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Author Topic: Hot head torch won't accept MAPP cylinder  (Read 3057 times)
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polperrobrian
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« on: January 28, 2014, 03:52:58 PM »

I'm new to torch work. I brought my torch easily 15 years ago and have only just sat down to try it out! I got a propane canister and a Mapp one. The propane works ok but I wanted to try MAPP to see how much difference a bit more heat might make. The cannister screws on ok but the nozzle thing that goes down the throat of the cannister seems a touch short and I get no gas. The cartridge is new and full. Have I got a propane version (is there such a thing?) or should both cartridges work the same?

When I look down the throat of the Mapp cartridge there seems to be a plastic sleeve that is standing proud where the propane one doesn't - is this normal?

Had some fun but the cost of MAPP was a fright! I will have to change - looks like to bug may have bitten me!

Can anybody help?

Brian
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highgardenbeads
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« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2014, 04:38:43 PM »

Hi Brian - I never had that issue with the MAPP gas canisters not fitting... I didn't try mine with propane though... I'd suggest getting the converter so you can use a large gas canister if you're going to be making a lot of beads.  I went through 4 of the canisters before I realized I could have paid for the attachment for that amount.  I' not using it anymore as I've not upgraded torches to a minor - so if you're interested in buying the converter attachment from me just send me a private message.
x
Ursula
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Essex Girl
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« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2014, 05:36:44 PM »

When I changed from MAPP to propane I had to have an adapter screwed onto the hot head to make it fit.  You may need to remove something from the torch to fit the MAPP!
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Karen
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polperrobrian
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« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2014, 09:13:56 AM »

Thanks for getting back to me.

I have the converter for bulk propane and I have no problems with that. I'm finding it hard to work because I feel it's not hot enough. (Absolute beginner don't forget!) Whenever I look at people making beads online they seem to be using more professional gear with a lot more heat and far quicker melting. I accept there is a lot of experience on show there and know I have a long way to go but not knowing if there is something wrong with my set up is niggling at me. I thought the hotter gas (MAPP) might persuade me to upgrade to propane oxygen and let me explore glass rather than extended waiting for things to melt. (Running before walking perhaps but more success will help me to commit.)

I have no idea if the waiting I am doing is typical you see. I do know that to make and sell a bead on the time base I am experiencing is an unlikely economic equation even allowing for my lack of ability.

I'm unwilling ti buy another MAPP cylinder to compare the valve arrangement at the price they are. I suspect though that is what I will wind up doing.
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anditsinthefish
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« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2014, 09:54:00 AM »

I used to use mapp and got very frustrated very quickly as the pressure would drop and the tank would cut out.

Are you using just propane? When you say people sets ups look hotter it may be because they are using duel fuel which is a lot quicker and I would never go back to mapp after getting my oxycon and propane tank.

Could you get a photo of you mapp cylinder and your connections? That might help Smiley xx
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Sarah xx
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Lynnybobs
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« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2014, 10:47:24 AM »

I sem to think there is a bit on the hot head that fits the MAPP that you take off for bulk propane - like a narrow tube ?
I only used 2 cans of MAPP before I went to bulk propane as its was soooo expensive and I wasn't getting much time out of it before the temp/pressure dropped.
Lots of people work on bulk propane for years - yes its slow but its cheap and allows you time to practise the basics and see if you really love beadmaking before you shell out for a dual fuel.
You just have watch out with some colours as the flame is slightly reducing so you can end up with murky browns...
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Lynnybobs
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Redhotsal
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« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2014, 12:52:26 PM »

Hi Brian,

I've just had a look at a couple of my hotheads, interestingly there's quite a difference between the length of narrow tube (the bit that physically goes into the opening of the cylinder) on my two. Looking at mine "from the side" one of the pipes protrudes 10mm, while the other one is only 7mm. These tubes are fixed into the base of the torch onto a cork gasket by a hexagonally ended nut. It may be worth measuring yours to see how much it protudes - I'm thinking it's not enough to work the valve of the Mapp. I suspect both of my hotheads are getting on for fifteen years old so might be similar to yours. You might be able to shim out the tube with some washers to get the extra length - you may only need a mm or so. If you want I'll take a piccy of my hotheads if you want to compare...just let me know.

