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We live in an old house that is a register Historic Site. The house is a community gem to the small town we live in. The people here have a real pride for the house and we have taken on the task of restoring it. While talking to some people at the local historical society, I found out the grandson, a third generation pipe fitter, of the man that piped the Eddy System in this house is still alive. Several weeks ago I met with him. He serviced this house for many years until he retired and was excited as can be when I said I wanted to learn about steam systems from him. This is my first steam heat home and I am amazed by the work of the old timers and their mastery of physics to overcome any problem presented to them.
Anyway, I met with him again today and we started talking about new inovations and things they didn't have "back then". We got on the topic of thread tape, and he proceded to tell me, then show me how he sealed pipes. He demonstrated on a nipple and a coupling by taking something he called "plumbers thread" and winding it in the valleys of the threads. He started where the pipe turns to threads and held the end of the string there, then pulled it tight down to the end of the nipple and started wrapping the threads of the nipple. Once he wrapped about 2/3 of the threads, he coated with some pipe dope and spun them together.
He claims every joint he ever made was done this way, and also claims to have never had a drop of water leak on any fitting, ever. He said all the joints in my system are fitted that way.
I'm curious if anyone does this anymore? I know thread tape and newer better joint compound means you don't need to do this anymore, but do any of you still use this method? Was it even a popular thing to do, or just something a few people handed down to each other?