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Old 03-03-2007, 11:53 AM
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Buying an Oxy/Aceytlene setup, need help

I am getting ready to buy my first torch, and I have done quite a few searches on here, but I haven't seen anything about the portable torch setups. I am looking at either a Victor portable torch unit or a Victor Super range II.
My concern with the portable unit is how long the tanks will last. But I don't know if renting tanks for the Super Range torch will be worth it either. Does anyone out there rent their tanks, if so how much are they for the size you have.
I really only plan on using the torch for some basic fabrication and welding up the exhaust and bars for my bike.
Thanks for the help and info

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Last edited by Leggo; 03-03-2007 at 04:11 PM.
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Old 03-03-2007, 05:45 PM
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That Victor Super Range II is a fine outfit probably the best you can buy for the money, maybe at any price. If all you plan to do is light welding you may get by with the portable tanks but be warned they go fast so if you can get the biggest tanks you feel you can handle, not only will they last longer the gas will be a heck of a lot cheaper per cubic ft.
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Old 03-03-2007, 05:55 PM
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Well, I went and talked to the guys at the AirGas near me today and they recommended the Super Range II as well. So it looks like I am going in that direction.
I did forget to ask them about bottles, should I just rent them from the shop here or should I try and buy them. I know that there can be some issues with owning them and getting them filled. Has anyone had problems with this.
Thanks
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Old 03-04-2007, 07:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leggo
I know that there can be some issues with owning them and getting them filled. Has anyone had problems with this.
Yes. But I think it is a regional matter. Around where I live the gas vendors (with the exception of one good old boy that still does it for my) will only provide gas in THEIR rented tanks. But an hour and a half away (Wausau) I could bring my private tanks in and they would fill them.

So just check with a couple vendors to insure they will sell you the gas before you invest in your own tanks. Also be aware, if you own your own tanks they will have to be tested periodically and if there are any changes in safety rules, it will be your responsibility to keep your tanks up to snuff. They won't fill faulty or untested tanks. Other than that, I think "owned" tanks are the way to go...except if you not certain of what size tanks are going to good for your particular use pattern. If you rent, you can change your tank sizes pretty easily. If you buy...you're stuck.
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Old 03-04-2007, 08:00 AM
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Here, you buy the small tanks.....when they are empty, you can exchange them.

I have a dispute right now, with the vendor I used to use....I bought a set of small tanks years ago......like 20 years ago....of course the paperwork is gone. The guy that I used to exchange them with allowed me to exchange them for the next size up. He went out of the gas business after that. I then had to go to a different vendor of the same gas company. They said I wasn't allowed to have those tanks without a rental contract....and wanted their tanks back.....I told them if they want their tanks, they had to give me some small tanks back, or my money back. Of course, with no paperwork, I have little recourse. I went to their head office but made no headway. Now, I have 2 empty useless tanks........Had to go buy 2 new small ones from another company.
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Old 03-04-2007, 09:10 AM
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I have medium size tanks that I bought....customer owned tanks where I do business can be swapped or exchanged for full ones..just pay for the contents. Since they exchange the tanks..they (the company) are responsible for testing, and re- certification etc. The company has changed hands but I did keep my paperwaork and they issued me new paperwork with thier company name on it. I have had this customer owned set up for years with no problem and I used to lease the tanks but this is cheaper.
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Old 03-04-2007, 11:02 AM
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It sounds like I might want to rent the tanks for a little while, until I figure out what size I am going to need and then buy some. When the time comes to buy my tanks, where do you guys recommend I get them from?
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Old 03-04-2007, 11:09 AM
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I have a particular shop that that I do business with as they honor the web prices and they have either rental tanks or customer owned..I have my own as I got tired of the paying demmurage on the rentals..

I have some smaller tanks but I have my setup on a handtruck that I made into a torch cart..works really well and I have about 30 ft of hose on my rig..makes a difference when out in the yard doing some cutting..way more convient than those little tanks that run out quickly..

Sam
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Old 03-04-2007, 11:13 AM
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When I ran my shop I did thousands of dollars with the local gas supplier but since I retired they don't even seem to remember me anymore so now I find myself going to both Tractor Supply and Northern Tool, whichever is handy at the time. Around this area they have about the best deal going where you just buy your tanks and exchange them when empty for whatever size you want (they just add the difference in cost if you go larger). They will take any customer owned tank as long as the inspection date is current whether it came from them or not plus they are open on Sunday .
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Old 03-04-2007, 11:32 AM
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Oldred,
That is an issue when a fellow just needs small amounts of material..Some people just do not care unless you are doing lots of business with them..

Tha tis why I like to do business with local people to me here rather than the big outfits..We have a local auto parts store that has tanks and will get them refilled and it is reasonalbe considering the fact I woudl have to drive 40-50 miles one way to use the big guys tanks..

Sam

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Old 03-05-2007, 12:08 AM
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Buying an oxy/acetylene set up

Yeah I runn 2 small tank's oxygen and acetylene both 1/2 the size of the big bottles << Standard size.

Avoid the super small portable Bottles <<, There a joke .
I bought my Bottles from California Tool and, welding Supply 1/2 standard size .

The Oxygen bottle runn's out first Generally .
I generally use 2-3 oxy bottles per bottle of acetylene .
Dependin on if cutting or welding .

The Cart <<< Is the ticket too portable , when it comes too portability of your set .
I pull my set around in the dirt by my self .
2 guy;s too load it in back of a truck .
Yett if I had too I could load it my self , fairly easy .
But then Im a Big guy . 250+ Lbs ?

So I reccomend 2 of the 1/2 standard size bottles, too start .
Generally you buy them from Welding shop I paid 100 Buck's a peice for mine .
Then when I need them refilled I just swapp bottles with them . <<, way it work's with every sett ive used over last 30+ year's in every shop ive worked in ? You buy the bottles first time , then swapp your bottles for filled ones .

