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Thread: Stay from those old compressor---

  1. #76
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    wow! if there hadnt been pictures it wouldnt have believed a steel tank would fail and shrapnel like that a cast part yes but not a steel tank I have had tanks, pipe, and stuff like that fail and always cracks and and dumps the air nothing catastrophic like that though. I will be a lot more carefull now.
    somebody mentioned hydrualic failures here is a picture of one I had,oil blew 60' and the piece that blew out went flying around like a slingshot because it had the upper hose attached. I had walked past the controlbank and must have locked in the detent accidentally
    found out later the cylinder was only 1000 psi rated and it blew at 2200. rented equipment.
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    Last edited by idacal; 02-28-2011 at 01:16 AM.
    Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.

  2. #77
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    Somehow I missed this thread altogether Mike. SO glad you and yours are still with us. Heal quickly.
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  3. #78
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    oxy, i would definitely give it some room outside if you want to try it. my misfortune was to be hunkered down beside it watching the gauges and making sure the pressure relief worked. i pulled it out at 135 psi and it would dump air, but apparently it was set too high for a weakened tank. i don't think the tank had been drained much if at all. there was a layer of rust on everything in the garage afterward.
    duane, thanks!! i'll see the doc tomorrow and am hoping to get the wire splints out of the hand and at least some light duty walking papers. i've sat more on my a$$ the last two months than the previous 63 yrs, LOL!!
    when i get the use of the left hand back, i'll start using the cap's in my typing, LOL!!
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  4. #79
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    By the looks of it the rust got into the seam and let it pull apart. relief and switch may have been switched in the past to 150 or 175psi parts.

  5. #80
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    I will take from this
    All "new" compressors get started 1st time outside on a long extension cord then make a decision. Thank you for not being afraid to look bad and deciding to educate us. We may be a bunch of childish idiots at times BUT we do need to be educated to be carefull and vigilant. Thank you
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  6. #81
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    Thanks, daas!! We all should learn from our own and others mistakes, so I hope others can learn from my mistake. Read my sig. Finally got my walking papers from the doc a week and a half ago and the splint wires removed from the hand. Still have have to go easy on the leg and the hand has a lot of scar tissue to work out and around, but it sure feels good to back to near normal.
    Mike
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  7. #82
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    Good to hear you are getting better quickly.
    .



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  8. #83
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    Thumbs up Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    A picture sure is worth a thousand words. Went out and drained my compressor. I bought it new in about 1990 and drain it regularly when I'm using it regularly. Must have gotten behind...lots of rusty water. Showed your post to my bride...No argument from her.
    New compressor is on the list, OLD compressor is out of service! It was a 115v single stage and may have been fine but...I'm too old to be blowing things up unintentionally!

    JimboTN "always in a Volunteer State of mind"
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  9. #84
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    That's good to hear , Jimbo. With that amount of rusty water after my little "incident", I wouldn't trust it either. I think anyone living in a high humidity area should drain the tank once a week whether it needs it or not. Needless to say I put a little distance between me and my two compressors when they're building up pressure,LOL!! I have to see a tiny bit of humor in it or I'd be nuts by now!!
    Mike
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  10. #85
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    DAMN!! Aint never seen one blow like that! Holy s#@t !! I've had stuff like that happen to me, not THAT bad. Makes you paraniod as hell for awile after. Glad yer OK, well OK is a relative term

  11. #86
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    Quote Originally Posted by Aquafire View Post
    "Built to last, all of our air compressors and reservoirs are proudly made in China "

    does'nt matter where they're made......in our shop , a 1000# plus , 120 Gallon T30 "Ingersoll-Rand" did the same xact thing......through a wall & roof to the parking lot.....this work safe link states :

    How can an air receiver tank explode?
    During operation, deposits of lubricating oil tend to build up in the line supplying compressed air from the compressor cylinder to the air receiver. As the diameter of the supply line decreases, the already high temperature of the compressed air rises further to a point where it is possible for the contaminant to ignite.

    Sparks are then carried into the air receiver where oil from the compressor, which is often present as a mixture with air in the air receiver, burns explosively. As the pressure relief valve is not designed for such an event, rupture of the air receiver vessel is likely to occur. In other air compressor accidents, static electricity sparks have also been identified as a source of fires and explosions.

    http://ncsp.tamu.edu/reports/WorkCover/Alerts.htm
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  12. #87
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    Just found this, glad you are on the mend.

    I used to pressure test vessels and piping in the past. Air testing was done at 2.5 psi, water was used for anything higher. Always used a minimum of two certified gauges.
    Leo

  13. #88
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    Hope you feel better soon seems like the same thing happened to me accept it was a bomb in Beruit when 300+ U.S. Marines were killed and i ended up missing my right leg....still after it all it's good to be alive, eventhough I dont kick as hard anymore. take all the revovery time you need!
    wbolden

  14. #89
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    Thanks, wbolden!! But my even greater thanks go to you for your service and sacifice for the rest of us. I'm in pretty good shape now. Walking good, can't touch my fingers to the palm, but if that's the lworst of my problems I can live w/ it.
    Again THANKS from this ol' vet,
    Mike
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  15. #90
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    Thought I would bump this back to the top for those that might not use this link that was posted in CEP's post about being afraid of his old compressor. Anybody using compressed air systems should be aware of what can happen when things go bad.

  16. #91
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    Thanks. I don't try to make this into a pulpit, but after what happened to me I just want unknowing people to be aware of what can happen. As I said if I hadn't been hunkered down beside it watching the gauges there probably wouldn't have been any bodily injury besides ringing ears. But who knows!!
    Mike
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  17. #92
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    Have you gotten back to full function in your hand and leg? Or is there any lingering after effects?

