Using nrs pump parts to make your own barrel pump - Mountain Buzz

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Old 06-17-2018   #1
Join Date: Jun 2018
Posts: 1
Using nrs pump parts to make your own barrel pump

Has anyone ever used all the 5" barrel pump parts NRS sells and added their own 5" barrel and bottom cap? I have the knowledge to do my own based on the hand pump from scratch design I've seen on this forum, but I lack the tools right now. I was hoping they haven't made the barrel some proprietary size that isn't the standard 5" pipe I could get at a hardware store or online.

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Old 06-17-2018   #2
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 508
Please let me know how it goes! I need a new pump.
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Old 06-18-2018   #3
Wondervu, CO, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 495
Unless you have a source for small sections of PVC pipe you may find the sum of the parts is greater then the whole. Large diameter PVC pipe comes in 10 or 20 foot sections. Note: NRS website lists several pump parts as 'out of stock'.

I did some quick math, see below...

pump parts from NRS, approx = $ 50.00
NRS shipping, estimate = $ 10.00
10' section of sched 40 PVC pipe = $ 131.00
PVC cement = $ 5.00
screws and other hardware = $ 10.00
marine grease = $ 5.00

total cost of parts = $ 211.00

cost of brand new NRS pump with warranty = $ 209.95
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Old 06-18-2018   #4
1mauisurf's Avatar
Ualapue' / High rockies, Colorado / Hawaii
Paddling Since: 1985
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 34
I have made bunch of pumps from scratch. I ordered the one way valve online and got all the other parts at a plumbing / irrigation store in Denver. The HDPE for the inside plunger came from a large supplier in Denver but I have used cheap cutting boards form Walmart for that as well. The O rings came from Rocket Seals in Denver. We use them for rafting and kiting. Total cost is less than $40.
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Old 06-18-2018   #5
MT4Runner's Avatar
Kalispell, Montana
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 2,796
If you know a commercial plumber, you can find a piece of PVC for cheap or a 6er of beer. 2'-3' is usually too short to use in that diameter, so it often gets thrown away.

Now you're looking at an $80 project to compete with that $200 retail pump.

Caveat is that you're likely looking at a 4" or 6" pump, as 5" is not a commercially common PVC pipe size. I do like 5" for a pump--4" is lower volume and takes a lot more time to inflate the raft. 6" is great volume, but takes quite a bit more muscle to push the plunger on that much air.

Follow the couple excellent DIY pump threads on here, and you can probably build a pump for under $50. 4" can be pretty inexpensive because the caps are cheap. 6" caps cost $12-15.

The hose seems to be the only spot you'll spend any real money.
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