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Old 05-10-2012, 03:54   #1
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Problem Filling Propane Tanks In Indonesia

In the last 3 Indonesian ports I have been in NE Indonesia, I have been unsuccessful getting my aluminum propane tanks refilled #$%^
Where I am now (Tobelo) I was able to purchase local tanks with the intention to transfer the propane to my US tanks myself ...

I did the procedure a long time ago in some forgotten country and it worked fine. This time, it does not seem to work???

The difference is that this time, the only way to connect the transfer hose to the full tank is to use an Indonesian regulator. I am wondering if that could be the problem??? Anyone has any idea by any chance???

All the older posts I could find show transfer hoses without any regulators. Unfortunately, Indonesian tanks have no valve on the tank and the only way is to use a local regulator that has a on/off on it. When I connect the full tank and open the valve, I can see (and smell) the propane coming out very slowly but after a few hours, the empty tank feels as empty ???
Do I need to open the small opening with a screwdriver on the empty tank? (when I do that gas leaks out)

Thanks for any input!
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Old 05-10-2012, 04:09   #2
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You need to get the regulator out of the way. Either physically or by cramming the pressure screw all the way in to defeat it's purpose*. Yes, you need to bleed a tiny bit of gas out of the receiving cylinder to keep the transfer going. That is, to get one gallon of liquid into the tank you need to bleed at least a gallon of gas out.

* sounds a little dangerous to me...

Do this in a vacant area. I see idiots doing it on their boat.
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Old 05-10-2012, 04:10   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daddle
You need to get the regulator out of the way. Either physically or by cramming the pressure screw all the way in to defeat it's purpose*. Yes, you need to bleed a tiny bit of gas out of the receiving cylinder to keep the transfer going. That is, to get one gallon of liquid into the tank you need to bleed at least a gallon of gas out.

* sounds a little dangerous to me...

Do this in a vacant area. I see idiots doing it on their boat.
The supply tank needs to be inverted so as to emit liquid.
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Old 05-10-2012, 17:00   #4
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Re: problem filling propane tanks in Indonesia

As daddle says. It won't work with the regulator. You need as much pressure as possible to fill your cylinder. You might be able to disassemble it or get the nozzle out on which you could connect your transfer hose?
Hang the local cylinder above yours (inverted as said above), cool yours, heat the local one (Indonesian sun is good enough). When you start, start slow to check for leaks, then open the local valve to the maximum. If you do the cooling/heating you can transfer the gas fairly quickly.
Good luck!
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Old 05-10-2012, 17:14   #5
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Re: problem filling propane tanks in Indonesia

Quote:
Originally Posted by lucseawalker View Post
In the last 3 Indonesian ports I have been in NE Indonesia, I have been unsuccessful getting my aluminum propane tanks refilled #$%^
Where I am now (Tobelo) I was able to purchase local tanks with the intention to transfer the propane to my US tanks myself ...

I did the procedure a long time ago in some forgotten country and it worked fine. This time, it does not seem to work???

The difference is that this time, the only way to connect the transfer hose to the full tank is to use an Indonesian regulator. I am wondering if that could be the problem??? Anyone has any idea by any chance???

All the older posts I could find show transfer hoses without any regulators. Unfortunately, Indonesian tanks have no valve on the tank and the only way is to use a local regulator that has a on/off on it. When I connect the full tank and open the valve, I can see (and smell) the propane coming out very slowly but after a few hours, the empty tank feels as empty ???
Do I need to open the small opening with a screwdriver on the empty tank? (when I do that gas leaks out)

Thanks for any input!
No problem really, you only need the correct fitting for each cylinder, a hose to connect the two and a screwdriver to open the bleed valve on the cylinder you are filling.
Connect together and open the full cyl and CHECK FOR LEAKS, if no leaks open the other cyl valve and the bleed valve to let the gas out and the liquid in. As said previously the tank you are filling from needs to be inverted to allow the liquid to flow to the tank you are filling.
When the recieving tank is full the bleed valve will emit a constant stream of gas, it is time to close all valves and disconnect.
Very simple really.
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Old 05-10-2012, 18:24   #6
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Re: problem filling propane tanks in Indonesia

It is really simple, but just to point out the valid observation of the earlier posters who read your OP... the regulator IS the problem.

While the transfer will be easier using the tips mentioned (invert the supply tank, heat supply and cool tank being filled... etc)... NONE of these suggestions will work at all with the regulator in between the tanks.

The regulator will not allow gas to transfer beyond filling your tank with low pressure (regulator pressure) gas.

Good luck.
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Old 06-10-2012, 04:08   #7
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Re: Problem Filling Propane Tanks In Indonesia

I tried to screw the plastic pressure screw all the way in but now propane is leaking out from there ... The pressure screw has a tiny hole into it so I will try to plug that hole and seal the pressure screw so all the propane goes thru the hose. This sealed regulator cannot be modified I think to be able to just use the tank connection ... I could try to put the filling hose directly on the valve but then I have no way to press on the tank bicycle pin that need to be depressed in order for the propane to come out ...???

I will read the other posts and try to solve this frustrating issue ...
Thanks for your help ...


Quote:
Originally Posted by daddle View Post
You need to get the regulator out of the way. Either physically or by cramming the pressure screw all the way in to defeat it's purpose*. Yes, you need to bleed a tiny bit of gas out of the receiving cylinder to keep the transfer going. That is, to get one gallon of liquid into the tank you need to bleed at least a gallon of gas out.

* sounds a little dangerous to me...

Do this in a vacant area. I see idiots doing it on their boat.
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Old 06-10-2012, 04:09   #8
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Re: Problem Filling Propane Tanks In Indonesia

yes, I did that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by daddle View Post
The supply tank needs to be inverted so as to emit liquid.
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Old 06-10-2012, 04:42   #9
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Re: problem filling propane tanks in Indonesia

Ok, I will try to disassemble the regulator ... or make some connector ...
I will keep you all posted.


Quote:
Originally Posted by klubko View Post
As daddle says. It won't work with the regulator. You need as much pressure as possible to fill your cylinder. You might be able to disassemble it or get the nozzle out on which you could connect your transfer hose?
Hang the local cylinder above yours (inverted as said above), cool yours, heat the local one (Indonesian sun is good enough). When you start, start slow to check for leaks, then open the local valve to the maximum. If you do the cooling/heating you can transfer the gas fairly quickly.
Good luck!
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Old 06-10-2012, 04:55   #10
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Re: Problem Filling Propane Tanks In Indonesia

A tip:
Chill the receiving tank and it'll also take on more gas. Propane creates pressure as it warms and decreases as it cools. So if the receiving tank is colder then the delivery tank it takes less effort for the liquid to transfer.

HC-290 (PROPANE) PRESSURE - TEMPERATURE CHART
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Old 06-10-2012, 07:40   #11
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Re: Problem Filling Propane Tanks In Indonesia

Filling propane/ butane tanks is becoming rarer, with many countries now just operating on an exchange basis.

It's time more yacht manufacturers made gas lockers with provisions for many different sized tanks.

Local regulators or hoses with the correct fittings are usually easy to buy.

OK rant over.
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