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The Return of the old Bryant boiler

PrecaudPrecaud Member Posts: 211
"Return", as in wet return. The other thread was getting to be way too long.

The experts here noticed pretty quickly that the header drip was connected to the main return drip above the water line, which leads to steam being pushed into both ends of the main loop. And they were right. So my challenge, should I decide to accept it, is to move that connection point from the main drip at "A" to the wet return at "B" in the following pic.


(The woodstove is in the way but will be removed before doing this.)

Here's a pic of the Wet Return, all 2-1/2 feet of it. It and the drips are all 2" pipe.


Here's the end of it, where my plan is to remove the cap, add another tee, drop the header drip into the tee top, and put a ball valve on the end (for cleaning). (If you have a better idea, pls tell).


First question is, how the heck do you screw a tee onto this, so close to the floor?
1950's Bryant boiler in a 1-pipe steam system at 7,000 ft in northern NM, where basements are rare.

Comments

  • GrallertGrallert Member Posts: 419
    You'll have to break that union and gently lift the horizontal return.
    Hap_Hazzard
  • mattmia2mattmia2 Member Posts: 1,023
    Looks like you could just break the unions and rearrange the fittings between A and B to swap the union and the tee at A and put a longer nipple out of the 45 to connect it below the water line.

    A valve and hose adapter or cap is a good idea to be able to flush the return.
    Precaudethicalpaul
  • PrecaudPrecaud Member Posts: 211
    Very interesting, @mattmia2 . You're saying: No added tee. Flip the pipe from the tee at A to the union above B, invert the elbow, then drop the new drip to it from the 45. Correct?

    Does the new drip need to be 2"?

    You guys are so clever. Piping is a lot more imaginative than I would have ever thought.
    1950's Bryant boiler in a 1-pipe steam system at 7,000 ft in northern NM, where basements are rare.
  • mattmia2mattmia2 Member Posts: 1,023
    I just see an easy way to plumb it. The real steam people can confirm that it will work OK. It needs to tie in a certain distance below the water line so the weight of the water keeps the pressure of the steam from pushing through the water.
  • PrecaudPrecaud Member Posts: 211
    edited February 13
    Understood. Yesterday I was wondering if, using the existing arrangement, a U could be added between the header drip and the main drip tee, and fill it with water (like a pigtail). Similar concept as a "false water line", I believe. Would that be sufficient to stop the steam?

    But that might be more complicated to pull off than your idea.
    1950's Bryant boiler in a 1-pipe steam system at 7,000 ft in northern NM, where basements are rare.
  • EBEBRATT-EdEBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 6,706
    I would take apart the union on the header drip and remove the 90 & 45 off of the tee in the return drop. Put a plug in that tee. Put the union and 45 back on the header drip to measure with.

    Take the cap off the return down low and put a tee on their for flushing and cleaning. Put the run of the new tee on the existing tee and screw the new tee on until the bull of the tee points to 3 oclock. Put a nipple and a 90 in the bull of the tee, make this line up with the union and the 45 you took off of the header drip.

    1 more 90 and a nipple pointing up into the 45 with a piece of pipe and your done.
    PrecaudSTEVEusaPA
  • PrecaudPrecaud Member Posts: 211
    edited February 13

    1 more 90 and a nipple pointing up into the 45 with a piece of pipe and your done.

    Another interesting approach! Methinks you meant tee instead of 90, though.

    PS - what are "bull" and "run" of the tee? My guess is, the run is between the long ends.
    1950's Bryant boiler in a 1-pipe steam system at 7,000 ft in northern NM, where basements are rare.
  • PrecaudPrecaud Member Posts: 211
    edited February 15
    Does the header drip need to be 2" pipe like it is now?
    I checked all but one local source for iron pipe today, and there's no 2" in town.
    1950's Bryant boiler in a 1-pipe steam system at 7,000 ft in northern NM, where basements are rare.
  • ethicalpaulethicalpaul Member Posts: 1,510
    > @Precaud said:
    > Does the header drip need to be 2" pipe like it is now?
    > I checked all but one local source for iron pipe today, and there's no 2" in town.

    Not in my opinion, it doesn’t. Peerless states 1-1/4 for their smaller to mid boilers and 1-1/2 for larger ones.
    1 pipe Utica 112 in Cedar Grove, NJ, 1913 coal > oil > NG
    Precaud
  • PrecaudPrecaud Member Posts: 211
    Thanks @ethicalpaul , that makes sense to me, given that, in this case, the only water in this drip will be from the short counterflow branch, which has only one active radiator on it. Plus whatever condenses in the header before it heats up, of course...
    1950's Bryant boiler in a 1-pipe steam system at 7,000 ft in northern NM, where basements are rare.
  • mattmia2mattmia2 Member Posts: 1,023
    the header is the one place that can have an appreciable amount of water:
  • PrecaudPrecaud Member Posts: 211
    edited February 16
    No doubt the lower header is pretty wet and resembles what the video shows. And the equalizer is probably pretty busy. But from what I've learned here, in this oddball setup, I doubt any water makes it to the upper one.
    1950's Bryant boiler in a 1-pipe steam system at 7,000 ft in northern NM, where basements are rare.
    mattmia2
  • PrecaudPrecaud Member Posts: 211
    edited March 1
    Another view of the wet return and Hartford loop.



    The red arrow points to a capped tee in the equalizer. Is this a useful access point for cleaning/maintenance? It doesn't look like it to me. What would you use it for?
    1950's Bryant boiler in a 1-pipe steam system at 7,000 ft in northern NM, where basements are rare.
  • New England SteamWorksNew England SteamWorks Member Posts: 1,305
    SteaMaster tablet!


    New England SteamWorks
    Service, Installation, & Restoration of Steam Heating Systems
    newenglandsteamworks.com
    ethicalpaulPrecaud
  • PrecaudPrecaud Member Posts: 211

    SteaMaster tablet!

    Perhaps it's not useless after all :)
    1950's Bryant boiler in a 1-pipe steam system at 7,000 ft in northern NM, where basements are rare.
  • The Steam WhispererThe Steam Whisperer Member Posts: 475
    That tee can come in very handy when trying to clean the system of oils. It is something I am probably going to start adding to our standard installs. When the boiler is new, guess where most of the oils end up .....in the equalizer. If you can skim thr oil out of the equalizer, then you get the oil out faster.
    To learn more about this professional, click here to visit their ad in Find A Contractor.
    Precaudethicalpaul
  • PrecaudPrecaud Member Posts: 211
    Interesting. So you would suck water out of that tee with a vac with the boiler steaming?
    1950's Bryant boiler in a 1-pipe steam system at 7,000 ft in northern NM, where basements are rare.
  • The Steam WhispererThe Steam Whisperer Member Posts: 475
    No. Just shut down the boiler and skim it like the main boiler skimming.
    To learn more about this professional, click here to visit their ad in Find A Contractor.
  • dopey27177dopey27177 Member Posts: 219
    The header drip must be connected directly into the boiler.
    The Hartford loop should start at the low side of the header drip.
    You need to rearrange the piping where all drips connect in the wet return.

    Jake
  • PrecaudPrecaud Member Posts: 211

    The header drip must be connected directly into the boiler.
    The Hartford loop should start at the low side of the header drip.
    You need to rearrange the piping where all drips connect in the wet return.

    Jake

    The header drip is not shown in the photo. It does have a problem, in that it is connected to the wet return above the water line, but that will be corrected as soon as heating season ends.
    1950's Bryant boiler in a 1-pipe steam system at 7,000 ft in northern NM, where basements are rare.
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