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Single Riser with Drop Header Question

krisnet55krisnet55 Posts: 13Member
Hi guys. Little info first about myself. I started service plumbing roughly 4 years ago. Ive installed two boilers with a master plumber, one steam and the other hot water. Dont have much experience specifically in that area.
Anyways my own boiler went, along with my return line and have decided to take on this task on my own to gain experience.
Been reading and learning from this forum for a while now. I was all set on running my boiler with 2 3" risers down to a 3" drop header, then off to the 2 mains in 2". However I just got my boiler down in my basement, took it apart and realized it only has one riser in 3". The boiler is a Williamson GSA175, and the manual calls for a 2 1/2 riser although the outlet riser is 3".
My question is how would you guys pipe this thing being that I have only "one" 3 inch riser option?
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Comments

  • Danny ScullyDanny Scully Posts: 1,209Member
    Are you sure there isn’t another riser tapping that is just plugged? Here is the last Williamson we did, and the 2nd riser tapping was simply (although no that simple to remove) plugged.
  • krisnet55krisnet55 Posts: 13Member
    Positive. Only one.
  • clammyclammy Posts: 2,275Member
    At 175 I would do 2 3 inch risers at mimiun . How many main s are u picking up .myself I would just do a 4 inch header the velocity will be very slow under 13 FPS the extra money between 3 and 4 isn’t a killer but this way you ll have some slow moving dry steam . The higher the riser the better off you are ,being it’s your own please use full ports on the return s w a tee on your return line and a nipplle and cap on the other ,leave anipple in the block w a cap for a skim cap .what brand steam boiler are u going to use ,I personally over the years have had the best luck w peerless as top Weil followed by the pack top rated steam boiler are top tapped ,side tappers are so so but need both tapping no matter what size .beat of luck on your project Peace and good luck clammy
    R.A. Calmbacher L.L.C. HVAC
    NJ Master HVAC Lic.
    Mahwah, NJ
    Specializing in steam and hydronic heating
  • krisnet55krisnet55 Posts: 13Member
    clammy said:

    At 175 I would do 2 3 inch risers at mimiun . How many main s are u picking up .myself I would just do a 4 inch header the velocity will be very slow under 13 FPS the extra money between 3 and 4 isn’t a killer but this way you ll have some slow moving dry steam . The higher the riser the better off you are ,being it’s your own please use full ports on the return s w a tee on your return line and a nipplle and cap on the other ,leave anipple in the block w a cap for a skim cap .what brand steam boiler are u going to use ,I personally over the years have had the best luck w peerless as top Weil followed by the pack top rated steam boiler are top tapped ,side tappers are so so but need both tapping no matter what size .beat of luck on your project Peace and good luck clammy

    Im picking up 2 mains. However the boiler only has one riser option in 3". Boiler is a Williamson GSA175
  • Jamie HallJamie Hall Posts: 10,900Member
    If the work that @Charlie from wmass did for Cedric (a Weil-McClain 580) is any guide -- and it works superbly well -- you can get away with one 3 inch riser. Go up, over, down, 90 elbow to the header (4 inch would be good!) which slants back to the equalizer. The two mains come off in the middle as you go along.

    For what it's worth, we tapped the pigtail for the vapourstat -- which is a control (there are two pressurestat safeties as well) into the pipe that comes back down to the header. More stable.
    Jamie

    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England.

    Hoffman Equipped System (all original except boiler), Weil-Mclain 580, 2.75 gph Carlin, Vapourstat 0.5 -- 6.0 ounces per square inch
  • ethicalpaulethicalpaul Posts: 807Member
    Curious— how’d you size it?
    1 pipe Utica 112 in Cedar Grove, NJ, 1913 coal > oil > NG
  • krisnet55krisnet55 Posts: 13Member
    > @ethicalpaul said:
    > Curious— how’d you size it?

    I used the method listed on Weil McClain website to measure the radiation sq on radiators.
  • EBEBRATT-EdEBEBRATT-Ed Posts: 5,969Member
    @krisnet55

    It will work with 1 riser as the mfg advises. If you want to upsize the riser to 3" go ahead. If you want a drop header you can do that too.
    It will work fine if you follow the MFG minimum instructions
  • Charlie from wmassCharlie from wmass Posts: 4,081Member
    Drop header is needed when height is limited and when connecting to a counter flow system. One riser in 3inch will be better than a 2 1/2 inch. A 2 1/2" riser into a 3" header, drop or standard will be better than 2 1/2" . Budget will dictate how much above minimum you want to go. But as @EBEBRATT-Ed said the minimum will work fine.
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/charles-garrity-plumbing-and-heating
  • The Steam WhispererThe Steam Whisperer Posts: 402Member
    At only 175,000 input, the velocity in the 3 inch riser is low enough to allow water to drop back down into the boiler, so 3 inch will work quite well. Going from the minimum of 2 1/2 to 3 will drop the velocity about 75%....that's really good. On a boiler that small I find 2-3 inch risers overkill....It's really nice but in terms of real world performance, there is probably no gain but under extremely dirty boiler water conditions.
    To learn more about this professional, click here to visit their ad in Find A Contractor.
  • Charlie from wmassCharlie from wmass Posts: 4,081Member
    If the water is that dirty I strongly believe that the water needs addressing more than adding the riser.
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/charles-garrity-plumbing-and-heating
  • Intplm.Intplm. Posts: 862Member
    @krisnet55 try to remember this. Steam is a gas that always wants to be a liquid.
    You want the cleanest, driest steam possible. The near boiler piping is very important.
    Be sure to read and follow the manufactures requirements.
  • ethicalpaulethicalpaul Posts: 807Member
    > @krisnet55 said:
    > > @ethicalpaul said:
    > > Curious— how’d you size it?
    >
    > I used the method listed on Weil McClain website to measure the radiation sq on radiators.

