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Carbon Fibre Cylinders Lifespan and Testing Questions

Discussion in 'Anything Airgun Related' started by Witterings, Dec 6, 2014.

  1. RichieRich

    RichieRich Pew Pew

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    I think the translation is a bit off, but my interpretation is that they have been manufactured with a 15 year life, but there's a possibility they have been done a couple of years ago and just now sitting as stock. Say they've been sitting 2 years, you have 3 years to use them before they need a test.

    That's my interpretation of that conversation?
     
  2. jantar

    jantar Donator

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    As said 'your interpretation'; Point is that the information has been verified to me by the local fire brigade and the company details are on the carbon cylinders they use at the present time.
    Add to that that the cylinders no doubt are examined by the HSE and customs at the point of import gives me even more reassurance that they are the genuine article otherwise they would not have been allowed entry into the UK. Language will always be a problem and perhaps if you were to send a message to China then they too would feel as you that they could not fully understand the message or reply.
    Pointless arguing the matter because you have your views and I have the proof that my version is the correct one or the FB would not be using the same cylinders from the same company.
    :)
     
  3. 18 Wheeler

    18 Wheeler Busy Member

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    Which is all well and good. However, CF/composite cylinders used for breathing apparatus have more stringent periodic test criteria applied (Clause 4).

    I suspect that this is why the Fire Brigade stated a 3 year cycle, it is what they would apply and hence state, quite understandably.

    I can only reiterate the advice given earlier...

    ...ensuring that you ask the question appropriate to the intended use and specific configuration of cylinder and valve applicable to a pcp charging kit. HTH
     
  4. jantar

    jantar Donator

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    The question you ask me to ask was already asked of the qualified person at the charging station who obviously refer to the same set of regulations as Best's. The guy I asked is also a national circuit shooter so why would he lie?. Sorry but all you are doing is leading this around in circles so it may be best if you retain your opinions I mine which are based on personally gained and proven facts. Yours again is merely advice to contact a Best Fittings, a dealer. Why would I contact a dealer, however good they are, when I have contacted and gained the information from users, not merely sellers, who are far more able to verify the details I asked for? Who do I believe? The shooter, The Fire Brigade or a Best's UK shop who presumably are selling them? I believe those that actually use them.
    As stated previously if they are allowed to be imported into the UK without problem they have logically passed all required rules and regulations prior to them being in service with the brigades that use them. The fact that they are 'breathing air cylinders' has no relevance because the steel ones we all use are labelled 'Breathing Air' too. A 3 years test period is also irrelevant because that is taken on board by the buyer who obviously has taken that restriction into account.
    Not much else to be said unless you repeat again the information that is not helpful.
     
  5. happydad

    happydad Engaging Member

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    IDEST, the Inspectorate for Diving Equipment Servicing and Testing, advised approved test centres to implement the new standards by 31st August 2002. These came into force on 1st September 2002.
    In March 2002, European standards for cylinder testing were changed. The familiar old BS 5430 part 1 (steel cylinders) & part 3 (aluminium) were withdrawn and replaced by new standards - BS EN 1968:2002 for Steel Gas Containers, and BS EN 1802:2002 for Aluminium Gas Containers.
    The new standards make recommendations. This is important because it is not in itself illegal for a dive shop to fill a cylinder which does not have, say, a contents label conforming to EN 1089 Pt 2.
    It is ultimately up to the filler to decide whether a cylinder is safe to fill or not. If they are not completely satisfied this is the case they have every right to refuse to fill the cylinder.

    Just thought that i would throw a spanner into the works
    ,

    There are No requirements in law in this country to have your air cylinder tested. (fact)
    There is No set end of use date on steel dive cylinders, but a life expectancy of 20,000 full fills on a 232bar cylinder (this is why you have hydraulic testing)
    there is again No requirements by law that the person that fills your cylinder to have any form of qualification. the HSE advise is:
    These European Standards require that the inspection and test is carried out by a competent person. There
    is no unique legal definition of competence for cylinder
    testing. However, HSE considers that the following
    provide a suitable level of confidence in a cylinder
    inspectors’ competence for this task:
    in other words if you feel that you are a competent person then you can inspect your own cylinder by discharging all the air and then remove the valve to check the condition of the inside. (FACT)

    The testing done at your fill station (dive shop/RFD) dose not mean that it has to be recogised by another fill station, even though your dive shop/RFD would have followed the requirements set out by IDEST. its like a car MOT worthless as soon as you walk out of the door:rolleyes:

    have any of you when getting your cylinder filled at a local gun shop or a dive shop asked when was the last time that they changed the filter on their compressor :confused: a good dive center should have a charcoal filter as well as the standard filter and change them before the recommended expiry date as Divers life's are in their hands. but I wonder if a gun shop would be quit as scrupulous.

    remember that its moisture that will destroy your cylinder from the inside, and that just because the cylinder that you have has a test certificate on it doesn't mean that it can't fail. although catastrophic failure is very rare (about one a year) although three did happen in one year, 80% of these were at the point of fill at the fill station.
    so! where do you keep your air cylinders :confused: in the house or out side in the shed/garage.

    i would personaly rather have a steel dive cylinder than a carbon one (just personal choice) although the new type of carbon cylinders are excellence bits of kit.

