HOW STUFF WORKS
QUIZZES

FOLLOW US
The Ultimate Blowtorch Quiz
by Staff
Whether you're a welder or a plumber, a blowtorch could be the very thing you need. Of course, you must comply with safety regulations and be familiar with the mechanics before you begin. But that said, you will find the blowtorch a wonder tool. Take this quiz to see what you know about the humble blowtorch.

What are the sparks that you see coming out from a blowtorch?

  • electrical flashes
  • tiny pieces of molten metal
  • reflective glints of sunshine

With mishandling of the blowtorch or improper pressure, what could happen?

  • A fire could break out.
  • The blowtorch could work intermittently.
  • The blowtorch could generate more heat.

What revolution in the welding process did the 19th-century invention of the blowtorch cause?

  • Welding could now be more precise by focusing high heat on a small area.
  • Welding could now be accomplished by the untrained worker.
  • Welding could now be performed on non-metals too.

Why is welding a high-paying job these days?

  • because welding as a career choice is unpopular, so good welders are a rarity
  • because welding takes many years to learn
  • because welding involves very expensive materials

Which of these are essential components of a blowtorch?

  • face mask and laser light
  • gas cylinder and hoses
  • metal straps and drainage well

What is the function of the regulators?

  • to regulate the heat of the blowtorch tip
  • to regulate the amount of gas released
  • to control gas pressure and flow

Why shouldn't you light the blowtorch with a match?

  • because you'd need someone else to hold the blowtorch for you while you're holding the match
  • because you might inadvertently forget to extinguish the match flame
  • because of the extreme heat of the flames

In terms of gas pressure, what is the rule regarding the hose and the torch head?

  • The torch head pressure should be more than the hose pressure.
  • The pressure should always be even between the two.
  • The hose pressure should be more than the torch head pressure.

What gases are commonly used in home blowtorches?

  • hydrogen or helium
  • butane or propane
  • carbon dioxide or oxygen

Which is the more volatile of the gases used in professional blowtorches: acetylene or MAPP?

  • acetylene
  • MAPP
  • both are equally volatile

What is the flame temperature range of an oxyacetylene torch?

  • 1,000-2,000 degrees Fahrenheit (537-1,095 degrees Celsius)
  • 2,500-3,000 degrees Fahrenheit (1,370-1,650 degrees Celsius)
  • 5,000-6,000 degrees Fahrenheit (2,760-3,316 degrees Celsius)

How do you know when backfire has occurred?

  • You hear a loud pop when the flame goes out.
  • You see a bright flash when the flame goes out.
  • You have trouble extinguishing the flame.

In the welding process, what is meant by the term "flashback"?

  • There is a flash of flame that transfers onto the surrounding work area.
  • You have a bright flash of memory of recent welding work that you did.
  • The flame goes into the torch.

Why do welders heat the entire piece of metal uniformly before they weld?

  • as a gesture of perfection
  • to prevent part of the metal warping
  • to save time

When you begin to operate a blowtorch, you adjust the acetylene regulator to optimum working pressure, or:

  • 5 psi
  • 10 psi
  • 15 psi

If the blowtorch doesn't have its own igniter, how should you light it?

  • with a flint
  • with a friction lighter
  • with a cigarette lighter

How do you drain away any remaining oxygen pressure from the hoses and torch?

  • Allow the blowtorch flame to die out by itself. This releases any pressure build-up.
  • You leave the pressure valve open.
  • Open the oxygen needle valve until there is zero pressure, then close it again.

Why do plumbers use blowtorches?

  • to solder and join copper pipes
  • to unclog water pipes
  • to fuse together disjointed steel pipes

If you have a home blowtorch, what two safety essentials must you have on hand?

  • emergency exit and life vest
  • emergency phone number of the fire department and fire-retardant surfaces
  • fire extinguisher and smoke detector

Why shouldn't you use a home blowtorch to thaw frozen water pipes?

  • because it won't reach a high enough temperature to be effective
  • because they're usually made of plastic
  • because the water could boil and the pipes could explode