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Author Topic: Pepsi and a CO2 leak
Frank Cox
Film God

Posts: 2160
From: Melville Saskatchewan Canada
Registered: Apr 2011


 - posted 02-13-2015 03:14 PM      Profile for Frank Cox   Author's Homepage   Email Frank Cox   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I got a pretty good scare this week.

I have premix Pepsi here. If you don't know what that is, it comes in five gallon aluminum cans (tanks) and you hook the tanks up to a CO2 tank to pour it. Similar to BiB, but you don't add any water since it's premixed -- hence the name.

I put a new CO2 tank on the system on Tuesday, and on Wednesday night the tank was empty. [Confused] I usually get one or two months out of a tank, not one day.

I keep two CO2 tanks here, plus the one that I'm using. So all I had left was one full tank since I had the empty that I just changed, plus another empty that just leaked away. Obviously, I wasn't particularly anxious to put another (my last) full tank on just to watch it leak away.

I phoned Pepsi service and said that I need someone to fix this leak, and also to bring me another CO2 tank since I now have only one left and if it leaks away too then I'm sunk. If I run out of root beer, I can sell something else. If I run out of CO2, I'm screwed.

The service booking person told me that the service techs don't haul CO2 for safety reasons and I have to call the sales department to get one. I did, and the sales person said that there is absolutely no way that I can get a delivery until next Thursday, a week away!

Lovely. What now? I can't even reasonably drive and pick one up myself since it appears I would have to go all the way to Winnipeg for it, about a six hour drive.

Just when I was getting really quite upset about this, John, a really nice guy who's been the service tech for this area approximately forever, pulled up in his service truck. He walked in the door carrying a new CO2 tank and his toolbox. I said, "That's interesting," and his reply was, "I always carry a CO2 tank for just exactly this reason."

He fixed the leak and left me the new tank.

The leak, incidentally, was in the Diet Pepsi tank outlet hookup. He said that this is a common problem with Diet Pepsi since the aspartame causes the seal to swell. Apparently it's less of a problem with Diet Pepsi BiB, but still an issue.

A few lessons learned here. I'm now going to start keeping three spare CO2 tanks in addition to the one that I'm currently using, instead of two. I'm also going to start shutting off the valve from the CO2 tank every night when I'm finished using it, so even if there is a small leak the whole thing won't just vanish overnight. (John said that the product will be less foamy if I do that since it won't be taking on CO2 all the time, and that's a good thing too.)

I used to keep two spare CO2 tanks because I've had a couple of occasions where I had what was supposed to be a full tank that turned out to be empty when I put it into service. Now I see that I'll have to worry about leaks, too, and that can cost me a whole CO2 tank in a day.

I've never had a leak before that was undetectable like that. If something is leaking, I'll either hear the hiss when I walk past the cans, find a puddle of soda pop on the floor, or have a stream of liquid blasting three feet in the air when I hook one up.

All's well that ends well, thanks to the initiative of the local service tech and no thanks to the central dispatch people.

I've always liked John. [Smile]

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Justin Hamaker
Film God

Posts: 2222
From: Lakeport, CA USA
Registered: Jan 2004


 - posted 02-13-2015 04:22 PM      Profile for Justin Hamaker   Author's Homepage   Email Justin Hamaker   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Do you have a box of spare parts? I don't know how Pepsi is about this, but Coke will ship us pretty much any parts we want. I have repaired leaking valves and other issues, and saved myself a service call. Usually these valves are very easy to replace if you have the parts on hand.

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Tony Ratcliff
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 216
From: Madison, IN, USA
Registered: Mar 2002


 - posted 02-13-2015 05:32 PM      Profile for Tony Ratcliff   Email Tony Ratcliff   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I had the same issue with Diet a few years ago.
But at least mine was leaking so bad I could hear it leaking out.
I mananged to disconnect it and plug the line so I didn't loose all my CO2, because of course it happened on a weekend.

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Martin Murray
Film Handler

Posts: 69
From: ennis tx
Registered: Sep 1999


 - posted 02-13-2015 06:11 PM      Profile for Martin Murray   Email Martin Murray   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
It's a good idea to have a good working relationship with another theatre or a restaurant to be able to borrow a tank when necessary.

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Mike Blakesley
Film God

Posts: 12672
From: Forsyth, Montana
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 02-13-2015 06:33 PM      Profile for Mike Blakesley   Author's Homepage   Email Mike Blakesley   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
That's good Pepsi service for you. Our local Pepsi distributor has always been johnny-on-the-spot with repairs and problems, even though they are located 85 miles from here -- we have rarely ever had to wait more than a day for a service visit. One thing that undoubtedly helps is that our local distrib is a family-owned business with virtually no turnover. People regularly get promoted within the company. The guy who is currently in charge of the service department was a route driver when I first met him around 30 years ago, and we've had the same salesperson for at least 10 years now.

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Marcel Birgelen
Film God

Posts: 3114
From: Maastricht, Limburg, Netherlands
Registered: Feb 2012


 - posted 02-14-2015 06:55 PM      Profile for Marcel Birgelen   Email Marcel Birgelen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote: Frank Cox
Lovely. What now? I can't even reasonably drive and pick one up myself since it appears I would have to go all the way to Winnipeg for it, about a six hour drive.
It's rather hard for me to judge your situation but for emergency purposes, why rely on Pepsi? Aren't there any other companies in your vicinity that can provide a compatible CO2 tank? Your situation is obviously different, but there are at least four companies I know off that can deliver and/or refill CO2 tanks within a 20 mile radius around here.

