U.S. Code of Federal Regulations

Regulations most recently checked for updates: Aug 10, 2020

§ 178.51 - Specification 4BA welded or brazed steel cylinders.

(a) Type, size, and service pressure. A DOT 4BA cylinder is a cylinder, either spherical or cylindrical in shape, with a water capacity of 1,000 pounds or less and a service pressure of at least 225 and not over 500 psig. Closures made by the spinning process are not authorized.

(1) Spherical type cylinders must be made from two seamless hemispheres joined by the welding of one circumferential seam.

(2) Cylindrical type cylinders must be of circumferentially welded or brazed construction.

(b) Steel. The steel used in the construction of the cylinder must be as specified in table 1 of appendix A to this part.

(c) Identification of material. Material must be identified by any suitable method except that plates and billets for hotdrawn cylinders must be marked with the heat number.

(d) Manufacture. Cylinders must be manufactured using equipment and processes adequate to ensure that each cylinder produced conforms to the requirements of this subpart. No defect is permitted that is likely to weaken the finished cylinder appreciably. A reasonably smooth and uniform surface finish is required. Exposed bottom welds on cylinders over 18 inches long must be protected by footrings.

(1) Seams must be made as follows:

(i) Minimum thickness of heads and bottoms must be not less than 90 percent of the required thickness of the side wall.

(ii) Circumferential seams must be made by welding or by brazing. Heads must be attached by brazing and must have a driving fit with the shell, unless the shell is crimped, swedged or curled over the skirt or flange of the head and must be thoroughly brazed until complete penetration by the brazing material of the brazed joint is secured. Depth of brazing from end of the shell must be at least four times the thickness of shell metal.

(iii) Longitudinal seams in shells must be made by copper brazing, copper alloy brazing, or by silver alloy brazing. Copper alloy composition must be: Copper 95 percent minimum, Silicon 1.5 percent to 3.85 percent, Manganese 0.25 percent to 1.10 percent. The melting point of the silver alloy brazing material must be in excess of 1,000 °F. The plate edge must be lapped at least eight times the thickness of plate, laps being held in position, substantially metal to metal, by riveting or by electric spot-welding. Brazing must be done by using a suitable flux and by placing brazing material on one side of seam and applying heat until this material shows uniformly along the seam of the other side. Strength of longitudinal seam: Copper brazed longitudinal seam must have strength at least 3/2 times the strength of the steel wall.

(2) Welding procedures and operators must be qualified in accordance with CGA Pamphlet C-3 (IBR, see § 171.7 of this subchapter).

(e) Welding and brazing. Only the welding or brazing of neckrings, footrings, handles, bosses, pads, and valve protection rings to the tops and bottoms of cylinders is authorized. Provided that such attachments and the portion of the container to which they are attached are made of weldable steel, the carbon content of which may not exceed 0.25 percent except in the case of 4130 × steel which may be used with proper welding procedure.

(f) Wall thickness. The minimum wall thickness of the cylinder must meet the following conditions:

(1) For any cylinder with an outside diameter of greater than 6 inches, the minimum wall thickness is 0.078 inch. In any case the minimum wall thickness must be such that the calculated wall stress at the minimum test pressure may not exceed the lesser value of any of the following:

(i) The value shown in table 1 of appendix A to this part, for the particular material under consideration;

(ii) One-half of the minimum tensile strength of the material determined as required in paragraph (j) of this section;

(iii) 35,000 psi; or

(iv) Further provided that wall stress for cylinders having copper brazed longitudinal seams may not exceed 95 percent of any of the above values. Measured wall thickness may not include galvanizing or other protective coating.

(2) Cylinders that are cylindrical in shape must have the wall stress calculated by the formula:

S = [P(1.3D 2 + 0.4d 2)] / (D 2 − d 2) Where: S = wall stress in psi; P = minimum test pressure prescribed for water jacket test; D = outside diameter in inches; d = inside diameter in inches.

(3) Cylinders that are spherical in shape must have the wall stress calculated by the formula:

S = PD / 4tE Where: S = wall stress in psi; P = minimum test pressure prescribed for water jacket test; D = outside diameter in inches; t = minimum wall thickness in inches; E = 0.85 (provides 85 percent weld efficiency factor which must be applied in the girth weld area and heat affected zones which zone must extend a distance of 6 times wall thickness from center line of weld); E = 1.0 (for all other areas).

