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Thread: acetylene vs propane

  1. #321
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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    Eric, that was a fun train ride and Bina is a good organizer. Have you changed the intake filter? I just talked to Bill at M&M Medical in Beaverdale PA and he said that if they start to get clogged that effects their output. He also said was worth it to get the more expensive filters supplied by the maker for $12 to $20 instead of the cheapie replacements that can be found online. I asked where they could be purchased and he said they could be bought online but if someone couldn't find a supplier they can be bought from them. I remember him telling me some time ago that the older heaver units last longer and preform better but lighter more portable units are now more desired by medical patients. I'm not positive of this but I think the older units used a more durable metal sieve to separate the gases and the newer units those pellets William mentioned in his post. Someone might be able to check if this is true.

    Bill also said that my Devilbiss model 515 and the newer 525 were the most requested models by jewelry makers. I would guess for 2 reasons, 1st because they have a bit higher output then other makers and 2nd they have a brass "B" fitting that a welding hose can screw directly into. It is easy enough to convert a typical barb fitting to a welding hose fitting with a plastic adapter but if one can choose a refurbished Devilbiss model there is no need for that bother.

    I mentioned to him that the Invacare Perfecto2 models I have work just fine but don't seem to have as much output as my Devilbiss. He thought the difference was in output pressure as in psi rather than output flow as in lpm. He mentioned 5psi for the Invacare.

    It is possible to send in a unit to them to be repaired. The cost depends on what they need to replace but can be as high as $250 if there is a lot wrong with it. My recommendation remains the same. If someone wants to get started right away and have the security of a 3 year warranty then buying a Devilbiss unit from M&M makes the most sense. If one's funds are limited and you enjoy the thrill of the hunt and are willing to risk possible repair of a used unit than keep checking the classifieds. That risk can be reduced if buying direct and the unit can be check out first.

  2. #322
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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    I just recently got an Email from Richard at Paige Tools with a picture of the forthcoming adapters.

    Regards,
    Michael Fabian
    Attached Images Attached Images

  3. #323
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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    I just got the new NK adaptor from Paige Tools that allows their multi-port tips to be used with a Smith AW1A torch handle and an AT-61 mixer/elbow. This is great news that they are now in stock! The problems they had with their supplier that delayed their arrival were finally ironed out. An adaptor for the Victor J-28 with a UN-J neck is still a month or so away.

    This is the 1st time the popular Smith torch has handle to tip parts that are optimized for propane use. It has been possible with Meco Midget but that was not everyone’s 1st choice of a torch handle (although those that like it really love it). The propane specific AT-61 mixer/elbow has more and bigger gas supply holes than one designed for acetylene. And the Paige multiport tips are specifically designed to mix oxygen and propane for greatest efficiency.

    As has been mentioned hundreds of times throughout this subject thread, tips designed for propane keep the flame sharp and steady and is much less likely to blow out from gas pressure blowback.

    If I was starting again, I would get the A set for $89.95 that includes the M3, M4 and M5 tips, the NK adaptor and the tips holder. The NK adaptor by itself is $35.

  4. #324
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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    Thanks for posting that, Doug, I have to get an AT61 and an oxygen concentrator now.

  5. #325
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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    I have just about finished my eighth frame from a single 3.9kg cylinder of propane. It ran out while I was brazing the seatstays. That is 8 lugged frames (or 7 3/4 at least) and 4 forks out of one £16 (about $20) cylinder which is less than $3 per frame for propane. I spent more than that on oxygen of course.

  6. #326
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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    Another shout out to Doug for his continued contributions. I took a course from Doug over a decade ago. We've remained in contact and I've even bumped into him at Philly once. I converted over to propane and an oxygen concentrator and recently took his advice when it was time to replace my hoses and tips with his recommendations. He continues to be a great mentor.

    Like other converts, I've been enjoying the low cost of the propane fuel, I don't miss the soot from acetylene, nor do I miss picking up oxygen refills now that I have a concentrator. The final piece I wasn't quite happy with is now resolved with the NK adaptor from Paige Tools and the AT-61 mixer/elbow.

    Nice sharp flame from this set up

    Thanks Doug!
    tips (2).jpg
    torch (2).jpg
    Tim To | Granville Bicycles | flickr | instagram | Smoked Out

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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    I had not kept up with this tread after getting my set up running.

    Going to order some of the Paige tips once they have the parts to mate them up to the UN elbow.
    Brian Earle
    North Vancouver, BC
    Built a few frames in my garage.

