Frequently Asked Questions
Welcome to the Frequently Asked Questions portion of Nitrox Made Easy.com. If
you have specific questions that you need answered, please email
The Nitrox Stik looks like it's made out of PVC, why shouldn't I just make one
Are there other makers
of the Nitrox Stik?
Nitrox Controller is expensive, why should I buy one?
My air compressor and oxygen supply are in a building out back, I don't want to
hang out there for hours (in the cold) while I'm filling Nitrox, is there a better way to make
What is the
most cost effective way to make Nitrox?
does the Nitrox Stik require?
|Q: The Nitrox Stik looks like it's made out of PVC, why shouldn't I just make
A: Much of the Nitrox Stik is made out of PVC. PVC is durable, does not
corrode, and fabricates easily. This means the Stik will last forever and
is essentially maintenance free. But there is more to the Nitrox Stik than it's attractively painted PVC exterior, and beautiful laminated
mounting board. A stainless steal air filter and helical
mixing vanes are the heart of the Stik's function and performance.
Considerable engineering, analysis, testing and expense have gone into
developing a system that thoroughly mixes the gases while causing very little restriction on the air compressor. If you attempt to manufacture something
yourself that either insufficiently mixes the gases or causes too much
restriction, you will dramatically reduce the life of your air compressor.
Additionally if you make something like the Nitrox Stik yourself, you are
assuming sole responsibility and liability for its performance, if something
goes wrong, its all your fault. After you fry the inside of your air
compressor and it costs you thousands to either replace or repair, you'll say to
yourself, "Self, it would have been a heck of a lot less expensive and much less
headache, if I had only purchased the Nitrox Stik to begin with." So in
the immortal words of Dirty Harry, "Do you feel lucky, well, do you, Punk?"
Q: Are there
other makers of the Nitrox Stik?
A: Sort of. The concept of
Nitrox Continuous Gas Blending was originally conceived by Dr. Morgan
Wells who worked for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
(NOAA). He patented the concept but didn't have a practical design
until Mr. Ross Cowell, a marine engineer, came along and developed the
Nitrox Stik you see today. Mr. Cowell patented the Nitrox Stik in
the USA and Canada and receives royalties for the sale of every Nitrox
Stik. There are several knock off "Sticks" that are infringing on
this patent and being illegally imported and sold in North America.
Envirodive Services, makers of the Nitrox Stik, is presently taking
legal action to stop the sale and distribution of these illegal imports.
Nitrox Controller is expensive, why should I buy one?
A: The Nitrox Controller has a number of features that make the
operation of the Nitrox Stik easier. The controller measures the
concentration of oxygen at the outlet of the Nitrox Stik and either
incrementally opens or closes the oxygen supply valve to achieve the desired
Nitrox mix. The computer in the controller is vastly superior at this
sometimes tedious task than any human could be. This frees up the operator
to attend to other matters in the Dive Shop while filling Nitrox: helping
customers; answering phones; running the register, etc. The Nitrox
Controller also has safety features that shut the oxygen supply valve and alert
the operator if there is a problem. It really boils down to time and what
your time is worth. To be a safety conscious operator, you need to monitor
the process of filling Nitrox. If you determine the cost of labor
associated with filling Nitrox there is a strong financial argument for
purchasing the Controller. The Controller could save you thousands
of dollars in labor costs over its life.
|Q: What is
the most cost effective way to make Nitrox?
A: That really depends on how much Nitrox you are filling. There
are a couple of things you need to look at: initial system costs and reoccurring
costs, including the price of oxygen, electricity, labor, and supplies.
Follow this link to an Excel spreadsheet that will compare the various costs
associated with making Nitrox. Edit the assumptions to reflect the costs
(labor, # of Nitrox fills per month, Compressor costs per SCUBA tank fill,
etc.) associated with your dive shop to see which method is most cost effective for you.
Nitrox Cost Breakdown Spreadhseet
Here is another spreadsheet to help you understand the costs of
filling a SCUBA tank at your shop. Edit the fields highlighted in
yellow to reflect the costs associated with your compressor and shop.
Tank Fill Cost
If you think either of these spreadsheets has omitted something glaring, send us an email
and tell us what you think. Derek@NitroxMadeEasy.com
In most cases, the Nitrox Stik in conjunction with the Nitrox Controller is
the most cost effective method to produce Nitrox. But if you feel
like throwing money away, go ahead and purchase something else.
maintenance does the Nitrox Stik require?
A: The Nitrox Stik
requires very little maintenance. The blender unit has a stainless
steel filter that needs to be periodically cleaned. You simply
remove the oxygen hose from the barbed fitting, unscrew the filter from
the blender unit, pull off the wind diverter, and wash the filter in
warm, soapy water. You won't need the the paper/foam pre-filter on
your compressor any more as the Nitrox Stik's high quality stainless
steel filter serves this purpose.