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Replace main vent

dmcs
dmcs Member Posts: 19
In trying to replace a gorton valve on my old single pipe system, i broke the nipple off in the main line pipe. It was on an elbow in spot with little room to work. Is it possible to drillout the hole and retap? Do i find a new spot and someow cap the old tapping? Thank you.

Comments

  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 4,176
    Several possibilities exist including both that you mentioned. Can you show us some pictures?

    My first thought would be to (rather than drill out) use a small hacksaw blade to try to cut free the remainder of the nipple so it can be carefully chiseled out, but it's hard to say without seeing it.
    1 pipe Peerless 63-03L in Cedar Grove, NJ, coal > oil > NG
  • dmcs
    dmcs Member Posts: 19
    Thank you. I'll take a picture tonight and post. I thought about the hacksaw too but didn't know there were ones small enough to fit. If i decide tp cap the old one is there a way to do that without removing the old nipple?
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 20,421
    Do you have a big easyout that might fit?
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • dmcs
    dmcs Member Posts: 19
    Not large enough but ciuld get one. Rusted in there pretty good - do you think that would work?
  • Fred
    Fred Member Posts: 8,540
    If it was on an elbow, can you remove the elbow and replace it?
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 4,176
    dmcs said:

    Thank you. I'll take a picture tonight and post. I thought about the hacksaw too but didn't know there were ones small enough to fit. If i decide tp cap the old one is there a way to do that without removing the old nipple?

    They make pretty small ones, but you can also break off the end of a normal hacksaw blade and grab it with locking pliers and slowly make your cuts. It's not too bad because you want to work really slowly with this kind of operation anyway to keep from (overly) damaging the threads. Teflon tape and pipe dope can "fix" quite a bit of the results of your cutting.

    To plug it you can just do something janky with a plug and some JB weld or something to seal it, it should only be a couple PSI max, but only do that if you can find another place for your vent (but you already know this I think)
    1 pipe Peerless 63-03L in Cedar Grove, NJ, coal > oil > NG
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 10,278
    The way I understand it is that there is a broken nipple left in the steam main tee. The elbow snapped off?
    dmcs
  • dmcs
    dmcs Member Posts: 19
    The tap was on the elbow and the nipple broke off in the elbow. The elbow on main is otherwise fine. Here are some pictures.
    ethicalpaul
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 10,278
    Is that nipple an 1/8" pipe? I would be tempted to drill it out to the next size of pipe thread to gain more air venting.

    It is fortunate that those are cast iron fittings, if things go bad.
    That reducing 90 would be easy to "crack" with 2 hammers.
    You could replace it with a bullhead tee, 45 and union to drop down to the lower coupling.
    Then vent off the other run of the tee with horizontal offset to get the vent away from water hammer.
    ethicalpaul
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 4,176
    Yeah seeing that I'm with @JUGHNE. The picture in my head was a reducing tee with a real tapping and doesn't apply to your situation.
    1 pipe Peerless 63-03L in Cedar Grove, NJ, coal > oil > NG
  • acwagner
    acwagner Member Posts: 505
    How much space is between the tap location and the drain pipe behind it?
    Burnham IN5PVNI Boiler, Single Pipe with 290 EDR
    18 Ounce per Square Inch Gauge
    Time Delay Relay in Series with Thermostat
    Operating Pressure 0.3-0.5 Ounce per Square Inch

  • dmcs
    dmcs Member Posts: 19
    Not a lot of space at all, but hopefully enough for drilling and tap.
    Yes, I think it is 1/8 piping.
  • Fred
    Fred Member Posts: 8,540
    If you are planning to try and use that same elbow, you may want to consider plugging the existing hole and tap a new one on the top side of the elbow.
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 10,278
    Fred, yes, I was wondering why both vents were tapped into the sides.
    question
  • Fred
    Fred Member Posts: 8,540
    JUGHNE said:

    Fred, yes, I was wondering why both vents were tapped into the sides.

    And on the backside no less!
    question
  • dmcs
    dmcs Member Posts: 19
    That would be easier to work on the top. What's the best way to plug the hole? I thought I might have to drill and tap anyway to screw in a plug. What sort of plug might I use with JB Weld or do I fill the whole space with JB Weld? Thanks for all the tips!
  • acwagner
    acwagner Member Posts: 505
    If you have the space to re-tap the existing hole, I'd do that and put a plug in.

    I've tried both JB Weld and RTV Silicone for temporary repairs on steam leaks, and the RTV held up better. Like painting, it's all in the surface prep. Those repairs were only for half a season until I could make a permanent repair during the summer.
    Burnham IN5PVNI Boiler, Single Pipe with 290 EDR
    18 Ounce per Square Inch Gauge
    Time Delay Relay in Series with Thermostat
    Operating Pressure 0.3-0.5 Ounce per Square Inch

  • dmcs
    dmcs Member Posts: 19
    Got it, thank you, all
  • Danny Scully
    Danny Scully Member Posts: 1,396
    I would just drill that exiting hole for 1/4”. Then use a 1/4” tap. Don’t bother plugging and re-drilling.
    ethicalpaul
  • dmcs
    dmcs Member Posts: 19
    Jamie Hall's suggestion of trying an easy out worked! Thanks again!
  • dmcs
    dmcs Member Posts: 19
    Here's a photo
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 15,755
    So how much better does the system work?
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Towson, MD, USA
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • dmcs
    dmcs Member Posts: 19
    Probably have to wait for some cold weather to know - but hoping that replacing no.1 vent that did not seem to work with new no.2 will help the radiator upstairs on that line heat up faster and balance with the rest of the house.