    Steel dive cylinders are very, very good at what they are designed for and will last for many years especially if they have never been in the sea, although i know several wreck divers that have some very old cylinders that they use. treat them with respect and don't bang them about.

    did hear of a guy that took a cylinder to a local test center (very well known and respected in the diving community) that he found dumped in a council tip, to repair it he drilled out the hole that had been caused by rust, threaded it and inserted a bolt in to it :eek: needles to say that when he returned to pick up his cylinder he found it cut in half as required when a cylinder fails:D


    ATB
    mike
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2014
  6. jantar

    jantar Donator

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    Just spoke to the fireman who gave me the information and because he had bought and is using one himself I have decided to order one after the Xmas bash is over. After all what's good enough for the fire brigade is good enough for me. No money worries either about costs so 3 years against the weight of steel is worth it seeing as I am disabled and limited a lot by weight/mobility issues.
    Each to their own choice is how I see it. My 200 Bar HW cylinders are 10 year rated and tested to 300 bar with no intermediate testing required. Not even after the initial ten year period so I fail to see what the uproar is about. Could it possible be that marketing anti-hype and profit from self sales come into it? Best's after all don't exactly have the reputation of being reasonable prices when some of the same goods of like quality they offer are available elsewhere at a lower cost. That sort of destroys any trust I have in them. For instance I have just bought a HW cylinder plug from another seller after seeing Best's advertised at near on 11.00 notes plus postage. I got mine, with the same manufacturers markings as the one Weihrauch supplied me with the new rifle for 4.99 including postage! Not too much difference there ;)
     
  7. 18 Wheeler

    18 Wheeler Busy Member

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    Quite right Mike, and well done on finding, reading and understanding the relevant HSA info sheet (#11pdf). :up:
    However, cylinders filled or used at work require periodic inspection and testing, so unless you have your own compressor or use one not associated with a business then there are some (sensible) restrictions in place.
    The reality is that virtually all the places we get cylinders recharged are either SITA or IDEST certified.


    I can't see I implied anyone lied.:confused:

    BF are well known as a helpful and knowledgeable bunch who offer solid advice, hence the recommendation. They advise a 5 year hydro test is applicable on CF airgun refill kits.

    I asked these questions a couple of years ago when considering a CF cylinder. I got different answers to you from my FB, and was shown the relevant info at my refill centre.

    "Breathing air cylinders" and "breathing apparatus" are not the same thing*.

    If you want to apply a more stringent standard than is normal then there's no problem with that.
    _________________________________________________________________________________
    Edit:

    *
    I've just had it confirmed by Warwickshire Fire & Rescue that the 3 year test periodicy is applicable to BA (Breathing Apparatus) iaw with FSRC 64/2006.
    [Fire and Rescue Service Circular 64/2006: Periodic Inspection and Testing of Breathing Apparatus Cylinders] it applies to BA cylinders irrespective of construction.

    Nothing to do with cylinders that are used for filling airguns, again the construction of these is irrelevant. The test period required by IDEST is determined by valve type (surface only/diving) and are those we are familiar with.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2014
  8. tintin

    tintin Engaging Member

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  9. RichieRich

    RichieRich Pew Pew

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    the 3 year test applies to their cylinders produced before 2002. Safe to say if it's a new tank it will be on a 5 year test cycle according to that PDF
     
  10. Paul Cann

    Paul Cann Posting Addict

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    Some good info on here guys, well done for ferreting it out. I'm not sure about air cylinders for the fire brigade but I know all and any fire extinguishers are made to their own unique spec unlike all other cylinders and are purposely made with a tapered thread on the valve to deter people from using them for other purposes
     
  11. Witterings

    Witterings Posting Addict

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    Thanks to everyone for all their input, still on the fence as to whether its worthwhile or not, does anyone know where else sells them apart from Best Fittings and they're out of stock anyway!!
     
  12. 18 Wheeler

    18 Wheeler Busy Member

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    Spoke with two local dive shops, neither stock composite/CF cylinders I'm afraid and couldn't offer any suggestions as to where to buy. Hopefully someone else can come up with a suggestion? ...

    I wasn't trying to antagonise you jantar, but I was confident that there was some confusion which remained, hopefully you'll agree that has been cleared up and that the 3 year test was for breathing apparatus, with a different requirement for our airgun refill kit.
    Other than the limited life on CF cylinders they are treated the same as others when it comes to periodic testing.

    Perhaps you can help Witterings with a supplier as some of your posts indicated you may have a lead?

    Happy shooting (and charging).
     
  13. terry1001

    terry1001 Major Poster

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    I don't think that dive shops would stock these lightweight cylinders as divers would just need extra weight in order to control buoyancy. I did google 'carbon fibre air cylinder' and there are some suppliers listed.
     
  14. RichieRich

    RichieRich Pew Pew

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    Best Fittings list some on their website
     

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