***Air system safety advice***
Compressed air/nitrogen and CO2 safety
Skipping straight to the conclusion for those with short attention spans, it is highly recommended that you only use CO2 in CO2 tanks, and only use compressed air or Nitrogen in air systems. Equally, only tanks manufactured for the purpose of storing propane should be used with the Tippmann C3.
As far as CO2 and air is concerned, only bottles that have been cleared for use by the paintball industry should be used to store and use these gasses. Tanks intended for the storage of other gasses should not be used, under any circumstances, unless the manufacturer of the bottle confirms their suitability for both the gas you wish to store, and for use in paintball. It is your responsibility to confirm that this is the case.
Any accident that occurs through the use of the wrong type of tank would be your responsibility, and knowingly using a tank unsuitable for the task it is being put to could constitute an offence if others are injured or property is damaged. If that doesn’t make you think twice, keep in my mind that you will most likely be the person closest to the tank if an accident were to occur. For your own personal safety, as well as the safety of others, you must ensure that the tanks you use are suitable for the task.
This forum is intended purely to provide information on paintball specific power sources, and as such, questions regarding the use of non-paintball specific tanks will not be condoned. Neither PBReview, myself, or other members of this forum will be held responsible for accidents caused by the use of tanks that are not intended for use with air, nitrogen or CO2. Our experience is based on the use of paintball specific tanks, and we cannot be expected to provide information on the properties of tanks intended for other gasses or applications, and neither can we conclusively say whether their use in paintball would be safe or not.
If you are absolutely hell bent on using a tank that has not been specifically cleared for use in paintball, consult the manufacturer, and the DOT, and comply with whatever their decision is.
Having said that, lets cover some specific examples: -
Can I fill a CO2 tank with compressed air?
This is a very common question. Of course, a CO2 bottle is designed to safely hold a certain amount of pressure. However, this does not necessarily mean that they are cleared for use with compressed air. Unless a CO2 tank actually has a “working pressure” marked on it, it is not considered suitable for compressed air use, and should only be used with CO2 – end of story.
CO2 bottles that are considered suitable for use with compressed air will generally be marked with two pressures – the working pressure and test pressure. The bottle can only be filled to the working pressure. This is often 1800psi, but can vary from bottle to bottle.
However, the suitability of the bottle to hold air is only one issue. Another thing to consider is that the fill pressure is lower than that of an air system, while capacity is the same as smaller air systems (48CI for a 20oz bottle) – this makes for a low shot count, making the use of air in a CO2 tank relatively pointless.
Another issue is the pressure in the bottle being unregulated, which as such may not be suitable for use with your marker anyway. While this may seem easily resolved with the use of an inline regulator, regulators often have a maximum input pressure of 1200psi, with many newer regulators only being rated for a 900psi input pressure. As such, not only does a CO2 bottle provide very few shots when filled with compressed air, it also has relatively few applications.
As such, the use of compressed air in purpose built, regulated air systems, and not in CO2 bottles, is strongly advised.
Can I fill an air system with CO2?
There are two types of air system to consider – one has a fibre wrapped bottle, the other uses an aluminium or steel bottle.
Fibre-wrapped bottles consist of a relatively thin walled aluminium bottle, which is reinforced by wrapping it with layers of carbon, glass or boron fibres solidified in a resin matrix. The problem here is that it is possible for the tank to freeze when used with CO2. This freezing can make the fibre/resin matrix brittle. With the possibility that the tank may be at it’s coldest when there is no gas pressure left in the tank, the aluminium inner core can contract as there is no pressure in the bottle to combat this. The combination of brittleness and the contraction of the bottle can eventually lead to the fibre wrapping and the bottle separating, seriously lowering the structural integrity of the bottle. The tank would almost certainly rupture if it were then filled with high-pressure air.
As such, fibre wrapped tanks should not be filled with CO2.
