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  • Air tank source?

    Hi everyone,

    I'm looking to replace the air tank on my compressor, which is a little 10 gallon deal that I bought used a few months back for $30. When I got it, I noticed that it didn't have a drain plug on the bottom. Well sure enough, just a few minutes ago, it turned on and went up to full pressure (a staggering 94 psi) and when it stopped I heard this kind of wet, airy squeak, like when you stretch the end of a balloon. While I was listening around for the source it suddenly just popped and it sounded like the safety valve blew Scared the bejesus out of me. Anyway, I've got a nice little hole on the bottom of the tank and a nice rusty puddle on the floor. All the replacement tanks in the MSC Big Book cost more than a new compressor of comparable size. Does anyone know of a more affordable source?

    Thanks,
    Stuart
    Stuart de Haro

  • #2
    Did you change your skivvies?
    "four to tow, two to go"

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    • #3
      No need, but I do have a nasty bump on the head from where I hit the ceiling
      Stuart de Haro

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      • #4
        you could try surpluscenter.com

        http://www.surpluscenter.com/sort.as...r&keyword=ATT1

        You might be able to rig something up with those 6.3 gallon over-the-road tanks. They have three ports so you could put a drain plug in and its enamled on the inside so its less likely to rust through.

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        • #5
          Try your local farm supply or even Wal mart for one of the (I think) 10 gallon tire refill type tanks. Bolting up the compressor head (I am assuming its a smallish oilless or even oil filled type) might be a treat...especially if you don't want to weld to it....which really then would require re-hydro testing.

          If you don't need portability, the compressor head could mount next to it.

          Another option....given that you are not too far away....well...its overkill, but...

          A local industrial surplus dealer had a big maybe 60 gallon tank of some sort sitting out the last several times I was there. It had some sort of insulating jacket on it which left me wondering if it had been used for a gas that had to be kept at temp, but that is entirely removable. It appeared to be in very good shape and had the typical ring and feet at the bottom of the tank etc. If you think you are interested, I can get you in touch or would even call about it for you to see if its still around etc.


          Paul
          Paul Carpenter
          Mapleton, IL

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          • #6
            Air Tank Source

            Has anyone given any thought to using a hot water tank or, better yet, an air cushion tank? I know they are for water, but they are pretty dumb, and are rated to 125 psi and tested to 250 psi. I picked one of the latter up at a yard sale for $15.00. It was hot dip galvanised inside and out and I only had to remove the plastic diaphragm. I've been using it for at least six years at 120 psi and it works a treat.
            Duffy, Gatineau, Quebec

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            • #7
              A not too old post from Evan shows that he got a bladder tank from the junk yard, stripped the ruptured bladder out and did exactly what you talk about. it was a vertical type and had a built-in mounting for a pump on top which served as the mounting platform for the compressor and motor. Not a bad idea at all....especially for something that only makes 95 or so PSI.

              Paul
              Paul Carpenter
              Mapleton, IL

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              • #8
                had an electric water heater that when I tore it apart had a pressure test tag that claimed 300 psi, After I cut it up I started thinking of possible uses for it.

                Ken.

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                • #9
                  The bladder water tank I salvaged was practically new. It appeared that it was discarded because of some very foul contamination of the water side of the bladder. There wasn't a trace of rust inside the tank and since it is rated to hold air pressure putting it into air service wasn't even a change in what it was designed to do.

                  Air receivers don't go boom due to rust out. That's a misconception. When they rust out they fail just like Stuart experienced, at worst. Usually they just develop a pinhole leak. They usual cause of an air receiver explosion is oil accumulation in the tank which ignites when the air becomes hot enough from long use. That produces an oxygen accelerated deflagration that blows out the tank.

                  Air receivers and propane tanks as well as most similar pressure vessels are made from aluminum killed steel. Such steel is soft and does not propagate cracks at room temperature. The only reports I have ever read of an air receiver failing from air pressure alone were in sub zero conditions when the receiver metal was approaching the ductile/brittle transition temperature.
                  Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here

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                  • #10
                    Graingers has a nice selection of replacement tanks, but it's got to be a pretty nice compressor to make it financially worthwhile.

                    I'd find 4 refrigerant tanks from an HVAC shop. Empty R22 tanks or the like. Weld them up in a nice square frame and braze copper tubing to connect them all. Works fine.
                    "Lay on ground-light fuse-get away"

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                    • #11
                      Evan
                      I hate to burst your bubble (ha) but I have seen the aftermath of a catastrophic rupture of an air compressor tank. A friend was lucky enough to not be in the shop at the time. When he returned all windows were blown out, small parts bins were tipped over and in general a major mess in his shop. At first he thought that he had been vandalized.

                      It does happen maybe not very often but it would only take once.

                      Ross
                      GUNS Don't kill people
                      Drivers using cell phones do.

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                      • #12
                        Evan
                        I hate to burst your bubble (ha) but I have seen the aftermath of a catastrophic rupture of an air compressor tank. A friend was lucky enough to not be in the shop at the time. When he returned all windows were blown out, small parts bins were tipped over and in general a major mess in his shop. At first he thought that he had been vandalized.

                        It does happen maybe not very often but it would only take once.
                        It can happen but is very uncommon. Your shop could also get hit by a meteorite. I'm not going to worry about all the uncommon ways to get killed. There are plenty of common ways to be concerned with. It's all about acceptable risk. Most people that have a shop don't worry about storing oxy/acetylene equipment in the shop and that poses a much greater risk than an air receiver blowing up due to simple material failure. See if you can find a single documented example of an injury caused by a steel air receiver exploding from simple failure of the vessel.
                        Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Evan
                          See if you can find a single documented example of an injury caused by a steel air receiver exploding from simple failure of the vessel.

                          I thought I recall reading (on this very site) about an upright tank that blew and killed a guy or severly maimed him, all he was doing was going to put air in his tire at a gas station and the entire bottom of the tank blew off taking a small shed with it, it sent the rest of the tank into orbit, the analisis was the tank had held water for many years and had a rot line 4 or 6 inches above the bottom and there was speculation about it being a cold day and perhaps the water froze in the bottom of the tank further weakening it...

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                          • #14
                            We had a discussion about this once and there was such an incident mentioned. The tank in question was cold enough that it had lost about 50% of it's fracture resistance because it was approaching the ductile/brittle transition temperature.

                            I will point out that you never see air receivers outside up here.
                            Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here

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                            • #15
                              As for a new tank, around here brand new propane tanks between 80 and 200gal sell for less than a dollar per gallon. I use one for supplemental air storage and it works great. You'll need to modify the fittings and possibly add the drain at the low point, but that's no big deal.

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