hunterkz
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Luchard H6 USD cyclone compressor questions

Tue Apr 30, 2019 10:22 pm

Hey good folks out there, I acquired a older French built Luchard h6 220v single phase(motor made in England) 3.5 cfm compressor sold as a USD Cyclone. It has not been run in over 30 years and has very low hours. I changed the oil and and tried it out. I let if pump up to 1500 psi and then opened the bleeder and let it warm up to do another oil change to flush it out. It sounded good and was pretty quiet. I am having trouble opening up the filter tower to clean it out. Any suggestions or do I need a bigger wrench? Also if anyone has one what oil do you recommend? I used mobil jet oil to flush it out. Also, what do you think this thing is worth once it is all cleaned up and works as it should? I already have a cornelius that works great so it is not really needed. It is a heavy unit for its size and looks very well built. Pictures to follow after I get time to clean it and change wiring. Thanks

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antique diver
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Re: Luchard H6 USD cyclone compressor questions

Wed May 01, 2019 3:54 pm

Hi Gary, a good photo of the filter tower may help with some ideas.... but first, are you sure all air pressure is relieved from the tower. It doesn't take much to jam those threads together and prevent movement. If there is a back pressure valve in line after the tower (common on modern compressors but not so often on older ones) you may have some pressure in there that can't be readily drained at your final fill outlet. Or, if there is a drain valve at the base of your tower it may be clogged up with corrosion products and not relieving all pressure.

First a photo, then maybe someone can advise from there. Like a larger wrench.

Good luck,
Antique Diver
The older I get the better I was.

hunterkz
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Re: Luchard H6 USD cyclone compressor questions

Wed May 01, 2019 5:10 pm

The rest of the compressor is apart for cleaning and paint. This thing is a very heavy unit for one guy to move around. The filter has probably not been opened in 35 years. It does have a back pressure regulator on it.
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antique diver
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Re: Luchard H6 USD cyclone compressor questions

Wed May 01, 2019 9:55 pm

Photos help. Looks like steel, and the threaded ends may respond to treatment with generous application of PB Blaster penetrating spray (available at Walmart and hardware stores) alternating with heat and more force after some soaking time. I have some concern about the rust spots. Are they pits or just surface discoloration? If pitted or threads are compromised from corrosion it may need replacement. I think Captain has some experience and advice with heat application along with PB Blaster, so you might contact him.

If I am seeing this wrong, and it is aluminum, I would definitely be looking for a modern replacement. Aluminum pressure vessels of that era are of questionable safety due to unknown alloys and metal fatigue. It should not be heated with a torch to aid disassembly.
The older I get the better I was.

hunterkz
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Re: Luchard H6 USD cyclone compressor questions

Thu May 02, 2019 9:36 am

It is made of steel, not sure if it is galvanized or plated. The spots on it are mainly oil staining and crud. There is some light surface rust in a couple spots around the threads but no pitting that I can see. It is soaking with pb blaster on the threads now and I will stick it in the vice and try a pipe wrench. I'm sure the inside is filthy. I'll post some pics of the rest once it is back together. Also thanks for the help.

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antique diver
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Re: Luchard H6 USD cyclone compressor questions

Thu May 02, 2019 10:33 am

Good news that no pitting outside, and I hope inside is good too. Too bad you aren't close enough to lend you my 48" long pipe wrench! I use it once about every 20 years on something.
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hunterkz
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Re: Luchard H6 USD cyclone compressor questions

Thu May 02, 2019 8:15 pm

I got the top cap off the tube. There are two o-rings in the top cap. there is a carbon stack inside held together with a long threaded rod and a nut atop. I got the nut loose but the stack is pretty stuck inside. I am now trying to get the bottom cap off and it isn't budging so far. Lots of pb blaster but the pipe is spinning in the vise. The 48 inch wrench would be handy right now or maybe two of them. So far not too much rust inside but I can't see much yet until I bang out the stack from the other side. If it all looks good when apart I will try to adapt a filter cartridge to go in instead of the hand poured one. I can put another small stack before the filter to get most of the water out if the pmv is still working. Weird thing is that I enjoy trying to get this think working again.

