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Safety -- Make sure you are safe!

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  #1  
Old 2013-08-12, 10:50am
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Default Cleaning brass fittings for oxygen use

I purchased fittings for a foot pedal class. I later realized I didn't have the brand or part info to give people so I called the fittings business. The guy I talked with told me that it's dangerous to use fittings for oxygen without having them cleaned first. I haven't done this in the past.

Safety gurus, what do you think? If needed, is it something that can be done at home and how should it be done?

Thanks.
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  #2  
Old 2013-08-12, 4:46pm
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You could use some Methylene Chloride, sold as paint stripper (nasty stuff)
or Tetrachloroethylene spot remover/dry cleaning solvent

OR

Every thing is listed here...

http://www.asiaiga.org/docs/AIGA%200...%20Service.pdf

5.2.1 Alkaline Chemicals
Aqueous solutions of the following alkaline chemicals, often as mixtures, may be used as cleaning
materials.
Sodium hydroxide: NaOH (caustic soda).
Sodium carbonate: NazC03 or sodium bicarbonate, NaHC03 (buffet solution)
Sodium phosphate: Na3, Po4 (water softener, emulsifier and buffet).
Sodium silicates: NaSi04 (emulsifiers and buffets).
Refer to Table 2 for details of recommended alkaline materials for the metal involved and reason for
cleaning. Other treatments required in addition to water rinse and drying are shown.
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  #3  
Old 2013-08-12, 4:48pm
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Thanks. Any idea where I get the stuff? Do I just soak the fittings for a while?
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  #4  
Old 2013-08-12, 5:38pm
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Sodium hydroxide (caustic soda) is lye and in the grocery store laundry isle
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Old 2013-08-13, 3:27pm
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Dawn dish soap?
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  #6  
Old 2013-08-13, 5:40pm
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I found lye at the hardware store near my house, but in searching for instructions I've found a few different sites saying it's corrosive to brass and shouldn't be used with it.
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  #7  
Old 2013-08-13, 8:02pm
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Check some of the threads that discuss making an oxygen holding tank. What what has been seen is that they start with lacquer thinner followed by acetone and then a water soap/detergent rinse and finally alcohol to dry out the tank.
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  #8  
Old 2013-08-13, 8:29pm
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Thanks. I'll see if I can find them.
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  #9  
Old 2013-08-14, 8:59am
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Felicia,

The danger of using any fitting or part for oxygen service is the small amount of residue of oil left from manufactureing as it may react with the pure oxy and ignite. In all but very rare situations that residue is long evaporated or even removed by the mfgr before the fittings are sold. Ignition in store bought fittings is very very very rare.

To be absolutely safe it is only necessary to remove that trace of oil. Almost any solvent that leaves no residue itself will do the job. Those solvents are themselves somewhat hazardous. For your situation I would just use dish soap and hot water. Dunk them in hot soapy water for a few minutes, swish them around a bit, drain, rince well, and dry. Problem solved.

I might mention that these days brass is machined with water based cutting fluids that are not flamable as are most other metals as well. There is nothing to worry about.

Have fun at Glass stock.

PJH
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  #10  
Old 2013-08-14, 12:55pm
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Awesome. Thanks, PJ!
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  #11  
Old 2014-03-13, 10:21am
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The engineer at Swagelock recommended Simple Green Degreaser for my application.
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