Trick here is too know that you will alway's be fetchin Oxygen with 1/2 sized oxy bottle .
So Build a cart that will handle the Load .
Both Bottles << Keeping in mind that you will eventually want too upgrade your Oxygen Bottle too a full size standard bottle .

So your Cart should be able too handle 2 of the 1/2 size bottles with intentions of runnin the full sized Oxygen bottle at a Later date .
This will give you a 1/2 Size Oxygen bottle as a back up when you eventually upgrade with larger bottle of oxygen

Think about it ?
All the Set up's you have seen in Shop's Majority has been 1/2 sized Bottle of Acetylene with the Big bottle of Oxygen .
That is right Combo too Runn out at same time, approx .

But for portability 1/2 sized Oxygen Bottle <<, Makes it where you can still manage the set up, in the dirt , possibly load it in back of a pickup by your self .
Or least easily with 2 guy's .

Just build the cart with intention's of Upgradeing the Oxygen bottle, too the full size, at later Date . << Now you can do both?
Now Ive seen the Mini Bottles sold at Harbour Freight , Lowes , Home depo etc .

There a joke ! Waste of time !

Buy certified Bottles from reputable welding supply only .
If you can buy a Victor Torch set up at Lowes or Home Depo etc. at good price ?
That's fine !
But for bottles and supplies you need too do bussiness with a welding shop that , fill's and certifies bottles . <<, Money ahead in my opinion .
The advice you get alone is worth , any xtra that they charge on Rodd or High dollar Helmet's with flames on it etc.

Hope wasnt too long winded ?
Cart is every thing , for portability !
Stay away from pneumatic tire requireing air . <<< Dont last long sittin or being pulled around hot embers .
Then your pullin a Cart with a Flatt, 1/2 time Etc. << Real pain !
Solid large tires << reccomended .


Hope this answers your question's ! Sean .
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Old 03-05-2007, 02:14 AM
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Sean--- Thanks for the info, I hadn't thought about the bottle sizes until you mentioned it but I do remember the O2 bottle being bigger. I decided to get the good Victor torch, the Super Range II, and when I bought it I got a cart as well. Nothing fancy, but it does have big solid wheels and is designed to hold 2 full size bottles. I guess I need to go and talk to AirGas here and see how they do the bottles, rental or purchase. I definitely like the idea of buying them and just having them swapped when I come back to get more gas.
So for the sizes, should I get a 80cf oxygen bottle and a 60cf Acetylene. I don't want to be running back and forth to get more gas all the time, but I don't want to go to big either. At first I am sure I will go through a ton of gas, since I will be refreshing my memory on how to weld with a torch as it has been quite a while. I'm sure there will be questions coming on that subject, but I'll save those until I have the torch.
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Old 03-05-2007, 07:53 AM
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Leggo, The super small acetylene bottle he is talking about is the MC size and the oxygen is the 20 cubic ft size, he is right they are a joke for about anything except soldering pipe. Acetylene tanks come in many sizes and there really is no one standard size so what you need to do is look for the cubic ft capacity of the gas marked on the bottle. The common sizes, the actual amount contained will vary slightly depending on the fill but this should be marked on the tank, are 10 cubic ft (worthless) about 13" tall and around 8-10 lbs, 40 cubic ft (easy to handle and will obviously last 4 times as long as the MC tank) about 20" tall and around 25-30 lbs, 75 cubic ft (good all-round size) about 25-28" tall and around 45-50 lbs, 100 cubic ft (less commonly found than the 145 size) about 35"-38" tall and around 55-60 lbs, 145 cubic ft (excellent size if you can handle moderate weight) about 40"-45" tall and around 75-80 lbs, There are many sizes larger than this with the next size up being over 100 lbs and more than 200 cubic ft of gas and it goes up from there but now you are getting into industrial sizes . A simple way to chose an oxygen tank would be to select one about twice the size (size of the tank not cubic ft of the gas) of the acetylene bottle, for comparison the 75 cubic ft acetylene at about 32" and 50 lbs or so with the oxygen tank being 250 cubic ft at about 55"-60" and 115 lbs or so. If that oxygen tank is too heavy then a bit less of a match but still pretty good would be 140 cubic ft at about 45" and 70-75 lbs and of course you can go even smaller on the oxygen it just depends on how often you are willing to refill. there are literally hundreds of combos you can come up with but what I have listed should give an idea of where to start. These figures are only estimates but I think they are very close just remember that the larger you go the cheaper per cubic ft of gas usually by quite a bit.

About how much weight would you want to handle?
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Old 03-05-2007, 08:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leggo
It sounds like I might want to rent the tanks for a little while, until I figure out what size I am going to need and then buy some. When the time comes to buy my tanks, where do you guys recommend I get them from?
Around here...the minimum rent time is one year and the only size tanks that they rent are the large ones. One years rent will buy a set of smaller tanks.
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Old 03-05-2007, 09:01 AM
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Oldred--- thanks for the info. I am going to go to the local shop here and see what they have. I really don't want to be running back and forth a lot for gas. And of course you know you always run out on Saturday evening so you can't do anything until Monday. I want to get the best setup I can, but I am limited to how much I can move right now, being one legged and all. Hopefully that will change here soon and I'll be back to normal.
As for the cart, I got what I think is a good one. It looks a lot like this one, but with bigger tires.Cart
Is that around a standard size, and how big of a bottle can I go with something like this one.
Thanks to everyone for answering my questions, I am sure some of you out there think they are stupid... but everyone needs to start somewhere and you guys are definetely making it a lot easier for me. Thanks
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