Imagine what a surprise it was to open the January/February Issue of NOMMA’s Fabricator and see the article “Hot Treadle Torch” by “Uncle Bob “ Walsh just after I had written about rebuilding mine.
As I thought about what seemed like a coincidence I decided that there may be less serendipity involved than I first thought because I had recently been reading the articles in the fabricator he had been writing about making acanthus leaves. That may have started me on the track of reworking my treadle torch.
He mentions that he saw Wendell Broussard use a treadle torch at an ABANA demonstration. I wonder if it was the same occasion in La Crosse, Wisconsin when I watched Wendell for my second time.
I posted a couple of pictures of Wendell’s work then.
The Fabricator article is well worth reading. Also, his explanation of the pros and cons of gas and coal forges is well done.
I did notice the system described is a bit different from mine. First, I do use acetylene and oxygen and don’t have a soot problem if I keep the pilot light flame carefully adjusted. And secondly, I don’t generally use the rosebud tip but use a cutting tip instead because my setup is used more often in the free hand torch mode than the treadle mode. I, too, use the quick couplers and the Smith company gas saver and believe they work well.
I found a few more images of Wendell's work from the 2002 conference.