the customer's ankles with an appropriate flatulence sound when they get close to the outhouse.

A cheap comedy shot, but why not?

As is, one improvement over the previous application would be int he comedy realm of each outhouse having their own soundtrack of the natural sounds you expect to find in outhouses. So the air cannon is an extra festivity.

03-30-2007, 06:19 PM
A cheap comedy shot, but why not?


I am finding out that it's the "cheap" shots that are the most enjoyable to the customers. I have beat my head against a wall trying to make a "special" scare work when it's the cheap ones that get the most scares and attention.

Besides, I'm still trying to find a scare for our second cannon. Got the first one all taken care of. :twisted:

Jim Warfield
03-30-2007, 06:20 PM
Customers are open for potty humor because potty is on their minds, "Will I make potty now or much later when I'm at home?"
Does an air cannon make it's sound just from the release of a large amount of compressed air or is there something else happening to accentuate the air under pressure?
If it is just air being relaesed I might have a idea to improve upon it. (But of course it would not be a change every haunt would or could make use of.)

03-30-2007, 06:28 PM
Well, if the "Flatulence" smell from Sinister Scents is flowing in the breeze, even though the air cannon doesn't really come off as sounding like a human, I think they will get the message. :lol:

Jim Warfield
03-30-2007, 09:58 PM
Butt in 20 years of seeing and hearing all the customers coming through here I have heard some human sounds that definately did NOT sound "Human"!

03-30-2007, 10:01 PM
I was going to have it triggered from a sound system with the flatulence sound at maybe 30 watts amplified. A SERIOUS type of rip roaring, tear the seat from your pants type of fart sound. And since it is coming from an outhouse in a redneck cornfield, why not?

A THEMED cheap shot!

03-31-2007, 11:11 PM
How about a special feature in a haunted house called the Hall of Farts? Complete with flatulent sounds and special "smells" from Sinister Scents! :shock:

03-31-2007, 11:40 PM
Something like that was used at a circus themed haunt at Knott's Scary Farm. You walked through a room with a bunch of elephant butts facing out and some of them would fart as you passed by.

Jim Warfield
03-31-2007, 11:41 PM
Sort of like The Ravens Grin hall of toilet seats, all engraved with words of wizz-dumb.
"Who wizzed on this toilet seat, that was dumb!"
I personally have affection for my homemade toilet seat, a very rough- hewn, crude, almost circular creation that scares most buttz by just looking at them!
The phart noises have already usually happened long before this toilet seat hallway.
"Remember, a "Brown-out" can be more than just an electrical term."
"Electrical" means not enough "Juice", the other means a little too much "Juice".

04-01-2007, 02:56 AM
Mmmm.... “The Hall of Farts”, that is definitely one haunt I would not want to miss! I hope it’s not scratch and sniff thing....

I’ve got a bunch of mounted animal heads that do different things, one that has sound that does the old “ah-ah-choo” and sneezes water spray, and a deer rear that of course does its thing, was thinking about adding Sinister Scents to it. My wife likes to pick up everything she sees at stores and at one of the shows she picked up a bottle of the flatulence, her hands smelled like farts for a week. Needless to say, farts are almost always funny!

Jim, most air cannons use only the rush of air and a pipe for resonance.

Tony, the outhouse scene should be very funny. You might consider having the amplified sound of the hillbilly grunting and groaning at a normal level and then just use the sound and air from the air cannon to make the loud fart blast. Could have him say “I knew I should’nt a ate Ma’s bean dip!” Corey Minion has some very loud low pitch cannons vs the bang you get from other cannons. Those would work great.

04-01-2007, 04:23 AM
I already have that planned, my next door neighbor came up with the idea. As is, it would be a multiple soundtrack gig.

The scene is a cornfield with real corn growing. 2 outhouses, 1 metal, 1 wood (those were FUN bringing them on the freeway, got some spectacular waves :D

Soundtrack 1 is original of mournful wind, stalks rustling.
Soundtrack 2 is Hillbilly Hell from Virgil (VERY perfect for the cornfield!)
Soundtrack 3 and 4 are of each outhouse with the appropriate sound effects.

One outhouse will have the air cannon and fart sound, triggered by the same actor who will come rushing out of it.

Halfway enclosed area, fog machines doing their thing, but outdoors. Lightset up shining down the paths so you hear straight into the light most of the time. Didnt get the windmill, going to get an 8 foot tall replica (they go for 40 bucks or so). Clothesline with chonas, of course :p

Overall, a humorous scene. Orignal scene was much more serious and amazingly spooky. The outhouse air fart is the giggle side of things.

Jim Warfield
04-01-2007, 07:36 AM
It's "Comedy Relief" used since at least Shakespeare. The tense audience sometimes really appreciates the little break. It is a reset, now that they have relaxed, you can scare them some more.
The majority of my full front room routine is set up like this, build tension, dissapaite it. Of course being rather cheap, I do alot of it with my story telling , voice and pace of delivery.
To tell the whole story takes a long time and I am also working to keep from ever boring anyone in the room.
Even if someone is ever even half bored , I think they can appreciate the extreme effort they see me making to inform and entertain them so they feel kindly toward me and allow me to keep their admission money without beating me up, pinching me, rifling my pockets.