Solidox torch

         Have you considered the Solidox torch? 

G’day; I once had a Solidox torch - tried it because the local
welding company wouldn’t sell me a small cylinder for compressed
oxygen; they insisted I had to pay weekly hire for a big one…
(Someone gave me a small one eventually.)

Very briefly, one buys little cylinders of a substance that
seemed to me to contain sodium chlorate with a tiny bit of an
organic substance, absorbed in a fibrous material something like
asbestos. One lit the end of a cylinder and placed it in a
special tube which had a simple torch attached. One had to buy
one of the small ‘Primus 2000’ propane bottles and fasten a
second tube conducting the propane gas to the torch. The burning
cylinder did produce oxygen, and the gadget worked, and one could
do some jobs with the very hot flame, In fact, I even used the
torch to cut up to 1/4 inch steel rod and 1/16 steel sheet, but
invariably the oxygen generator burned out before one had
completed a job. . But the snags were considerable. It seemed
to generate a good deal of hydrochloric acid gas, which is very
corrosive and rather bad for the lungs. Occasionally the
generating cylinders wouldn’t light, or would go out before one
closed the tube properly. I got into trouble from my long
suffering wife for using it indoors. In fact, the thing was far
too fiddly, rather hazardous, and I really wasted my money. I
couldn’t use it for jewellery anyway as the flame was not
controllable; the size and composition of the flame couldn’t be
varied. Don’t bother with it. Cheers John Burgess

John Burgess is right on target again! Solidox torches would
lead to permanent baldness… from tearing one’s hair out in
frustration. I tried it and quickly relegated the cylindar,
etc. to the give-away box and used the propane bottle for other
things. judymw

John hello! Could not believe what you said about the solidox
torch! Baptism by fire, for sure! That was my first torch. As I
recall one of my first lessons was not getting the pellet in the
holster quick enough. I remember tossing it in a pan of water.
It did not go out immediately; just boiled the water! Always had
a fan going, and two open windows.

At a cost of forty dollars, I made my money back. In order to
get any production of torchwork, you need to have as many
solders ready all at once. Without flame adjustment, your
control is limited to distancing from the work. Miserable, but
you can get a lot done in 3 minutes, (how long the pellets
lasted)if you have planned well.I would lay out bands, bezels,
etc. in rows, fluxed and a paillon of solder. It lasted a
couple months. Glad to afford a decent set up after that bizarre
method. And cheers to you! Tim

I agree with John and Judy that the solidox torch is not as
suitible as many others here where O2, cheap power for
compressors, etc. are all plentiful. When I looked for the one I
had I rememberd giving it away because I never used the thing. I
suggested it to get some alternate sources thought about.

I think that some applied ingenuity available in this group
could suggest ways that chemically generated o2 could be stored
and regulated for use in better torches than the uncontrollable
solidox torch was. All my chemistry is too far removed from the
present to be able to suggest other shemical sources. Don’t
airplanes use chemical generators for emergency sources of o2??

I’ve been looking around for a source for the solidox since I
suggested it be considered. I haven’t found anyone who sells it
any more. Searches on the web all point to the anarchist’s
cookbook and similar crap. I didn’t want to go near those sites.

Chunk Kiesling