Guess this dates me, but when I did a fair amount of house plumbing, there
was pretty much
only the Propane type of torches.
I see now at Home Depot, that they apparently sell a lot of MAPP torches for
So, may I please ask:
a. which is more popular now for occasional house use to run a new line,
repair a leak, etc. ?
b. With MAPP, does one still have to "completely" drain the line of any
water first ?
If so, "fully" drain ?
c. MAPP more expensive ?
d. Pros and cons, etc.
I hired a "pro" to install a water heater with 1.5" copper, he worked
all day and never got it soldered and the leaks stopped he quit and
was not paid, out came a real pro and in 5 minutes with Map it was
I haven't done a lot of these, and I've never used a MAPP, but my
general impression is that MAPP's are for people who don't have enough
patience to wait for the solder joints to warm up properly using a
regular torch. That and a MAPP torch can at least used for more
other things too.
On Nov 28, 10:29 am, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
My guess is that MAPP, being hotter, will heat up the joint quicker
which actually will reduce the conduction of heat away from the joint
which will reduce the total amount of heat that needs to be applied
for a proper solder joint.
Last time I had a professional plumber out he was using MAPP for his
MAPP will make your joint hotter quicker...seems to allow better
solder joints since the flux doesn't slowly burn off. It also allows
you to work faster. You still need make sure there is not water
anywhere near your joint...that has not changed. It is the only thing
I ever use now.
Yep. Pricey in comparison to propane, but well worth it.
Why do you care which is "more popular"? Shouldn't you be interested in which
one works better?
I have no idea whether MAPP is more popular than propane for occasional house
use, but I can assure you that it works far, far better. I finally bought a
MAPP torch about two years ago, and haven't even touched a propane torch
What's the difference between "completely" drain and "fully" drain? <g>
With propane, you need to have the joint completely dry. With MAPP, you need
to have it pretty nearly dry. You can't solder a joint that's full of water,
no matter what you use.
A MAPP torch costs about twice as much as a propane torch; of course, the
torch is a one-time expense.
A bottle of MAPP gas costs nearly three times as much as propane ($8 vs. $3
at Lowe's), but you don't need to use nearly as much of it as you do propane
to get the job done. In my experience, the overall cost of the gas is about
MAPP gas stinks, and it burns with a sooty flame. But it's *much* hotter, and
so sweating a fitting with MAPP takes a small fraction of the time it takes
with propane. The higher temperature of MAPP is especially useful when
sweating valve bodies, or pipes larger than 1". Propane is pretty close to
useless on anything over 1-1/2". Also because of the higher temperature,
there's more risk with MAPP of setting framing members on fire. A fireproof
protective pad is a good idea, e.g.
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
On Nov 28, 10:51 am, email@example.com (Doug Miller) wrote:
Those protective pads are the nuts! I combined mine with a piece of
luan with some hooks so I can stiffen up the pad when required. I also
cut a slot in the luan and a slit in the pad so I can fit it around
pipes and other obstructions.
It seems there are two differences with MAPP torches: different fuel,
and different burner construction. All of the MAPP torches I've seen
use "swirl combustion" burners that make a lot of noise when operating
compared to the cheap but quiet propane torches.
Now, at least some of the MAPP torches (I think mine is a Turner) have
an internal pressure regulator that can be adjusted for either propane
or MAPP fuel. The swirl torch is hotter when burning propane than an
ordinary propane torch, though not as hot as the same swirl torch
So I tend to ignore my "normal" propane torch and use the swirl torch
all the time - but I burn propane for smaller jobs (e.g. half-inch
copper plumbing) where it provides enough heat. I switch to MAPP for
when solder went no lead for safety, necessary temperatures increased,
which made mapp more necessary
it costs more but saves a lot of time, the faster the joint heats up
the less the chance of the joint getting dirty and leak
I tried to make up an elbow joint of 1" copper at my furnace a while ago
and couldn't get it hot enough, so called on a friend who arrived with
MAPP and voila! Good clean sweat - easy as pie. So if you need extra heat
go with MAPP.
Well, it's a Pres - To - Lite rig on a MC tank. I'm not sure it's worth
much. I doubt I could ship the MC tank anywhere, even if I tried. You'd have
to come pick it up. And we'd have to figure out what it's worth. Any ideas?
Christopher A. Young;
"DerbyDad03" < firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote in message
Rather than just give an opinion, here's a recent experience.
I had to replace a faucet bibb on a 3/4" copper line. Cut the old bibb
off. Line had a slow drip that I couldn't stop. Packed a bread in the
line to stop the leak. Tried to sweat the new bibb on using a propane
torch. Tried for over 20 minutes and never could get the solder to
flow properly. Gave up and bought a Mapp gas outfit. Did a perfect
job in about 2-3 minutes.
So it was not a case of impatience - the propane just would not get
the line, bibb. & water hot enough to solder whereas the MAPP did an
Actually, IIRC "MAPP" means something like methyl acetylene, propadiene
stabilized. Machinery mfg I once worked for was required by insurance
co. to change over from using bulk acetylene bottles (where the
acetylene is dissolved in carbon disulfide, and such bottles get
explosive with little temp elevation) to bulk MAPP bottles. For
burning/welding steel. (In same vein, USN will not allow bulk acetylene
bottles to be stored within any space on ship; all are stored out in the
The portable torch I have uses oxygen in refillable, MAPP in
disposables. There also, you can't tell the difference between MAPP and
acetylene for heating up steel for burning.
Bottom line: MAPP removes/reduces safety probs for really serious
torches. Maybe this carries over to air/fuel-gas torches?
Anyone knowledgeable about relative hazards of heating propane/MAPP
bottles? Risk-management rules. :')
I don't have an official source of information. However, I do know that one
bitter cold winter day I was trying to braze a copper connection on an
indoor piece of equipment. My Mapp torch was just totally useless until I
took the torch in the bathroom. Heated the tank under the hot water faucet.
And then it worked fine.
I'd guess that for heating a winter cabin that propane would be the way to
Christopher A. Young;
"John Barry" < email@example.com> wrote in message
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