What size propane tank?

Hi I’m new to forging and have a small two burner forge just to start myself off, what size bottle should I go for? Forge is to be delivered so have no idea what size bottle I should go for, can’t really afford trail and error…

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Just get the biggest one you can afford. They’re not terribly expensive. I bought a 100lb tank from lowes for like 130.00 But when I first started I used a small 15lb tank. The small one will last longer than you think.

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I have been playing around with this for only a couple of months but I just use small 20 pound bottles because its the easiest to get and they work fine.

Just make sure you have a regulator that you can adjust.

Thanks guys didn’t want to get half way through something and have it run out! Thanks for the info

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+1 on the 100# tank. When I get mine refilled where I go I always make sure I get the one guy thete who trily understands how the tank can/should be filled. When he fills, I can run my forge 6-8 hrs a day at forge weld tempsbfor a month or better. When the ither guys there fill my tank…2, maybe 2.5 weeks.
For those that DO NOT know about filling ANY “tank” with a compressible/condensible substance (propane is condensed…meaning, under pressire it turns from gas to liquid, vs 99% it is compressed, but can be pushed further to condense): the best way to fill the tank is with said tank in a bucket of ice/water. Adding pressure without increasing volume creates heat. The cooler the recpticle the more can go in, in other words. But a word of caution, depending on the size (volume) of the tank there is a “safe limit”. For a grill bottle…75%. So a 20# grill bottle should only be filled with 15 ACTUAL #'s of liquid. This allows for room for the liquid to expand without stressing the welds on the tank. A stressed weld could lead to an explosive cylinder…firey explosion if near a heat source.

Again, for those of you who DO know this, I do not mean to treat you as though you do not. Physics PhD’s, experienced smiths, and divers aside, you would be surprised at how few people lnow this. I would have forgotten it, even after Combat Diver training, if I ahad not become a commercial diver years later.

Back to the OP. I only +1’d the 100#'r bbecause of ease of transport. I had considered getting a 2nd (that way 1 is always charged) except that my disability (and this new CDC/DEA bull£#!+ messing with the only thing keeping me on my feet) if I can qyickly retro a log splitter into a press, I can keep going, but will need to up my tank to a size that warrants delivery. So if, in your area, you have good rates on delivery…then go as big as you can afford. In the long run, the more you get the less it costs.

Oh. And samm…one more thing…unless you are using the forge to HT and are at that step…anneal in vermiculite (or equivalent) go fill, pick back up the next day. Annealing, normalizing, thermal cycling…they all can only help, not harm. You eill get to the point where you can tell your bottle is getting critically low just from the sound. I can, and my left ear has permanent tinitus, my right too, but is so severe that the roar of the forge is a comfort to the ringing…so if I can hear it, so can you!

100 is nice for sure, but one thing to consider is if you want your forge to be more mobile. I have a few friends who throw their burner on a cart with the 20lb tank underneath and forge above. You can then push the cart around where ever you need it, it’s pretty damn handy to be able to pull the forge out and tuck it away when you’re doing work that doesn’t require it.

Of course be sure the cart is sturdy and metal :wink:

If your forge is static, it’s nice to have a 100 lber to not worry about the tank freezing up over long forging sessions.


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