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Danny Scully
Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
Just a thought. I'm working out a counterflow repipe. Just thinking about pipe sizing. Would you think reducing the size as the load drops off the main would matter? For example, the load requires 3", after I pass the point of needing 3", I'm think of dropping to 2-1/2, 2, and so on (with eccentric fittings of course). I can't see the downside, but that's why I'm asking.


  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 22,932
    I can't see a downside either, @Danny Scully
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • Abracadabra
    Abracadabra Member Posts: 1,948
    I think as long as the reduced pipe can handle the EDR from that point on along with the counterflow condensate you should be fine.
  • jumper
    jumper Member Posts: 2,208
    I'm not sure. Idea is that less pressure drop by continuing same size compensates for farther?
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    Not exactly sure what you're saying @jumper but the math I've done leads me to believe it will work. I'll definitely keep the wall posted :smile:
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    Understood @Hatterasguy. The 2" portion is only carrying about 100 sqft for example.
  • gerry gill
    gerry gill Member Posts: 3,078
    utilize the ashve charts, would be my recommendation..my favorite are the 1937 charts, but every year had a book.
    Serving Cleveland's eastern suburbs from Cleveland Heights down to Cuyahoga Falls.

  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    edited October 2016
    Don't make me beg @gerry gill, where would I find them?
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    Another quick thought. I'm going to pipe this boiler with a drop header, takeoffs, and equalizer (as usual) as opposed to the typical drawing you'll find for counterflow. The takeoffs will drop into the top of the counterflow mains as well. Again, no downside right?
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    Well, the job is in full swing. I had the great pleasure of working with @EzzyT today. We were able to get a good portion of one of the counterflow mains complete. In doing that, we had to pipe around multiple obstructions, but with a little creativity (and patience), we made it work. The main decreases from 3, to 2-1/2, to 2, to 1-1/2 as the load gets lighter along the way. More progress to come.
  • BobC
    BobC Member Posts: 5,473
    Is that piping in the second picture going around the old coal chute?

    Smith G8-3 with EZ Gas @ 90,000 BTU, Single pipe steam
    Vaporstat with a 12oz cut-out and 4oz cut-in
    3PSI gauge
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    No it's the chimney clean out which the customer still plans to use.
  • EzzyT
    EzzyT Member Posts: 1,290
    This is the original Arco boiler
  • Fred
    Fred Member Posts: 8,542
    Wow, that's when they made REAL boilers! I love it.
  • Paul S_3
    Paul S_3 Member Posts: 1,257
    nice job guys! @EzzyT & @Danny Scully .... I love the piping setup to go around the obstruction .... I used it once to go around a metal beam....
    ASM Mechanical Company
    Located in Staten Island NY
    Servicing all 5 boroughs of NYC.
    [email protected]
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    Thanks @Paul S!
    Paul S_3
  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 6,723
    Very nice piping job guys... mad dog
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    Thanks @Mad Dog!
  • Dave in QCA
    Dave in QCA Member Posts: 1,785
    drop header instead of typical counter flow arrangement is fine, but the risers to the system piping should not go straight up from the header, they should go up on a 45 degree angle. you want the returning condensate staying on the bottom side of the pipe, not dropping like water fall against the high speed flow of steam.
    Dave in Quad Cities, America
    Weil-McLain 680 with Riello 2-stage burner, December 2012. Firing rate=375MBH Low, 690MBH Hi.
    System = Early Dunham 2-pipe Vacuo-Vapor (inlet and outlet both at bottom of radiators) Traps are Dunham #2 rebuilt w. Barnes-Jones Cage Units, Dunham-Bush 1E, Mepco 1E, and Armstrong TS-2. All valves haveTunstall orifices sized at 8 oz.
    Current connected load EDR= 1,259 sq ft, Original system EDR = 2,100 sq ft Vaporstat, 13 oz cutout, 4 oz cutin - Temp. control Tekmar 279.
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    edited November 2016
    Worked for a little while tonight and finished the counterflow main me and @ezzyt started. Starting the 2nd counterflow main Saturday. More progress to come.
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    2nd counterflow main complete from basement to third floor.
    RomanGK_26986764589New England SteamWorksSWEI
  • Dave0176
    Dave0176 Member Posts: 1,177
    @Danny Scully that's SOME repipe, looks awesome.
    DL Mechanical LLC Heating, Cooling and Plumbing 732-266-5386
    NJ Master HVACR Lic# 4630
    Specializing in Steam Heating, Serving the residents of New Jersey


    I cannot force people to spend money, I can only suggest how to spend it wisely.......
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    Thanks @Dave0176! Essentially, it's a complete repipe.
  • Thanks @Dave0176! Essentially, it's a complete repipe.

    Yes, it is. Which begs the question: Why are we starting the thread in the middle?! How did this all come about? It looks like a fascinating project and inquiring minds want to know why in 2016 there isn't pex and circulators? How did you pull that off?

    I am completely jealous...

    I assume you know, but don't forget the vents at the ends of the counterflow mains. And keep the pics coming!
    New England SteamWorks
    Service, Installation, & Restoration of Steam Heating Systems
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    edited November 2016
    Well I was requested by the customer, who had just bought the house, to inspect their steam heating system and present them with an estimate to convert to forced hot water...I accepted the request but explained I would be more inclined to present them with an estimate to maintain their existing steam system for any number of reasons which I would go over with them upon my site visit. Ultimately, I made their decision easy when I explain their beautiful ornate radiators were not connected at the top, and only functioned as steam radiators. Then, an exchange of estimates (from parallel flow, to counterflow) finally concluded with the counterflow option, as it reduced labor time. Engineering the project was fun, with the mains reducing in size as the load got lighter. The 2nd main actually goes from 2-1/2, to 2, to 1-1/2, back to 2 for a horizontal portion that couldn't be handled by 1-1/2, then back to 1-1/2. The main vent(s) in the first series of pictures will be located at the 1st open tee, in the first picture I think. The 2nd main will be vented at the top of the riser on the 3rd floor. I'll keep the pictures coming!
  • Paul48
    Paul48 Member Posts: 4,469
    What type of eccentric fittings did you use to go 1.5-2-1.5, counter-flow?
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    It's 1-1/2 on the vertical, then 2" on the horizontal to a 2 X 1-1/2 X 1-1/2 tee. No eccentric fittings needed.
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    Boiler piped. We're getting closer!
    Paul S_3
  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 7,350
    edited November 2016
    Looks great...except for that rusty ell atop the equalizer. ;)
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 15,331
    Hopefully you have enough pitch isn't counter flow 1"/10'??
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    :lol: I'll paint it for you @Ironman
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    Yes @EBEBRATT-Ed, it is, and yes, we do. It's all 1/8" per foot minimum.
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 15,331
    @Danny Scully Excellent!! Nice looking job. Never thought of this before but is there a maximum distance you can go with counter flow without dripping???

    I guess if the pipe is sized right and you don't run out of pitch you can go as far as you want??
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,415
    I think the practical limit is 100 feet @EBEBRATT-Ed