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valmalbright
10-26-2007, 14:29
I was given a tank form the 1980's. How long are these safe? Please help.:smiley9: I have never seen a tank with two valves (one on each side). One appears to opperate as an adjustment for the air supply after the main valve is turned to open.

Val

diversteve
10-26-2007, 14:44
It's called a J-valve. As you've surmised it was a residual air supply, you flipped it when your main supply became hard to breath from. Now we just use a gauge...

I don't think an Aluminum tank that old is safe anymore. Or will pass a hydro test. There were problems in the mid-80's with neck cracking on certain mfr's aluminum tanks, there's a post here about it. It probably wouldn't even be safe to test it anymore.

ScubaToys Larry
10-26-2007, 14:48
Yea, don't even spend the money to get a hydro unless it was 89 or a catalina. But if a luxfer, scubapro, US Divers, Walter Kiddie, etc... you basically have a paper weight.

Here's a nice read... About the Scuba Tank that Exploded (http://www.napsd.com/cscuba.htm)

No Misses
10-26-2007, 14:53
I was given a tank form the 1980's. How long are these safe? Please help.:smiley9: I have never seen a tank with two valves (one on each side). One appears to opperate as an adjustment for the air supply after the main valve is turned to open.

Val

There may be issues with the tank. I do not know the specifics off the top of my head. But, tanks made before 1989 with 6351-T6 aluminum have been recalled and or taken out of service due to a known weakness. Take it to a shop. They should be able to tell you if it falls into the "unsafe group".

Chad
10-26-2007, 16:33
You could make it into a lamp. :smiley4:

cyclone
10-26-2007, 17:16
Yea, don't even spend the money to get a hydro unless it was 89 or a catalina. But if a luxfer, scubapro, US Divers, Walter Kiddie, etc... you basically have a paper weight.

Here's a nice read... About the Scuba Tank that Exploded (http://www.napsd.com/cscuba.htm)
Eeeeewww spooky...:smiley5:

dludwig
10-26-2007, 21:28
:smiley19: they do make nice table lamps

JahJahwarrior
10-26-2007, 23:02
Take it to a shop. They should be able to tell you if it falls into the "unsafe group".


Don't ever ask a shop about things like this. Conflict of interest. They exist to sell you things, if you ask if something is usable, they are going to try and find a way to tell you "no!" so you buy a new one from them :)

Seriously though, many shops just know "before 1990=satan" when it comes to aluminum tanks.

Post all of the lettering on the tank here, and someone can tell you what it is and if it's useful. Be warned though, it's probably not. :)

finflippers
10-26-2007, 23:14
I was given a tank form the 1980's. How long are these safe? Please help.:smiley9: I have never seen a tank with two valves (one on each side). One appears to opperate as an adjustment for the air supply after the main valve is turned to open.

Val


If it has two valves that you can attach regulators to it will be an H-valve if it has only one valve and and a movable pice off to the side it is a J-valve.

valmalbright
10-30-2007, 21:24
Thank you guys for all of your help. It will make a nice lamp. I will buy a new tank.

Thanks,

Val :smiley20:

Puffer Fish
10-30-2007, 22:22
Thank you guys for all of your help. It will make a nice lamp. I will buy a new tank.

Thanks,

Val :smiley20:

Get HP steel and find a sale.... look forward to see pictures of it....

jakeeib
10-31-2007, 16:31
I picked up a lexfur 80 from a friend that gave up diving and now you guys got me worried...lol
it says lexfur 05 A 01...is that the mfg date?
Is this tank worth testing?

finflippers
10-31-2007, 16:41
I picked up a lexfur 80 from a friend that gave up diving and now you guys got me worried...lol
it says lexfur 05 A 01...is that the mfg date?
Is this tank worth testing?

If the 05 A 01 is the first date you see on the tank then it is the mfg date and there is nothing to worry about except getting it hydroed before filling if that is the only date on the tank.

RonFrank
10-31-2007, 16:41
I picked up a lexfur 80 from a friend that gave up diving and now you guys got me worried...lol
it says lexfur 05 A 01...is that the mfg date?
Is this tank worth testing?

If it says LEXFUR, than throw it in the trash. Now if it say Luxfer, that maybe different! :smiley2:

Sounds like a 2005 tank to me but without seeing the tank, I can't tell. This should not be hard to figure out. When was the last hydro on the tank? Provide a list of ALL the tank markings, and that should be enough to determine when the tank was made, and when it was last hydro'd.

ScaredSilly
10-31-2007, 16:49
This gets discussed way too much. The vast majority of the time what is posted about this subject is wrong - way wrong.

