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Caution: The Damage that Compressed Air Can do....


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I know that there are good reasons to have onboard air and indeed quite a few have novel solutions involving diving tanks, old bottles, hollow roll cage / rockslider components / home made receivers etc but it is worth reading the attached and thinking:

"What if"...

  • The old diving bottle I am using has some moisture in it that is corroding the tank?
  • The method I am using to refill it sometimes exceeds the pressure which I think is okay?
  • I am using stressed components (cage / sliders) that may get bent / battered while they are full of pressurised air?
  • There is a failure of the tank - where is it likely to exhaust or send debris?

I cannot tell you what pressure the BA compressor in this alert was working to except I do know that they have good controls in place so it would have been going to the established working pressure for the bottle.

I am not aware of any checks done on Range Rover air suspension tanks after they leave the factory....

Notice that it didn't just peel the tank open, it blew the bottom out of the fibreglass lifeboat which would have been double skinned etc so there was a horrific amount of energy involved.

Best regards, AirCylinerExplosion.jpg

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I agree, very important to be cautious with compressed gasses, though this was a breathing apparatus bottle, so would have probably been at nearly 3000 psi.

Hopefully most vehicle compressed air systems will only be at around 150psi (apart from dive bottles). Nevertheless even these pressures can cause serious injury or worse, so this should be a good reminder for us all.



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My dive bottles for on-board air are in-test. I don't know anywhere that would re-fill them if they weren't.

No that I'd contemplate messing with ones that weren't. Not that its a guarantee.

I disconnected the hose from my garage compressor the other day, guess the hose was about 100psi. I forgot to de-pressurise it before pulling the PCL connector. It whipped out of my hand like a whirling dervish and the PCL connector smacked me on the nose. No real damage, but it still hurts and was a big shock.

Compressed air is great but dangerous.

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Fully agree about the potential for death or worse - but as has been said, a dive bottle will be a lot worse than a 100psi tank.

I was initially worried about this when I used the cage as a reservoir so carried out a test.

Pressurised a short length of the same tube to 200psi and then drove a spike in to the side of the tube with a fly-press to see if the puncture would cause the tube to rip open.

All it did was hiss a bit - very unexciting!

Think I'm safe for the moment!


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