“Less efficient” sounds like the ball is slowing down your shooter wheel on it’s way through, which more torque would help you solve?
(Shooting wheel diameter plays a huge role in all of this - diameter drives surface velocity drives torque requirements. If you’re spinning a 3" wheel, your results make sense - if you’re spinning 4" or 6", there’s definitely room for improvement.)
How carefully have you characterized what’s going on?
We’re at about 80% of our theoretical exit velocity (26ft/s measured* exit velocity out of 33ft/s theoretical on a 66ft/s surface speed** single wheel hooded shooter), and 95 has gotten closer to 110-130% by making their hood more slippery with less wrap.
*Taped a 1 ft grid, filmed shots across it with a smartphone, calculated based on “grid cells crossed per timestamp” - it was way easier than it had any right to be. And we got a real exit angle out of it too, about 6 deg lower than theoretical.
**calculated at 90% of free speed; we have an encoder, so I can see our RPMs drop another ~10% as the ball passes through with open loop control. This is most of our losses; we haven’t gotten closed loop control working yet.
On topic: OP, calculate the desired surface speed of your shooting wheels at ~80% of free speed and you might find the 10:1 is placing you slower than you want. OTOH if you’re doing a parallel wheel shot, you need half the surface speed of the hooded shooters for the same exit velocity, so something slow could be fine.
Make sure your components are rated for 18k RPM before implementing 1:1…