    Nice. Then you are already doing things better than many out there
    1 pipe Utica 112 in Cedar Grove, NJ, 1913 coal > oil > NG
  • krisnet55krisnet55 Posts: 13Member
    Well price isn’t much of a concern since I’m doing this myself and it’s good for experience due to my job.
    So I’m gonna go with a 3” riser and 3” drop header. I’ll have the driest steam ever, lol. Thanks for the info and help.

    Another concern I have is the return line on the Williamson boilers. I read on one of the posts here that Williamson wants the return to be on the left side. For me the way my mains are and where my current return is, it doesn’t make sense having the return on the left.
    Any issues swapping the return to the right side?
  • Charlie from wmassCharlie from wmass Posts: 4,081Member
    If you mean the same side as the exiting steam there could be a minor issue. The side of the boiler that the steam exits will have a higher water level than the opposite side. By using a 3-inch riser it will be a minimum height difference.
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/charles-garrity-plumbing-and-heating
  • krisnet55krisnet55 Posts: 13Member
    edited March 9
    > @Charlie from wmass said:
    > If you mean the same side as the exiting steam there could be a minor issue. The side of the boiler that the steam exits will have a higher water level than the opposite side. By using a 3-inch riser it will be a minimum height difference.

    The original placement of the return line, from the manufacture is located on the left, which is the same side of the riser outlet and controls.
    What I want/did is swap the return line so it returns on the right side of the boiler.
    According to a post I read here Williamson wants the return to be where it originally is, although I didn’t read anything about it on the manual.
    However I was told that Williamson is a rebranded Weil McClain. And in the McClain manual it states that you can swap sides if necessary.
    Wondering is anyone knows anything about this.
  • Charlie from wmassCharlie from wmass Posts: 4,081Member
    Same boiler
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/charles-garrity-plumbing-and-heating
  • krisnet55krisnet55 Posts: 13Member
    edited March 10
    > @Charlie from wmass said:
    > Same boiler

    That’s what I’ve heard.
  • EBEBRATT-EdEBEBRATT-Ed Posts: 5,969Member
    Williamson usually sells for less than Weil for some reason. As far as I know they are the same
  • ethicalpaulethicalpaul Posts: 807Member
    edited March 10
    They use the Williamson brand to sell to very price-conscious consumers while still selling the WM brand at a premium to those who recognize and trust the WM brand.

    They’d rather get a lower margin sale than let a sale go to a competitor, while protecting the value of their premium brand (and those higher margin sales that they are able to get)

    I imagine a contractor can quote both on a job and present it like “here’s a good boiler for $x and here’s a premium boiler for $y
    1 pipe Utica 112 in Cedar Grove, NJ, 1913 coal > oil > NG
  • clammyclammy Posts: 2,275Member
    I did a Weil I believe it was a 5 section and it was thought to be a dual tapping but we discovered the change and it was only a single riser .I did it 3 inch and I had relocated the return to the opposite side due to the way things payed out and it was fine .peace and good luck clammy
    R.A. Calmbacher L.L.C. HVAC
    NJ Master HVAC Lic.
    Mahwah, NJ
    Specializing in steam and hydronic heating
  • clammyclammy Posts: 2,275Member
    That job was a quickie and I was just a sub so I used what was given it was a fiasco but we got her done n running .peace and good luck clammy
    R.A. Calmbacher L.L.C. HVAC
    NJ Master HVAC Lic.
    Mahwah, NJ
    Specializing in steam and hydronic heating
  • ethicalpaulethicalpaul Posts: 807Member
    Looks great. If you had total budget freedom would you do a drop header @clammy or is it unnecessary for this size boiler with that available riser headroom?
    1 pipe Utica 112 in Cedar Grove, NJ, 1913 coal > oil > NG
  • clammyclammy Posts: 2,275Member
    There was a lot of headroom so it really wasn’t a issue .even though getting the new boiler down was tough it was much lighter then a peerless of similar but I personally would have installed a peerless and did a few things differently like installed a reservoir tank . A lot of main piping and dry return and no insulation’s and a lot of crappy steam main leaks all repaired in copper . But I got done what needed to be done and got them heat ,just what I was sent to do not change the world lol peace and good luck clammy
    R.A. Calmbacher L.L.C. HVAC
    NJ Master HVAC Lic.
    Mahwah, NJ
    Specializing in steam and hydronic heating
  • clammyclammy Posts: 2,275Member
    Forgive that gas pipe I did not do it and am getting to old to yell at a 30 year old about it looking like dodo and was to busy to do everything myself other wise they just stand there either looking texting in between breathing .
    R.A. Calmbacher L.L.C. HVAC
    NJ Master HVAC Lic.
    Mahwah, NJ
    Specializing in steam and hydronic heating
  • Charlie from wmassCharlie from wmass Posts: 4,081Member
    @Kris_3 please edit price referance from the post. We do not use specific dollar amounts.
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/charles-garrity-plumbing-and-heating
  • EBEBRATT-EdEBEBRATT-Ed Posts: 5,969Member
    @clammy at first glance the gas pipe looks ok until yyou eyeball it with your nice straight stuff....then it's leaning a little.

