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Sunday, December 13th, 2009

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I got a new torch, a GTT Cheetah, about a month ago but it took several weeks to find the time and parts to refit the attached pigtails into threaded connectors. At long last I fired it up about two weeks ago. It's nice: big hot flame, quiet, and a new challenge to learn how to make it work well. I'm still learning how to set a neutral flame but I think I have that about down now. I've learned how to have a light touch on the controls (they're smaller knobs than on the Nortel so the same twisting action in my fingers turns the knobs about twice as much) but I'm still learning how to set the main and secondary oxygen to interesting settings. I've made some ornaments and some paperweights and it's great to melt the 19mm solid clear cane fast. It's proving not too adept at small stringer work, or at least, I've not found a good way to do that work just yet (I'm currently working about 14" out in the flame in order to find a place that won't melt a stringer in 3 seconds).

Yesterday Melinda and I burned for about 3 hours and finished off our first propane bottle (we've burned through 5 or 6 oxygen tanks in the same time). I may replace it this week or I may wait until January; I don't think we'll be melting any more glass this year (Melinda leaves town Thursday and I head out Saturday). I did finish the year by blowing some lumpy ornaments using the colored tubing I bought from American Lab Supply. So now when I head back there to buy more cane (need: 4mm and 10mm clear) I can say that I've at least tried the tubing I bought there earlier.

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