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captain
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Re: Luchard H6 USD cyclone compressor questions

Sat May 04, 2019 10:13 pm

I bought a Cyclone H6 compressor in 1968 and have been running the Cyclone ever since. I have the manual for it. I was lucky enough to score a second compressor and spare parts when a fire department sold theirs 3 years ago.
it is rated 3.5 cfm at 2400 psi, 2800 psi maximum.
It requires a 5 HP gas engine or 3 HP electric motor.
Parts are no longer available and haven't been since the late 1970's. I have a limited stock of some parts but not all parts.
I do have the manual and if you send me your email address I can send it as a pfd document.
Being it is a 3 stage unit 3000 psi is pushing it, I have filled to 2800. Maximum compressor speed is 1500 RPM.
It is all cast iron and a heavy unit.
Although it is a sturdy compressor the 2800 PSI max pressure and lack of parts availability greatly affect it value.
Captain

hunterkz
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Re: Luchard H6 USD cyclone compressor questions

Mon May 06, 2019 10:50 pm

Thanks for the info captain. 2800psi will do it for most of my tanks, the hp ones I will still have to take to the shop. It is a cool piece of vintage equipment and I enjoy bringing stuff like this back to working order. What oil do you suggest for this unit? I would rather use something better than mineral oil to keep it going and run cooler. I did get the filter apart and it looks ok inside but the carbon sitting in it for 30+ years made a mess of it. Hopefully the back pressure valve will function once I can remove it and clean it up. I'll post some more pics once I get it back together.

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captain
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Re: Luchard H6 USD cyclone compressor questions

Tue May 07, 2019 5:59 pm

Any synthetic breathing air compressor oil of ISO Grade 100 should work. I used Anderol 500 because I had access to it at my job.

https://www.nuvair.com/products/parts-a ... r-455.html
Captain

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antique diver
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Re: Luchard H6 USD cyclone compressor questions

Thu May 09, 2019 12:20 am

Captain's notation concerning the Luchard being limited to a maximum of 2800 psi due to being a 3 stage pump reminded me how far the engineering of compressors has come since the 40's and 50's designs. With the right balance of factors such as piston sizes, appropriate interstage pressures and compression ratios, better cooling and the correct rpms for a given system, the max pressure limitations of 3 stage units are way up there now.

Since at least the 70's 4500 psi 3 stage units have been readily available to the breathing air industry (including diving use). That soon moved up to 5000, and for at least 10 or 15 years now Bauer has been producing a small 6000 psi 3 stage compressor by making just a few design changes to their 5 cfm "Capitano". I don't recall what changes may have been made in piston bore sizes, but they did slow the rpms down to the point it only produces about 2.5 cfm (by my actual flow meter readings on 4 or 5 different compressors)... never mind that they used a model designation of "H5" to make us believe it was a 5 cfm unit. A good number were sold to fire departments as such, and they are pretty inadequate in all but the smallest departments in small towns. I will say I have been pleasantly surprised at how cool these little beasts run at 6000 psi. Way cooler than their popular 4 stage 6000 psi unit running at 10 cfm (they call it 13). Five stage compressors have a big advantage in lower compression ratios and less heat. In the mid-70's we were using a 15 cfm 5 stage Joy at the dive shop and even after filling several tanks to 3000 you could hold your hand on the final stage head. It was not even slow turning, being direct driven at about 1700 rpm by 20 hp motor. It still works.
The older I get the better I was.

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captain
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Re: Luchard H6 USD cyclone compressor questions

Thu May 09, 2019 10:23 am

I think the compressor is easily capable of 3000 with the right relief valve. As Hunterkz said it is all cast iron and heavy, plenty strong enough. It was built in the age of 2250 tanks so that is what it got rated for. I have pumped my double Navy non mag aluminum's to 3000 but it was bumping up against the relief valve setting. It originally lacked inter stage water traps which I added along with a second tower for sieve. Originally it only used carbon in the one original tower. Compressor RPM is 1500 so it is rather low running compared to newer compressors.
Captain

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captain
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Re: Luchard H6 USD cyclone compressor questions

Tue Sep 17, 2019 10:37 am

Just bumping this up, any progress on the Luchard. I have been long distance helping someone in Ontario rebuild a Luchard.
Captain

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