    You stuff looks nice!!
  • SeanBeansSeanBeans Posts: 361Member
    Why does it look half of that 3 inch tapping is blocked?
  • Charlie from wmassCharlie from wmass Posts: 4,081Member
    @SeanBeans There is a catch in there that is used in the hot water models to remove air.
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/charles-garrity-plumbing-and-heating
  • SeanBeansSeanBeans Posts: 361Member
    edited March 12
    So that boiler essentially has one 1 1/2 tapping?

    I don’t know if the picture is lying to me but it looks like the catch is non/removable and is blocking half of the tapping?
  • New England SteamWorksNew England SteamWorks Posts: 1,228Member
    edited March 14
    The way it is: In October WM/Williamson decided to stop shipping with two 3" supply tappings, going with just one instead. We all howled and the resulting compromise is: Williamson will forever more have only the single tapping. As of February the WM branded blocks will once again have the two 3" toppings. Just a matter of clearing the old one-tapper stock out.

    So going forward, Weil and Williamson are no longer identical. Weil has two tappings, and Williamson just the one. A very important distinction now, where previously there was none.


    New England SteamWorks
    Service, Installation, & Restoration of Steam Heating Systems
    newenglandsteamworks.com
  • STEAM DOCTORSTEAM DOCTOR Posts: 915Member
    Wow. This is big news. @New England SteamWorks. Did you get this info from the manufacturer?
  • New England SteamWorksNew England SteamWorks Posts: 1,228Member
    Yes.


    New England SteamWorks
    Service, Installation, & Restoration of Steam Heating Systems
    newenglandsteamworks.com
  • STEAM DOCTORSTEAM DOCTOR Posts: 915Member
    What a bummer. I have been installing Williamsons for a long time. I guess now they will be limited to one riser installations where the left side riser makes sense.
  • STEAM DOCTORSTEAM DOCTOR Posts: 915Member
    Will Williamson continue having the second return tapping on the right side?
  • STEAM DOCTORSTEAM DOCTOR Posts: 915Member
    Anyway that we can convince Peerless to stop using the cyclegard? Would save extra expense involved in replacing with safegard. Also, anyway to convince Peerless to use a 24v LWCO instead of 120v.
  • CanuckerCanucker Posts: 553Member
    edited March 14
    I thought everyone was bringing their cyclegards to Wetstock for this...
    You can have it good, fast or cheap. Pick two
  • krisnet55krisnet55 Posts: 13Member
    > @New England SteamWorks said:
    > The way it is: In October WM/Williamson decided to stop shipping with two 3" supply tappings, going with just one instead. We all howled and the resulting compromise is: Williamson will forever more have only the single tapping. As of February the WM branded blocks will once again have the two 3" toppings. Just a matter of clearing the old one-tapper stock out.
    >
    > So going forward, Weil and Williamson are no longer identical. Weil has two tappings, and Williamson just the one. A very important distinction now,

    Well that just sucks for me.
  • New England SteamWorksNew England SteamWorks Posts: 1,228Member
    In the interim we've grown fond of the Peerless 63 (with the exception of the CycleGard). The waterline is steadier, it comes without the plugs installed by a maniacal robot, the wiring harness* is much better and the gas valve is already installed. Negative: Installation of the service switch box is non-sensical, and no leads for TT supplied.

    On the plus side for the Weil EG: Gas can be piped in on either side, has a 1/2" top tapping for a better optional gauge/control tree, skim tapping is 1-1/2 as opposed to 1-1/4 and not directly in line with return tapping, and has SafeGard (which is 24v, also making VXT wiring a little easier).

    P.S. The Smith GSX is a Peerless 63 if you like red.

    *The old harness to the damper was just fine. But then they switched to a new one with multiple harness termination choices for various brands, and now it is too bulky to fit and attach properly to the damper, risking a wire nick (ask us how we know...).


    New England SteamWorks
    Service, Installation, & Restoration of Steam Heating Systems
    newenglandsteamworks.com
  • Charlie from wmassCharlie from wmass Posts: 4,081Member
    Pretty sure weil is also going one tapping too. Crown, Peerless and Smith are also one tapping on the pin boiler models
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/charles-garrity-plumbing-and-heating
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