This brings us to aluminium and steel tanks, which would appear on face value to be perfectly safe to use with CO2, and as far as the tank itself is concerned, there should be no problems, as they are rated to a higher pressure than CO2 will achieve even at 100+ *F. However, there are again other things to consider. The regulator on an air system is not equipped with an anti-syphon tube, and they are not threaded to accept one. This means that liquid CO2 can pass through the air system regulator, which will damage o-rings and other seals, causing leaks, inconsistency, and possibly causing the full gas pressure to enter your marker or inline regulator. Not such an issue with the pressure of CO2, but if you then switch back to HPA, this is obviously more of a concern, as the full HPA pressure is much higher. If you’re lucky the LP burst disk will rupture before any permanent damage is done to your marker and/or inline regulator.
Why risk it? Use air systems for HPA only.
So could I not swap the regulator on the air system for a valve when I want to use CO2?
This would appear to be a solution, but can cause it own problems. Constantly switching valves is likely to weaken the bottle and/or valve threads. Damaging the threads will increase the likelihood of the valve breaking away from the bottle at a later date, causing the bottle to be launched under gas pressure.
Another consideration is whether you would have the right tools on the field to carry out this swap safely when you need to, and whether you would be able to guarantee that under field conditions you would be able to install the valve securely enough. If the valve isn’t secure, you risk the possibility of the bottle coming unscrewed from the valve.
The cumulative effect of multiple valve swaps is to increase the likelihood of an accident occurring with each valve change, and as such, should not be attempted. Unless your tank is equipped with a regulator that has been designed to be removed easily for transportation, valve removal should be limited as far as possible.
Having mentioned burst disks, lets look a little closer at those.
In it’s simplest form, a burst disk is quite simply a thin disk made of metal, most commonly brass. The disk is held against a hole that exposes it to gas pressure, and clamped in place with a nut that is drilled to allow air to escape if the disk ruptures. The thickness and material of the burst disk dictates what pressure it will rupture at. In the case of the high-pressure burst disk on an air system regulator, or the burst disk on a CO2 valve, the rupture pressure is designed to prevent the bottle being dangerously overfilled. The burst disk has a rupture pressure below the failure pressure of the bottle, but higher than the working pressure. So, the disk shouldn’t rupture often, but should fail before the bottle would.
Air system regulators are also often fitted with a low-pressure safety, often in the form of another burst disk with a lower rupture pressure. This will have a burst pressure higher then the output pressure of the air system, but lower than the fill pressure of the bottle. This is designed to protect your marker from being exposed to the unregulated fill pressure of the bottle if the regulator fails.
So, if your LP burst disk were to rupture, this means that there is something wrong with your air system. Do not be tempted to fit a higher rated burst disk or more than one disk, to stop the disk rupturing, as this could lead to your marker being damaged. Same goes for CO2 valves – use only one burst disk of the correct rating, otherwise your bottle could fail before the bust disk does.
Another thing to consider is when fitting a valve or regulator to a new bottle. Ensure that the high pressure burst disk on the regulator or valve is of a suitable value for the bottle you are using. If the burst disk has a higher pressure rating than the bottle, then it possible that the bottle could fail if overfilled, so make sure that your burst disk rating suit the bottle you are using.
Can I use Nitrous Oxide tanks from a car supercharger on an air system?
As stated at the beginning, this forum deals with air systems that have been tested for paintball use, and cannot confirm the suitability of tanks intended for use in other applications. As such, these tanks cannot be and should not be recommended for use in paintball applications unless the DOT and bottle manufacture confirm that they are suitable.
Can I fill a large Propane tank with CO2 and use it to fill my CO2 bottles?
As above, you are using a tank for a purpose it was not intended for and with a different gas. This cannot be condoned and should not be attempted or recommended unless the manufacturer and the DOT state that it is safe to do so. It is also entirely possible that the tank will have different valving that will not allow for the use of a commercial fill station, and may not be fitted with a syphon tube, so you would have to turn the tank upside down to get a liquid fill in to your bottle. With the potential this has for the tank to be dropped, this is another practice that isn’t advisable.
Hire a CO2 cylinder with a syphon tube installed, they don’t cost that much, and use a commercially available fill station.