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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    Picked up a concentrator found on craigslist, Smith AW1A and fixing to order the Paige adapter and tips. thanks to all who contributed to this thread.

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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    Hi all,

    I just moved to Denver and am working on setting up an oxy-propane torch in my garage. I called a fellow about a 5lpm concentrator and he suggested that I probably need to run two concentrators into a manifold because of the elevation in CO.

    Does anyone have experience running an oxy-propane set up at altitude? Do I really need a higher output setup for the pressures required for brazing? Any tips are welcome. Thanks.
    Justus Kauffman Zimmerly

  10. #330
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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    Quote Originally Posted by justusz View Post
    Hi all,

    I just moved to Denver and am working on setting up an oxy-propane torch in my garage. I called a fellow about a 5lpm concentrator and he suggested that I probably need to run two concentrators into a manifold because of the elevation in CO.

    Does anyone have experience running an oxy-propane set up at altitude? Do I really need a higher output setup for the pressures required for brazing? Any tips are welcome. Thanks.
    I don’t know anything about running an oxygen concentrator at altitude. What I do know is that my Devilbiss 515 concentrator has more output than my Invacare Perfecto2 concentrators. I would guess it is more like 8lpm. And either one of them has more than enough output at sea level (or whatever Lake Michigan elevation is above sea level) for any of the Meco or Paige multi-tips designed for use with propane. And more than enough for a Victor #4 TEN tip. They can run a rosebud tip at normal settings but do not have enough output for running them on a high setting. I never use a rosebud unless I’m taking something apart by myself. I’m more likely to use in those cases 2 torches held by 2 people hooked up to 2 concentrators.

    I tried running my 2 Invacares in tandem by putting a T junction in the line so the 2nd one feed into the first one’s line. The backpressure that created caused the annoying beeping warning noise to come on. Actually it is a piecing screeching sound to let semi-deaf old people know they aren't getting enough oxygen. I had to get a Y junction so they would work together.

  11. #331
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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    Inspired by this thread - I'm going to have a go at switching from oxy-ace.
    Joe Rowing
    Blacklab Bikes

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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    I've ordered the Paige tips but am having trouble finding an At61 mixer that doesn't have ridiculous shipping cost to New Zealand. Any pointers? 80US shipping seems kind insane to me.

  13. #333
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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    Quote Originally Posted by Krus View Post
    I've ordered the Paige tips but am having trouble finding an At61 mixer that doesn't have ridiculous shipping cost to New Zealand. Any pointers? 80US shipping seems kind insane to me.
    If you order on the Internet, without emailing, faxing or phoning somebody in person, the shipping rates and charges that are automatically generated are usually very high, even within the US. If you contact somebody at the company, they can usually find lower, sometimes much lower, shipping rates and charges.
    Steve Anderson

  14. #334
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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    Quote Originally Posted by Krus View Post
    I've ordered the Paige tips but am having trouble finding an At61 mixer that doesn't have ridiculous shipping cost to New Zealand. Any pointers? 80US shipping seems kind insane to me.
    One problem when ordering welding stuff from the US is that many online welding sellers don't actually keep a complete inventory in stock but rather have whatever they don't have on hand drop shipped directly from Victor or Smith. However they will bill your credit card the instant you place an order and it takes several weeks before the shipment arrives. I have gotten so I always ask if they have what I am ordering in stock.

    I would assume that the cheapest way to ship to New Zealand is by US postal service (USPS). UPS and FedEx can be really expensive shipping internationally. Having said that I haven't specifically checked prices lately. USPS is how I have shipped the sets of Nikko blank lugs that I sell oversees and the prices have been reasonable.

  15. #335
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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    Okay,

    So I runned out of acetylene, I still have some oxy.

    Winter has come and BBQ time is over... still have some propane left... I guess now you know what I did!

    So, I unthreaded the acetylene regulator and then I was bummed because I thought it would not fit although I have read it should. I came back home and read some parts of this thread, looked at pictures and then I saw I had to unscrew the CGA410 to get the CGA510 threads.

    I used my J28 handle with the normal acetylene No2 tip. Light that propane up and the flame was at 30mm from the tip! I lowered the pressure at the regulator at 3psi and the flame hooked to the tip, then added a bit of oxygen at 10psi and voilà!

    https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=395049598319052

    I only heated a part of a tube for fun. It looks like it would work. I can only imagine with a real oxy-propane tip.

    Now I need to find a oxygen concentrator...

    Thanks Doug for this thread and everyone who chimed in.

