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Re: Big regulator problem - urgent

Cavan has a CO2 dump problem:
What kind of regulator do you?
Does it have a safety blow-off on the body of the
This would be a small nut or fitting with a hole in it --
it dumps if the pressure on the low-pressure side of the
regulator gets too high.

Is (was) your CO2 tank near empty.  The way regulators
work, the tank pressure causes the regulating valve to
close -- it pushes against a spring, the tension of which
is set by the control knob.  This is the simple elegance of
single stage regulator.  However, as the CO2 tank pressure
drops, there is less pressure against the valve diaphragm
and the spring and so the valve opens up.  Thus, as the
pressure drops, the output increases! (Ironic, huh?)

Once the tank pressure gets below normal at all, then all
of the liquid CO2 is gone and the pressure will steadily
drop and output will tend to steadily increase.  Some
regulators hold on better than others but why wait?  Once
the liquid CO2 is gone, there's only a buck's worth of gas
in the tank-just get a refill when the liquid runs out.

Other possibilities:  there was a small speck in the
metering valve that final blew loose, thereby allowing more
gas to pas through.

The same is possible for the regultor; the gas passes
through some small openings going form high-pressure side
-> valve -> low pressure side.

You check valve gave out and no longer provides as much
restriction as before, thereby allowing the gas to pass
through more quickly.

I think those are the most likely reasons for a dump.

FYI: The safety blow off on my $25 regulator blows at about
25 psi, so if my tank starts to dump it empties right into
the room and not the tank.  My $60 regulator's safety
doesn't blow until a much high pressure.

I had a $60 regulator (one form M3) blow out when it's low
side gauge got stuck and I set the tank too high.  The
gauge is a metal ballon that is slightly curled.  As
pressure increases, it tends to straighten, pushing the
needle over farther.  In my bad regulator, the "balloon"
had a kink--an original manufacturing fault that eventually
caught up with me.

With this you should be able to track down your problem
item, although you might need a filled CO2 tank to check
them all out.

Hope that helps,
Scott H

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