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  1. #1
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    Brazing with oxy/propane - which tip?

    Hello Everyone,

    I've recently become interested in learning how to build lugged silver brazed and bronze fillet brazed bikes, and have been reading textbooks, these forums, other forums, and pretty much everything I can find about safe and proper use of an oxy-fuel torch setup.

    Right now, I'm specifically interested in oxy-propane, as I understand it to be more stable, safer to transport, and less expensive than acetylene. I have no desire to do welding at this time, just brazing. I rent a house with an attached garage, and I'm not sure I'm comfortable keeping an acetylene tank inside the garage. With propane, I can keep cylinder outside the house when not in use.

    Specifically my question is, to those of you who have experience with oxy-propane, what type of tip or tips have you found to work best for bicycle brazing applications? In my searching, I have found rosebud and cutting tips for propane, but never any welding tips. I know that propane isn't typically used for welding, but what about brazing?

    -Will the regular acetylene welding tips provide proper oxy/fuel mixing/preheat/combustion when used with propane?
    -If no, would a propane rosebud be suitable for brazed framebuilding?

    I've got my eye on the Victor super range II outfit, as it comes with grade T hoses, a 100FC torch handle, check valves/flashback arrestors, regs, and a #2 welding tip. I'm definitely not opposed to buying different tips that would be more suited to the work, I'm just not sure what those would be in this case.


    Also, am I making a bigger deal out of the acetylene stability thing than I should be? I'm a pretty careful dude and am confident in myself to follow safe operating procedures, I just don't want to blow myself (or the neighbors) up due to a faulty valve filling my garage up with gas overnight, etc.

    Furthermore, If this is not the correct place to be asking this question, any suggestions on where to go would be appreciated.

    Thanks a lot,
    Ryan

  2. #2
    dru
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    I am by no means an expert here, but I am OK at googling stuff.......

    Brazing and soldering can be accomplished with welding tips that use any common fuel gas because they do not require the higher heat that fusion requires. Welding tips to be used with alternative fuels often require a recess at the tip outlet to prevent the flame from blowing off the tip end.
    Taken from this site:http://www.thefabricator.com/article...d-welding-tips

    Drew
    occasional cyclist

  3. #3
    dru
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    Oh, one other thing; take a course. I'm self taught in brazing and welding with oxy/acet. and I'd hazard a guess that I'm no better than barely OK at it. It takes a ton of practice to get really good at it. You will learn so much faster having someone to guide you. You can waste a lot of time (like I did) reinventing the wheel before you figure things out. Having a mentor is so much better, believe me, especially where safety is concerned.

    P.S. the guys (the experts) here are really cool and helpful as long as you are respectful and non-annoying.

    Drew
    occasional cyclist

  4. #4
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    i agree take a course. as for me, i keep my acet. tank in my apartment because i dont have any other option. when not in use i take the regulator off and make sure the valve is tight and im still alive.

  5. #5
    dru
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    Quote Originally Posted by thefuzzbl
    i agree take a course. as for me, i keep my acet. tank in my apartment because i dont have any other option. when not in use i take the regulator off and make sure the valve is tight and im still alive.
    You are a seriously lucky dude.

    I had a full tank leak out its contents in a matter of a few months in my garage, and I always turn off the valve tightly, as well as backing off the reg. valves completely.

    Is you tank taken from a pool? Mine are, so I can never really know what condition the tanks' valves are in.

    Sometimes a valve is bad on a tank from the supplier, or goes bad while in your possession; either way it's not cool.

    Not only are you endangering yourself, but everyone else in your building.

    Aside from the personal risks you are willing to take, you are almost certainly breaking the law if you are living in a building with other tenants.

    If your tanks caused a fire your fellow tenants and the building owner would very likely sue you for damages. I suspect that the F.D. and the cops would be after you too.

    Please give my comments some serious thought. There is a reason why almost every single factory I've visited keeps their gas bottles outside in cages.

    Find an alternative place to store your gas!

    Drew
    Last edited by dru; 04-11-2010 at 05:27 PM.
    occasional cyclist

  6. #6
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    hmm, the tanks i get are in a pool but are tested each time they are returned. also they all must have up to date inspections performed by independent testers. i think im fine.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by dru
    Please give my comments some serious thought. There is a reason why almost every single factory I've visited keeps their gas bottles outside in cages.