I don't think there are two different types of hothead - it was originally designed in the US by Cindy Jenkins to run specifically on Mapp - but it's a lot cheaper to obtain Mapp over there which is why many people go over to bulk propane in this country.

Having said that - yes, the Mapp gas will be quicker, but only a little quicker - I suspect it won't be quick enough...It is also blimmin expensive, plus you will find it frustrating because you will find that the continuing forcing of gas through a narrow nozzle will cool everything down, making the gas pressure drop over several minutes which will cause the flame to get smaller and smaller. I used to have to sit the cylinder in warm water to heat it up enough for the flame to be reasonable. On bulk propane this is not so much of a problem as the gas is far away from the torch head so you don't get a drop in pressure.

Bear in mind that most people go from Mapp to propane, rather than the other way round for economic reasons. That 18 canister is only going to last a few evenings at best. If you're really serious about glass making and you haven't got loads of patience your best bet is a dual gas system - propane and oxygen. But this gets really expensive. Having said that the speed and quietness is much much better.

Whereabouts are you? If I were you I would see if there's anyone local to you with a dual gas set up (like a Minor burner) who will let you have a go. Failing that you might want to go to the Flame Off and then you can have a play on their torches.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2014, 12:54:13 PM by Redhotsal » Logged

polperrobrian
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« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2014, 11:28:56 PM »

Ok - just about managed to get a picture up! Hurts my head all this technology!

You will see from the picture that the two connecting parts of the Propane and Mapp are clearly different. The MAPP one the central spigot on the torch (not shown) doesn't penetrate far enough to press on the valve. Can somebody with a MAPP cylinder have a look and see if there's is the same please?

http://www.flickr.com/photos/115950716@N08/
« Last Edit: January 29, 2014, 11:35:00 PM by polperrobrian » Logged
Dragonfire Glass
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« Reply #8 on: January 30, 2014, 07:36:08 AM »

Ring Martin Tuffnell - I'm betting he'll be able to answer any questions you have
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Redhotsal
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« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2014, 07:54:13 AM »

Haven't got a cylinder anymore but I can safely say I've never seen the plastic sleeve on any of the cylinders both propane and Mapp. Daft question  - is it possible that it's a sort of removable "safety guard"? Not suggesting you pull it out but perhaps you could return to the shop and ask them if it's meant to come out?
« Last Edit: January 30, 2014, 07:56:38 AM by Redhotsal » Logged

silkworm
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« Reply #10 on: January 30, 2014, 09:22:56 AM »

We still have a hot head and canisters of MAPP bought in the last few months, they do not have a plastic sleeve jutting up like the one you have, in terms of structure they look much more like the other canister you show though the innermost bit looks like it may be plastic.
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Mary
polperrobrian
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« Reply #11 on: January 30, 2014, 09:48:21 AM »

It seems - I think - that the can must be faulty. Typically - in the search for a good price - I bought it online so now I have to duke it out with the vendor about returning it! Another challenge for the day! Thanks to everyone for their interest and taking time to respond.

I have been into stained glass for years and used forums there. Apart from the occasional encounter with trolls forums have always been a good experience.

Brian
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polperrobrian
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« Reply #12 on: January 31, 2014, 12:54:26 PM »

OK! Been talking to the supplier who tells me ALL his Map cylinders have the plastic insert and it is there to limit the type of torch that can be used. He is a plumber and has never heard of a Hothead.

So MAYBE my torch is at fault!

I emailed Mr Tufnell and asked his advice but haven't heard back yet.

Bit of a mystery!
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silkworm
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« Reply #13 on: January 31, 2014, 02:33:41 PM »

Unless the manufacturers of MAPP have changed the canisters since November then some come without it. We usually get ours from Grahams Plumbing.
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Mary
hopejacare
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« Reply #14 on: January 31, 2014, 04:04:34 PM »

I did buy a cylinder of gas (from a lical diy shop)before I went to b&q to buy my mapp ones and it turned out to be only suitable for certain torches. The cheapest supplier I found online was screwfix. However I converted to bulk fuel as I went through two mapp canisters 18.99 each in a couple of weeks, recon I got about 4-5 hours from each one. Good luck xx
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