First let me say that I represent G-TEC Natural Gas Systems - we
build small natural gas Torch Boosters that are designed for jewelry
torches. the commercial will come at the end of this message.
Anytime a torch uses fuel gas and oxygen OSHA, local fire codes and
common sense require a flashback arrestor on the torch. Many jewelers
don’t use flashback arrestors saying, “I’ve been doing this for XX
years and I’ve never had a problem” - many people do dangerous things
and live to tell the tale. But some have accidents and you don’t want
it to be you.
As James Binnon noted natural gas pressure in most places is < 1 psi
and all UL Listed flashback arrestors need at least 1 psi pressure
for gas to flow through them, otherwise they block gas flow and you
can’t light the torch.
The purpose of the flashback arrestor is, in the case of a
flashback, to extinguish the fire in the torch hose. Many jewelers
have checkvalves and believe they are protected but all a checkvalve
does is prevent high pressure gas from flowing in the wrong direction
- if you have a flashback the 5,000F flame will melt the checkvalve!
Jewelers in NYC who want to use city natural gas are required to
have a pressure booster to raise pressure enough so that flashback
arrestors can be used effectively. There is more about
what is required, as well as explanations of flashbacks, flashback
arrestors and checkvalves on our website here:
Another consideration is the right working gas pressure for a torch.
People using acetylene and propane for bench torches normally set
pressure between 3-8 psi yet jewelers use city natural gas at 1/4
psi. I don’t think there are any jewelers setting their acetylene or
propane torches at 1/4 psi - the flame would pretty weak.
We’ve found that jewelers who have installed our Torch Boosters much
prefer the flame on their torches when they can set gas pressure
higher than what the utility offers. Our customers include everyone
from Tiffany & Co., Jared, The Galleria of Jewelry, colleges and
universities, independent retailers and individuals in home studios.
They have found that with higher pressure natural gas they get the
full performance that their torch is designed to give - they are
surprised and pleased.
An earlier comment mentioned the noise of a natural gas compressor
but our units are pretty quiet - you can see and hear one on a
YouTube video if you Google “TB-15/30 Video” and look for the one
that says “by GTECNGS”. It will also show how they are installed and
If you are going to be at the MJSA Expo in NYC next week I will be
in the Gesswein exhibit - please stop by and I will answer any
questions you have.
I’ll also be happy to tell you how G-TEC Torch Boosters are used in
making the Super Bowl’s Vince Lombardi trophy, baseball’s
Commissioner’s Trophy for the World Series winner, and others!
G-TEC Natural Gas Systems