I just switched to a wp9 torch from a wp 26 Trafimet style torch. Most of the welds I'm doing are on small diameter thin wall material at 40-50 amp, so the little torch and lightweight power hose are ideal.
This has made a big improvement in my control of the weld puddle. It's like trying to draw a house blueprint with a big dull carpenter's pencil then switching to a sharp drafting pencil, just a night and day difference.
The torch I bought is an ebay deal ,new in box with flex head and gas valve.
I don't see any need for the gas valve for my application, I'm doing all bench work and once the flow is set where it should be at the reg, why would I change it?
I can see that for remote applications such as boiler repair it might be handy to add a little flow as needed, especially if there was a breeze present, however without even a simple on off torch switch or preferably a sliding adjustable amp type, what good is this torch as a remote use unit?
It works fine for me, I just crank the valve wide open and set the argon flow via the regulator at about 12 cfh as with the other torch, but I'm curious about that gas valve and how it might come into use in certain situations that I'm not thinking of.