  18. #93
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    Quote Originally Posted by Bistineau View Post
    Have you gotten back to full function in your hand and leg? Or is there any lingering after effects?
    My left hand fingers close within 1/2" of the palm. I can live w/ that.I still have a fairly good grip on anything larger than that. I'm just glad to have them all,LOL!! The left leg turned out fine, good range of motion and no pain.
    Mike
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  19. #94
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    Good deal, glad to hear your "almost" back to original again. Best you can hope for, huh? Things could have turned out alot worse considering, or alot better with more distance between you and the "accident waiting to happen". If I had to guess the pressure switch either hung up and didn't shut off or was set too high, and or the relief valve stuck closed, or something caused it to not open at the preset pressure when it was supposed to.. But then you did manually open it, so it wasn't Stuck, most likely the pressure switch stuck in the run position and didn't shutdown when it should have. Was there ever a definate cause to this determined? I know, it could have been a deteriorated tank as the main cause.
    Last edited by Bistineau; 01-16-2012 at 06:03 PM.

  20. #95
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    Bottom of the tank was thin due to extreme rust and when the gauge hit 150 the sh!t hit the fan.
    Mike
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  21. #96
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    There seems to be a lot of misunderstanding about hydrostatic testing.

    When you have a compressed air or steam explosion, the damage is caused by the sudden explosive release of stored pressure. The compressed gas suddenly expands releasing a huge amount of stored energy.

    With hydrostatic testing, water is used which is essentially non compressible.
    When a storage vessel is filled entirely with water, you only need to add a very small extra volume of water to raise the internal pressure to very high values.
    If the thing suddenly ruptures only the small extra volume of added water needs to escape before the pressure then falls safely back to zero.
    There can be no explosion, just maybe a loud cracking sound, as something gives way, and a flood of released water.

    You can quite easily hydrostatic test tanks yourself at home easily enough, with a pressure gauge and a clutch master cylinder with a long lever to create as much hydraulic test pressure as needed for the job.
    That is all a commercial hydrostatic tester is anyway. They are simple, relatively low cost, and easy to make yourself. There is no magic.

    The worst that is going to happen is your tank splits open during testing, and it is ruined.
    No explosion, no drama, maybe you get suddenly sprayed with about a cup full of water is about the worst thing that can happen.

    I have a compressed air receiver that is 65 years old, it is stamped with a 450psi original test pressure. I have hydrostatically tested it to 300+ psi without any problem.
    I have no concern at all running it at 100 psi max, with a regularly tested safety valve set to open just above working pressure.
    Last edited by Warpspeed; 01-17-2012 at 05:27 PM.
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  22. #97
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    Quote Originally Posted by Warpspeed View Post
    There seems to be a lot of misunderstanding about hydrostatic testing.

    When you have a compressed air or steam explosion, the damage is caused by the sudden explosive release of stored pressure. The compressed gas suddenly expands releasing a huge amount of stored energy.

    With hydrostatic testing, water is used which is essentially non compressible.
    When a storage vessel is filled entirely with water, you only need to add a very small extra volume of water to raise the internal pressure to very high values.
    If the thing suddenly ruptures only the small extra volume of added water needs to escape before the pressure then falls safely back to zero.
    There can be no explosion, just maybe a loud cracking sound, as something gives way, and a flood of released water.

    You can quite easily hydrostatic test tanks yourself at home easily enough, with a pressure gauge and a clutch master cylinder with a long lever to create as much hydraulic test pressure as needed for the job.
    That is all a commercial hydrostatic tester is anyway. They are simple, relatively low cost, and easy to make yourself. There is no magic.
    The worst that is going to happen is your tank splits open during testing, and it is ruined.
    No explosion, no drama, maybe you get suddenly sprayed with about a cup full of water is about the worst thing that can happen.

    I have a compressed air receiver that is 65 years old, it is stamped with a 450psi original test pressure. I have hydrostatically tested it to 300+ psi without any problem.
    I have no concern at all running it at 100 psi max, with a regularly tested safety valve set to open just above working pressure.
    Great explanation, Tony.
    Thanks

  23. #98
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    I have one that lasted 30 years, max pressure was 120#, check valve failure to keep air from leaking from tank through compressor. Put a pulg in it and only used as portable tank to take air to flat tires that could not get hose to. Think now that I will even quit that. Thanks for pictures

  24. #99
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    Quote Originally Posted by JimboTN View Post
    A picture sure is worth a thousand words. Went out and drained my compressor. I bought it new in about 1990 and drain it regularly when I'm using it regularly. Must have gotten behind...lots of rusty water. Showed your post to my bride...No argument from her.
    New compressor is on the list, OLD compressor is out of service! It was a 115v single stage and may have been fine but...I'm too old to be blowing things up unintentionally!

    JimboTN "always in a Volunteer State of mind"
    Dang if that was not the exact thing I did!!!! Showed the wife the rust in the tank, showed her the thread, and bang! I'm getting a new one too. LOL

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  25. #100
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    Re: Stay from those old compressor---

    I used to have that exact same compressor that blew up on you. I bought mine in the 80's at Sears, and used it hard for many years. When the pump finally lost compression due to old age, I was so impressed with its performance and longevity that I actually went on the Sears parts website looking for rebuild kits, but they were no longer available. My son-in-law never liked this machine, thinking it was too old and dangerous and needed to go to the scrapyard. I gave up on it and scrapped it. Then I find your story here. I'm glad that I couldn't rebuild it. There was rust on the outside of the tank, and doubtless rust on the inside. I saw one on Craig's List not long ago, and would have tried to buy it had you not posted this awful story......

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