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Salvimar Predathor pressure gauge with pump attachment

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popgun pete

Well-Known Member
Jul 30, 2008
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Well we talked about it and now they have made it.
Predathor pressure gauge.jpg
 
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I ordered one of these from Scubastore today (1/09/2020), so it will be interesting to see how long it takes. The price of 55 AUD was very close to that from Edosub at 34.90 euro, but shipping cost from Italy is much higher and is almost prohibitive.
 
Today received a notice via email indicating that item is shipped (3/09/2020). Now to see how long it takes to arrive here.
 
This gauge arrived today as I found the delivery guy had left it on the front doorstep. During the pandemic they don't stick around for a signature and are off on the next delivery. It came inside a vendor supplied cardboard shipping box which in turn was inside one of those grey plastic shipping bags. Plenty of bubble wrap in the box and marked as fragile, but often delivery guys don't know what that means.

The gauge itself is mounted on a card that would normally be hanging on a store display hook or rack.

Travel time just over 3 weeks which is pretty good.
 
Salvimar now offer this in-line gauge for other companies' models as shown in their 2021 catalog entry below. Although the name for their version is “Predathor”, it also fits the “Vintair” as they both use the same hand pump. I had not noticed it earlier, but the “Vintair” disappears from their catalog in 2020, the last entry for them was in 2019. Of course old stock can remain unsold and I bought a “Vintair Vuoto” (but not for me) from Scubastore in May this year before the shutter came down on selling these products to Australia.
Salvimar in-line gauges.jpg
 
As long time readers will know I never bothered with gauges, just pumping guns up to the maximum pressure that I could load with just a little left in reserve by bleeding a little bit out once I got there. However one advantage of a gauge is to see if your gun has lost pressure in the off-season or after a protracted period of non-use. Of course each time you measure gun pressure you let a small amount out, but if the gauge has a small dead space then it will not be much.
 
As an example of how handy this gadget is I picked up my Salvimar Vintair 85 Vuoto which I have never used and thought that I would see how much air was still in it. Note that the originally intended recipient did not want it, he got a wet barrel Vintair instead with 8 mm shaft. Screwing the pump in-line gauge attachment in the back end of the gun the needle on the gauge stayed on zero. Now the power selector lever was right back in the gate for low power and knowing the idiosyncrasies of these guns I next put the hand pump on and found the pump got hard to push very quickly, and the gauge needle now read 15 bar. Then I gave a few more pump strokes and now the gauge rear 26 bar. The power adjuster lever which would not budge before moved relatively freely. So this is a demonstration of how the inner barrels can leak down while the gun is still at full pressure in the tank. The few pump strokes pushed the partitioning bulkhead's curved plate sealing element off its seat and let air flow back to refill the inner barrel because it is also the gun's one-way valve. As a rule I usually store these Salvimar guns at the full power setting in the selector gate, but on this one I had forgotten, It was sold when the Predathor was already on sale and they just wanted to get rid of it. Yesterday's gun! It also has an inox 7 mm integral tip shaft and mono shooting line, the worst combination for my wants. I have been tempted to turn it into a wet barrel gun and use an 8 mm shaft with screw on tip, my favourite combination. But my Scubapro Magnum already does that job, so I have not bothered with it.

Although they look like twins the Magnum has a different pump and attachment screw thread, so this Salvimar gadget does not fit it.
 
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Here are some photos, note that at 85 cm the Salvimar is slightly longer than the Magnum labelled as a 95! Never worked out why, but will depend where they measured from. The Magnum is all plastic, alloy and stainless steel with stainless steel piston and shock absorber anvil, they gave you the highest quality parts because you paid through the nose for the guns. No brass parts in the gun.
Scubapro Magnum Salvimar  Vintair 1 R.jpg

Scubapro Magnum Salvimar  Vintair 2R.jpg

Scubapro Magnum Salvimar Vintair 3R.jpg

Subapro Magnum Salvimar Vintair 4R.jpg

Note the different end caps, why Salvimar used that rear lump on the back of the handle is a mystery.
 
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Note the attention to detail on the Magnum, there is a red insert moulded into the sliding white safety bar which is a larger rectangular stripe on the top side and you can see its round anchor point from underneath, it is not just a dab of paint. The gun has a spear carrier clip at either end which you can remove if you don't want it. This gun carries three wraps of spectra shooting line, but it will not shoot all three without leaning on the hand pump in which case loading becomes difficult without a double handed loader.
Scubapro Magnum detail 1.jpg
 
Hmm, just found that the metal prong on my Salvimar gauge doesn't depress the inlet valve on one of my other guns. This metal prong is a rolled steel split pin and it is meant to stick out far enough that when you screw the gauge adaptor right into the rear of the gun that it presses on the inox ball valve stem and opens it. Right now it is a 9.8 mm projection measured with end callipers. Looks like when they assembled it the rolled split pin has been pushed in too far, but how to get it out and reset it? If it does not depress the valve then you might as well not have a pin. Once you pressurize it with a hand pump then the gauge reads because pressure inside the brass adapter body is holding the inlet valve open. The gauge has never been dropped, so it is not like an impact has pushed it in, at least not while I have possessed it. This probably explains the zero pressure that I found in the gun mentioned above, maybe it had not leaked down, or at least not completely, but just enough to make the power lever hard to move. This current gun is single power and I know it is not zero as the gauge says because I tried pushing the piston first. Using an Allen key I can crack the valve open and hear air coming out. These guns are Vintairs, but I don't expect this part to be any different on the Predathors.
 
Well here is the answer. When I checked back on my Salvimar files the pressure gauge kit that they offered in 2018 shows the Predathor and Vintair attachments and the pin is clearly longer on the Vintair, so this inline adaptor really is just for the Predathor. I am pretty sure that if you replace the hollow pin with a longer one then it would work fine in the Vintair.
Salvimar catalogue  pressure check 2018.jpg
 
The Vintair and Predathor are basically the same guns, only the Predathor received a new handle to create a side-mounted line release. To squeeze that all into the new handle they changed the length of certain parts and that included the rear inlet valve body which is the rear nut that holds the gun together along with the muzzle screw fitting. Which is probably why that rear cover, which I don't like, is a type of bung. I prefer screw-in end caps as a coin can be used to unscrew them rather than some bit of wire bent up into a special tool. The four socket head cap screws used on the Vintair rear cap were not much better, whereas the original Magnum has a screw cap inlet valve cover.
Salvimar Vintair and Predathor diagrams.jpg
 
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When Salvimar reissued the Magnum as the Vintair they used one of the standard hand pumps of a smaller bore than the Scubapro pump. The big bore Scubapro pump took less pump strokes to reach a given pressure in the gun, but required a larger effort on the pump handle. Using a smaller bore hand pump attachment screw thread Salvimar could not use the existing Scubapro end cap, but why they chose the "beehive" cap with four socket head cap screws is anybody's guess.
Salvimar Vintair and Scubapro Magnum pump connection R.jpg

Salvimar Vintair and Scubapro Magnum pumps R.jpg
 
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