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Question for experienced welders about renovating an ancient oxyacetylene torch set.

Big Bad Dad

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Hey guys, my Dad bought an oxyacetylene torch setup at an estate auction in 1980. This makes me think the set is probably from the 1970s, or possibly earlier. I used to use it a lot, but have not touched it in probably 35 years now. The regulators are branded Victor Equipment Company / San Francisco Calif. Both tanks have Air Products labels on them dated 5/1984. This set has been stored under roof in an open shed the whole time we have had it, so it is filthy dirty. But I plan to clean it up. I am pretty sure the tanks still have gas, but am reluctant to crack the valves open on these regulators that have been setting for so long. I'm sure the hoses will need to be replaced. What do you think I should do, if anything, about the regulators and the torch body? I would like to use this set again, but I don't want to have a problem due to rot or something inside the equipment.
Think they are worth saving, or would I be better off to buy something new? I like to keep older tools in use as much as possible instead of buying chinese knock offs
Torch set 1.jpg
Torch set 2.jpg
Torch set 3.jpg
Torch set 4.jpg
. (Dad has passed away now, and I am dealing with his stuff that is left behind......)
 
Buy a pair of rebuild kits for the regulators off of Amazon, use Victor brand, and rebuild the regulators. Plenty of u-tube videos, very simple job. I cracked my oxygen regulator the other day on a 1980s set and blew the oxygen hose out. Nothing you can buy new is better than what you have.
 
I would open the valves and see if there is anything in the cylinders. You will know right away if the regulator is going to leak. Maybe back off the pressure first. If the regulators dont leak, pressure them up and check for leaks on the hose and torch. If you dont have any leaks, fire it up.
The cylinders will have to be hydro tested before they will refill them. Maybe you can find a welding supply that will just exchange them for full ones, with the testing included in there charge. The torch might need some o rings.
The hose is probably the most likely to be a problem, but they are cheap.
 
Take the hoses off first if you crack the cylinders, if the pintle seal inside is failed from age it will not leak at the regulator, just blow your hoses. It is wise to just rebuild them for what little it costs
 
Back in the day, we were taught to back out the regulator first before opening the tank. Agree with rebuilding them. I'd get new hoses perhaps, if they're dry. Safety first. Victor is a well known brand.
 
Sorry your dad passed away.
Not sure about your area supplier but I have one out of date tank and as long as I just get it refilled and take it home it's no problem.
But that said, to be safe best to get them tested,
Victor .regulators are pretty darn good, they may have survived the time.
New set of hoses are in order though.
 
I agree with all the above. May have to soak the torch valves in a lube like Zilla product. Just to clean them up. Good luck and know you will remember using them every time they get used. Sorry also for your loss.
 
No lube on anything on these, we are dealing with oxygen. Wear gloves when working on the regulators, even oil off your skin is to be avoided.
 
Most all welding supply shops have certified people that can rebuild your gages back up to par if you prefer a pro to do the job. My shop said they could get mine back with in a weeks time.
 
I don't trust rebuilders to use Victor parts anymore, nor do I like the glass beads finish I am left with. It is a simple job, do all cleaning on the exterior before you disassemble the regulator. only 4 parts to change. The part I am holding is what goes bad, not the diaphram for the most part. If you regulators ever get twitchy when you adjust them it is time to change these parts. I got lucky and mine failed and blew the oxygen hose while using the torch outside, could have been a disaster inside. I was also taught to back the regulators down to zero when storing them, right or wrong.

20230315_224657.jpg
 
Buy a pair of rebuild kits for the regulators off of Amazon, use Victor brand, and rebuild the regulators. Plenty of u-tube videos, very simple job. I cracked my oxygen regulator the other day on a 1980s set and blew the oxygen hose out. Nothing you can buy new is better than what you have.

No lube on anything on these, we are dealing with oxygen. Wear gloves when working on the regulators, even oil off your skin is to be avoided.

Take the hoses off first if you crack the cylinders, if the pintle seal inside is failed from age it will not leak at the regulator, just blow your hoses. It is wise to just rebuild them for what little it costs
This ^ ^ ^
 
I was surprised how easy it was to rebuild a regulator. It's been years since I've done one but wouldn't be afraid to do it again. And sure wish my dad had been more into mechanics but he was a carpenter and that's all he was interested in. He's been gone since 98 and I still miss him....
 
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