A brief look at valve installation: -
I don’t intend to get in to a detailed description of valve installation procedures, as you should not be attempting this yourself if you do not know the correct procedure. If you do not know how to do this safely yourself, leave it to an experienced airsmith at shop or field.
What I wish to discuss is the use of Loctite during valve installation, or more importantly, not using it.
The use of high strength Loctite threadlocker, product code 262 or 271 (often referred to as “red Loctite”) is often suggested when installing valves. While this makes the separation of the valve from the bottle highly unlikely, it’s use is actually a bad idea. High strength threadlock is intended for use on permanent or at least semi-permanent installation, where the parts are seldom if ever expected to be taken apart. Unfortunately, this is not the case with air systems, which require the valve to be removed for hydrotesting or air travel, and in some cases, need to be removed from the bottle for servicing. Separating parts held together with this product requires excessive force, or the use of heat to soften the threadlock. The bond is in fact so strong, that it can remove particles of metal from the bottle and valve threads when the parts are separated by force. This can weaken the threads, and increases the likelihood of the threads failing with each successive assembly and disassembly. Obviously, heating the Loctite bond to weaken it is not an option, as this can effect the structural integrity of the bottle.
As such, the use of high strength Loctite threadlock cannot be recommended. If you absolutely insist on the use of a threadlock, use a removable strength one such as Loctite product codes 222, 242 or 243. Loctite threadlocker 242 is often referred to as “blue Loctite” – it isn’t actually very helpful to identify Loctite products by colour, as a lot of their products are either blue or red, most of their products are not threadlockers, and blue and red do not necessarily refer respectively to weak and strong throughout their product range. To get the product you need, it is best to refer to the product by the code number. A removable strength Loctite is much less likely to damage the threads of you air system, and should not require heating to remove it.
The o-ring between the valve and the bottle should seal the joint. Loctite is not required to make a seal. If the joint leaks, replace the o-ring.
Loctite is also not required to stop the valve separating from the bottle. This can be accomplished purely through torque. A preset regulator or CO2 valve should be installed with enough torque that the bottle and valve cannot be separated by hand strength alone, so the bottle cannot be accidentally unscrewed from the valve where the valve to get stuck in the marker’s ASA. The level of torque used during the installation has to be high enough to ensure that the valve and bottle cannot be separated without the use of tools. That way, the bottle cannot come apart unless it is being intentionally disassembled.
Copied from PBNation.
For those who don't recognise the name, Trevor Kent is a partner in what is probably the UKs largest hydrotesting and HP filling facilities: -
A statement form Mr. Trevor Kent form H-Pac concerning an incident at the the Millennium event in Madrid, today the 2nd June 2006.
At approximately 3pm there was an incident where a cylinder being filled exploded. After a thorough investigation and examination of the cylinder / regulator and also evidence found on the fill station, it was decided that a player had sprayed a general purpose lubricant (3 in 1 oil, found close by) into the fill nipple and then commenced to fill the cylinder.
This obviously ignited inside the cylinder under pressure which caused the reg to melt and the cylinder to fly into the staging area causing some injuries believed to be minor.
The reason for this accident was because the player used an incorrect method for repairing a fault with the fill nipple/ reg and thus endangered their own and other people's safety.
H-Pac would like to make it absolutely clear that the entire fault for this incident lay with the improper filling and maintenance of this cylinder.
The player in question has not come forward and remains anonymous for reasons which seem obvious.
Compressed air is dangerous if misused and if you have any problems, you should immediately consult the manufacturer.
Never attempt to repair these cylinder reg units by yourself; you should always consult the correct technicians or manufactures.
Now, after you have read this you all need a refresher course with oil and chemicals in or
around your air system. DO NOT ! I SAY AGAIN DO NOT!!! ADD DROPS OF OIL OR USE ANY
OIL TO SERVICE YOUR AIR SYSTEMS TO KEEP THE FILL NIPPLE FROM LEAKING. I will report
that 3 times now the fill operator at my old field has had 3 flash explosions. The last one
occurred with an aog member’s tank. I will not release his name as I will explain a little more
in a second. The last flash back actually burnt my partner’s arms and the flash was doused
with water to put out the flames. That’s correct, the flames. The resulting flash back actually
melted the redz tank cover right to the tank and john’s arms were burnt and the hair was
completely removed from his gorilla like arms. This is bull§§§§ and it doesn’t need to happen. A
while ago I posted a mini tech scenario about what happens when you add oil or grease that
is not explosion proof. After I posted this an industry insurance provider asked me not to
make a "big" deal" about it. Well guess what? I don’t want to die or anyone else to because
of lack of knowledge about this situation.
