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Thread: Scuba Tank Refill and Testing

  1. #1
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    Default Scuba Tank Refill and Testing

    Hi All
    If you last filled and tested your scuba tank in 2007, at Prest-ige Dive School in Boksburg be ready for problems.
    I yesterday took my tank to be filled last tested in May 2007 and stamped 07.2 (year 2007 quarter 2). They refused to fill the tank indicating that it must first be tested, saying that 07.2 now indicates that the tank was last tested in February 2007. One employee informed me that this new rule, to stamp the tank the year and month it was last tested, was implemented after May 2007. The more I try to argue the point that you cannot use this logic the more he refused. Another employee then advised that they commenced this new rule in January 2008 ???. So if your tank was last tested in December 2007 stamped 07.4 you will have to have it tested again from April onwards (money making racket?). I requested the contact number of the owner of the shop as well as the number of the controlling body to obtain clarity but was refused both numbers. Being informed that the owner was on her way I waited outside. After a while one of the employees came to me, and said that they will stamp the tank 2008.02 (no test performed?) and fill it with no charge to me. ?? Would not say why the sudden change of attitude.
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  2. #2
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    Duke

    it should be stamped year and month ex : 07.2 meaning Feb 2007.

    It's not law that it gets stamped, but it is that it gets visualed every year ! Some places put stickers on but these can be tampered with / damaged. The stamp is the best and safest, you can then see the whole history of that tank.
    Don't see it as a money making racket, I don't think they make R 60 on it, it's there for your own safety and security.

    ie there is no such thing as second half of 2007 when it comes to either hydro or visual tests, it works on the month, has always ... will always !

    another thing ... a diving cylinder that pops it pillar valve with 100 bar in it will make your airrifle look and sound like a peeshooter and your house or car look like it was hit by an atomic bomb!

    It is ILLEGAL to try and stamp a tank yourself, it is even worse when a diveshop puts a new stamp on without checking the internal condition of the cylinder, and also the thread of cylinder and pillar valve ! They got SABS approval to do the tests and could lose it .... forever ... they are also endangering your life by doing so !

    If they stamped it wrong they should correct the mistake at their own cost, provided that you can prove that they stamped it wrong (invoice ?)
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  3. #3
    Sharp Shooter
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    This is a good example of why you want to take your Scuba or Scba equipment to a qualified inspection unit.... When I had mine done, a certficate was provided with the test.... I agree with neilg's response to the year and month stamped on the shoulder of the bottle, but that is only for the hydro tests....., the visuals will only be on paper, backed up by a sticker or plastic disc around the neck, under the pillar valve.....
    These tests are not a money-making racket, it is absolutely essential to have it done for everyone's safety....

    malan
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  4. #4
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    Malan,

    I was the first in PE to stop with the sticker/certificate/disk issue when doing visuals.

    And I'm sure more will follow in the future !

    Doesn't matter if you bring your tank to me for either a visual or a Hydro test, IT WILL GET STAMPED. I keep the certificate in a file. I don't do the tests myself, gets done by Fire & General in PE.

    On steel there are 2 tests either Hydro or Visual or both at the same time, in some cases they need to be chemically cleaned.
    With Alu bottles you get Hydro, Visual and also Eddy tests, and sometimes you will need a chemical clean.

    This takes the need for all paperwork on the clients side away ! Stickers Come off/get damaged, disks break or cut people and can also be moved from 1 tank to another by removing pillar valve (and they do it believe me). A STAMP IS PERMANENT.

    Imagine driving to Tsitsikamma (200km), they check your cylinder before taking you out on a groupdive and question the validity of your visual (with certificate at home), end up either going home or having to rent a cylinder !

    I pay R 30 more / visual because of the stamp but in the long run it saves everybody alot of frustation !

    If your tank is out of date I will not fill it ... period.

    My equipment ... my choice ... my live.
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  5. #5
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    I also took my bottle to these guys....and everytime the guy with the limp treats you like a freakin criminal ...and he is always confused...the guy doing the fills that gets payed less than the tea girl, he corrects this guy everytime....it is seriously like dejavu everytime i go there....

    A collegue of mine is a Diving instructer and I will get clarity as well as Telephone numbers of the control body of this procedure

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  6. #6
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    Control body is SABS (South Africa Berau of Standards)

    Procedure for visual is every year (and in PE), Hydro every 2 years, but people in JHB says 4 years.

    ps : if a diveshop has any doubts whatsoever they can choose not to fill a cylinder, it is THEIR CHOICE.

    I know about this diveshop, went there a few times, used to be in same street as Target Specialists ... lekka deurie k@k as jy my vra ...
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  7. #7
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    Thanks guys - some confusing info - I am fully aware of the implications and the reason for the test and have no objection having it done and pay. My concern is that a person goes to so called specialists, and even amongst themselves there is conflicting information. I never expected them to fill the tank if it had expired and was prepared to pay yesterday. At no time has any stickers been fixed to the tank - only the stamp, no certificate, invoice etc. - makes one wonder. How often is it mandatory for a visual check and how often for a Hydro test?
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  8. #8
    Sharp Shooter
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    neilg

    Read my post again, I am all for the safety issue......!!!!!
    I am talking about having the tests done by a reputed agent, as you had to send the hydro testing to Fire & General in PE.... Even they might not be qualified to do a hydro test and will have to send it to some other accredited agency to have the test done.... Duke's example was for a normal visual test to be done at a dive shop, and that is where the confusion started....... They would have it sent to another agency for the hydro testing in any case. If you fill the Scuba tanks yourself, you have the right to refuse your services, of course, because it is for your own safety....
    See my thread of hydro and visual checks for Scuba and Scba tanks on a previous discussion.....

    malan
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  9. #9
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    SPOKE TO SOMEONE - THEY STAMPED THE BOTTLES PER QUARTERS IN THE PAST ( MORE THAN FOR YEARS AGO THE LAW CHANGED) NOW THEY ARE STAMPED AS PER DATE...SO THE LAW DIDN'T CHANGE LAST YEAR AS PER PRESTIGE DIVING...OR IS PRESTIGE DIVING STILL IN LAST YEAR ?
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  10. #10
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    Checked SABS, but they want R121 for the PDF

    https://www.sabs.co.za/Business_Unit...aspx?search=qs
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  11. #11
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    Does Wilston still work at Prestige?

    He always gave me 60bar overfills for a couple of smokes. Cool oke.

    ...
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  12. #12
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    Avion, you are nuttier than squirrel turds my friend impgrin
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  13. #13
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    why?
    I have a smallish tank, so I need as much air as possible.

    Tanks heat up when they're filled hence the pressure is higher than when it cools down.

    How much is a fill now anyways?

    ...
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  14. #14
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    Avion, a responsible Diveshop will never overfill cylinders for safety reasons. What I usually do is leave the tank with the shop and they know to fill it and wait a few hours and then top up. I realise that this may not be practical for people who live far from he diveshop but then the only real solution is to get hold of the bigges tank you can get your hands on or go higher capacity, maybe 300bar.

    I must say though that I get plenty fills from my 232 10L.

    As for the squirrel turds thing, I,m pretty paranoid about high pressure vessles and gas bottles of any variety, if I go camping and someone is using a skottle to do breakfast or something, then I can be found beer in hand behind the human shield which is gathered around the bacon impgrin
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  15. #15
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    I forgot, fills cost R35.
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