The case for Oxy-Acetylene - part 2
Honestly, if I did not have other welders or cutters to rely upon, I could actually perform about 99% of my welding and cutting needs with a properly adjusted oxy-acetylene torch. With the other 1 percent, I could easily farm it out to someone else without feeling too bad about not being 100% self-sufficient with my welding needs. When an Oxy-Acetylene torch is needed in my shop, I usually use it to heat items for bending or for preheating for welding. And as good as a plasma cutter is, it will not substitute for even a small cutting torch rig on cutting thick metal. Your average plasma cutter with 40-80 amps cannot reasonably cut really thick metal. The first time you work on your tractor or piece of heavy equipment, and need to cut a bracket or teeth off a loader, you’ll quickly run into a wall. It just won’t cut it. But even a small Oxy-fuel rig will surpass the 1.5” mark and quite easily reach over 2 inches. A larger rig will even surpass that. As for welding, in a pinch the oxy-acetylene torch with a welding/brazing head can be used to weld plate up to ½” fairly easily. Before the employment of arc welding for common fabrication work, Oxy-Acetylene was the premier choice for welding ships together. So, while it may be slower, the old gas-ax will do it all and in some cases, it is the only tool that will do the job. If you are truly wanting to get into welding, do not forget about sourcing an oxy-acetylene outfit first. I’m not trying to lose business for Everlast here, but in full transparency, you will not regret buying an Oxy-fuel unit first.