(4) For a cylinder with a wall thickness less than 0.100 inch, the ratio of tangential length to outside diameter may not exceed 4.1.

(g) Heat treatment. Cylinders must be heat treated in accordance with the following requirements:

(1) Each cylinder must be uniformly and properly heat treated prior to test by the applicable method shown in table 1 of appendix A to this part. Heat treatment must be accomplished after all forming and welding operations, except that when brazed joints are used, heat treatment must follow any forming and welding operations, but may be done before, during or after the brazing operations.

(2) Heat treatment is not required after the welding or brazing of weldable low carbon parts to attachments of similar material which have been previously welded or brazed to the top or bottom of cylinders and properly heat treated, provided such subsequent welding or brazing does not produce a temperature in excess of 400 °F in any part of the top or bottom material.

(h) Openings in cylinders. Openings in cylinders must comply with the following requirements:

(1) Any opening must be placed on other than a cylindrical surface.

(2) Each opening in a spherical type cylinder must be provided with a fitting, boss, or pad of weldable steel securely attached to the container by fusion welding.

(3) Each opening in a cylindrical type cylinder must be provided with a fitting, boss, or pad, securely attached to container by brazing or by welding.

(4) If threads are used, they must comply with the following:

(i) Threads must be clean-cut, even, without checks and tapped to gauge.

(ii) Taper threads must be of a length not less than that specified for American Standard taper pipe threads.

(iii) Straight threads, having at least 4 engaged threads, must have a tight fit and a calculated shear strength of at least 10 times the test pressure of the cylinder. Gaskets, adequate to prevent leakage, are required.

(i) Hydrostatic test. Each cylinder must successfully withstand a hydrostatic test, as follows:

(1) The test must be by water jacket, or other suitable method, operated so as to obtain accurate data. A pressure gauge must permit reading to an accuracy of 1 percent. An expansion gauge must permit reading of total expansion to an accuracy of either 1 percent or 0.1 cubic centimeter.

(2) Pressure must be maintained for at least 30 seconds and sufficiently longer to ensure complete expansion. Any internal pressure applied after heat treatment and previous to the official test may not exceed 90 percent of the test pressure.

(3) Permanent volumetric expansion may not exceed 10 percent of the total volumetric expansion at test pressure.

(4) Cylinders must be tested as follows:

(i) At least one cylinder selected at random out of each lot of 200 or less must be tested as outlined in paragraphs (i)(1), (i)(2), and (i)(3) of this section to at least two times service pressure.

(ii) All cylinders not tested as outlined in paragraph (i)(4)(i) of this section must be examined under pressure of at least two times service pressure and show no defect.

(j) Physical test. A physical test must be conducted to determine yield strength, tensile strength, elongation, and reduction of area of material, as follows:

(1) The test is required on 2 specimens cut from one cylinder or part thereof having passed the hydrostatic test and heat-treated as required, taken at random out of each lot of 200 or less. Physical tests for spheres are required on 2 specimens cut from flat representative sample plates of the same heat taken at random from the steel used to produce the spheres. This flat steel from which 2 specimens are to be cut must receive the same heat treatment as the spheres themselves. Sample plates must be taken from each lot of 200 or less spheres.

(2) Specimens must conform to the following:

(i) A gauge length of 8 inches with a width not over 1 1/2 inches, or a gauge length of 2 inches with a width not over 1 1/2 inches, or a gauge length at least 24 times the thickness with a width not over 6 times the thickness is authorized when a cylinder wall is not over 3/16 inch thick.

(ii) The specimen, exclusive of grip ends, may not be flattened. Grip ends may be flattened to within one inch of each end of the reduced section.

(iii) When size of the cylinder does not permit securing straight specimens, the specimens may be taken in any location or direction and may be straightened or flattened cold, by pressure only, not by blows. When specimens are so taken and prepared, the inspector's report must show in connection with record of physical tests detailed information in regard to such specimens.

(iv) Heating of a specimen for any purpose is not authorized.

