Does somebody make a waterproof tube?
March 7, 2010 9:58 AM   Subscribe

SurelyThisProductExistsFilter: Where can I find a metal tube with a threaded, transparent cap?

Ideally, this pipe would be made of copper or aluminum and seal against ~500kpa of pressure or so. The plan is to throw a non-diving light into a tube [lubed and quintuple o-ringed and sealed with a kiss etcetera] and see things in the deep.

It must be metal for the heat exchange. For now, I'll assume that I'll just make it long enough to carry enough batteries to be on for ~2 dives + surface interval so that I don't have to try to make a waterproof switch. I was about to go buy some pipe and plexiglass and [epoxy?] to make my own, but I am hesitant for the embarassingly simple reason that I just can't cut circles. Even with a hole saw. It's ridiculous. I feel that precision might be helpful in making strong seals.

So: does anybody know of an existing thing that is a metal pipe with a see-through end?
If it is less expensive than a 4D Maglite, that would be grand. I already know how to pressure-proof one of those.

I know clear pvc exists, but the end caps are not flat, and would be optically non-ideal.

Oh. Diameter can be anywhere between 3/4 inch and 3 inches.

Bonus question: how do I bond copper/aluminum to glass/plexiglass?
posted by Acari to Grab Bag (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I used to dive, and I've never seen anyone do anything like this. Given that you can get a dive light rated to 500' for US$20, why bother with an iffy jury rigged solution?
posted by Admiral Haddock at 10:02 AM on March 7, 2010

Response by poster: Because I really *like* iffy jury rigged solutions?
Because my light will be uglier but much much brighter?
Because I already have the leds, optics, and lithium batteries and don't want to admit defeat?

Thanks for that link, though. I had no idea it was possible to get a light for $20. I have only ever seen super-expensive lights and thought I was saving myself money. I might buy one of those and gut it. But I'd rather have a broken light that I built than admit defeat!

Is there a term for embarassment at one's own googling researching skills?
posted by Acari at 10:20 AM on March 7, 2010

Your title didn't mention metal which made me of the tubes that vanilla beans come in. However, they're plastic, clear, and with a solid cap. I've dropped mine in water without issue. I can't find an image for the ones I buy in Toronto, but they look like this but with a black screw cap on them.

For your purposes, you might want to try and find a cigar tube with a clear cap.
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 10:53 AM on March 7, 2010

Couldn't you encase the LEDs in some sorta resin with wires running out? The other connections may not need to be waterproofed since water doesn't really conduct all that well.
posted by malp at 4:53 PM on March 7, 2010

As for your bonus question, I can't recommend highly enough.
posted by bigdamnnerd at 8:37 PM on March 7, 2010

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