Information about the Luxfer recall / exchange 6351 alloy

Discussion in 'Tanks, Valves and Bands' started by chrispete, Aug 4, 2002.

  1. chrispete

    chrispete Divemaster

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Seabrook, TX
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    I recently purchased a few tanks used, and ended up with Luxfers dated 1982, 1988, and 1993 (got a really good price on them, so...) I know that there was a problem with the alloy used in some of the tanks from the 80's, but I can't find the exact date ranges anywhere. Does anyone know when the problem tanks started and ended production? If one (or two) of the tanks that I have fall in the date range, what would be the responsible course of action - to err on the side of caution and make wind chimes out of them (in which case I still got a good deal on the one or two remaining, so not a big loss) or to continue using them and cross my fingers that I don't end up being responsible for blowing half of my LDS apart if one of them unzips on them during fill?
     
  2. SDAnderson

    SDAnderson Hog Repair Specialty Instructor

    # of Dives:
    Location: On a good day, Lake Michigan
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    A short lesson in Luxfer tanks is...not short enough to post here and I don't want the liability to your estate, anyway. ;}

    Take the tanks in for a visual inspection and tell them that you just bought the tanks and that you want to make certain that they're okay. They can check for withdrawn certifications as part of the VIP. Don't be suprised if they order a hydro.

    Or, you can visit the Luxfer Gas Cylinders website and see what information they have posted. You may have to email them with serial numbers and tank specs to get a definitive answer.

    Keep on diving safe!

    Steven
     
  3. roakey

    roakey Old, not bold diver ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Colorado Springs, CO
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    6351 is the older alloy that has a shorter life span than the newer 6061 alloy, at least in theory since 6061 hasn’t been around nearly as long as 6351.

    6351 is not dangerous, if it was the DOT would pull the permit for it to be used in the US.

    The reason it’s not dangerous is that impending failure can be detected literally years in advance by a good visual inspection (note the word “good” in that sentence). The stress cracks in the neck can be seen and the cylinder removed from service long before it kabooms. A Visual Plus isn’t even necessary, but does make the inspection process easier.

    To answer your question, the 82 is 6351, the 88 is probably 6351 (I’d give it a 99% chance, since I think the transition for 6351 to 6061 for Luxfer AL80s were in the 89-90 range) and the 93 is 6061.

    Roak

    Ps. I’m assuming that these are AL80s.
     
  4. chrispete

    chrispete Divemaster

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Seabrook, TX
    947
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    28
    They are AL80's - the tanks were hydro'd and viz+'d before they were shipped to me, and I did have my LDS do another viz when they got here - interestingly enough, he said that the two older tanks looked brand new, it was the newer tank that had a small spot of corrosion on the bottom and a little in the threads (the neck was brass-brushed and all was good with that.) Thanks for the replies!
     
  5. Scubaroo

    Scubaroo Great White

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  6. roakey

    roakey Old, not bold diver ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Colorado Springs, CO
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    Lemmesee, shipping the cylinder to Luxfer will cost $20-$30, you get back $50.

    Hardly seems worth it, which probably why Luxfer is being so "generous." Maybe if you just have to slap a label on the cylinder it'll be a bit cheaper.


    Roak
     
  7. C_C

    C_C Scuba Instructor

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    Luxfer Gas Cylinders
    Technical Bulliten
    October 17, 2002

    Dates by models when Luxfer changed the aluminum alloy in its scuba tanks from 6351-T6 to Luxfer's proprietary 6061-T6 alloy.

    Scuba tank model.................................Date of alloy change

    S808..................................................................5/87

    S72....................................................................8/87

    S100..................................................................8/87

    S80....................................................................1/88

    S50....................................................................4/88

    S92....................................................................4/88

    S30....................................................................5/88

    S63....................................................................5/88

    S40....................................................................6/88

    This information relates only to cylinders manufactured in the U.S. Cylinders manufactured in Australia are subject to different dates.

    Good luck...

    C_C
     
  8. 427HEVN

    427HEVN Angel Fish

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    After surfing Luxfer's website yesterday I found news item for 2003 about a $50 voucher in exchange for any 6351 scuba tank starting in 2003.

    http://www.luxfercylinders.com/news/releases/20021022.shtml

    My question is this worth it for the average diver with an old tank? I would guess I would be able to purchase these older alloy tanks for a song on ebay after this goes into effect.

    Very cool!:D
     
  9. Scubaroo

    Scubaroo Great White

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    I raised this a few weeks ago, somebody pointed out that the shipping of the tank to Luxfer is at your own expense. Do the math. So unless you live near the factory, probably not worthwhile.
     
