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interchangability of scba bottles

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  • interchangability of scba bottles

    does any one know if osha nfpa alllow you to interchange bottles in the fire service and does anyone know where i can get the documation on this

  • #2
    Originally posted by wvfire140 View Post
    does any one know if osha nfpa alllow you to interchange bottles in the fire service and does anyone know where i can get the documation on this
    They will not. Basically it comes down to NIOSH. NIOSH certifies SCBA's as a complete unit. The certification only applies if you use the cylinders designed for use with that pack.

    Whatever brand of air packs you are using, you must use the cylinders provided by the manufacturer. And to add. One of the companies who makes cylinders for SCBA's, Structural Composites (SCI) advertises they will sell you cylinders direct for much less then Scott. And they are in fact the very same cylinders Scott sells, minus the Scott logo. But they are not certified for use with any SCBA because they lack the NIOSH Tag that can only be added when the cylinder is sold by the SCBA manufacturer. So beware of that as well.
    Last edited by WD6956; 04-07-2011, 08:09 PM.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by wvfire140 View Post
      does any one know if osha nfpa alllow you to interchange bottles in the fire service and does anyone know where i can get the documation on this
      Babies drink from bottles
      Tanks have turrets
      Air is stored in CYLINDERS
      Steve Dragon
      FFII, Fire Instructor II, Fire Officer I, Fire Appartus Driver Operator Certified
      Volunteers are never "off duty".
      http://www.bufd7.org

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      • #4
        If it were me, I think I would be more concerned about the "buddy breathing" systems rather than the cylinders/tanks/bottles/whatever you prefer to call them.
        Last edited by FFSKPII; 04-07-2011, 11:24 PM.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by dragonfyre View Post
          Babies drink from bottles
          Tanks have turrets
          Air is stored in CYLINDERS
          CYLINDERS move hydraulic attachments
          Courage, Being Scared to Death and Saddling Up anyways.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by dragonfyre View Post
            Babies drink from bottles
            Tanks have turrets
            Air is stored in CYLINDERS
            Yeah, and tenders go behind locomotives, but that hasn't stopped the folks on the left coast from using the term for tankers.
            Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

            Everyone goes home. Safety begins with you.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by WD6956 View Post
              They will not. Basically it comes down to NIOSH. NIOSH certifies SCBA's as a complete unit. The certification only applies if you use the cylinders designed for use with that pack.

              Whatever brand of air packs you are using, you must use the cylinders provided by the manufacturer. And to add. One of the companies who makes cylinders for SCBA's, Structural Composites (SCI) advertises they will sell you cylinders direct for much less then Scott. And they are in fact the very same cylinders Scott sells, minus the Scott logo. But they are not certified for use with any SCBA because they lack the NIOSH Tag that can only be added when the cylinder is sold by the SCBA manufacturer. So beware of that as well.
              Except for in emergency situations. And once the emergency is over, correct cylinder needs to be put back on the SCBA.
              "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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              • #8
                The rules state the air bottle/tank/container/big round thing must be of the same manufacturer since they test the SCBA unit as a whole.

                Personally - its BIG BS. This is a cash cow for the SCBA manufacturers. If it wasn't a cash cow, why then can the OEM tank manufacturer sell the same tank for 1/2 the price of the manufacturer?

                I seriously question whether the 'difference' of that sticker would hold up in actual court proceedings. If the tank is made to the exact same specs (and marked as such by the DOT regs) and it uses a valve from the scba manufacuturer, it would he hard to prove a functional difference. You can't even claim an assembly difference since valves are removed every 5 years for hydro testing. You would even have a hard time proving that the NIOSH test result didn't apply. Remember - MSA/Scott does not do anything to the tank itself when they get it - if they did, it would invalidate the DOT exemption it was made under. They put thier valve on it, test the assembly and send it out. (SCI puts the NIOSH approval sticker on when they affix the DOT info). Its possible SCI puts the valves on (can't say either way).

                I would not lose sleep using SCI bottles with MSA valves on MSA packs or SCI bottles with scott valves on Scott packs. For this to be an issue - a lot of VERY bad things would have to happen.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by dragonfyre View Post
                  Babies drink from bottles
                  Tanks have turrets
                  Air is stored in CYLINDERS
                  Tanks SOMETIMES have water. T.C.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by tree68 View Post
                    Yeah, and tenders go behind locomotives, but that hasn't stopped the folks on the left coast from using the term for tankers.
                    Isn't just the left coasters. Damn Federal government calls them that too. Nims says so,hehe T.C.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Bones42 View Post
                      Except for in emergency situations. And once the emergency is over, correct cylinder needs to be put back on the SCBA.
                      Best summary so far.