  16. #336
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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    Quote Originally Posted by Guillaume View Post
    Okay,

    So I runned out of acetylene, I still have some oxy.

    Winter has come and BBQ time is over... still have some propane left... I guess now you know what I did!

    So, I unthreaded the acetylene regulator and then I was bummed because I thought it would not fit although I have read it should. I came back home and read some parts of this thread, looked at pictures and then I saw I had to unscrew the CGA410 to get the CGA510 threads.

    I used my J28 handle with the normal acetylene No2 tip. Light that propane up and the flame was at 30mm from the tip! I lowered the pressure at the regulator at 3psi and the flame hooked to the tip, then added a bit of oxygen at 10psi and voilà!

    https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=395049598319052

    I only heated a part of a tube for fun. It looks like it would work. I can only imagine with a real oxy-propane tip.

    Now I need to find a oxygen concentrator...

    Thanks Doug for this thread and everyone who chimed in.
    You're welcome. Your need for a fresh fuel source reminds me of my own journey when in the early 2000's we were starting to build frames for our charity project in Ukraine and propane was the best and cheapest available fuel. I put out an SOS on the framebuilder's email list for help on how to use it and right away got solid answers. I think it amazed me that in a country where some parts of it seemed still like it was still in the 19th century (for example, cycling through some small villages I saw that they had to get water at wells by the road), I could access international brazing help. Now your journey can skip some of my learning curve.

    I soon found out that my acetylene torch tips worked okay but that flame had a hard time staying on the tip and blew out pretty easily when it got close to the work from bounce back gas pressure. A propane specific UN-J mixer/elbow with bigger and more numerous oxygen supply holes and TEN tips with recessed orifices combined to make a more steady flame. Propane uses more oxygen than acetylene so of course a concentrator provides an unlimited supply without the need to get refills. And finally we convinced the Paige Tool company to make adaptors so their awesome multi-port tips could be used with the Smith and Victor torches. The tiny side flames made the sharp center flame much harder to blow out.

  17. #337
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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    Quote Originally Posted by Doug Fattic View Post
    A propane specific UN-J mixer/elbow with bigger and more numerous oxygen supply holes and TEN tips with recessed orifices combined to make a more steady flame. Propane uses more oxygen than acetylene so of course a concentrator provides an unlimited supply without the need to get refills. And finally we convinced the Paige Tool company to make adaptors so their awesome multi-port tips could be used with the Smith and Victor torches. The tiny side flames made the sharp center flame much harder to blow out.
    I will defenitely get a set of propane tips. I'll see if it easy to get TEN tips from my local weld shop. If not I'll get the Paige.

    Yesterday I just wand to see and try, I was surprised it was not that bad. I'll try a few braze-ons this afternoon.

    Once again thanks Doug and Vsalon!

  18. #338
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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    I'll put in my 2¢ - get the Paige tips, they are great. I have both acetylene and propane, but now that I have the Paige tips I rarely use the acetylene.
    Jon Kendziera
    Jonny Cycles

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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonny Cycles View Post
    I'll put in my 2¢ - get the Paige tips, they are great. I have both acetylene and propane, but now that I have the Paige tips I rarely use the acetylene.
    I agree with Jon. The Paige tips are cheaper with a better flame quality (a sharper, more pointed center flame) that is also harder to blow out when the tip is close to the work (like when fillet brazing) and the gas pressure bounces back and puts out the flame. And by cheaper I mean a lot cheaper. The price of Victor TEN tips vary by size. The 2-TEN screw-on tip is around $30 each and the 3-TEN close to $40.

    Having said that TEN tips work just fine in most applications. It wasn't until a couple of years ago that Paige Tools made adaptors so they can work with Victor or Smith propane mixer/elbows (the UN-J or AT-61). Before that the best option was the TEN tips. Even though Victor tips are expensive they don't have a consistent quality. In other words 2 different Victor 3-TEN tips can have slightly different flame patterns (a more blunted or uneven shape). Also they can be hard to find and not every online welding supply source with every size in stock. The Gentic clones are much cheaper but suffer the same quality control issues (although they stay within an acceptable range). Torch Tools has them for $11 each + S&H. My impression is that the S&H fees is how they make their profits. The Paige tips have a consistent high quality that give a flame pattern I prefer.

  20. #340
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    Default Re: acetylene vs propane

    All right then, Paige it will be.

    However I have a hard time finding the UN-J universal nozzle...well they have the 881W at torchtools.

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