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Often dangerous...
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Discussion Starter #1
Here's a heads up.

I had a few consequtive days booked with a regular Lundy dive boat and the skipper recommended that we get our air fills on the Island overnight. Having enquired with the Lundy shore office I find that their compressor does not pump O2 clean or dry gas and that the use of personal in-line gas filters is recommended, perhaps inferring that by using these filters the potential problem of contaminated gas will be addressed. Not so! A (Beaver) personal filter will neither remove hydrocarbons (to O2 clean standards) nor moisture and if flow rates exceed 10 lpm the filter bed may break up and allow hydrocarbon contaminated filter media to enter the cylinder. Woe betide the partial pressure blender who subseqently fills one of these...

Conseqently, I have cancelled all but one of our days, preferring to take O2 clean gas with us and not exposing our cylinders to the Lundy compressor.
 

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Question...

Unless you are filling from your own compressor how do you ever know how clean or dry the air going in is?
 

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Often dangerous...
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Discussion Starter #4
Question...

Unless you are filling from your own compressor how do you ever know how clean or dry the air going in is?
A bona fide filling station should be able to evidence a regime of inspection based on analysis of their gas and their filtration system should be serviced / replaced with sufficient regularity and have sufficient back-ups (triple filtered) so that if any one filter stack should fail, those remaining will continue to deliver the quality of gas which is required.

I would always avoid taking air fills from a boat or any LDS which does not pump nitrox to high O2 concentrations unless I was able to reclean my pillar valves and internally inspect the cylinder before presenting it for partial pressure blended fills. To do less is criminally irresponsible (I have a TDI O2 service tech ticket...)

In the case of our Lundy trips, we only need 21% to dive with and photograph the seals but later that week we have other diving booked which will require (partial pressure blended) nitrox. I'm buggered if I'm going to reclean a dozen or more cylinders...
 

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"Look mate, the problem's between the user and the
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Question...

Unless you are filling from your own compressor how do you ever know how clean or dry the air going in is?
Ask to see the current air purity test cert, also obtain a copy of the air purity standard (BS EN 12021) and compare the actual test results with the standard.

Phil
 

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So everytime you guys go to a new fill station you ask to see the certs?

I fill mine from a private compressor and 1, maybe 2 shops I know well so it is not a concern for me but in reality how many people with O2 clean tanks actually ask about these things and how many tanks go bang as a consequence?
 

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I'll have one of everything......please.
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What's the point of a Beaver filter, apart from stopping small mammals and bits of compressor getting in your cylinders?
Options
1 Get a filter that does the job!
2 Take more cylinders!
3 Don't dive
 

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Utrinque Paratus
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or get Ilfracombe BSAC to fill them for you!
 

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I provide much-needed sarcasm.
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Great option but its a heck of a drive from Clovelly...
Clovelly is a bit like the village of the damned though, isn't it? I stood at the bar waiting to get served whilst two groups walked in and got served before me. I got the feeling they didn't like tourists. I didn't like their hill. My mate didn't really like the local drunk who tried to pick a fight with him at 6pm in the pub.

Lundy has nice diving and it's been years since I've been, but it is a complete pain in the arse to organise. Maybe some kind (mad) soul would like to organise something?

Jason
 

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Clovelly is a bit like the village of the damned though, isn't it? I stood at the bar waiting to get served whilst two groups walked in and got served before me. I got the feeling they didn't like tourists. I didn't like their hill. My mate didn't really like the local drunk who tried to pick a fight with him at 6pm in the pub.

Lundy has nice diving and it's been years since I've been, but it is a complete pain in the arse to organise. Maybe some kind (mad) soul would like to organise something?

Jason
Were you on the same trip that I was on, we got blown out on the Sunday but had to sit on the beach waiting for the tide to come back in so that we could get our gear off? Also the joy of walking twinset's up and down to the carpark as the public are not allowed to drive on the public road to and from the harbour - compressor, instead you get to pay the local to do it in his car?

The day we had on Lundy was fantastic, however I'd not dive out of Clovelly again if you paid me!

