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12 posts • Page 1 of 1
Since I attend a few auctions, I run across oxygen/acetylene torches for sale. Condition varies from sale to sale. Often the tanks are up for sale too.
It's one of those tools you need occasionally, so didn't want to run out an buy a new one, but what would be some quality name brands to look for, as well as pros/cons from some of you who have one?
Or, do you think it better just to buy a set at AirGas?
I'm all ears...
My 1945 Farmall H makeover
This is a post I made while I was still in my welding class back in 2011 in the Cutting Torch Opinions:
I finally got to play with the Harris torches and like the Smith they are not my favourite, although that is simply my own opinion. I do like my Victor torches. And if you watch on CraigsList/:eBay:/garage sales/Kijiji if in your area .. you can find good torches for next to nada. As I said, I paid $80.00 delivered for these torches and I got an O2 regulator, dark goggles and a few other items with it. I bought my second set of Victor torches which included hoses, cart, tips, cleaning tools, goggles and other items including complete new style gauges/regulators for $100.00. So I is all set up. I finally got my leased tanks (we cannot own medium or large tanks - and the little ones are not useful at all), and we used the Oxy-Acetylene setup on my Storage Trailer project along with the 50 foot hoses (definitely a good buy) and the Linde torches were the best of the two sets.
Stanton, Both the O2 and acetylene tanks have to be pressure tested and/or recertified every so often. I don't know all the details of that process, but I think you possibly risk buying used tanks that can't be recertified and therefore can't be refilled. You might want to check with where you would have refills done and ask them about it. I have a set of Victor torches that are mostly used with a rosebud tip or cutting tip and like them, although I have no experience with other brands.
"We don't need to think more,
we need to think differently."
i have Victor
IN GOD WE TRUST
All others pay cash
Power corrupts; absolute power corrupts absolutely byJohn Emerich Edward Dalberg
I have used both Smith and Victor torches and other than operating a little differently, I have no preference for either of them. They both are good. Mine are used mainly for cutting and heating with a little welding and brazing.
As others have mentioned, be very wary of used tanks. Most cannot be filled. First you need to prove ownership and there is the certification issue. My supplier is a local auto parts store. I just go by there and swap out my empty for a full tank. Works good, because I always have a good certified tank. Same setup as swapping out a LP tank at Walmart.
1947 Cub S/N 9216 (My Dad's "Uncle Bob")
We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give......Winston Churchill
There are a lot of places around here that will just exchange bottles( any brand) with you. Take empty in and exchange for full one, paying only for gas. Price might be a little more but still less than price of having one checked every 5 years.
Stan you may want to looking into using LP gas over acetylene. It doesn't put out as many btu but the cost is some cheaper and no rental. You can use the bottle of your grill and get it refilled. Rent your bottles. Like was said they get out dated and it is your cost to have tested. If you own your own they don't trade out bottles. May take a couple of week to get filled and back.
They will around here.
I own several sets of oxygen and acetylene bottles and the place back home swaps them out all the time. Ive never had to pay for a set of bottles to be recertified. Now with that said, the supply company aint just gonna take some old rusted up bottles in and give you a new set. You are gonna have to buy the bottles from them initially unless you find some that have a current sticker on them. Owners bottles have a special stamp on them to identify them as such. You might want to ask around and see how the supply companies around your area identify an owners bottle. With owners bottles, even if you don't use them up for several years, you pay once and that's it. If you rent them, you pay recurring amounts if you use the bottles or not.
Victor is a good set, and everything has a rebuild kit!
Plasma cutter does the same thing as a cutting torch. Recently purchased a Thermal Dynamics Plasma System Cutmaster 52 from Airgas. Total cost was just under $1500- for the plasma cutter, air line dryer and plumbing. Big air compressor and 220 Volts AC already on hand. 1/2" steel designated cut thickness but cuts up to 1 1/4" thick steel.
$1500- sounds like a lot of money and it is. I have several repairs to make and projects to build. The cost of the plasma cutter will be paid for shortly in Do It Yourself savings.
Building a brush guard for my 154 Low-boy. Today, cut out two each 1/2" thick steel plates for backets that mount to the frame from on hand metal.
I have an excuse. CRS.
Thanks for all the opinions. Useful info.
Have experience with AirGas (I'm currently renting a medium bottle of argon from AirGas to use with my MIG welder). From dealing with them, I'm leaning more toward a lease/rent arrangement rather than own. The program at AirGas, for my purposes, seems better to rent; they're basically responsible for the bottles, I buy the gas.
That's why I've always been leary of buying a used set of bottles at auction; unknown condition and recertification.
I was more interested in your comments on the torch set itself. I've seen some Victor torch sets sell pretty cheap. I'll keep my eye out for one and let you know what I find. My way of thinking right now is that a torch set is nice when you need it, but it probably won't see that much use from week to week.
Rudi--I'd love to take a welding class. Thanks to all for sharing.
My 1945 Farmall H makeover
A torch set is one of those tools you'll wonder how you ever got along without. I have a Victor Jr. set and it does everything I need it to. It cuts 1" plate no problem and I've even cut 1 1/2" with it. I have a myriad of ways to cut metal, saws-all, several cut off tools, a horizontal metal band saw, plasma cutter, and I still use the torches regularly. Beside cutting of course is brazing, welding, and heating up rusted, stubborn nuts an bolts. The tank situation must be issue by location. I've had no problem exchanging tanks I've gotten cheaply. I would add that you might want to consider using propane (with the appropriate hardware) instead of acetylene because acetylene is pretty pricey and propane is easier to get on a Sunday afternoon and it isn't that much cooler than acetylene, most people wouldn't notice the difference in how it cuts. I would try to get larger size tanks, they obviously last a bit longer.
12 posts • Page 1 of 1
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