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Vapor Restoration

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Dan Foley
Dan Foley Member Posts: 1,258
Poppy and his crew restored this vapor system in a 1916 rowhouse in Columbia Heights, DC. Only two of the graduated inlet valves remained and neither worked.

The Peerless boiler is fairly new. While not perfect, it is piped better than most we see. We added a skim port and installed a Vapor-Stat set to 8 oz.

There were no steam traps as the original system relied on low pressure and graduated inlet valves to keep live steam out of the returns.

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  • Dan Foley
    Dan Foley Member Posts: 1,258
    edited November 2017
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    We elected to go with orifice plates, rather than traps, to mimic the original graduated valves. At low pressure, it will not allow more steam to pass than the radiator can condense.

    Poppy drilled the copper plates with a specific size bit to match the EDR of the radiator.
    RomanGK_26986764589
  • Dan Foley
    Dan Foley Member Posts: 1,258
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    The owner had these Pierce Butler radiators hot dipped, sand blasted and re-finished.
    RomanGK_26986764589kcopp
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,899
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    Pierce made the original valves too. Most suppliers offered graduated valves back then.

    Did "Chem Strip" do the refinishing? This looks like their work.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • Dan Foley
    Dan Foley Member Posts: 1,258
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    Frank, you have a good eye. Yes, Chem Strip did the re-finish work.
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 16,899
    edited November 2017
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    Thought so. Nice work! Bet this system works perfectly now.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
    Dan Foley
  • BobC
    BobC Member Posts: 5,479
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    Beautiful radiators, with those orifice plates the system will now work the way it was designed.

    Bob
    Smith G8-3 with EZ Gas @ 90,000 BTU, Single pipe steam
    Vaporstat with a 12oz cut-out and 4oz cut-in
    3PSI gauge
    Dan Foley
  • jumper
    jumper Member Posts: 2,289
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    I wonder how well TRVs would work on these old systems? Can steam TRVs be set so that they don't close entirely?
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,427
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    Yes @jumper, you can’t close trvs completely.
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,076
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    Do you mean TRV's with the orifices installed?

    Was there a reason for the dead men to pipe in and out of the same end of the rad?

    Did you size the orifices for 80% of the EDR at 8 ozs? Just curious. When I drill orifices I put them in a union with a nipple attached, that holds them pretty well. I order all of them with an 1/8" pilot hole predrilled also.
    Dan Foley
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 16,545
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    I want to bronze Poppy's hands. They're beautiful.
    Retired and loving it.
    Dan FoleySeanBeans
  • gerry gill
    gerry gill Member Posts: 3,078
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    nice job, beautiful radiators.
    gwgillplumbingandheating.com
    Serving Cleveland's eastern suburbs from Cleveland Heights down to Cuyahoga Falls.

    Dan Foley
  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 7,379
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    Very nice!
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
    Dan Foley
  • Dan Foley
    Dan Foley Member Posts: 1,258
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    @ JUGHNE

    I have never combined TRV's with orifice plates but I don't see why it would not work.

    I don't know why the dead men piped the radiators on the same side. I have seen them piped both ways.

    I like your idea of using a union and nipples as a jig to line up the bit.

    Where do you get pre-drilled blanks? I get mine from Tunstall but they are not drilled.
  • Fred
    Fred Member Posts: 8,542
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    I think some of those radiators that are piped on the same side have a tube in them that runs across the inside bottom of the radiator to the other end. Just a thought.
  • Dan Foley
    Dan Foley Member Posts: 1,258
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    @ Fred. Yes, I have seen that on hot water radiators but not on steam.
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,076
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    Dan Foley, I ordered the orifices with 1/8" drilled, they are from Tunstall.
    Were you able to buy direct from Tunstall?