View Full Version : Newbie "oxyacetylene" please direct me..

Treasure Hunter
11-06-2007, 10:10 AM
Hello All,

I looking for some advise for my first set-up Oxy/Ace...

I have just entered into the HVAC/R Field so I'm looking for a setup that would be useful for work..and Portable..
Along with Various other projects like for use in the Work shop,plumbing, Cutting etc....Nothing Hardcore....

I was looking into picking up a Smith Versa Torch but I was told that the Gages were kinda cheep...

Please advise as to what I Great Portable setup would be...

which vendor is top notch out there...

Smith, Victor, Lincoln etc..

Thanks for looking..

11-07-2007, 08:02 PM
I have a small Victor set with a 10Cuft Acetylene and a 20CuFt Oxygen. The O2 gauge is a Victor SR150CR.

I suggest you go with gauges the next size up, the SR250, is serviceable since Victor will not service/sell parts for the 150.

They will however warrant it for a year then tell you to buy a new set.

Here is the set similar to what I have and it is nice and light, but the cutting torch is deceiving. It looks DINKY, but it can cut like torches twice its size.


One last tidbit. Watch out if buying a used set. The tanks are only certified for 10 years. I got lucky. Mine were dated 1986 and I was able to exchange mine out for $35 filled. $10 O2 and $15 Acetylene)

NC Cams
11-08-2007, 07:22 AM
"Old" tanks can be exchanged albeit for a recertification fee. Been there, done that.

The advice here is to buy the best you can barely afford. Reason: I bought my first torch set when I was working in an auto parts store - that was in 1972. The damn things still work/cut today. Granted, I don't use them daily but, if you take decent care of them and don't use the torch head for a hammer - easy mistake, they'll last a lifetime.

In fact, I have inherited my dad's torches. His torches are big and used for iron/bridge working, not light ornamental or race car stuff like I bought them for. In light of the fact that we lost him in 1999, if you buy well, the torches can last LONGER than a lifetime.

Buy good, no PREMIUM stuff - you won't be disappointed if you do.

11-13-2007, 05:49 PM
If your getting into HVACR work then you may have to possibly drag the torch set up on the roof of a building. I am in this field and can tell you large bottles suck when you already have to haul a bunch of other needed tool up there. If your doing a huge job which would require using a crane to set the compressor, ect. then it would be of no difference on weight. I use a small harris setup that they carry at refigeration supply houses. They also keep the cylinders refills in house so you dont have to run around and find a welding supplier to get your tanks filled. Get the parts for the job and if the tanks are getting low just trade them in. They also keep all the parts in stock most of the time, tips, handles, guages, regulators, hoses. I have hard silvered 4 inch suction lines with this set and it is no problem. The only time tank size has come into play for me is when I am using it to cut plate steel. The cutting head if you have it turned up to cut thicker metal will suck the tanks down pretty quick. I do all commercial work so its used hard and I have had it for about 7 years and only replaced a couple guages because the lense came unscrewed and the needle got bent. Just my 2 pennys though.

11-13-2007, 06:13 PM
I have been in the plumbing trade as well as HVAC. You can get an airacetylene bottle witch is an oxygen and acetylene mix in one small bottle at you local gas supply. Then all you have to have is a torch I prefer Grainger item # 5kh08. Trust me it is a lot easier to use than a two bottle system it makes brazing a breese. You can braze a piece of 3/4 inch copper in a matter of seconds.

11-18-2007, 12:15 AM
I have an air acetyline setup also and am really not impressed. If you were using soft silver it would work fine but if you use 5-15% hard silver it takes alot more to melt and flow it around. For plumbing lines it works fine but when you start getting into unbrazing lines that are 1 inch and larger and alot of times steel to copper you get into a situation where you cant supply enough heat fast enough. The oil used on some new refrigeration units can flash if it gets to hot in the compressor. So ideally you want to use a tip that will flow the silver almost immediately to get the line loose as quick as possible, not to mention that if you overheat copper it crystilizes and vibration will crack it very quickly. You can go either way, they even sell a air/fuel torch that runs on propane. Same thing for me though not hot enough.