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Pyrene fire extinguishers
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Minxy



Joined: 22 Sep 2010
Posts: 214
Location: West Northants

PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2019 1:56 pm    Post subject: Pyrene fire extinguishers Reply with quote

Good day all.
My latest must have for each of my cars but there does seem to be lots of variation on the theme. There are brass ones, polished ones, Chrome ones, etc etc. Now as I tend to be rather anal when it comes to accessorising can you kindly gents give me the lo-down on the type/style that would have been fitted to a early fifties and later fifties car (if not the same)
Thanking you kindly
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Rick
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Joined: 27 Apr 2005
Posts: 20093
Location: Cheshire

PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2019 11:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It just so happens that on the floor behind me I have a near-immaculate Pyrene fire extinguisher, bought somewhere a few months ago (complete with the bracket, which is harder to find than the extinguisher itself). There are a few others around here, but this is the closest - it's a chrome one, and is dated 1955, so would be correct for a car of that era.

Or were the large ones more often found in commercial vehicles at this point in time, with smaller extinguishers making it into cars?

RJ
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Various 1920s-1960s - Austin, Morris, Commer, Dodge etc.
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Norseman



Joined: 09 Jan 2019
Posts: 70
Location: Essex UK

PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2019 4:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The larger versions were always found in the cabs of London buses (RT/RTL/RTW) but as the chemical was very efficient in removing oil stains from clothing the partial discharge Pyrenes were replaced with total discharge items as strangely enough an empty extinguisher isn't a lot of good in fighting a fire Laughing
I have a smaller chrome version (empty) somewhere, one of these days I'll dig it out & see if it's dated.
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winchman



Joined: 21 Feb 2014
Posts: 204
Location: Merseyside

PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2019 5:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I take it you know the stuff in side is very toxic?
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Norseman



Joined: 09 Jan 2019
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Location: Essex UK

PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2019 7:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

winchman wrote:
I take it you know the stuff in side is very toxic?


'Oh yes, carbon tech..... (forgotten how to spell!) Used in bulk at dry cleaners, or always used to be in the days when I used to carry it in road tankers.
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Bitumen Boy



Joined: 26 Jan 2012
Posts: 1298
Location: Above the snow line in old Monmouthshire

PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2019 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Norseman wrote:
winchman wrote:
I take it you know the stuff in side is very toxic?


'Oh yes, carbon tech..... (forgotten how to spell!) Used in bulk at dry cleaners, or always used to be in the days when I used to carry it in road tankers.


Carbon tetrachloride? Another of those useful and supposedly hugely dangerous things that have been banned although they probably killed far fewer people than knife-wielding thugs... I suspect it's akin to asbestos in that while it's undoubtedly dangerous if handled carelessly, if it was as dangerous as some people claim it to be it would have affected a lot more people than seems to be the case.
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roverdriver



Joined: 18 Oct 2008
Posts: 1079
Location: 100 miles from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

PostPosted: Sat May 11, 2019 7:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I certainly agree with you, Bitumen Boy. Carbon Tetrachloride was a useful product for the dry-cleaning industry, and I have a vague memory that it was used in cinemas for cleaning film. I wonder how many dry cleaning workers who used it wisely had ill effects?

Re the extinquishers, I have only seen brass ones in commercial vehicles here in Oz. Perhaps the plated versions were more expensive.
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Keith D



Joined: 16 Oct 2008
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Location: Upper Swan, Western Australia

PostPosted: Sat May 11, 2019 10:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I seem to remember during my apprenticeship at Ekco in Southend, having to dip baskets of steel parts in a huge tank of bubbling Carbon tet to remove all traces of oil and grease. The fumes were very heady. We were definitely given no protective gear to wear. That was back in the early sixties.

Keith
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alastairq



Joined: 14 Oct 2016
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PostPosted: Sat May 11, 2019 10:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thawpit, anyone?
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Penman



Joined: 23 Nov 2007
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Location: Lancashire

PostPosted: Sat May 11, 2019 10:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi
alastairq wrote:
Thawpit, anyone?

Thanks for reminding me of that name.

Glass, wide necked, bottle with with an appllcator pad wedged in the top of it. and very useful for spot/small area cleaning.
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Phil - Nottingham



Joined: 01 Jan 2008
Posts: 1239
Location: Nottingham

PostPosted: Tue May 14, 2019 7:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Whilst the fumes are not good for you when used as a degreaser using Carbon Tetra Chloride (CTC) in fire extinguishers is deadly. Right up to the later 70s car, domestic and commercial extinguishers used this stuff.

When heated in a fire it creates Hydrogen Cyanide gas (HCN) which is deadly in minutes if breathed in

The old Pyrene ones were CTC but other stuff could be used or just water or wet water
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Minxy



Joined: 22 Sep 2010
Posts: 214
Location: West Northants

PostPosted: Tue May 14, 2019 9:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks all for your input.
I have managed to pick one up quite cheap, mainly I think because it is in Ďas foundí condition and not polished to within an inch of its life. I have since found out that most are date stamped around the collar where the plunger enters so I have one that is dated 1956 so it sits in the Minx a treat.
I have no intention whatever of using it for its intended purpose, I carry a regular foam extinguisher in the car although in practice, after seeing more than one car burn, it is doubtful it would ever be used! Iím in the Ďlet it burn campí.
As a laboratory technician (retired) I am acutely aware of the dangers of carbon tetrachloride although like a lot of similar chemicals it is perfectly safe when handled correctly- much like a sharp knife really.
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