Now back to what happened with the last flash back. The customer had a leaky fill nipple;
the person who serviced the tank did put oil into the fill nipple. After the tank was filled the
pressure release when removing the fill nipple flashed the oil that had migrated to the area
around the fitting. This flash back turned the regulator black with soot and the cover melted
to the air tank. Here’s where it gets way way way worse. the customer then took the tank
back, cleaned the soot off the reg and remainder of the cover and cleaned the fill nipple
with an spray cleaner used to clean automobile carbs.i have now advised my partner to
change the whole way we now fill hp tanks and goes as follows. When a player comes in for
a fill there are no more "top offs" every tank is now drained and a c/a adapter is screwed
onto the bottle to drain the tank. Then a "purge" is done then a fill will be continued. We are
actually looking into a "blast box" or a ballistic blanket like they use on drag cars to keep the
pressure plate/fly wheel from exploding into the driver’s compartment to put the tank in during the fill. Guys please pay
attention to this warning. You most likely won’t be the one that the explosion happens to,
it’s the poor sob that is filling your tank. I am awaiting a real tank explosion video to post on line
so you can see how serious this situation really is.
REPRINTED WITHOUT PERMISSION FROM WAR PIG DATED 2002.
Don't Blow Yourself Up
Oil and compressed air do not, and should not be mixed. Many people have taken to the practice of dropping paint gun oil into the fill nipple of their compressed air system, especially in the hopes of sealing a leaky fill nipple.
While this would not be a real problem using the inert gas nitrogen, most "nitrogen" systems in paintball are actually filled with compressed air. As air is compressed the amount of oxygen (as well as the other gasses in the air) is increased. Fire, also known as combustion, or an exothermic oxidation reaction requires three things to start: oxygen, fuel and heat. The temperature needed to start a particular fuel burning is known as that fuel's flash point. As the amount of oxygen a fuel is exposed to increases, the flash point drops. With some materials like phosphorus, the flash point is below room temperature, and they will catch fire when exposed to air.
There are many oils which are perfectly safe at room temperature and air pressure. However, when the oxygen content around them increases - as with air compressed into a paint gun’s HPA tank, the flash point can lower to below the temperature of the fill air and cause the oil to ignite. This is the principle at work in the cylinders of a diesel engine.
In a recent telephone interview with WARPIG.com, Shawn Townsend of Compressed Air Specialties, Inc., a Bauer Compressor distributor in Southern California, related a warning against using oils in HPA tanks and the story of an accident that occurred at SC Village.
According to Townsend, a customer at the field experienced a leak in the fill nipple of his air system and treated it with a few drops of paint gun oil dropped into the nipple before taking his gear to the air fill station. The player started to fill his tank and dropped it, shouting. Townsend says he stepped over to investigate and smelled the after effects of a fire, and found the fill hose and fill nipple coated in a black film.
Townsend theorized that the fill nipple would have sprayed the oil into a mist, much like the fuel injector in an automobile engine, further increasing the surface area in contact with oxygen and lowering the flash point.
Townsend said that the resulting fire flashed through the tank and the hose. Fortunately the explosion was small, and did not create any shrapnel, so no one was injured. Townsend ended up taking the fill hose out of service, and recommended that the customer have the tank both visually inspected and hydrostatically tested by a DOT certified inspector before filling it again.
Paintball safety lies in the hands of the players. Do not put oil or any other lubricants into your compressed air system's tank or fill nipple. No lubricants should be used on the regulator unless they are explicitly recommended by the manufacturer.
How should I dispose of 12 gram containers?
