Vintage or junk?

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Coztick

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Hey all you vintage gear gurus!
I've collected 4 lp steels for local stuff and was wondering whether to reuse the original valves.
The J valve has adjustment screws on the top. I'm not sure whether they set reserve pressure or gauge calibration. I'm curious whether I can remove the reserve function and actuator.
The K valves have a cover on top as well that I haven't removed...

Any wisdom will be appreciated.

Cheers
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0ctoman

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That's some relic hardware you got there and it's in great shape. They even have an integrated pressure gauge (the windows with the F, 1/2, E). I would removed them and service them before use but they look in working conditions. I have two tanks with K valve and they work just fine as long as the emergency valve is pointing down to keep the chamber open all the time. Never had an issue (knocking on wood)
 
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Coztick

Coztick

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That's some relic hardware you got there and it's in great shape. They even have an integrated pressure gauge (the windows with the F, 1/2, E). I would removed them and service them before use but they look in working conditions. I have two tanks with K valve and they work just fine as long as the emergency valve is pointing down to keep the chamber open all the time. Never had an issue (knocking on wood)

Thanks!
They are old but have only been hydrotested a couple times. 3 galvanized and one paint over galvanized.
3 72s and an 85.
I was hoping to defeat the reserve and remove the lever to use the stub for a bungee hook as I SM.
The integrated gauge would be great if it's close to accurate.
New burst discs after hydro is a given...
20210103_165830.jpg

Cheers
 

Luis H

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Those are great valves. They were my favorite valves in the 70's.

The gauge is not very accurate, but it was convenient to let you know if a cylinder is empty or if it is full. It was handy to sort which cylinders have been used.

The reserve valve is called a DCAR valve (Depth Compensated Adjustable Reserve valve). Yes, you can remove some of the guts for the reserve and use it as a K valve. You can actually open the reserve side and work on it with a full cylinder (with the valve closed).

If you remove the reserve plunger (from the top), the tiny little hole on the top (in the center of the adjusting piece) will need to be blocked to keep the air in. When you put a regulator on and open the valve air will come out of that hole if you take out the reserve plunger. That hole allows water pressure to push on the reserve plunger for pressure/ Depth Compensation. This is the only reserve I am aware of with this feature.

If you go to the VintageDoubleHose.com web-site you can download a diagram for the valve. It is very simple. You access some of the reserve valve components from the large screw on the top.

Leaving the reserve alone and just lowering the lever is a very reasonable thing to do. Even if you don't plan to use the reserve, it doesn't hurt to leave it alone. It is just a flow restriction when the tank pressure is low (with the lever up).
 

John C. Ratliff

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What no one has stated here is that the screw on top simply converts the reserve from 300 psi held back to 500 psi held back. When it's in the "out," or flush position, it's a 300 psi reserve. When it's screwed in it's about 500 psi. I believe it's a 1/4 turn to reset it, and can be done when the tank is full as long as no regulator is hooked up to it and pressurized.

This valve was designed this way for Florida cave divers, very early in the cave diving history, from what I've heard. Cave divers sometimes took their steel 72s and hooked them together with a "twin tank bar yolk," which allowed them to have twin 72s for longer dives. But they used the J-valve on the tanks, and so wanted 500 psi as the J-valve setting. I use them with 500 psi to tell me when I'm getting low on air, even as singles.

SeaRat
 

Luis H

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I didn't bother pointing out all the features of the reserve, since the original poster didn't seem to be interested on the reserve.

The Scubapro catalog page (you have posted it in other threads) does mention about the intention for cave diving... I always wondered if anyone actually considered using that reserve for cave diving seriously (as a real safety feature). :oops:
I think any cave diver nowadays would laugh about that. Their typical "turn around" pressure is about 2/3 of their initial pressure. In other words, what a cave diver would like is a 2000 psi reserve assuming they started with 3000 psi (which is way low for them). :wink:

The Scubapro catalogs also talk about adjustable reserve pressure of either 350 psi or 600 psi. The pressure selection is by pushing down on the center piece and turning it 90 degrees. It is not a screw, it is more like a two position cam. You actually have to push down against the spring and turn it.



Pages  DCAR valve  from Scubapro 1974.jpg
 

John C. Ratliff

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Luis,

Take a look at this series of videos from Warm Mineral Springs. In particular, look at the 1959 video by Col. Bill Royal about the first explorations of Warm Mineral Springs.


SeaRat
 

Luis H

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Thanks. Those are amassing videos. I would have like to hear some narration.

It is interesting the cave diving they were doing with double hose regulators. But if you notice many of them had SPG even in 1959 (not all). I saw some SPG just attached to the double manifolds and even to some single cylinders.

That was some interesting dive footage. I also noticed that their lights appeared to be powered via umbilical cables, therefore, I can't imagine that they were supper long penetrations.


By the time the Scubapro DCAR valve came out (1967) the use of an SPG was likely very common for this type of diving. I was not there at the time so I don't really know.

In the early 70's all my cylinders had this type of Scubapro reserve valves, but we were all also using SPG all the time. It was standard in my area.
 

John C. Ratliff

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I noticed both the DA Aqualung and the DA Aquamaster being used, and also the single hose regulator was an U.S. Divers Company Aquamatic. I just tried out my Aquamatic again, and it is a regulator I won't take into open water. Breathing resistance was very hard.

I liked the interview (with sound) of Eugenie Clark in conjunction with deep diving in Little Salt Springs, and her experience with nitrogen narcosis.

SeaRat
 

Gone for diving

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On different valves I have removed the guts as well,
or if I am really lazy, I have used electrical tape and tape the knob to the steel beside it, so it can't accidentally be activated,,, that does seem to work fine,,,,
But beware,,,,
 
https://www.shearwater.com/products/peregrine/

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