April 9th, 2012
Last year we decided to make some changes to the Button Gauge: it needed the same safety features as a hose SPG – a pressure relief valve. It took longer than expected, but it’s now back in stock. I feel this is an important feature especially because of the abuse this little gauge is exposed to. It’s most common application is on decompression bottles and rebreather bailout bottles. Applications where close gas monitoring is not important, but rather monitoring if the tank if full or needs filling.
This application usually means pressurize the cylinder, check everything, then turn the gas off to prevent loss thru regulator free-flow concerns. If the pressure drops on the cylinder the regulator can fill with water including the SPG, this can damage the gauge and regulator. This happens more often than divers will admit. Another area of abuse is exposure by mounting the gauge on the top of the regulator of a decompression or bailout bottle where it can be bumped, hit and anything else you can imagine. I see many guys will now mount a button gauge on the bottom side of the regulator to protect it. Since it is only used to check starting and ending pressures tucking it away on the underside keeps it out of harms way.