12 grams are still used in some pump markers and mainly BB guns as a light form of propellent. These are filled with CO2 and when the tip is punctured by some sort of device inside the marker or BB gun the CO2 can flow out to provide an adequate air source to propel the paint or BB.
It's recommended you not puncture the tip to empty it with something like a nail or any other instrument like that. It is far safer to use the 12 gram in it's proper aspect then to tamper with it in another manner; no matter how safe you may think it is or how controlled the environment is.
Also, do not intentionally destroy a 12 gram by shooting it with a firearm, slamming it in a toilet seat, or whackinig it with a hammer. These are just examples of what not to do.
These cylinders are pressurized and if you were to intentionally rupture them, especially at close range, you run the risk of producing some sort of shrapnel that can seriously injure or kill a person in an extreme situation. If you have them laying around it's best to give them to someone that can use them properly then trying to be funny and hitting one with a hammer only to have a splint of metal blind you. Even a needle thin piece of metal in the eye can cause serious damage and blindness.
Can I fill my tank above the recommended fill pressure and use it since Hydro testing does it anyway?
Hydro testing is based on displacement of water with the tank inside a tank of water. The tank is filled to a certain pressure point, far above the working pressure but below the bursting point. These tanks can be filled anywhere from 5000-6500 psi roughly from what I have heard of others getting it done. All tanks are different and have different pressures they are tested at, these numbers will vary from tank to tank but are also done in controlled settings with trained professionals to test the strength of your tank so it will not burst.
If you have a 3000 psi tank you fill it to no more then 3000 psi. Same goes for a 4500 psi tank, fill it to 4500 psi and no more. And in rare cases, such as the Evil Scion tanks, do not fill above 5000 psi should the tank be rated for 5000 psi. Filling it above the rated psi level stretches the tank body and can cause weaknesses in the tank body over time leading it to burst and injuring or killing an individual.
Most fields have fill stations for 3000 psi and 4500 psi lines and are meant to only fill those tanks. Don't think it'll be safe to hook your 3000 psi tank up to the 4500 line and get 1500 more psi then the tank is rated for. You don't know how it will handle it and you will be the person holding the tank when it gets filled. If the tank should fail you will be releasing 3000-4500 psi in your hands and to give you an idea of how serious that would be... it would be like a shotgun going off point blank into your body or head. There is not much left after that and more then likely it would kill you and others around you; or seriously injure them at the very least. I would not like to see the person that survived a Nitrogen tank going off in their hands because they over filled it thinking it was safe.
Only fill your tanks to the proper rated pressure as stated on the label from the manufacturer and DOT. Safety is key with these tanks and should not be toyed with. As Uziel stated before, PBR, the staff, and members who follow the guidelines of PBR are not responsible should you use a tank in a way it was not meant for. All damage, injuries, and potential deaths caused by improper use will be the sole responsibility of the individual who violated those rules and guidelines.
Remotes can be used with compressred air/N2 and c02.
However when using a remote with comp. air, you must read the remote rating. The majority of remotes are only rated for 3000 psi comp. air tanks.
When using C02, do NOT use an antisiphon tank. Antisiphon is made to be put horizontally, not vertically. All Non antisiphoned tanks that have been rehydro-ed can be used with a remote.
Everything about hydrotesting.
Hydro testing is short for hydrostatic testing where the tank after a certain amount of time are inspected (for paintball tanks between 3-5 years, see here.)
The tank is inspected visually and if deemed unfit the tank must not be used, if the tank passes the visual test it then moves onto the hydro-static test, where water is put into the tank at high pressure and it tests the strength and integrity of the tank. This MUST BE DONE every 3-5 years depending on the tank. It is your responsibility to do so and if not done things can turn disasterous. Even if you take top notch care of your tank, if you get it filled outside of your house or use it outside of your house you are required by law to have it hydro tested. Almost all tanks, CO2 and N2 alike must be retired after 15-24 years depending on bottle material, no exceptions. Even if the tank was capable of being safe for longer it most be retired after 15-24 years. Small tanks of 9-12 oz. under the right circumstances(at or under 2 inches in diameter) dont have to be retired after 15 years.
