Setting up a compressed gas system

Be sure you have taken a safety course or have done safety training for compressed gas systems before trying to set one up.

Things you will need to buy:

The Regulator:

- Knowing which kind of compressed gas is important to know before you start on anything else because the regulator you will get for the tank depends on what kind of gas you are using.

- Nitrogen Regulator: Two-Stage Regulator, 3000 scfh Capacity, 580 CGA Fitting. Click here to get to the order page for the Nitrogen Regulator

The Tube Racks:

- To hold the tubing to the wall and ceiling use: Tube Rack 3/8 OD BLK-NON-SEP (#EW-06432-04) from Cole Parmer. Click here to get to Cole Parmer order page for the tube rack

- Depending on your chosen diameter of tubing, the size of the rack may change. Other sizes are also listed below as links to the order page.

10 Channel Tube Rack 3/16 inch 10 pk-EW-06432-02

10 Channel Tube Rack 1/4 inch 10 pk-EW-06432-03

7 Channel Tube Rack 3/8 inch 10 pk-EW-06432-04 (this is the one listed above)

5 Channel Tube Rack 1/2 10 pk-EW-06432-05

- These Racks do not come with screws, so you will need to get your own screws.

The Tube Connectors:

- Tube connectors can be found here: John Guest Female Adapters. The one needed for the regulator is 1/4 inch nptf on one end. The other end should be the appropriate size for the tubing you will use.

- You may also need one that can connect the tube from the tank to the tube that is part of the equipment you will eventually hook it up to.

The Tube:

- Flexable tubing can be found on the Cole Parmer website here.

- Rigid tubing (which may be better) can also be found on the Cole Parmer website here.

- Size for tubing is not too important as long as you have the correct size tube connectors (for tube-regulator, and tube-tube), and tube rack for the tube size you have.

Setting up the system:

Creating the path for the tube/placing brackets:

1. Mark out with tape where you are going to place the brackets

Tips for where to place brackets:

- On a long straight away, brackets should be placed at a max of 2 feet apart

- For a 90 degree turn on a flat surface: brackets should be placed perpendicular to each other.

- For a 90 degree turn onto perpendicular surfaces: brackets should be placed parallel to each other, and 6 inches away from where the perpendicular surfaces meet.

2. Double check that the line you have made by the brackets is correct before proceeding.

3. Count the number of brackets you will need and make sure you have three more than you will need just in case you miscalculated the number you might need.

4. Screw in the screws (for some surfaces you may need to drill a hole before screwing in the screws, such as through a concrete wall)

4a. If drilling/screwing into the ceiling make sure there is nothing you may be drilling into above the ceiling

4b. If drilling/screwing into a wall, make sure you are drilling far enough away from any electrical outlet or switch

5. Measure out the amount of tubing you will need.

- This does not need to be an exact science, in fact you should overestimate the amount of tubing you need by an extra two or three arm lengths (maybe more).

Stringing the Tube:

1. Start with the side where you do not want any extra tube (It doesn't really matter which side you start from, but from my experience it is easier to start from this side)

2. If the tube you are placing in the rack is too small for the rack to adequately grab it, you may need a split a small section of larger tube to wrap around the main tube to keep it in the rack.

3. Measure the distance between brackets by holding up the tube to where you want it to be and place the section of larger tube around the measured place

4. Press firmly into the tube rack.

- You may need to manipulate the larger tube so that it goes all the way in as it will tend to open up when being pushed into the rack.

5. Continue until you finish placing the tube in all the racks.

6. You do not want any of the turns to be very tight or the tube will pop out of the rack. Rather, have a little slack at each turn.

7. The straight-aways should not be pulled tight either, but should be strung so they are up against the wall (but not tight) rather than hanging loosely away from the wall.

8. If you have a problem with the tube popping out use a rubber band to hold the tube in place

8a. Wrap one end of the rubber band around the screw on the rack (or anything that the rubber band can be hooked to)

8b. Make sure the rubber-band is wrapped enough times that it will be tight when you hook it to the other screw

8c. The tube should be in the rack when you attach the other end of the rubber band, and when the rubber band is hooked into the other screw, it should be strung across the tube

Setting up the tank:

1. Consult with your supervisor about where a tank can be strapped to safely.

2. Attach a strap to where the tank will be placed.

3. Get a tank and safely strap it to the table/wall.

4. Attach the regulator to the top of the tank. Be sure to place the tank and regulator such that you can easily see the gauges on the regulator.

5. Use wrench to tightly screw the piece of the regulator into the tank.

Attaching tube to tank and turning on tank:

1. Take the end of the tube that is close to the tank and place it in the tube adaptor that will fit into the regulator (Reminder: The one needed for the regulator is 1/4 inch nptf on one end)

2. Screw the end of the adaptor into the regulator and use a Wrench to make sure it is tight.

3. Lightly pull on the tube to make sure it is securely in the regulator.

4. Make sure the knob at the front of the regulator is all the way off (decreased pressure), so that when you turn on the tank, air will not be pushed through the regulator.

5. Turn on the tank using the main knob on the tank.

9a. Look at the pressure gauge on the regulator to see that the gas is flowing through the regulator properly.

9b. There should be about 2000psi in the tank to start.

9c. Turn the tank all the way open until the knob stops, then turn it back one half turn.

6. You can now turn on the front knob to the desired exit psi.

Done! You may now enjoy your system!


- It might be easier to leave the front knob as it is (not decrease the pressure each time you turn off the tank using this knob), but instead turn off the main tank each time you turn the tank off so that you have the same amount of pressure exiting the regulator each time which you know is the correct amount of pressure .

- When you turn the tank off, there will still be a pressure reading, this is normal, and the pressure gauge will go down as the gas slowly exits from the system.