                      Originally posted by The nots so new FNG View Post
                      Personally - its BIG BS. This is a cash cow for the SCBA manufacturers. If it wasn't a cash cow, why then can the OEM tank manufacturer sell the same tank for 1/2 the price of the manufacturer?
                      Because they haven't made the investment in testing that the SCBA manufacturers have. And they won't be selling the "same tank" because it is likely to have a generic valve assumbly on it rather than the SCBA manufacturers proprietary specification assembly. (Can you say, "Low bid knock-off?")
                      "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"
                      sigpic
                      The Code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by dragonfyre View Post
                        Babies drink from bottles
                        Tanks have turrets
                        Air is stored in CYLINDERS

                        Oh man, I'm going to have to take my fire engine to the shop. I checked all over, but couldn't find a turret on the booster tank.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by WD6956 View Post
                          They will not. Basically it comes down to NIOSH. NIOSH certifies SCBA's as a complete unit. The certification only applies if you use the cylinders designed for use with that pack.

                          Whatever brand of air packs you are using, you must use the cylinders provided by the manufacturer. And to add. One of the companies who makes cylinders for SCBA's, Structural Composites (SCI) advertises they will sell you cylinders direct for much less then Scott. And they are in fact the very same cylinders Scott sells, minus the Scott logo. But they are not certified for use with any SCBA because they lack the NIOSH Tag that can only be added when the cylinder is sold by the SCBA manufacturer. So beware of that as well.
                          1/3 correct. There are three standards that are at play here NIOSH, OSHA and NFPA. Niosh standards are how SCBA are put together as a unit and how manufacturing must have the SCBA coming out of the plant. OSHA granted we all know their capabilities for levying a fine for not following a standard. BTW the SCBA fall under 1910.134. And NFPA
                          Am I being effective in my efforts or am I merely showing up in my fireman costume to watch a house burn down?” (Joe Brown, www.justlookingbusy.wordpress.com)

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by DeputyMarshal View Post
                            Best summary so far.



                            Because they haven't made the investment in testing that the SCBA manufacturers have. And they won't be selling the "same tank" because it is likely to have a generic valve assumbly on it rather than the SCBA manufacturers proprietary specification assembly. (Can you say, "Low bid knock-off?")
                            You did read what I said about using OEM valves right...

                            As for the testing - the required testing for an Air cylinder is set by the DOT. By standard, SCI does this as required to label the cylinder. The SCBA manufacturer does NOT do this as they would then become the tank manufacturer and required to do the full labeling, documentation etc. The SCBA manufacturer cannot modify in any meaningful way the tank without voiding the DOT certification. Tanks are made to a specific standard approved by the DOT - for composite cylinders, this is a specific exemption standard. This is 'stamped' on the tank as part of the required DOT markings. The manufacturer by law must do this as part of the manufacturing process and part of the original hydrostatic test process.

                            The only testing you could mean is for the valve (which I stated to use OEM) and for the unit as a whole. There is nothing unique about the physical cylinder. If its the same physical size and made to the same exemption number standard, with an OEM valve, its the same tank - with or without a NIOSH test sticker number on it.

                            Buying the cylinder direct from SCI without a valve would not concern me in the least - especially since I can read the DOT marking on the MSA cylinders which indicate the tanks are made by SCI to the same exact exemption standard. Literally, the only difference is a sticker on the tank. (valves not included - those are a different subject)

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by The nots so new FNG View Post
                              You did read what I said about using OEM valves right...
                              Do you really think there's a worthwhile cost savings from saving a few bucks buying unlisted generic cylinders and then mixing & matching them with brand name valve assemblies (either purchased or scavenged) which are now also unlisted as soon as you screw them into the wrong cylinder?

                              Seriously? And when an accident happens, as they always do, and the department is found in violation of fundamental OSHA regulation and open to expensive civil litigation for ndangering its members, will it be worth it? Will it be worth it to the individual who knowingly assembled the non-compliant unit for an illegal use? I don't think so.

                              The SCBA manufacturer does NOT do this as they would then become the tank manufacturer and required to do the full labeling, documentation etc.
                              The SCBA manufacturer does pay for the SCBA testing which certifies that the whole assembly as tested meets the NIOSH SCBA standards. They also hold the liability for the design if it's found to be flawed. They're the ones primarily at risk for any failure of the SCBA -- cylinder included.

                              Buying the cylinder direct from SCI without a valve would not concern me in the least
                              Then I can only assume that you have no concern for your own exposure OSHA fines for willfull violations nor to both your personal liability nor your department's.

                              If you feels so strongly about this then, by all means, lobby to change the way NIOSH certifies compliance. But, until they change, it's foolish and irresponsible to suggest using generic cylinders for SCBA.
                              "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"
                              sigpic
                              The Code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.

                              Comment

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