While it is correct that fibre wrapped tanks have a lifespan of 15 years, and metal tanks marked "3HT" have a lifespan of 24 years (and require testing every 3 years), aluminium tanks often have no limit to their lifespan - as long as they keep passing their hydro test of course! The bottle will be marked to show if there is a set condemnation date - Uziel
^^Uhhh.....What he said ;).
Where can I get Hydrostatic Testing Done?
You can take your tank to your local pro-shop and see if they can arrange something for you. You may also be able to get it done at
-Any-other place that deals with high pressure bottles(ask around).
-If you really need a place to do it and dont have anything local there are online companies that you send your bottle to and they will do it and ship it back to you.
Such as this one which has some good information on it as well.
How do i tell when my tank was made so i know when to get it Hydro'd?
If you look on the bottle there should be 2 numbers then a symbol(this varies by bottle manufacturer) and then 2 numerals after them. The first numerals are the month it was made, the last 2 after the symbol is the year it was made. Add 3-5 years onto this to find out your FIRST hydro date. After your first hydro a new sticker will be placed on the tank, add to that sticker, and so on and so forth.
How do I read the bottle label in general?
Here is a great picture and site explaining everything.
If this hasn't been mentioned.
For the love of God, don't take a regulater/valve off a HPA/co2 tank while the tank is pressurised.
since I cant figure out how to just paste it right in here:
What if my tank is damaged
Please look at this link from carleton www.carltech.com/new-composite/damage.pdf
I think that about covers all the bases since people aren't adding... I vote for a sticky with a big, colored font to draw attention to it. :tup:
Can I use oxygen to fill my nitrogen tank?
The short answer is no and this falls back onto the rule of not filling your tank with anything it's not rated for. Oxygen supports combustion and any kind of spark or flame could cause the tank to combust, this is why you see the big, red flame stickers on oxygen bottles. Also, when you fill a nitrogen tank it heats up because of all the pressure being applied to the bottle. Oxygen and pressure do not mix because there is a good chance it will cause the tank to rupture and ignite ontop of that.
Also if there is any grease or oil present on the tank reg or inside the reg, there usually is some kind of grease or oil for the valve, the heat and oxygen can cause those to ignite as well. So don't try to fill up your tank with oxygen from a welders torch or grandmas' oxygen supply because chances are not only will you blow yourself up but you'll light yourself on fire ontop of it. That's the grim reality.
The end result of a Rapid 7 pre-charged air rifle being filled with pure oxygen and then fired - not pretty. The owner ended up in intensive care, and is lucky to be alive. Uziel.
I skimmed this thread and didnt find anything about putting oil in your HPA tank
DO NOT PUT OIL IN YOUR HPA TANK
Its kind of hard to explain and im not sure if its true with all oils but definitely true for 3in1 oils. If you do put oil in i think just the fill nipple (not sure if something occurs with putting it into the end part) You could cause an explosion next time your tank is fill. See all oils have a flash point, temperature at which the oil catches fire or explodes, im not sure which, under high pressure, say 3k or 4.5k psi that flash point is lowered significantly, low enough to ignite under the heat created when an HPA bottle is being filled, if you know how a diesel engine works u might understand me a little bit better
If this has already been posted please delete it, i didnt see it on any stickies and it seems to me like this would be something you should know, If it hasnt been posted, your free to elaborate on it or do a better job explaining and clarifying some of the stuff i dont know
It is a subject that has come up on the forum a number of times, but for some reason, never got added to this thread. :| So it was certainly worth adding this - thanks for contributing. :tup:
The general rule of thumb is that no oil or grease should be used where it will make it's way in to the tank, and the regulator should only be lubricated as per the manufacturers instructions, and with the lubricant they recommend.
Edit - more info added at top of page.
its like a diesel engine-compression ignites the diesel fuel with no spark of any kind. Same principle with a HPA tank. Thats also why on an oxy-acetylene torch gauge it says in big letters-USE NO OIL!!!!
hmm i wonder if anyone will end up reading this, but i thought id ask anyways: i know oil and grease into the fill nipple = big no no. but what happens if my tank were to get shot and got paint in there?
and if there is paint and/or debris in the fill nipple, is there any way of getting it out safely?
