If you’re into deep burning pyrography, this is the unit for you! I’d built my own wood vaporizer from a car charger based on some information I found on the internet. I worked great until it fried… This of course left me in a pinch to find a replacement… and fast.
I ended up getting a Razortip SS-D10 unit from my local Klingspor’s Woodworking Shop. The main reasons for this purchase are that it is local and the brand has a good reputation. This unit has very fine temperature adjustment and seems to be well made, but it really lacks the wattage for deep burning that I needed. I tried and hoped, but to no avail. It just wouldn’t get hot enough for my needs and had to go back. I’m sure the Razortip is great for light burning and shading, but the SS-D10 just didn’t cut the mustard for me. Even just signing my name took more time than expected.
Enter the Burnmaster. This is what I wanted at the onset of searching for a new wood burner because it offers the highest wattage output of any other consumer unit. Also, when you compare it to others, it’s cheaper than some and right in line with the majority of the competition.
With that, lets talk price for a minute. The Razortip SS-D10 ran me $160 and was in stock at my local store. The Burnmaster Hawk is a single port unit for $143.95, but wasn’t in stock in my area. The Burnmaster Eagle is a dual port unit for $173.95, and also wasn’t in stock in my area. Both of the Burnmaster units have the highest wattage output of any consumer wood burner on the market of 130 watts! The only difference between the two units is the number of ports. For the few extra dollars, I opted for the Burnmaster Eagle from www.woodcarverssupply.com.
Why didn’t I just make another wood vaporizer from a car charger? Well, a good charger runs at least 50 bucks. Add in the dimmer to control the output wattage and the time to modify the unit, it just didn’t make a lot of economic sense to do that again. Don’t get me wrong, I loved my car charger wood burner Frankenstein machine, but well… It died on me when I needed it most. Sniffle…
So what do I think about the Burnmaster Eagle? Well, in a word… It’s amazing! I purchased the Burnmaster Eagle kit, which retails at $259.95 and comes with a seriously nice bag, two pens, adapters, and 10 different tips. I opted for the kit since I’m demoing more these days and thought that the extras would be good to have. The Burnmaster pens are top notch. They will accept custom made tips with ease and stay cool even during long work sessions. Each of the burning tips are well made with heavy solid copper cross sections at the attachment side. They interface with the pens well and perform as expected. Speaking of the pens, they are the only units that accept all hot wire style tips sold in North America. Regardless of whether you purchase the kit or not, each unit comes with 1 or 2 cables and adapters (depending on # of ports on your unit) to use with any pen on the market. Another feature only found on Burnmaster is reset overload protection. If a pen, tip or patch cord malfunction the overload trips and protects the main unit. In addition, the Burnmaster units carry a 3 year warranty, and if you don’t love your Burnmaster they’ll refund your money!
Alright, enough about the features and such…How well does the thing work?
In addition to the heat adjustment knob, these wood burners have an adjustment screw so that you can bias the heat range to be hotter or “cooler” across the 1-10 temperature range. They come preset from the factory at 3 which is in the middle of the “bias” adjustment. Use of the unit is fairly straight forward. First, plug it in… ok, ok… simply slide the port selection switch to port 1 or port 2 and adjust the temperature knob for the desired heat. Depending on the task at hand, you can either have the tip cherry red and bring flames off the wood or just warm enough to shade the work piece.
When I first received my unit, I was ready to start burning a basket weave pattern on a bowl. Even with a large coil of 20 gauge wire, this unit delivered enough heat to make this job a breeze! Also, the pen I’m using in the photos below is one that I made for my previous wood burner.
I will say, that I very much enjoy having the dual port unit so that I can leave the pen I use for signing always plugged in and ready to go with just the flip of a switch. The $30 difference for this functionality was well worth it to me.
Usually, there is something that I’m rather nit picky about when it comes to tools, but this unit does everything I want it to. There isn’t a single thing I’d change about the Burnmaster Eagle. If you decide to give it a try, I’m sure you’ll be happy, too.