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Old 01-09-2006, 12:48 AM
karljay karljay is offline
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need argon tank for new tig, what size and how much $

I just bought a used miller 250 ac/dc TIG and it came complete except for the argon tank.

Someone suggested that I rent a tank and it would cost about $5 / month. I have no clue as to what size to get and how long I should expect it to last.

How much is it to fill a 20 CF tank and how long does it last?

What do you guys pay for leasing one of these?

I found 20 CF tanks for about $100 and 40 CF for about $140

Can an Oxy/Acc tank be used to fill with argon, as I have this setup that I don't use very often.

Thanks, KarlJay.
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Old 01-09-2006, 02:43 AM
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Ford_Six Ford_Six is offline
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Depending on who you have around you, Praxair and Airgas are two good suppliers. Many automotive machine shops rent bottles as well. You will have to call for prices, though, as they do vary quite a bit store to store.
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Old 01-09-2006, 03:09 AM
"Beemer Nut" "Beemer Nut" is offline
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Get a owner owned 260/280 cubic/ft bottle, up front costs more but cheaper in the long run. I think I paid $215 for a 280 Argon which costs $85 to refill.
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Old 01-09-2006, 03:11 AM
buffalobob buffalobob is offline
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gas flow when you tig weld is around 20-30 cfh....so a 20 cf bottle isnt gonna last more than an hour of welding....rent a bottle...until you find what size is right for you....I believe the one I have is 180 cf...like ford_six said shop around.

Last edited by buffalobob; 01-09-2006 at 03:14 AM.
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Old 01-09-2006, 10:53 AM
fefarms fefarms is offline
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Whatever you do, find the source you are going to use for argon before you buy the tank. (DON'T go out and buy a random tank from ebay or craig's list or at auction).

Talk to the supplier about how you are going to get refills. This tends to be a very regional thing -- some gas suppliers won't refill anything but their own tanks. In some places you have little choice but to rent the tanks. Some of the used tanks you might naiively buy are actually somebody else's rented tank, stamped with a special mark. Take one of those in to a gas supplier, and "poof" it's gone (they'll seize it).

Tanks have to be periodically recertified (hydrostatic tested). A tank which is out of date with respect to hydro testing cannot be (legally) refilled. So even if the shop will refill an owned tank, at some point they will stop and you must get the tank retested and re-stamped.

Around here, the path of least resistance is to buy a tank from the local gas supplier. Each time you run out of argon, take your empty tank into the supplier's storefront and exchange it for a full one. You can be in and out in just a few minutes. They take care of the hydro testing.

But every region is different, so talk to a couple of your local suppliers first.
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Old 01-09-2006, 10:57 AM
fefarms fefarms is offline
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Acetylene tanks cannot be used for any other gas. They are filled with acetone; the acetylene is actually dissolved in it. The tanks operate under a relatively low pressure -- a few hundred PSI.

Oxygen tanks would be mechanically suitable for argon, having a pressure rating of 1800 to 2200 PSI. But they have special fittings and are painted a special color. The supplier will not fill them with anything but oxygen.

You will have to obtain a true argon tank.
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Old 01-15-2006, 09:05 AM
Kelly Aitken Kelly Aitken is offline
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fefarms is right. Get your bottles from a gas supplier. I bought mine and now when ever I need more I just swap the bottle and don't have to worry about the condition of the bottle. I bought a set of oxy/act bottles from a friend awhile back. It turns out that I won't be able to get them filled when they are empty. Something about them being leased bottles and basicly I bought a set of "stolen" bottles. My gas guy said to bring them in when they are empty and he would try to work out some kind of deal.

Kelly
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Old 01-15-2006, 10:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fefarms
Acetylene tanks cannot be used for any other gas. They are filled with acetone; the acetylene is actually dissolved in it. The tanks operate under a relatively low pressure -- a few hundred PSI.

Oxygen tanks would be mechanically suitable for argon, having a pressure rating of 1800 to 2200 PSI. But they have special fittings and are painted a special color. The supplier will not fill them with anything but oxygen.

You will have to obtain a true argon tank.
Any of the "fuel gas" tanks, and oxygen tanks cannot be cross filled. Some suppliers will cross fill the helium, argon , and "mix" bottles, as they're all the same bottle/fitting, differing only in the label. For portability the 180 is a nice compromise between small bottles with short weld time and monster tanks. I have a couple 10 cu ft tanks for portable use, and a couple 180's. One to weld with while the other is out for refill. And after you've lugged the welder up a ladder or across a half mile of concrete, you don't want to lug a big bottle for a 10 minute weld job ....
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Old 01-15-2006, 06:04 PM
midlf midlf is offline
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GAS CYLINDER, C25, Q SIZE (36" tall, 75lbs total, 83 CUFT) purchased filled for $168. This is basically buying a tank you can exchange for a filling fee (I don't remember how much for C25). You are buying rights to a tank of a certain size. Renting was way to expensive for the amount of gas I use. I can exchange it for any type of gas that comes in the same size tank.

This was from the Milwaukee WI PRAXAIR outlet.
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Old 01-18-2006, 08:54 AM
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I just picked up a 40CF tank for $85.00. Refill is $25.00. Shop around.
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Old 01-31-2006, 09:50 PM
Engloid Engloid is offline
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I've been welding for a living for almost 20 years...and from my experience, FeFarms is right. Talk to your supplier about the bottles. Having them tested is a pain to do. You'll probably opt to lease the bottle or work an arrangement where you buy the bottle, but they let you swap it for a refill, as if you were leasing.
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Old 01-31-2006, 10:16 PM
"Beemer Nut" "Beemer Nut" is offline
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I own my 280 cf bottles, out of the last five exchange / refills three bottles were near their next hydro test and expired before being exchanged. There was no problem with any exchange or hydro charge added, this is dealing with Airgas on C25, Argon and Tri-mix. From the PU to garage with hand truck is well worth it vs exchanging small empty bottles all the time.
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Old 01-31-2006, 10:16 PM
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