Cylinders made from AL6351 which is what Luxfer used up until 1988 can developed what is know a stress load cracking. There have been approximately 20 cylinders explode due to this. They have not been recalled nor are they banned. They require a higher level of care (an eddy current test at the time of hydro) than cylinders made with 6063 which is what Catalina Cylinders has always used and Luxfer now uses. Many shops refuse to deal with these cylinders anymore (chalk this up to the scuba industry's inability to self regulate).

At the same time some shops are going as far as to refuse to fill any cylinders over XX years old. I saw one in the Florida Keys where XX was 15 years. This did not matter whether the cylinder was steel or aluminum. Go figure that one.

finflippers
10-31-2007, 16:50
I picked up a lexfur 80 from a friend that gave up diving and now you guys got me worried...lol
it says lexfur 05 A 01...is that the mfg date?
Is this tank worth testing?

If it says LEXFUR, than throw it in the trash. Now if it say Luxfer, that maybe different! :smiley2:

Sounds like a 2005 tank to me but without seeing the tank, I can't tell. This should not be hard to figure out. When was the last hydro on the tank? Provide a list of ALL the tank markings, and that should be enough to determine when the tank was made, and when it was last hydro'd.

05 A 01 would be a 2001 tank if there is no earlier markings.

Tripper82
09-15-2011, 14:37
The issue is 6531 Aluminum alloy cracking, which can be detected through an “Eddie Current test”. The tank may be fine for use. You just need to have the test done.

I have a Luxfer 6531 AL 80 tank that I bought in 1983 and and still use regularly. Regular certification requires an annual inspection stamp and a five-year hydro test. To certify a 6531 AL tank, they do an “Eddie Current” test to check for hairline fractures, which is an extra charge. That is all that was needed and the tank is safe. I have never had anyone refuse to fill the tank. If you Google the topic "6531", you can read more on issue. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO SCRAP THE TANK.

Note: Just FYI, there might be some risk in showing up to a dive boat, resort, etc. only to find out no one will fill your tank. However, that has never happened to me.

scubadiver888
09-15-2011, 22:22
ScaredSilly is correct. There is a lot of misinformation about aluminium cylinders made before 1990. In 1989 there are some cylinder which were NOT made of 6351 alloy. These are safe to use. General rule of thumb is that if the original hydrostatic test stamp is 89 or earlier than it is 6351 alloy and can suffer from SUSTAINED load cracking. Cracks form in the neck of the cylinder. These cracks might not be visible during a visual inspection. The eddy current test will detect the issue. So 6351 alloy tanks must be eddy current tested as well as visually inspected and hydrostatic tested. Luxfer requires 6351 alloy tanks to be visually inspected and eddy current tested at least every 2.5 years. It is recommended to have the tanks visually inspected every year.

This said, my shop owner has told me he has had flash fires filling O2 clean tanks with oxygen. They were obviously not O2 clean but they had a sticker saying they were O2 clean. Anyone can buy stickers off eBay and slap it on a tank. Doesn't mean the tank passed an eddy current test just because it has a sticker on it.

You want to save $139 by continuing to use an old tank. You want me to trust you with my life so you can save $139 by continuing to use an old tank.

in_cavediver
09-18-2011, 08:02
You want to save $139 by continuing to use an old tank. You want me to trust you with my life so you can save $139 by continuing to use an old tank.

This is the crux of the arguement right there. You want another party to take the risk with a tank material with known issues for a measly $5 fill - of which very little is actual profit?

The FD where I volunteer still has 30+ of the luxfer 2216psi SCBA bottles made from 6351. You may hear only 20 have failed but the reality is we have now had 10+ this year fail with neck cracks, one that leaked and drained itself to boot. With luck, in 30-60 days, we'll be rid of the last of them, as soon as we get our new Scott packs.

There is VERY little incentive for a shop to want to fill these tanks. They take much of the risk for you to save $150 on a 20+ year old tank.

snagel
09-18-2011, 08:36
With the price of scrap no days, I wonder how much you would get from a scrap dealer for the aluminum? Maybe, this would go a fair distance to purchasing a new tank. Probably not.

Snagel

Culcuhain
10-21-2011, 21:52
More like the tanks made in 88 were the "bad alloy" and 1989 we started to see both...

in_cavediver
10-22-2011, 07:50
More like the tanks made in 88 were the "bad alloy" and 1989 we started to see both...

Not Catalina brand tanks. They never used 6351. Therefore any Catalina tank is good (alloy), irregardless of the date.

scubadiver888
10-22-2011, 08:48
More like the tanks made in 88 were the "bad alloy" and 1989 we started to see both...


