Do I need torch regulators?

Hello everyone,

Sorry to bother you with what I’m sure is an obvious question, and
which I think I already know the answer too… but, I’m hoping you
can help. (For those of you who are in a hurry, just read the last

A while back I purchased the Advanced Soldering kit from RioGrande
(item 500172) imagining that the kit would include everything I
needed to solder (except of course canisters of fuel, since shipping
those would be troublesome). However, I was reading the manual for
the Smith Little Torch as I was preparing to set it up to go with the
disposable O2 and Propane canisters I got to go with it. If I’m
reading the instructions correctly I will need to get regulators to
use the torch.

I was hoping that the 2.1oz oxygen tank and the 16.9oz propane tanks
were at low enough pressure to use without the additional cost of
regulators (since I just finished university a few weeks ago and
don’t have too much disposable cash), but obviously I don’t want to
wreck anything (or anyone) by rushing into it.

So my question is: do I need to buy regulators to use the disposable
tanks with the Smith Little Torch?

Mark Wells

So my question is: do I need to buy regulators to use the
disposable tanks with the Smith Little Torch? 

If you bought the little torch designed to use those disposable
tanks, then you have a torch, and hoses, and at the other end of the
hoses is a chunky little brass fitting with a black plastic knob and
threaded connector. This screws down directly on the disposable
tanks. They are the needed regulators. Mostly just turn on and off,
regulating the output pressure to what the little torch needs
automatically. They just don’t have pressure guages, so they don’t
look like full sized regulators, which wouldn’t fit those tanks

Peter Rowe


This question hits the in between need for a regulator. While your
canister sizes are very small, regulators provide additional
than regulating gas flow. They also indicate if the
canisters are experiencing leaks.

Are you able to use larger volume tanks in your studio? If not, you
can obtain reusable tanks in the volume you are limited to. In both
scenarios, I still think getting at least a tank volume regulator is
a good idea.

Just make sure that with propane, your work area is well ventilated.
Having your friendly fire Marshal take a looksie at your setup is a
good idea. They want you to be safe and at those volumes you
shouldn’t have any problem.

Don’t forget your fire extinguisher either, which is rated as ABC.

Last thing. The Little Torch tips for propane/oxy have a limit on
the size you can use. They are rated for oxy/aceyt which has a
smaller molecule for gas than propane. If there is a red ruby tip at
the end for the 1 - 3, then you cannot use these for propane as they
are too tiny. The 4 -7 is fine.

Happy soldering!

Karen Christians

So my question is: do I need to buy regulators to use the
disposable tanks with the Smith Little Torch? 

Yes. And remember you can always call Rio’s tech help line for
faster answers.

I imagine they don’t include the regulators because people buying
the kit might want to use different types of tanks.

The regulators for the disposable tanks are the most affordable, so
you’ve got that going for you. If you go to a local welding shop you
can get flashback arrestors for them.


the disposable tank kits usually come with the regulator adaptors on
the hoses. If you did not buy that kit yes you need regulators to
use any other tanks. If you have to purchase Oxy Fuel tanks then you
definitely should not buy the disposable adapters too- in the long
run you will save money having the largest bottles you can afford

Hey Mark, I’m afraid you will need regulators for your set up. I
would recommend using non disposable tanks as you will blow through
those expensive O2 tanks quickly. It’s expensive initially but
you’ll be happier biting the bullet and buying larger tanks and
regulators for them. If you buy the regulators for the disposable
tanks they will not fit the larger tanks, I don’t think adapters are
available. Welding or gas supply companies are a good source for

Have a good one, Jim Doherty

Is there any reason why I could not use Smith Little Torch
regulators (propane/O2) for the Meco Midget Torch? I would like to
get a Y adapter in order to have both torches hooked up. Presently
I’m using just the Little Torch but planning to get a Meco but hope
to use the regulators I already have.