Re: slight rust in steel tank - slight tumble needed

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Posted by Ken Kurtis on August 13, 2008 at 09:32:45:

In Reply to: slight rust in steel tank posted by Gregg on August 12, 2008 at 23:42:26:

A couple of things for you Gregg. Without actually seeing the tank it's hard to judge but . . .

1. Yes, tumbling may remove a tiny bit of metal but it's desinged to remove the rust. If the rust is above the surface of the steel, you'll just remove the rust. If the rust is penetratng the steel (and maybe pitting) then you'll lose a little metal.

2. We had steel tanks in our rental pool that were over 30 years old, had been tumbled numerous times (downfall of having steel tanks), and were still perfectly serviceable and passed hydros. A couple of tumbles are not going to damage your tank.

3. It only takes one damp fill to start rust. One time when I suspected we were getting damp fills off a boat (no longer diving in SoCal), I took seven steel tanks that had come back from tumbling, did not fill them at the store, had them filled on the boat and then repeatedly over a two-day trip, and then looked inside each of the seven tanks the morning after the trip. Every one of them had rust. It doesn't take much and it doesn't take long.

4. You're correct that you can't add metal in a tumble. The SC guy is wrong is that aspect. But he's likely correct in saying you need a tumble. However . . .

5. Ask him is he's a qualfiied PSI-certified (or any other CGA-approved outfit) tank inspector. If not, he shouldn't be telling you anything because he's not qualified to comment.

6. Left untumbled, the rust in the tank will possibly spread. A tumble should run you $15-25. They're your lungs. What are they worth to you???

- Ken
Ken Kurtis
Owner, Reef Seekers Dive Co.
Beverly Hills, CA

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