Been having trouble with my cutting torch. Stupid thing wanted to pop an acetylene flame right where I was holding it. Makes for a hot glove. The welding shop guy put 2 new o-rings on it and I still got a hot glove. Talking to our mechanic today (long story, don’t ask) he said “you dummy, put some plumbers tape on it.” And I thought, you dummy, why didn’t you do that. So I did. Got it all put back together and thought I would kick its tires and take it for a spin, so to speak.
I am making a fire pit type thing out of steel tire rims. It will be 3 rims high and I need to cut out the middle of the center one. I had the rims prepped, so I tossed one on the stump I have been using for welding. It’s been in my shop for years, I use it for everything, and it is pretty dry. Didn’t think about that at all when I was fiddling with the gas flow. I was pretty focused on my torch, to see if my tape job was going to work.
Normally when you cut metal, you give it a good preheat with the torch and hit the oxygen lever when it’s glowing red, to start cutting. You get a lot of smoke and heat when doing this, so good ventilation is a must. I had my head down and was cutting away. The smoke was starting to billow up into my face and I thought, maybe the rim was a little greasy on the back side. Still no hot glove issue with my torch, so all was good, until I noticed serious flames coming out of the bottom of the rim. Yes sir, while I was cutting metal, I was also cutting the stump below it. The shop was starting to fill up with smoke so I shut down and and rolled the stump outside, marveling on how many times I could be dumb in one day. I haven’t kept track mind you, but I am sure there is room for improvement.