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Tool Talk Discussion Forum

Pros and Cons on oxy/acetylene setup using propane

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unioncreek

05-07-2007 06:47:26
134.121.226.24



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I've been looking for a oxy/acetylene setup for a while have been weighing the pro's and con's of each. Someone was telling me that you use about twice as much oxygen when using propane, is this correct? Most of the info I've heard has been good and that it's a lot cheaper, but I'd like to hear what you guys have to say about it.

Bobg




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frankiee

05-10-2007 15:09:54
216.183.136.2



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 Re: Pros and Cons on oxy/acetylene setup using pro in reply to unioncreek, 05-07-2007 06:47:26  
I dont like propane just because it is heavy and can settle in places I cant smell and blow up.
A bit extra on the gas designed for the job is worth it to me.



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paul

05-07-2007 20:34:33
66.44.132.235



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 Re: Pros and Cons on oxy/acetylene setup using pro in reply to unioncreek, 05-07-2007 06:47:26  
You use more O2, but the propane is so much cheaper, cheaper tank (purchase or rent), no vertical issue on the tank....

Can't cut as deep, as less heat. Is that an issue for you?

Can typically braze better, won't blow through light metal as easy.

I'm happy with the propane setup I got from dad, but don't really know it any other way.

--->Paul



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135 Fan

05-07-2007 17:54:27
68.149.46.121



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 Re: Pros and Cons on oxy/acetylene setup using pro in reply to unioncreek, 05-07-2007 06:47:26  
I didn't read the comparison in the archives but I have used both and also Mapp gas. Some large shops use natural gas on cutting machines. As far as oxygen cutting pressure goes, it should be the same when using the proper size of tip for the steel thickness. Getting a neutral flame might take a little more oxygen when using propane. I'm not sure. I have heard that different makes of torches can use different amounts of gases. As far as cutting performance goes, Acetylene is the fastest and easiest. It has a narrower kerf and you can see your line a little easier because you have usually 6 distinct flames rather than 1 big multiple flame. Propane needs special 2 piece tips for cutting that are more expensive and can be a real pain to keep clean. Propane is good for a big heating tip as propane has more btu's than acetylene and can be withdrawn at a faster rate. However only acetylene can be used for welding as it has a much hotter flame than propane. I've worked in some pretty cheap shops that still used acetylene. I prefer acetylene and unless you're doing lots and lots of cutting or heating, I think you'ld find acetylene goes a long way. Propane sometimes needs the oxygen turned on a little when lighting. Generally you will go through 2 or 3 oxygen cylinders for every acetylene cylinder. I guess it depends on what kind of cutting you're doing and if you would ever need to weld. Generally acetylene cuts need less clean up. Dave

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Stan in Oly, WA

05-07-2007 12:37:16
208.64.241.151



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 Re: Pros and Cons on oxy/acetylene setup using pro in reply to unioncreek, 05-07-2007 06:47:26  
Hi unioncreek,

There's an exhaustive discussion of using propane vs. acetylene by Mark KW in the archives of this site. It's got more information than you can imagine.

All the best, Stan



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KeithF

05-07-2007 10:11:19
70.147.135.251



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 Re: Pros and Cons on oxy/acetylene setup using pro in reply to unioncreek, 05-07-2007 06:47:26  
As others mentioned it depends on the use. If it is needed for welding, then actetylene would be better. However, if the need is only for cutting and heating then consider propane. I bought a Harris Oxy/propane torch about 5 years ago. I only use a torch for cutting/heating. It works good for that purpose. It lights just like a propane torch and doesn't have near the issues of tip fouling that acetylene does. I just use a 20lb. propane tank and the issue with acetylene tank position and draw down is non existant with propane. Also, if propane is your choice, buy a torch made for oxy/propane. Just occasional use would only require a small torch unit and acetylene would be cheaper and easier to come by.

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IH2444

05-07-2007 10:04:36
192.76.82.89



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 Re: Pros and Cons on oxy/acetylene setup using pro in reply to unioncreek, 05-07-2007 06:47:26  
I have used propane for cutting for 5 years now. Cut up a lot of scrap. It has a longer preheat time, requires a special tip and you will use about 2x the OXY, but a 20 lb tank of propane lasts a loooong time.
Also you can braze with it, but not weld and it si not just the heat on the welding, something in the flame/ fuel.



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glennster

05-07-2007 09:05:44
76.224.16.173



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 Re: Pros and Cons on oxy/acetylene setup using pro in reply to unioncreek, 05-07-2007 06:47:26  
if you are doing a lot of cutting, propane is a lot cheaper to run. your o2 pressure is a lot lower for propane too. you can cut with 10-15lbs of 02 pressure as opposed to 25-40psi for acetlyne. the downside, you propane isnt a good gas for welding.



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Paul Janke

05-07-2007 08:48:42
216.166.168.53



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 Re: Pros and Cons on oxy/acetylene setup using pro in reply to unioncreek, 05-07-2007 06:47:26  
Propane is not as hot so preheat time is longer and the temperature is too low for welding. The regulator for propane goes to higher pressures than the one for acetylene. If you get a propane setup you can use it for acetylene by getting the bottle of fuel, using the lower pressure, and getting the other cutting tip. If you bought acetylene first I'm not sure you could turn the regulator up to high enough pressures for propane.

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nwb

05-07-2007 08:30:12
4.252.101.16



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 Re: Pros and Cons on oxy/acetylene setup using pro in reply to unioncreek, 05-07-2007 06:47:26  
For me it depends how much you use the torch. At one time I used the torch alot and the expense was an issue. Now I work in maintenence in a factory. I work alot of overtime and do not use my torch much. Also the torch at work is acetylene, I wish they were both the same because they do burn differently. I think acetylene is more versitile and easier to use. Bottom line is how much will you use the torch?

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flying belgian

05-07-2007 07:17:01
207.13.162.207



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 Re: Pros and Cons on oxy/acetylene setup using pro in reply to unioncreek, 05-07-2007 06:47:26  
Iv'e heard you can get explosions at tip when liting with propane.



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Tim Casbolt

05-07-2007 16:43:33
24.154.171.105



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 Re: Pros and Cons on oxy/acetylene setup using pro in reply to flying belgian, 05-07-2007 07:17:01  
ANY torch setup should be running anti-blowback valves. To not use them would be crazy. I use the same fuel and oxygen pressures with propane as I did with acetylene. Don't know why a person might need to change that. Also, it's the same fuel regulator.



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