In my quest to melt aluminum, I have decided to build my own propane torch for my furnace.
I had been using a "weed burning torch" from Harbor Freight, but that was using too much propane, so I thought using a high pressure regulator was worth a try :) Here are some pictures and a few videos of the burner I came up with.
Make sure to hit "Next" at the bottom or use the article index because there are three pages and this first page does not describe the completed (better) burner.
OK, so in keeping with my "formula" for my other projects, I decided to try and build this burner from parts I could get mostly from the home hardware stores. Turns out I got everything I needed from them and didn't have to hunt for anything :)
Here's what my burner consists of: (Note this is not the final list - see the next pages of the article)
- High Pressure Regulator (0 to 10psi) - Get yours here!
- 3/8" MP to 1/8" Male Pipe to Female Iron Pipe Bushing - Found this in the plumbing section with all the other brass adapters
- 3/8" to 3/4" Iron Bell Reducer - The store I went to did not carry black iron pipe anymore so I had to settle for the galvanized
(Note: there are noxious fumes given off when the galvanized finish burns off - only do in a well ventilated area with protection)
(also note: I have since found black iron pipe for the final version of my burner)
- 3/4" - 8" long Pipe Nipple
- 3/4" to 1" Bell Reducer
That's it for what you need to buy - next you have to drill some holes or machine some slots in the pipe nipple. I did both :) At first I drilled a bunch of holes and when that didn't seem to get me enough air flow I used my grinder to make some slots... It's not pretty in the least and I figured I could buy another pipe nipple and do it right if it really bothers me - but I wanted to get it working first:)
Take a look at the pictures in order to see how I assembled the burner - so far this is the easiest assembly I've seen yet of all the burners :)
and at the end are some pictures of the burner in the furnace and on the bench and at night - I'm not sure I'm supposed to have the orange second flame and I'm on the forums getting some advice - and I will update this article accordingly if I change anything. (Update: no I am not supposed to have the orange second flame - that means that my burner is not aspirating enough air - see the next pages for the improved design)
Here's two videos...
After messing around much with the naturally aspirated burner - I decided to try a new idea - and use a blower (actually it's a hair dryer) - It's not very "elegant" but I will work on that - but the results were amazing to say the least so I had to post about it!
I wish I had a high temp thermometer to see how hot the furnace was getting - but the crucible (made from one of those tall skinny propane bottles) was red hot in about 30 seconds and got pretty soft itself after a while!
OK - so this burner is made up of:
- The same high pressure regulator from the hardware store (0 to 10 psi) - Get yours here!
- 8" long 3/4" pipe nipple (note the black iron pipe)
- 3/4" X 3/4" X 1/2" Iron Pipe T (this piece is still galvanized but that's OK it does not get even warm)
- the 1/8" to 1/2" Male Pipe to Female Iron Pipe Bushing brass adapter from before
- 3" long 3/4 nipple (just to have somewhere to connect the air supply to)
- the 3/4" to 1" bell reducer from before
- an old hairdryer (for now)
Check out the pics - pretty simple design and really great results (if I do say so myself) - and soooo much easier than worrying about propane jets and special mig welding tips and such.
Basically I turn on the air supply (hair dryer for now) - turn on the propane supply (about 6-7 psi seemed to work best) and light it up... That's it :)
I will upgrade the hair dryer to some sort of mini blower and then I think this project will be fully functional :) Finally - I can make progress on my other projects :) LOL - Speaking of that - check out the first part I cast with this new setup -> First Cast Part
as promised here's my blower modification / "upgrade" - basically I took the motor and fan out of the hair dryer and along with a reducer for vacuum cleaner hose made this... Works awesome! I was thinking about adding a potentiometer to be able to adjust the speed - but so far it worked so good I don't think I'll need to!
Thanks for checking out my post and remember - don't try this at home kids ;)