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valves, O rings, contamination

Posted By: Lookin to the future
Date: Tuesday, 13 February 2007, at 10:24 p.m.

I have been a neon tube bender, working in a sign shop, for 3 years. I joined this company after completing a 6 week neon course. The course taught me the basics, but the experience has been a true learning experience. I have several questions that may seem trivial, but they are important to me. I'm seeking second opinions, since during my 3 years of employment, the opinions have come from only one person above me in the shop. I also run the pumping system in our shop part of the time. There is another person that does some of that work.

Are the "O" rings on the valves in a manifold comprised of some special material, or can I buy the ones I've seen at the local hardware store for less than $1?

Can the "O" rings be purchased separately from the valves, or does the whole valve need replaced if there is a problem with the "O" ring?

What is the simplist, fastest method for cleaning out a glass manifold that may be contaminated?

Can too much pressure be placed on the valves, so that the "O" rings virtually get flattened? I've been told to just look at the valve and when the rubber hits the glass, stop, don't over turn it. Yet with a propane tank, or water faucet repair, you can't just stop when the rubber grommet makes contact, you have to turn it tight.

How do you learn city, county ordinances regarding signs? I spoke with a guy who brings repair pieces in to me and asked what kind of training he has head. He said he has some kind of apprentice sign liscense. If I see a broken piece of neon on a building, and I could easily remove it and fix it for them, what do I need to do to legally do that?

Thank you for your experienced opinions. I know I'm opening myself up for criticism, but I need to know these things.

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