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HPA bottle testing

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Hi does anyone know anywhere that tests cylinders for less than £50 a pop. Looks like it may be cheaper to just buy new.

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For steel bottles you're typically better off just buying a new one if it's a lower to mid capacity one. Even online the best you can do is ~ £35, and as you're not really meant to post them that difference in price gets smaller when all is said and done anyway.

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Most bottles around that get called steel are actually aluminium

A compact 13ci 3000psi aluminium cylinder is exempt from testing in the UK, and a standard 48ci 3000psi aluminium cylinder can be used for 10 years between tests rather than 5 years

(Subject to condition and the visual check you should make before filling)

However not every site will recognise the exemption and 10 year period

 

With the new price of aluminum cylinders in the region of £30 to £40 it’s rarely financially viable to test them.  

 

You can find places that could test at a lower price in the region of £20, and almost every dive shop in the UK can arrange testing. 

 

Look through the IDEST members list for places that can conduct hydro testing. Pick a local test centre and you can get it done quite cheaply without middle men and postage 

(Note the new regulations on postage, as an individual you would have to remove the regulator — and carriers still may not accept a cylinder)

   ***** don’t attempt to remove a regulator without investigating how to do it safely and without thread damage *****

 

https://www.sita.org.uk/idest/idest_members.php

 

 

 

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Mine are aluminium, I thought would need to replace in 18 months.  It does say needs to be tested every 5 years on them, hopefully the guy at the Scuba shop knows about the exemption, because he does check the dates on the cylinders before filling.

 

Cheers


G

He is on that website list, but told me he doesn't test airsoft/paintball bottles himself, and would need to send it away and not economically worth it to test.

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5 minutes ago, proffrink said:

Steel or aluminium I should say* carbon fibre steel ones are the only ones expensive enough to bother testing.

Yes, fibre wraps are the only truely viable cylinders for testing 

52 minutes ago, MisterG said:

Mine are aluminium, I thought would need to replace in 18 months.  It does say needs to be tested every 5 years on them, hopefully the guy at the Scuba shop knows about the exemption, because he does check the dates on the cylinders before filling.

 

Cheers


G

He is on that website list, but told me he doesn't test airsoft/paintball bottles himself, and would need to send it away and not economically worth it to test.

Note if you do buy a new cylinder instead of testing then do shop around.

 

Airsoft retailers may be more expensive than Paintball retailers due to the lower quantity turnover of HPA cylinders in airsoft

BUT make sure you know what you are buying, as some cylinders sold for airsoft have differnet output regulators which can account for the difference in cost.

You need the air pressure regulated down to a very low operating pressure in your gun.  In Paintball that’s primarily done with a low pressure regulator fitted to the gun, whereas in airsoft you may be using an inline LP regulator on your airlines or some cylinders are fitted with LP regulators to be airsoft ready

 

LP/low pressure is a relative term so an LP  regulator may be hundreds of PSI too high for your setup - make sure you know what you are buying and what you need

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Is there any link to the 10 year excepmtion?  I looked at that Facebook link in the thread Lewis created a while back and only mentions 5 years.

 

I've got a Tippmann M4.

 

Cheers


G

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3 hours ago, MisterG said:

Is there any link to the 10 year excepmtion?  I looked at that Facebook link in the thread Lewis created a while back and only mentions 5 years.

 

I've got a Tippmann M4.

 

Cheers


G

It was covered in the UKPSF law pages, however they decided to keep to 5 years on their HPA1 air safety document (this was to minimize confusion of real steel cylinders at 5 years and whether an aluminium was fully aluminium) 

The provision for 10 years is in the TPED regulations

 

There are references to it in the following :

https://bristolwalkon.wordpress.com/ukpsf-4/

 

 

If ever in doubt though the font of air knowledge is with Trevor of HPAC

 

http://hpac-armourlite.co.uk/?page_id=56

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It is confusing it says Steel and Aluminium bottles must also be tested five years from the manufactured date.

 

But at the bottom of the same page it says

TEN YEARS FOR ALUMINIUM BOTTLES 

 

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1 hour ago, MisterG said:

It is confusing it says Steel and Aluminium bottles must also be tested five years from the manufactured date.

 

But at the bottom of the same page it says

TEN YEARS FOR ALUMINIUM BOTTLES 

 

That’s unclear on the link, but is due to timing of articles on the original UKPSF source and when TPED revised the aluminium period

 

The original page has gone and any related info moved into members only areas of the UKPSF

 

Its no help if your filler says no, and they are in their right to refuse to fill any bottle.  But they may accept it if you point out that line

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Unless I can find definitive proof it is 10 years, I don't think he will fill mine once 5 years have passed.  On the botttles themselves it says test after 5 years.

 

I'm pretty much resigned to spending £80+ for two in 18 months time.

 

Cheers


G

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Hey guys,

 

I have this big hidrotech thank,  can you help me understand when I have to test it again, please? Date on the tank is 2015/10 

E66B56D3-21A5-4FF6-967A-2B3E4CDE539E.jpeg

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The time you have left will depend on the cylinder classification.

 

But 2015/10 in the neck is the manufacture date (October 2015)

In average its 5 years which would make it 2020, but look for other markings 

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3 hours ago, Marco said:

Thank I’ll have another look but what kind of markings should I look for? 

The actual marking sequence can vary between manufacturer and type of cylinder.

 

It would also depend on what you define as a ‘big’ cylinder.

If it’s designed as a dive cylinder then it would have an additional diving test sequence of every 2.5 years alternating between the 5 year hydro test and a visual test inbetween.  There is an exemption for surface use, so if you don’t dive then only need the 5 year test, but some places won’t fill without the 2.5 year test unless the regulator type cannot be used for diving systems

 

As it’s stamped then it will be an aluminium or steel cylinder.  True steel would be a rare sight in common paintball cylinders, but white painted cylinders could have been designed for diving, hospital air etc and can come in many shapes and sizes

 

There should be two figures in BAR, one the operating pressure that it should be used up to (eg 232 BAR for 3000psi and 300BAR for 4500psi) and the other is the test pressure

 

 

32676B86-1FD4-4390-A4D9-BE621DF53BF4.gif

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