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cutting heating oil tank

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  • #16
    cutting heating oil tank

    Sawzaa is ok. Anything flame related is NO GO.

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    • #17
      Do as Jersey welder says. Anything you use that causes sparks is taking a chance unless you do the correct things first. Fuel oil may only be a combustible with a flash point above 100deg F. but if a blade gets hot enough to burn your finger how hot is that. Certainly it's well above the 100 deg F.. If the blade gets hot enough to vaporize residual fuel then there is a great chance of an ignition and explosion. I would also be spraying my blade with soapy water while i was cutting just for added safety. Just saying............

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      • #18
        Do as Jersey Welder says........

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        • #19
          depends on which way you want to cut it

          I have had good luck filling stuff with water till it overflows, then if you have to drain some out to below your cut line. you must be sure that the tank has been completely drained of any liquid fuel before hand and then cleaned out good. pressure washer with detergent works nice. The water totally displaces any of the residual vapours. I even held a bbq lighter over the filler opening and the flame never even flickered. ( and for those guys that think i did this with the empty tank and it was Full right up to the filler spout. No flames, no explosion. Of course you have to ensure any oils or fuel are disposed of to ensure environmental regulations are met. Have done this to several fuel heating oil tanks and even propane bbq tanks with the valves removed. Hit it with the plasma cutter and no issues. Im sure the old oxy-acetylene would work equally well.

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          • #20
            I'll just throw my 2 cents in if the original poster is still alive. My old boss filled a diesel truck gas tank with water to weld a small repair on it, after a couple seconds of welding the tank suddenly ballooned and push him back. The residual diesel on the inside of the tank turned to vapor with the welding heat then ignited despite being filled with water. He was lucky and didn't get hurt, but honestly the only way to safely weld/cut a fuel tank is to use a degreasing cleaner first then purge the tank with a non reactive gas. If I can't do that then I don't work on it.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by jrscgsr View Post
              I'll just throw my 2 cents in if the original poster is still alive. My old boss filled a diesel truck gas tank with water to weld a small repair on it, after a couple seconds of welding the tank suddenly ballooned and push him back. The residual diesel on the inside of the tank turned to vapor with the welding heat then ignited despite being filled with water. He was lucky and didn't get hurt, but honestly the only way to safely weld/cut a fuel tank is to use a degreasing cleaner first then purge the tank with a non reactive gas. If I can't do that then I don't work on it.
              Same thing happened to me years ago. Customer swore he flushed out the tank. It knocked me across the shop. Never again without purge.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by Nathan128 View Post
                It's an oil tank. Oil burns not explodes.
                When oil vapor is at high temperature in the presence of oxygen, trust me – it explodes just fine.

                Oh, and by the way – an oil fire can kill you just as dead as an acetylene fire.

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                • #23
                  Very true.....looks like Nathan got LUCKY.....like many do....some people are too stubborn to listen.....just cause it didn't explode this time doesn't mean it never will. Dave
                  Originally posted by Helios View Post
                  When oil vapor is at high temperature in the presence of oxygen, trust me it explodes just fine.

                  Oh, and by the way an oil fire can kill you just as dead as an acetylene fire.

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