Danny
 

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Off to Lundy this wk/end, staying in Ilfracombe and I think the skipper (Obsession) is arranging fills with Ilfracombe BSAC. Do they pump O2 clean air then?
Answered my own question after a chat with Chris Hewitt of Ilfracombe BSAC. Looks like they do pump O2 clean air ;-)
 

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Often dangerous...
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Discussion Starter #15
I have had a dialogue with the Lundy Shore Office who have stated the Lundy compressor delivers double filtered but not O2 clean air. They appear to rely on divers supplying their own personal filters. It is my understanding that personal filters do not filter gas to O2 clean standards and if the maximum fill rate (litres per minute) were to be exceeded the filter bed may breakup and hydrocarbon contaminated carbon particles may be injected into the cylinder. I have decided that the Lundy compressor is off-limits for me and in future I will only dive Lundy out of Ilfracombe from where I can obtain 02 clean gas.
 

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So everytime you guys go to a new fill station you ask to see the certs?
It would be a bit hard to miss it.

The regulations on pumping stations are tight and policed by the HSE
with very serious fines and even potential jail time if it goes bad, more
to protect the operator and any staff that may use the air than the punter.

Air purity standards/checks must be displayed alongside the station,
so if you cant see it easily then you aint looking that hard.

The 2 places that I regularly use all have dated certs up from the
same IDEST testing station that does my own cylinders.

If its a strange place that i've not used before, then i'll expect to see
a cert displayed alongside the bank and yes I actually check it.

Mind you i've usually got 30 cylinders to worry about + the welfare
of 11 other divers, so its something that I do without even thinking
about.
 

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It would be a bit hard to miss it.

if you cant see it easily then you aint looking that hard
Terry, in many cases the compressor and the whips are not in areas open to the public and rightly so.

No comp or panel in the public area = no displayed cert..


Mind you i've usually got 30 cylinders to worry about + the welfare
of 11 other divers, so its something that I do without even thinking
about.

If you understood how condescending that sounds you may not have typed it......then again....
 

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Terry, in many cases the compressor and the whips are not in areas open to the public and rightly so.

No comp or panel in the public area = no displayed cert......
Yep, so ask to see it.

If you understood how condescending that sounds you may not have typed it......then again....
Dont get you. Being responsible for others has a tendency to make you cross the T's and dot the i's.
Soon as it gets personal, a lot of safety stuff tends to go out of the window.
 

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or get Ilfracombe BSAC to fill them for you!
:thumbs_up:

yep just what i was thinking nice club house to ,, :beer:



OR http://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&so...uj1sQEe2gTAytDk2Q&sig2=D9XzdRsKeY5fHgR6DUitrQ

and dont give me all the bull about them not working used them for a v long time with no problems at all the first lot of PF s came from smp about 15 years a go we used them for years long be4 dive shops did nitrox ,,, mixed the gas in my back garden right outside my patio windows lol ,,
 

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ex diving instructor
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We also used the smp filters for years, we did blow up a compressor on a dive boat with one though, the flow rate was insufficient through the filter and blew the head off the compair, his op valve had stuck as well.....

On a different note about fills, I was unfortunate enough to get a carbon monoxide hit about 2 months back, the air was from a reputable source, but I got nailed at ndac at about 30m when I turned the descent (air was NOT from ndac), I started to ascend at 6 minutes into the dive, at 9 minutes I was struggling to fin or comprehend where I was, so I wrapped an arm around the shot and put some gas in the wing, I hit surface at 12mins, but have zero recolection of the last 3 minutes. I felt really bad, all I could taste was oil and every time I exhaled for the next 12+ hours I could taste it, pre dive I was chewing some very minty gum, so did not notice the taste or smell, it was enter the water and start the descent. I breathed 02 on surface for 30-40 minutes and felt a little better, but as the day progressed I worsened, really sick, headache and lethargic. I started for home which takes usually 4-5 hours, but fealling crap slowed me down, it took 7 hours to stafford, I was by now bright pink in colour, the next day was spent at the doc's, then the chamber who confirmed by my carboxyhemoglobin count that I had a a large dose of CO in my body. I then spent the next two weeks feeling crap, slurring words and being very tired, after diving two weeks later I felt a damned site better, as the CO was compressed and diving on 1.5 for 2.5 hours helped flush it.

The centre who filled the gas had a current test certificate, but it was done with drager tubes (or equivalant), and in house testing as well, a drager tube can be fudged if the time is cut short on its test run, the best test's are by spectrum analyser and are performed by independant test houses.
So a certificate might mean a lot or not....
 
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