Not Catalina brand tanks. They never used 6351. Therefore any Catalina tank is good (alloy), irregardless of the date.

There is a very good article by Bill High at Sources - A Brief Scuba Cylinder History (http://divemar.com/naui/docs/sources/cylinder-history.html). It gives all the details about various aluminum cylinders. It confirms that Luxfer switched to 6061 alloy in June 1988 and Catalina always used 6061 alloy.

<pet peeve>
Adding the suffix -less to a word negates it. Thus senseless means to not have sense. Adding the prefix ir- to a word negates it. Thus irrational means not rational. Therefore, irregardless means to not not regard.
</pet peeve>

Boardndave
10-22-2011, 11:41
Do any shops still fill tanks with bad alloy? I know all of the LDS's near me do not.

scubadiver888
10-22-2011, 13:26
Do any shops still fill tanks with bad alloy? I know all of the LDS's near me do not.

I was under the impression that none of the shops around me filled the 6351 alloy tanks but today I saw someone selling a 6351 alloy tank on craigslist. The shop sticker was a shop around 200 km (125 miles) from me, it had a visual plus stick and was hydro'd in 2002. So it looks like there might be one shop in Southern Ontario which properly inspections 6351 alloy tanks.

in_cavediver
10-23-2011, 08:04
I was under the impression that none of the shops around me filled the 6351 alloy tanks but today I saw someone selling a 6351 alloy tank on craigslist. The shop sticker was a shop around 200 km (125 miles) from me, it had a visual plus stick and was hydro'd in 2002. So it looks like there might be one shop in Southern Ontario which properly inspections 6351 alloy tanks.

If it was last hydrod in 2002 - its just a little out of date - 4+ years. It should have had a hydro on 2007 and then due in 2012 again.

scubadiver888
10-23-2011, 09:57
If it was last hydrod in 2002 - its just a little out of date - 4+ years. It should have had a hydro on 2007 and then due in 2012 again.

I was just surprised to find anyone in my area who did Visual Plus & eddy current testing, even if it was 2002. Also, I could see a 2002 stamping in the picture but it is entirely possible it was hydro'd in 2007 as well. That would make sense as well. Needs a hydro this Spring so he'd rather sell it than pay for another hydro.

in_cavediver
10-23-2011, 18:33
I was just surprised to find anyone in my area who did Visual Plus & eddy current testing, even if it was 2002. Also, I could see a 2002 stamping in the picture but it is entirely possible it was hydro'd in 2007 as well. That would make sense as well. Needs a hydro this Spring so he'd rather sell it than pay for another hydro.

Its more common than you might think.

Up until about 2 weeks ago - my local VFD still used AL tanks from the mid seventies (mostly). After we had a TON fail this year - many saw the light and we now have 20 brand spanking new Scott packs with carbon fiber. The old AL tanks (MSA) will be drained just as soon as we can get training done on the new scott paks.

FFDiver
10-23-2011, 19:04
Its more common than you might think.

Up until about 2 weeks ago - my local VFD still used AL tanks from the mid seventies (mostly). After have a TON fail this year - many saq the light and we now have 20 brand spanking new Scott packs with carbon fiber. The old AL tanks (MSA) will be drained just as soon as we can get training done on the new scott paks.

I can say I am offically jealous. We got rid of our carbon fiber scott scba several years ago and switched to MSA. We have junk now and are stuck with them for several more years. heavy, uncomfortable, and unreliable. You will like the scott air packs.

in_cavediver
10-23-2011, 19:59
I can say I am offically jealous. We got rid of our carbon fiber scott scba several years ago and switched to MSA. We have junk now and are stuck with them for several more years. heavy, uncomfortable, and unreliable. You will like the scott air packs.

Yeah. If you think the compsite MSA packs are heavy - try adding an AL bottle instead of the carbon fiber one. It will *really* ruin you day. Worse yet - we still have a few 'spares' that are STEEL bottles.

From just playing with the new packs - I think I will REALLY like them. The MSA PASS is a PIA. The little ball in ours was always getting dirty and not working quite right. MSA replaced them but after a couple of uses, they seemed to fail again. Talk about frustrating to have to move that stupid thing consciously as you move. In training its a PIA. On scene - well - its not exactly safe. A recent fire - attached furnance room to a house - mostly seperated with only a couple penetrations, went in to heavy smoke looking for extension of the fire and heard a PASS go off. Checked my crew of three and realized it was *my* stupid pass that needed shaken every 5 seconds to not alarm.

I am hoping the Scott design works better.