While there is air in the tank, it is pretty much impossible for paint to get in to the tank - the pressure of air trying to push *out* of the tank, will stop anything trying to push it's way *in*.
So, not an issue at the time that paintball actually impacts.
Before refilling the tank, I would suggest emptying it, then removing the fill valve and cleaning it thoroughly. You'll need some teflon tape to reseal the threads - always a handy thing to carry with you. I prefer removable strength threadlock, but that's no good for patching things up at the field - you need time for it to cure.
Better solution all round? Always use a fill valve cover - stop paint getting in to the valve in the first place.
hey thanks for responding so quick, i appreciate that =)
ill keep what you said in mind and i already got some fill valve covers on the way.
Got an update for everybody since the Myth reg is becoming very popular.
When buying a tank, what things should I look for in terms of safety?
Besides looking for a tank that will fit your budget, style of play, and also provide a good recharge rate, safety should be your number one priority and concern. Not only for yourself since you will be holding and using it but also those around you should you leave your tank unattended or lend it out.
The biggest thing is the burst disc. With tank regulators like the Myth becoming popular because of the light weight and small size as it aids in the goal for the 'smallest and lightest' set up, people over look the lack of a key safety feature. The lack of a low pressure burst disc.
Tank regulators come with two brass nuts on the side the majority of the time, one is a low pressure burst disc and the other is a high pressure burst disc. Each has a rated pressure that will break once that pressure is released should the regulator fail.
Low Pressure discs usually rupture when the regulator begins to creep from damage or wear to the regulator, allowing more pressure to enter the regulator then designed. The burst disc will burst with a loud pop or bang and vent the air as a safety precaution.
A high pressure burst disc usually ruptures in a worst case scenario. These can also rupture from the tank being over filled at the fill stations. This is usually from a total failure of the regulator and the entire pressure of your tank tries to exit the tank at once and into your marker. The high pressure burst disc then breaks and vents the air, not only saving your marker but potentially life and limb around you.
What is so unsafe about the One burst disc design like the Myth?
The lack of the low pressure burst disc is what is dangerous. If the tank regulator spikes or creeps there is no safety precaution to stop the added pressure from entering your marker. And if you use a high pressure rated macroline like I do, then the line will not burst. This leaves only the high pressure burst disc as your only safety net in terms of the tank regulator.
To further prove a point there was an incident involving a Myth regulator and the lack of the low pressure burst disc which could have injured the user. This is the result of that tank regulator failure.
The tank regulator crept or spiked suddenly, the macroline was a high pressure line, and the air found the weak point. In this case it was in the regulator.
Macdev is investigating this currently and waiting to receive the regulator and pieces for examination along with more information from the user as of this posting to determine how and why the regulator failed in such a way. This shows you how dangerous these single burst discs can be despite the improvements in designs.
i've hear that if you trip and fall on an hpa tank and damage the regulator, the tank can shoot of the regulator and cut some one's body in half. is that true?
For a reg to fly off an HPA tank you'd have to one major major failure. Simply tripping and falling onto the tank won't cause the tank to just fly off reg. And as for cutting someone in half if it did well, i kinda doubt it. It would really depend on the size of the person, how far away they, and how fast the tank is traveling at the time. Even then it's doubtful to me that it would completely pierce someone. Still though a HPA tank that might happen to fail and fly off and strike someone is still very very dangerous and can very well kill the person it hits. To greatly avoid something like though i wouldn't try to take your reg off to service it yourself unless you know exactly what you're doing, be mindful when you're unscrewing it from the gun that the reg isn't unscrewing instead (had that happen to me), if you're using a CF tank invest in a nice cover, and also read through this sticky.
A Solumn Reality
None of this should have happened had the proper precausions and procedures been followed. Trust me when I say the CO2 tanks we use for our sport are just as dangerous as the tanks used to fill them. Handle these and the other types of air tanks with care; They are only as strong as the weakest part/area.
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