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Smiths little torch & oxygen concentrator

Hi

Does any know if the smiths little torch can be run from Propane and
an Oxygen concentrator? I don’t want to invest in a bottle oxygen
supply.

Could it be used even with a compressed air supply via a small pump?
Any help or ideas would be appreciated.

Neil

Yes it works fine, I run a big glass torch on a concentrator with
propane. also I have a splitter in the lines to switch to a tank of
oxygen if I should ever need it. I love mine I have had it for about
five or six years.

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Does any know if the smiths little torch can be run from Propane
and an Oxygen concentrator? 

One of the venues where I teach in Toronto uses a concentrator
instead of compressed bottled oxygen.

MDS
www.michaelsturlinstudio.com

Neil,

I use the Smiths little torch with a No. 5 tip with an oxygen
concentrator and 1 lb disposable propane bottles. It works great.
The oxygen concentrator actually puts out a little too much oxygen.
I’ve turned the flow down to 1 lpm which is as low as I can without
the alarm going off and that seems to be just right. I don’t use a
regulator on the oxygen, just a spark arrestor (probably not
needed). The propane lasts a long time. You just have to turn on the
oxygen concentrator about 5 or 10 minutes before you want to use it
so it will produce a high concentration of oxygen and you need to run
it for least 20-30 minutes each month. With the oxygen concentrator
and the 1lb propane bottles I feel fairly safe using a spare bedroom
in the house for a shop.

Scott

Yes, michael the concentrator works on your torch, I have been using
one for about five to six years running a bigger torch for glass bead
making. I added a “y” line so I could switch to the regular oxygen if
I wanted to. that works fine. both running on propane gas. There are
several units, I am using the 5 lpm one. It does fine but the 10 lpm
would be better (for my glass torches). You don’t need the medical
unit, just the oxygen for torch work. let me know how you do.

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any idea where the best prices for the oxygen concentrators are ?..at Riogrande they are refurbished and run around 400-780 USD…prices from different sources are also in the “several of thousand dollars each” One friend of mine inherited one concentrators from his daughter who is a glass bead/ass’t…so a glass supplier might have them as well I suspect?

I use a Smith little torch and oxycon, works great :). I bought mine for 200€ from the daughters of an elderly gentleman who had passed away. It may be worth looking in your local classifieds to see what’s available!

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Look for a local medical device refurbisher. I bought my second O2 concentrator from a local one for $200. They are made to run 24/7, so the time that we put on them is nothing. Actually, they have to run on a regular basis or the sieves fail. You may also be able to find one used on Craigslist. My current 5 lpm O2 concentrator runs both my Little Torch and Meco Midget in tandem just fine…Rob

thanks -good
idea

thanks for the idea

I agree with Rob here…it is illegal to resell the concentrators for medical use unless they are first disinfected and refurbished, so they usually go for cheap on the used market from relatives of the deceased. I have seen them costing from $75 to $200 on craigslist locally. Since they have an hour meter on them, you can tell how long they have been run and how much time they are likely to have left. They have an alarm that will beep really loudly if the oxygen content drops below a certain level, so you can pretty easily determine whether a used one is good when you look at it. They usually run over 10,000 hours, so as Rob says, the use we give them is minimal and they will last along time. And yes, you need to run one an hour or so every week or ten days or the sieves start to go bad. I left mine idle for too long and it started beeping and giving a low oxygen warning. Running it over and over a few hours a day took care of most of this beeping. If it beeps now, I turn it off and back on and it is good to go for another hour or so, so I’m limping along with it until it entirely gives up the ghost. Interestingly, the torch worked fine with it even when it was giving out the low oxygen warning, because that starts when the oxygen content drops below 93% and your torch will operate fine with less than that level of oxygen. If you run into one that gives a low oxygen beep, maybe you can get it for nothing and try this fix. Here ends my knowledge of these wonderful beasts…

When I was setting up the new trade shop here in the farmhouse @2 1/2 years ago, after “retiring” from working in retail stores for @45 years, I was looking for a safer way to run Oxygen and Propane.
At @ the same time I was helping a friend clean out a rental property that tenants had left trashed, and skipped out on their rent.
While cleaning out the massive mess I opened a closet and saw something that I thought might be an oxygen concentrator, from descriptions I had read here on Orchid.
It was.
I experimented, and I found that the concentrator is perfect, combined with “camp” sized propane bottles, using my Smith torch, for nearly every application I offer.
I originally stashed my heavier torches and spare Oxygen tanks nearby, just in case the new set up was not sufficient. They remain unused.
I no longer do any casting, and the tiny Smith, combined with my laser welder has been the perfect set up for the broad spectrum jewelry repair service i now offer.

I just got a 20 liter from my friend Ross at ABR imagery. Works great.

Please excuse any typos-- curse my clumsy digits…

andy_c
May 6

I just got a 20 liter from my friend Ross at ABR imagery. Works great.

Please excuse any typos-- curse my clumsy digits…

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Hi Andy,

Most mention a 5 liter concentrator, my friend who does glass has has a 20 liter. I did find ABR imagery prior to seeing your post. If I were to use propane with the concentrator and a little torch would it be better to get a 10 or 20 liter? Just wondering how you decide. Thanks for your insights.

To be fair I worked for 35 years in an industry where I had easy access to concentrators that still produced O2 but were not at an acceptable level for medical use. I took my first one and put on the tube, just plugged it in and went to work. The out put was fine for most of my torch use. Big melts and annealing where handled by other torches. For me the big benefit was changing from from acetylene to propane. I could only buy acetylene at welding supplies during their hours of operation where as the green bottles of propane could be bought anywhere seven days a week. I have never been worried about a B tank in the shop. Just the inconvenience. I gave a concentrator to my son and bought a reconditioned one for my own use. But since I have retired I am on my own for concentrators.

I have not found a project in my shop where propane was not adequate for the work. Green bottles last a month or so and don’t require hazmat charges when I buy them. The propane/O2 smith little torch is fine for the steel work I am now doing as long as the dimensions of the metal are reasonable.

Once you are set up with the equipment if there is a down side to to the Little Torch and propane/O2 combination it is the learning curve on how to get accustom to the equipment.

Don.

2 Likes

I think the key is the equivalent PSI of the output. It just needs to match up to the torch tip requirements.

I just checked and the used O2 concentrator I am using in my shop here is only 5L, but I find in adequate for my trade repair shop, using small propane bottles and the Small torch.

I was trained on the larger Hoke torches, and I scoffed at the tiny torch when I first encountered one at a shop I went to work for, but it is plenty for 99% of what I have encountered doing full service repair work.

Last week I had to anneal a heavy 6mm Tiffany Platinum band, and today I had to melt roughly 1 oz of Gold to roll.

This system handled both jobs well.
One of my Hokes on large O2 and propane tanks might have got the job done more quickly, maybe, but this got both jobs done satisfactorily.

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I use a Hoke torch with a 5L concentrator. The small needle tips for the Hoke come with an adapter and the adapter itself can be uses as a large tip for melting. I have not used this for melting, but I can tell you that it puts out quite a long, large flame with the concentrator and I have no doubt it would melt an ounce or two of silver or gold. If you are worried about capacity, you could go with a 10L concentrator, but I think a 5L is adequate for most all jewelry shop purposes. Both of les freres Meixner use one of these, I believe, and they do rather large silver pieces on occasion, so there isn’t a practical limit on your use of silver or gold for jewelry with the 1lb propane tanks and a 5L concentrator. -royjohn

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My first O2 generator was a 10 LPM unit. My current one is 5 LPM. they both work fine…Rob

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