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Brad Miller
Administrator

Posts: 17729
From: Plano, TX (36.2 miles NW of Rockwall)
Registered: May 99


 - posted 02-14-2015 08:20 PM      Profile for Brad Miller   Author's Homepage   Email Brad Miller       Edit/Delete Post 
Most any welding supply will carry tanks. Just buy one. I've got half a dozen that I use for the drink machine at the NOC and at home. They're also super cheap to have refilled.

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Frank Cox
Film God

Posts: 2160
From: Melville Saskatchewan Canada
Registered: Apr 2011


 - posted 02-14-2015 09:38 PM      Profile for Frank Cox   Author's Homepage   Email Frank Cox   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I'm not sure that welding tanks would meet the health inspector's requirements. Tanks that have been used for anything other than soft drinks might contain oil or other contaminants so I don't think I would be comfortable using something like that.

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Steve Matz
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 672
From: Billings, Montana, USA
Registered: Sep 2003


 - posted 02-14-2015 11:38 PM      Profile for Steve Matz   Email Steve Matz   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote: Frank Cox
He said that this is a common problem with Diet Pepsi since the aspartame causes the seal to swell. Apparently it's less of a problem with Diet Pepsi BiB, but still an issue.
That's kind of scary,if diet pepsi is doing that to a seal, what is it doing to a person's internal organs. I have drank bottled and canned diet pepsi for over 10 years now and haven't expierenced any health issues;but I hear all the time from these research science specialists constantly telling you about the dangers of Aspertame. In some Mix type powdered flavor drinks; it says Warning: contains aspartame which may cause Cancer! I did a little research on the substance and found that it is used in embalming Fluid so that didn't make me feel any better either. I guess a Guy better just drink water these days,because it seems Scientists are always coming up with something we have drank for years, now a suspected cancer causing agent. Can't win for Trying ! [Confused] [puke]

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Martin Murray
Film Handler

Posts: 69
From: ennis tx
Registered: Sep 1999


 - posted 02-15-2015 02:42 AM      Profile for Martin Murray   Email Martin Murray   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Frank, The tanks from the welding supply are perfectly safe and legal.

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Mike Blakesley
Film God

Posts: 12672
From: Forsyth, Montana
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 02-15-2015 10:29 PM      Profile for Mike Blakesley   Author's Homepage   Email Mike Blakesley   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote:
In some Mix type powdered flavor drinks; it says Warning: contains aspartame which may cause Cancer!
Eh. It's like anything else - moderation is key. If Diet Pepsi doesn't give you cancer, something will. The healthiest guy I ever met (super athlete, always ate the right foods, was a runner, etc.) died of a heart attack at 22.

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Brad Miller
Administrator

Posts: 17729
From: Plano, TX (36.2 miles NW of Rockwall)
Registered: May 99


 - posted 02-15-2015 10:36 PM      Profile for Brad Miller   Author's Homepage   Email Brad Miller       Edit/Delete Post 
I've posted this before, but it really is true.

 -

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Frank Angel
Film God

Posts: 5255
From: Brooklyn NY USA
Registered: Dec 1999


 - posted 02-16-2015 07:33 PM      Profile for Frank Angel   Author's Homepage   Email Frank Angel   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote: Steve Matz
Warning: contains aspartame which may cause Cancer! I did a little research on the substance and found that it is used in embalming Fluid
Steve, you get to a certain age were everything starts wearing out and embalming fluid may not be a bad thing...keeps the body from decomposing faster than it normally would. Also, the oil that they say could be in welders' CO2 tanks that are supposedly not "food grade" quality (there's no such thing, btw) will be better lubrication for your creaky old joints.

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Sean Weitzel
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 615
From: Vacaville, CA (1790 miles west of Rockwall)
Registered: Dec 1999


 - posted 02-18-2015 02:12 PM      Profile for Sean Weitzel   Email Sean Weitzel   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
N'thing what others have said. a CO2 tank filled with CO2 will have only CO2 and not be contaminated with anything else regardless of whether it comes from a welding supply outfit or a soda service company. Every 7 years the tanks have to be inspected and hydro tested anyway. I've been home brewing beer for 15 years or so and pretty much exclusively use surplus 5 gallon Pepsi "ball lock" premix kegs since I am incredibly impatient and don't want to wait the two extra weeks for bottled beer to carbonate itself after it comes out of the secondary fermenter. I'm more surprised to hear that Pepsi still provides premix in kegs. I and most of the homebrew community were under the impression that Bib overtook premix many years ago as it is increasingly difficult to source used premix kegs for homebrew dispensing. I know there are some Coke premix kegs floating around but those are pin lock and for some reason the majority of brewers ended up gravitating to the ball lock.

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Louis Bornwasser
Film God

Posts: 4439
From: prospect ky usa
Registered: Mar 2005


 - posted 02-19-2015 09:53 AM      Profile for Louis Bornwasser   Author's Homepage   Email Louis Bornwasser   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
"Aviators Breathing Oxygen" is the stuff used in oxygen masks on jets. They charge extra for it since there is no water in it. Regular oxygen is much cheaper.

The guy who fills the tanks says the source is the same. Marketing.

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