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General Dive Cylinder Information

May 02, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 149

When it comes to your Dive Cylinder there are some things that it is vital to know.

Maintenance of your Dive Cylinder

The tank, or dive cylinder as it is more commonly called must be properly maintained to the standards of your country.. These must be properly maintained according to the standards of your country. We will assume UK standards for this article.

Visual Inspection By Oneself - This should be carried out prior and after use. Externally you may develop rust or get dents. Visual inspections must be carried out regularly to ensure no sever damage has been caused. Small patches of external rust can be sanded down and repainted. Any severe looking damage and you should visit your dive shop. Do not use your cylinder if you are unsure.

It is also wise to inspect the tanks internals as well. Rust inside the tank is one major issue that can be quite common. This can be avoided by rinsing out after use and filling with air. If there is rust inside the dive cylinder, it can be removed using several techniques, though it is better to see a professional and get them to do this rather than attempting it yourself. The techniques require special tools and machinery. At the end of the day the cylinder is a life support machine, so it is vital you spend the dollar and get the professionals to carry out major maintenance.

Internal Visual Inspections - legally this is required to be carried out at least every 2.5 years by a professional certified body (your local dive shop will likely be able to do or arrange this for you). They will inspect the cylinder internally for rust and damage, and if required carry out repairs or deem it unusable.

Hydrostatic Test - this is legally required to be carried out by a certified body (again see your local dive shop) at least every 5 years. It involves filling your cylinder to its test pressure and measuring its volume before and after the test. A permanent increase in volume above the required level would mean the cylinder failed and it will not be allowed to be used again.

Cylinder Colour Coding - The colours on your cylinder must be correct for your country. Each country requires bottles to be painted specific colours depending on their specification. If the bottle is the incorrect colour you will not be able to get it refilled. The colour coding for the UK is noted below

Air has either a white (RAL 9010) top and black (RAL 9005) band on the shoulder, or white (RAL 9010) and black (RAL 9005) "quartered" shoulders.

Heliox has either a white (RAL 9010) top and brown (RAL 8008) band on the shoulder, or white (RAL 9010) and brown (RAL 8008) "quartered" shoulders.

Nitrox, like Air, has either a white (RAL 9010) top and black (RAL 9005) band on the shoulder, or white (RAL 9010) and black (RAL 9005) "quartered" shoulders.

Pure oxygen has a white shoulder (RAL 9010).

Pure helium has a brown shoulder (RAL 9008).

Trimix has a white, black and brown segmented shoulder.

With an interest in diving, I intend to learn about the subject and relay the knowledge to others as I do so.

Source: EzineArticles
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