Your name has popped up a few times so far as someone who can put something together. What do you recommend and what is a realistic price range to get up and running?
it is your budget takes the lead.
but if you look a little bit further, you will understand a custom system is under value because all parts are industrial grade(even a single high precision metering valve is $450 retail-the parker H3L). a well built show quality system serves well and it holds its value, because the parts price can not go any lower.
darkblade, oldpunk and me are building co2 systems, I am sure we are the best for such custom systems because info were shared openly, and most importantly, we help other hobbyists to build their own systems.
we only build for the hobbyists that don't want to go through the hassle to make their own. whoever has successfully make their own, understand it is not a small task, too much learning and too much attention to detail, plus a set of good tools.
A complete custom double stage system, all parts price are open, so whoever makes his own system, has good idea what is the cost to build and understand it is reasonable price of our custom built complete system.
last, it is always a thread like this pops up from time to time, asking what to get, but always answer by another guy with the similar background: new registered, low post count. the answer is identical though, GLA.
GLA is really good at marketing, so most hobbyists have less experience with co2 system know GLA first before some other choices.
I think GLA price is high but it is reasonable, they have to deal with the operational cost as a full-fledged business, but we just build on our spare time. The high value GLA systems are built by the owner though, this part of the operation make no difference.