  10. 427HEVN

    427HEVN Angel Fish

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    ...detracts from this $50. Looking at some of the threads here, it seems that the dive shops who refuse to fill these old tanks (even though they are fit for use) may become even more stingy as time goes on. Maybe the $50 is better than keeping an un-fillable tank around.:hour:
     
  11. Kronos13

    Kronos13 Angel Fish

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    A family friend gave me his old tank when he found out I was certified. I'm having trouble figuring out the tank markings.
    They are as follows:

    DOT-SP6498-2475
    Z12415 USD

    About the only thing I can decipher from this is it's a US Divers (that and the fact it has a big US Divers sticker on it :D )

    The oldest stamp on it (MFG Date I assume) is 3/72
    My friend bought it new, used it for a few years and then gave up diving. It's been sitting in his back room for over 10 years.

    So can someone tell me a bit about this tank? It looks to be in great shape. I'd like to know if it's been recalled or anything before take it in to be hydro'd and inspected. It's been out of hydro since 2/83.

    Thanks in advance.
    Dave
     
  12. Rick Murchison

    Rick Murchison Uncle Ricky Staff Member ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Gulf of Mexico
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    As far as I knew USD was only distributing steel tanks in '72, and the 2475 would make sense as a steel with a working pressure of 2250 + 10% is 2475.
    But... the SP6498, as far as I can determine, is an Aluminum alloy!
    Do you see a 3AL or a 3AA anywhere on the tank? Does it have a flat bottom, or a rounded bottom?
    SP6498, by the way, is susceptable to sustained load cracking and requires a VIP+, and some shops won't fill 'em at all.
    But that 2475 on it is wierd.
    Rick
     
  13. Kronos13

    Kronos13 Angel Fish

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    It's Aluminium (or so I was told) but no 3AL or 3AA anywhere. Flat bottom. J-Valve. It has air in it but I haven't put a gauge on it to see how much yet.
     
  14. OkieDiver

    OkieDiver Nassau Grouper

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    If it is taller than an aluminum 80 and a bit smaller diameter than an 80, then I believe it is what was called an aluminum 72. 2475psi was the working pressure with no overfilling. Just an educated guess. Also I believe 3AL was not required on aluminum tanks until the early to mid 80s. Not sure about the exact date.
     
  15. Waterborne

    Waterborne Barracuda

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    Yep, it's an aluminum 72. I had one a few years ago that my buddy gave to me. I got rid of it because it was too tall and kept hitting me in the back of the head. I was still diving a jacket at that time though. I asked my LDS about it when I got it and the guy there told me it had some unusual bouyancy characteristics. I would say give Aqua Lung a call or fire off an email to them and get the specs on it.
     
  16. Waterborne

    Waterborne Barracuda

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    BTW I gave the tank to a friend of a friend. Apparently it did not pass hydro and has been destroyed.
     
  17. C_C

    C_C Scuba Instructor

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    The markings translate as follows:

    DOT-SP6498--Dept. of Transportation approved Special Permit Number 6498 received by Luxfer for 6351 Alloy Aluminum Cylinders.

    2475 is the working pressure which means it was advertised as a 71.2 cu. ft cylinder, but held 71.55 cu. ft. at 2475.

    Z12415 is the Serial Number.

    USD is the distributor.

    3/72 is the date of the original Hydrostatic Test. DOT required that Hydro Retesters overstamp ALL SP6498 cylinders with 3AL after July of 1982.

    If you got the cylinder for FREE....check out this link!

    http://www.luxfercylinders.com/news/releases/20021209.shtml

    For the cost of shipping, Luxfer will take it back and give you $50 towards the cost of a new cylinder.

    Good Luck!

    C_C
     
  18. Kronos13

    Kronos13 Angel Fish

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    Yup, that's my tank alright. Thank you to all for the info.

    C_C, thanks for the translation and the link. Looks like I might be shipping it off to Luxfer.

    Dave

    BTW, the diving in Monterey was phenomenal today.
     
  19. reefseal

    reefseal Manta Ray

    # of Dives:
    Location: Merrimack, New Hampshire, United States
    1,137
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    Not sure if something has been posted on this already...

    My LDS just told me that after the 1st of year, they will no longer fill my old US Divers Aluminum Pro-80 (which I've had since '79). I knew that Luxfer had recall on old Luxfer Aluminum 80's but I didn't think my US Divers Alum pro-80 was made by Luxfer. Can someone confirm? DOT E6498-3000 (Date of manufacture is 5 '79)

    I will probably buy a new Steel tank anyway but I just want to know if my LDS is trying to pull a fast one on me..
     
  20. rmediver2002

    rmediver2002 Scuba Instructor

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    The tank has an exemption code (E6498-3000) you could search that through DOT and see if the manufacturer did not atempt to renew the exemption...

    Either way you got your money out of them right?

    I would be interested in hearing what you find out about them...

    Jeff Lane
     

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