Pam, I use three torches,all of which are propane/oxygen. One is a
Smith Lil’ Torch, one is a Meco Midget (haha, not so midget, but
handles well) and a large casting rosebud torch.
I have visited about 50 jewelers’ studios and have been interested in
their choices of torches, both brands and fuels. By far, the most
popular is the Lil’ Torch and then the Midget. All casting is done
with a big rosebud - that can be purchased for either of the torches,
The Lil Torch rosebud is limited by the volume the small hoses can
The Midget has much larger hose and is the same size required for
big casting rosebuds. Easy enough to Y 2 sets of hoses off the
tanks, one for casting and one for soldering. Or, just attach
which ever hose and torch you need to the tank as you need it. Most
of us do that until we can get more bells and whistles.
The Lil Torch is sometimes dismissed by ‘real men’… who haven’t yet
found how very comfortable AND precise they can be. They have an
interesting set of tips… from teeeeny flame to impressive flame! I
like it because of the light weight and low stress on my hands to
use it. For the work of repairing tiny chain, etc, it is the BEST!
For heavier work, bigger pieces, needing more fuel and heat, Meco
does it best. Tips also come in many sizes. and can be altered for
better efficiency (only after carefully researching how to do it!)
It is not, as is the same case with Lil’ Torch, inexpensive. Hoke
has, I believe, the honor of that title. (for me it is a clumbsy,
over-sized torch, but some very famous jewelers use it)
I would recommend that you, too, visit a few (or more) studios or
retail back rooms to see torches in use, and see how they would fit
your hand, and needs.