I had an acetylene and acetone leak last week that is puzzling and
For health reasons and inertia I haven’t used my shop in a long time and
used my torch for the first time in ages.
I did some annealing for just a minute using a moderate flame from a
Smith Silversmith with #2 tip. My MC tank is chained upright in a steel
cabinet outside and when I went out to shut it down there was a very
strong smell of acetone or similar solvent with a smell of acetylene
Some time ago I commented on the size of the flame a Silversmith torch
with #4 tip could produce and Sessin Durgham of Rio Grande Technical
support replied that Smith informed him drawing too much fuel too
quickly from an MC tank could lead to ‘instability’. So I stopped using
the #3 and #4 tips. Maybe the #2 is also too large and led to trouble?
Because the tank was outside, I have to wonder how much fuel and acetone
would have leaked without my knowing it had I done a lot of soldering.
‘Outside’ seems to have drawbacks.
Later testing with Safe-D-Tect solution on every connection revealed no
leaks. I did smell some acetylene and perhaps acetone. As I turned the
tank off, the tank pressure gauge went from a little over 50 psi to zero
in about 2 seconds, before I had a chance to go inside and bleed off the
hose. Gauge pressure at the hose stayed at 5 psi. Shouldn’t the tank
pressure have stayed at 50+ until I bled the hose? Is the tank side of
the regulator leaking? Did using too large a tip and ‘instability’ in
the tank damage the regulator?
That leak shook my sense of being in control and safe. I can’t have an
acetylene tank in my garage, no longer trust one outside, so I’m going
to try using a disposable propane tank indoors, where I can smell a leak
UPS just delivered a Meco Midget and Paige tips. The Meco looks puny
compared to the Silversmith. Can it solder and anneal larger silver
pieces like belt buckles and cuffs?
If the disposable tank isn’t good enough I’ll go to a 5 lb. tank in my
outside cabinet, but with a propane leak detector as well. Has anyone
had experience with those?