(3) The yield strength in tension must be the stress corresponding to a permanent strain of 0.2 percent of the gauge length. The following conditions apply:

(i) The yield strength must be determined by either the “offset” method or the “extension under load” method as prescribed in ASTM E 8 (IBR, see § 171.7 of this subchapter).

(ii) In using the “extension under load” method, the total strain (or “extension under load”), corresponding to the stress at which the 0.2 percent permanent strain occurs may be determined with sufficient accuracy by calculating the elastic extension of the gauge length under appropriate load and adding thereto 0.2 percent of the gauge length. Elastic extension calculations must be based on an elastic modulus of 30,000,000. In the event of controversy, the entire stress-strain diagram must be plotted and the yield strength determined from the 0.2 percent offset.

(iii) For the purpose of strain measurement, the initial strain reference must be set while the specimen is under a stress of 12,000 psi, and the strain indicator reading must be set at the calculated corresponding strain.

(iv) Cross-head speed of the testing machine may not exceed 1/8 inch per minute during yield strength determination.

(k) Elongation. Physical test specimens must show at least a 40 percent elongation for a 2-inch gauge length or at least 20 percent in other cases. Except that these elongation percentages may be reduced numerically by 2 for 2-inch specimens, and by 1 in other cases, for each 7,500 psi increment of tensile strength above 50,000 psi to a maximum of four such increments.

(l) Tests of welds. Except for brazed seams, welds must be tested as follows:

(1) Tensile test. A specimen must be cut from one cylinder of each lot of 200 or less, or welded test plate. The welded test plate must be of one of the heats in the lot of 200 or less which it represents, in the same condition and approximately the same thickness as the cylinder wall except that in no case must it be of a lesser thickness than that required for a quarter size Charpy impact specimen. The weld must be made by the same procedures and subjected to the same heat treatment as the major weld on the cylinder. The specimen must be taken from across the major seam and must be prepared and tested in accordance with and must meet the requirements of CGA Pamphlet C-3 (IBR, see § 171.7 of this subchapter). Should this specimen fail to meet the requirements, specimens may be taken from two additional cylinders or welded test plates from the same lot and tested. If either of the latter specimens fail to meet the requirements, the entire lot represented must be rejected.

(2) Guided bend test. A root bend test specimen must be cut from the cylinder or welded test plate, used for the tensile test specified in paragraph (l)(1) of this section. Specimens must be taken from across the major seam and must be prepared and tested in accordance with and must meet the requirements of CGA Pamphlet C-3.

(3) Alternate guided-bend test. This test may be used and must be as required by CGA Pamphlet C-3. The specimen must be bent until the elongation at the outer surface, adjacent to the root of the weld, between the lightly scribed gage lines a to b, must be at least 20 percent, except that this percentage may be reduced for steels having a tensile strength in excess of 50,000 psig, as provided in paragraph (k) of this section.

(m) Rejected cylinders. Reheat treatment is authorized for rejected cylinders. Subsequent thereto, cylinders must pass all prescribed tests to be acceptable. Repair of brazed seams by brazing and welded seams by welding is authorized.

(n) Markings. Markings must be stamped plainly and permanently in one of the following locations on the cylinder:

(1) On shoulders and top heads not less than 0.087 inch thick.

(2) On side wall adjacent to top head for side walls not less than 0.090 inch thick.

(3) On a cylindrical portion of the shell which extends beyond the recessed bottom of the cylinder constituting an integral and non-pressure part of the cylinder.

(4) On a plate attached to the top of the cylinder or permanent part thereof; sufficient space must be left on the plate to provide for stamping at least six retest dates; the plate must be at least 1/16 inch thick and must be attached by welding, or by brazing at a temperature of at least 1100 °F., throughout all edges of the plate.

(5) On the neck, neckring, valve boss, valve protection sleeve, or similar part permanently attached to the top of the cylinder.

(6) On the footring permanently attached to the cylinder, provided the water capacity of the cylinder does not exceed 25 pounds.

[Amdt. 178-114, 61 FR 25942, May 23, 1996, as amended at 66 FR 4535, Aug. 28, 2001; 67 FR 16015, Sept. 27, 2002; 67 FR 51653, Aug. 8, 2002; 68 FR 75748, Dec. 31, 2003]