I need to do a plumbing repair and will be replacing a soldered fitting.
Can anyone recommend a soldering gas torch?
Maplin do a few - a "kit" for £30, a "micro" torch for £10 and a
"microjet" torch for £10.
Thoughts anyone? Thanks.
It works better if you plug it in.
- Sattinger's Law -
The micro torches will be of no use whatsoever for plumbing. You will
need a bigger torch, such as the Taymar range as sold in B&Q etc.
Having said that, I must admit that I never had any luck with those on
22mm; the only thing that's ever worked for me reliably is my
Rothenburger (any plumber's merchant).
Aren't these all a bit expensive - and rather large to store - for a one
off job? I suppose they might be worth it if you're going to burn off a
lot of paint as well, but despite being a tool junkie I've not found the
need for anything bigger than a decent all in one blowlamp.
*One nice thing about egotists: they don't talk about other people.
Dave Plowman email@example.com London SW 12
It basically depends if you do any 22mm. A five quid Taymar simply won't
work properly for this. You'll probably burn away any surround combustibles
without melting the solder.
Besides, they're great for lighting barbecues!
I use unleaded for domestic water, in fact nowadays I use unleaded for
everything except rainwater goods.
Err is that "without success" as in couldn't solder the joint, or
"without success" as in never got hot enough to allow the solder to
In the first case I would blame technique, in the second I'd question if
you had any water in the tube.
That would also indicate trying to work "wet" to me.
Bizarre. I've renewed all of the pumbing in three houses now working
from 10mm up to 28mm using capillary joints, swaged joints and yorkshire
fittings <spit>, and it's only last year that I bought a Bernzomatic so
that I could have the luxury of a small, light handheld gas torch.
I don't know what your problems were, but I wouldn't blame the Taymar. I
can of course only report what I have seen with my own eyes.
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The solder not flowing. It was hot enough to get the flux fizzing away
It was definitely totally drained down. I only soldered new sections of
pipe. The fact that the proper torch soldered it in seconds tends to support
this. The joint to the preexisting pipework was done with a compression ball
valve as there was no way to drain between the rising main and the
I suspect the main difference is that the sort of torch I'm talking about is
even smaller than you imagine or had a wider nozzle. Or maybe it had started
to run out of gas without me noticing. It worked fine for 15mm, though. The
main problem I think was the width of the flame, making it difficult to
concentrate the heat in one area. I think, perhaps, the wide nozzle was the
feature most preventing me soldering it. Also, I was using a ceramic tile as
a heat mat. Maybe a proper reflective heat mat would have given that last
push to the temperature. It was obviously very close, but no cigar.
Agreed (as another Berzomatic user :-)
The £10 kit from B&Q with a bottle and a simple nozzle is very good vfm. If
you're doing lots of soldering, a fair amount of 22mm or practically any
28mm stuff the piezo ignition version at about £25 is worth going for. Apart
from the spark ignition the flame puts a lot more heat into the job -
essential for soldering the bigger fittings.
The Wickes £25 piezo ignition kit also seemed OK to me though I only fired
it up and waved the flame around, and didn't use it in anger.
Actually I asked the spotty-herbert-in-command firstly if I could look at
one (they keep them locked away with the high value easily nickable stuff)
and then if I could have a go: "as long as I don't see you" <wink>
Bizarrely, I've just had to go out and buy a new gas torch, since the
pathetic Focus one I had wouldn't solder a 22mm joint. Bought a Taymer
"High Power" one, yet to see if it works as advertised - the flame's
certainly very impressive.
Irritatingly, they [Homebase] also had gas for the Camping Gaz [*] torches,
although I cannot now find mine. I suspect I threw it away because
I was unable to get the gas...
(* Who, BTW, make the Taymar stuff anyway.)
"The road to Paradise is through Intercourse."
[email me at huge [at] huge [dot] org [dot] uk]
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