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Boro Room -- For Boro-related tips, techniques, and questions.

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  #1  
Old 2011-05-19, 6:57am
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lavendar420 lavendar420 is offline
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Default Propane & Oxygen Tank Sizes?

After years of renting torch time I'm finally setting up my own studio.

I have a Knight Bullet Burner & will probably be torching 5-8 hours per week. What size tanks should I get? How long do they last? & anybody have supplier recommendations for Beaverton, Or?
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  #2  
Old 2011-05-19, 7:33am
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For propane tanks the ubiquitous BBQ tank should give you lots of time.... It holds about 4.7 gallons of propane (about 20 pounds) when *full* and weighs in about 38 pounds when full (tank + propane)...

Oxygen tanks come in all sizes ... Some as small as 40 cubic foot and as large as 300 cu.ft. (at 2200 psi)... Some issues with tanks is transportation and you ability to handle them.... Large tanks weigh in at about 140 lbs and stand a little over 5 feet tall..... Most gas companies do not deliver tanks to residential areas (there are exceptions) so you have to transport them your self.... Many gas companies will not even help you load them in to you r car because of liability reasons (again there are exceptions) ... If you have any steps to go up or down to reach studio this is also a "handling" issue..

Here is listing from just one manufacturer of tanks size/volume/weight...

http://www.worthingtoncylinders.com/...ress.sflb.ashx

Depending on what torch you are using and what its needs are you may want to consider an oxygen concentrator. Oxygen concentrators (or "oxygen generators" ) take in the surrounding air and filter out most or the nitrogen and other gasses and supply oxygen at about 96-98% purity... if one concentrator is not enough to supply your torch additional ones can be ganged together to supply you with more oxygen volume...

Only draw back with concentrators is pressure, if you like to really push torch hard (rage) with high pressures of oxygen and fuel, the standard output of concentrator sorts of limits you....

Dale
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  #3  
Old 2011-05-19, 8:50am
LarryC LarryC is offline
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I transport S size (154CF) tanks to fill about once a week right now in my car and that is my limit comfortably. They stand about 4 feet high and weigh a little over 100 pounds each but do keep in mind that you never have to really carry that much weight if you learn how to roll them upright. I stick with the smaller tanks because it is comforting to know that I can handle the full weight if needed. Each fill costs me $18 and a tank lasts me about 5-7 days. My Propane BBQ tanks seem to last almost indefinitely. I am running a GTT lynx and I like to make solid sculpture and marbles out of Boro glass. For these items a concentrator would be somewhat limiting with this torch. Is there tanked Oxy available to you locally?
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  #4  
Old 2011-05-19, 1:36pm
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On a Cricket using a 2.5 gallon propane tank (smaller than the standard BBQ size) one can achieve about 24 hours of torch time.
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  #5  
Old 2011-05-20, 8:34am
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i torched on a Carlisle torch maybe 4 hours a day, 5-6 days a week and used 1 - 5 gal. tank in 2.5 months. Yes, an underpowered torch for boro but i just make beads.

issue #2: The cute little 2.5 gal. tanks are $100 at Cabelas Sporting place (yes, i did say that) and about $60 at campingworld. anyone found them any less expensive?
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  #6  
Old 2011-05-20, 9:16am
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wrong info. so sorry, need more coffee. I use a Lynx for boro and have no way to measure the propane consumption since i do that in my home garage studio where i work boro and soft glass, not when i escaped the snow last winter. the above info was working soft glass in Tucson where i could easily measure my propane and salsa consumption. too much info but glad to clear that up. please don't take away my password, i love this site.
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Old 2011-05-20, 1:25pm
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K tanks are nice, since they last a while, but I sure do hate moving them. If you can get oxy delivered or have a pickup, that's probably not a problem (um.. unless your shop is downstairs). S tanks are much more easy to move, but usually cost more for a given quantity of oxygen. I guess Dale et al. covered all that pretty well.

Propane is so much easier to deal with. I have a few barbecue tanks and one that's twice the size, which is convenient. I usually go through 2-3 K tanks of oxy for every 4 gallons of propane.
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  #8  
Old 2011-05-20, 2:17pm
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I just can't handle a K tank, much less transport it. I use what I think are B tanks, about 3' tall, but I don't think you'd be happy with that size- I do very small and fast projects so they last me a good few weeks or more. You might find rotating a couple tanks worked, but that's more $$. Oxycon might be the way to go, but check the Bullet specs. At full tilt it wants 150 scfh of oxygen. Oxygen is a way bigger issue than propane. The local club store was refilling BBQ grill tanks for $14 when I checked last week.
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Old 2011-05-21, 7:21am
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I use K tanks, they're a bit unweildy, but I have a pickup to transport them with & just use a hand truck to lug them into the studio, so I'm lucky. Trying to move them around with just a car and by hand would be a pain. They still Don't last long enough for me.
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  #10  
Old 2011-05-21, 7:44am
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Update on tank/cylinder sizes volumes/weight...

http://www.airgas.com/content/detail...=7000000000234

Dale
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  #11  
Old 2011-05-21, 9:45am
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I really hate running out of oxygen, almost as much as dealing with those awful tanks, so I use a liquid tank. They're actually more economical if you're blowing every day. The same amount of oxy that is in 16 K tanks costs $80-120, plus $60 a mo. rental. Hard to beat $10 a K tank!

A Knight Bullet is a two stage, like a CC or Barracuda, right? That's pretty hefty. If you were torching 5-8 a day liquid would be worth it, but I guess not 5-8 a week... I'd probably go for an oxy concentrator/generator. Personally, I've wasted a lot of time and money by not investing in one of those.
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Old 2011-05-21, 11:31am
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The Bullet is 2-stage; I never run the thing maxed out, but some might. The spec for just the inner stage is 50 scfh of oxygen, but again that's a maximum and usually it will be much less. As the man at the factory told me, "we designed it so you could really push it if you need to." OTOH, the burner face is only about 0.53" in diameter so we not talking any Kobuki here!

Dale- Thanks for the tank cross reference. Remarkable lack of standardization there! What really hits me is with the increase in pressure and the slight increase in size, that "300" tank looks quite desirable if one can handle it. Dang arthritis
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  #13  
Old 2011-05-22, 6:57am
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Handtruck????

The make then specially designed for moving large tanks....

Dale
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  #14  
Old 2011-05-22, 9:39am
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The handtruck I could afford, it's the pickup truck to go with it that's beyond my means- local branch of the gas supplier is about 10 miles away from here. They are, however, just close enough and just cheap enough that I don't really mind the more frequent visits with the little tank. I was just surprised that with a minor increase in pressure and volume, you get a significant increase in the amount of oxygen with the big tank, assuming they're widely available.
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