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Bernzomatic torches


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#1 crquack

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 05:17 PM

I bought another one of these: A torch attached to a 5' hose allowing one handed operation (lighting and, more importantly, extinguishing the flame). The hose is thick, unwieldy and hard to control. It has a nasty habit of swinging into the work field. A risk of hose damage is significant.

I e-mailed Bernzomatic to ask about repairing the hose if such accident should occur. I am told it cannot be done.

Has anyone tried it? It seems ridiculous to have to replace the whole kit, hose, regulator and torch, if one gets a small nick/burn in the hose.

#2 Rich Waugh

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 06:59 PM

Oh, I'm sure it can be done, but it is important to keep in mind that that hose is carrying propane at cylinder pressure, not regulated low pressure. A leak could be pretty dramatic, with 150-200 psig propane fueling a flamethrower. I would guess that the Bernz-O-Matic folks have a crew of product liability attorneys advising them to tell folks to forget trying to repair hoses. In their position, I would too.

My solution to the one-hand operation issue was to get one of the Bernz-O-Matic TS-4000 pushbutton-start torch heads. I use it on the fat cylinders instead of the taller skinnier ones and it is adequately stable when set down and I can just grab the button and it ignites instantly. It does have a lock so you can lock the flame "on", but it takesa bit of practice to learn to do that one-handed. I wish I'd gotten one of these twenty years ago, it is such a handy thing. I think I paid about $35 at Lowe's.
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#3 Eric Sprado

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 11:05 PM

Local hardware store sells a 12' conversion hose with fittings to use the Bernzamatic torches,Coleman camp stoves,etc., on regular propane tanks. They cost about thirty dollars but really save in the long run.

#4 crquack

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 09:39 PM

Oh, I'm sure it can be done, but it is important to keep in mind that that hose is carrying propane at cylinder pressure, not regulated low pressure. A leak could be pretty dramatic, with 150-200 psig propane fueling a flamethrower. I would guess that the Bernz-O-Matic folks have a crew of product liability attorneys advising them to tell folks to forget trying to repair hoses. In their position, I would too.

My solution to the one-hand operation issue was to get one of the Bernz-O-Matic TS-4000 pushbutton-start torch heads. I use it on the fat cylinders instead of the taller skinnier ones and it is adequately stable when set down and I can just grab the button and it ignites instantly. It does have a lock so you can lock the flame "on", but it takesa bit of practice to learn to do that one-handed. I wish I'd gotten one of these twenty years ago, it is such a handy thing. I think I paid about $35 at Lowe's.


This is only partially true: The regulator is at the cylinder so the pressure in the hose will be reduced by that. However, if fully opened I cannot say what the pressure in the hose will be. Is the pressure in the disposable cylinder 150-200 psi?

I understand the liability concerns, however, they would be more credible if:

1) The company included a set of instructions. IMHO it is downright irresponsible to sell this type of torch to general public who may not have a clue that the hose needs venting at the end of use.
2) They made the hoses resemble less awkward tree-trunks which are difficult to control and have a nasty habit of swinging into the field of work. Most other companies have solved this problem satisfactorily.
3) The company did not have a history of producing faulty items (this has been discussed here at length - the faulty cylinders were a major hazard).

The last point is the reason why I am reluctant to buy the torch that attaches directly to the cylinder. The fact that they are very awkward to use in that configuration does not help either.




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