    Not trying to be confrontational, but I've never seen bottles stored outside. Even at my local welding supply, they store them all in a warehouse.
    And yes, I work in a shop and use the torches weekly. We are inspected by the FD every year and all they care about is that they are chained.


    To the OP, tip size is personal preference. I started with a 0, 2, and 4. Went and bought a 1 and it changed my world. Play around a bit and see what fits your style.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by buildyourown
    Not trying to be confrontational, but I've never seen bottles stored outside. Even at my local welding supply, they store them all in a warehouse.
    And yes, I work in a shop and use the torches weekly. We are inspected by the FD every year and all they care about is that they are chained.


    To the OP, tip size is personal preference. I started with a 0, 2, and 4. Went and bought a 1 and it changed my world. Play around a bit and see what fits your style.
    They can be stored either inside or outside, given the right setup. These are the guidelines for my province for gas storage, I think they're pretty good guidelines. I think one of the key points about indoor storage is to make sure there is good ventilation.
    http://www.ofm.gov.on.ca/english/Pub.../cylinders.htm

  9. #9
    dru
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    I'm not trying to be confrontational either, but storing acetylene in an apartment and thinking it's ok is the epitome of stupidity and extreme selfishness, since Fuzzball doesn't seem to be thinking about his neighbours at all. He should ask them all if they think it's cool.

    As for your Fire Marshall regs. here's the relevant section:

    5.6.2.4.(1) Except as provided in Sentences (2) and (3), cylinders containing flammable compressed gas stored indoors shall be located in a room that

    1. is separated from the remainder of the building by a fire separation having a 2-hr fire-resistance rating,
    2. is located on an exterior wall of the building,
    3. can be entered from the exterior,
    4. if it has doors into the interior of the building, they are equipped with self-closing and latching devices, have a fire-protection rating of at least 1.5 hr and are constructed so as to prevent migration of gases from the room into other parts of the building,
    5. is constructed so that an exterior wall provides explosion venting
    1. in the ratio of 0.2 m2 for each cubic metre of room volume, or
    2. in the ratio computed in accordance with NFPA 68, "Guide for Venting of Deflagrations", except in no case less than 650 cm2 of vent area for each cubic metre of room volume,
    6. has ventilation conforming to Sentence (4),
    7. does not contain fuel fired equipment or high temperature heating elements, and
    8. is used for no purpose other than the storage of compressed gas.

    #8 makes the rest completely redundant, but of course they are important too, since clearly an apartment won't be an allowed storage facility.

    Quick question, why haven't you professionals jumped all over this thread; your lack of concern could cost lives!

    Drew
    occasional cyclist

  10. #10
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    couple of things, its not fuzzball but thanks for playing. secondly, youve made your point. you dont think i should keep the cylinders inside and apartment. if i had a garage attached to my house (that i dont have) then i would keep them in my garage. maybe its not safe, who knows. but where else do you suppose i keep them? i think smoking pot and lighting candles are way more of a safety risk than my cylinder and all my neighbors seem to partake in that but none of them came to ask me if i think its safe.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by thefuzzbl
    couple of things, its not fuzzball but thanks for playing. secondly, youve made your point. you dont think i should keep the cylinders inside and apartment. if i had a garage attached to my house (that i dont have) then i would keep them in my garage. maybe its not safe, who knows. but where else do you suppose i keep them? i think smoking pot and lighting candles are way more of a safety risk than my cylinder and all my neighbors seem to partake in that but none of them came to ask me if i think its safe.
    your neighbors sound cool.

  12. #12
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    yeah they are cool

  13. #13
    dru
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    Look, I'm sorry for coming down on you.

    If you have party folk neighbours you might find your house on fire. In fact it happened to me once. The dude downstairs passed out with a smoke going.

    Your neighbours could indeed put you at risk.

    Your behaviour is a whole order of magnitude worse though.

    For instance you are asleep or not home and your bottle decides to spring a leak.

    What do you think would happen if a spark set thing off?

    Ask relatives or friends if you can store your bottles at their places outside.

    I'm just trying to convince you to do the right thing. Dying in a fire or explosion would be a horrible thing for you or your neighbours.

    Drew
    occasional cyclist

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