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11/16 OD copper pipe!? Can't find fittings

Zipper13
Zipper13 Member Posts: 214
I tried to replace a leaky toilet supply shut off a couple weeks ago.

I cut it off and measured the ID as "close enough" to 1/2 so I figured it's 1/2 copper pipe - -easy off the shelf direct replacement, right? Not so fast!

Turns out the OD of the pipe is 11/16 so I can't find shut off or reducer to fit.

As best I can tell, Westinghouse briefly made pipe like this and for a while (until the 80's 90's), suppliers made shutoffs to accommodate - like the one I had on there before. But now no one has them!

I also found that the ID of this pipe is slightly greater than 1/2 so my best option I've worked out is to file down the threads of brass flare coupling then pound it into 3/8" type L tube to swage out a reducer to fit inside the existing pipe then attach a 3/8 shut off to that.

What would an actual plumber do here? I can't be the only one to run into this.

A homeowner like me can tinker (until now when my wife has had enough of this) but a pro needs to be a lot quicker and correct so what can/should I do?
New owner of a 1920s home with steam heat north of Boston.
Just trying to learn what I can do myself and what I just shouldn't touch
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Comments

  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 2,342
    3/4" that froze one time?

    Form it back with a flair block!
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 2,342
    Are you measuring with the solder?
  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 10,342
    Never herd of 11/16 pipe. 1/2" nominal copper is 5/8" od and that is what is normally used.

    Next size up is 3/4" OD which is only used on refrigeration. The only place to get fittings for that is at a HVAC or refrigeration supply house.

    Next size up is 3/4 nominal 7/8" od

    3/8" nominal is 1/2" od
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 2,342

    Never herd of 11/16 pipe. 1/2" nominal copper is 5/8" od and that is what is normally used.

    Next size up is 3/4" OD which is only used on refrigeration. The only place to get fittings for that is at a HVAC or refrigeration supply house.

    Next size up is 3/4 nominal 7/8" od

    3/8" nominal is 1/2" od

    /Rrr Refrigeration uses 7/8" ..............A/C contractors use 3/4"
  • Zipper13
    Zipper13 Member Posts: 214
    It's clear of any solder.

    It does have a chromeplated-looking finish, but this contributes negligibly to the diamter.

    the cross section of the cut and the cleaned up inside are very clearly copper colored so its not steel or galv or something weird from way back. Well, OK if it's 11/16 OD then it is something weird from way back, I guess.

    I don't think it's ever frozen. it's perfectly uniform and not deformed. I didn't sweat off the leaky valve (I just cut it off), but the diameter going into the shut off is the same and also show no deformation.

    the wall thickness appears a little thinker than "modern" copper.
    New owner of a 1920s home with steam heat north of Boston.
    Just trying to learn what I can do myself and what I just shouldn't touch
  • Zipper13
    Zipper13 Member Posts: 214









    New owner of a 1920s home with steam heat north of Boston.
    Just trying to learn what I can do myself and what I just shouldn't touch
  • Alan (California Radiant) Forbes
    Alan (California Radiant) Forbes Member Posts: 2,969
    edited April 2020
    I've never seen one before, but it looks like the valve and nipple are one piece. You should be able to unscrew it out of the fitting behind the wall, no?

    Often wrong, never in doubt.
    HVACNUTGrallertZipper13
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 2,342
    That's 1/2" Plumbers......…..5/8 Refrigeration/ Same copper!

    I think what your reading is it not being deburred!
  • Zipper13
    Zipper13 Member Posts: 214
    well shoot! @Alan (California Radiant) Forbes might be on to something here. I took the bell off and pulled the pipe out a bit from the wall and what do you know.

    There's 1/2 pipe back there!




    OD of the pipe this thing is attached to.



    New owner of a 1920s home with steam heat north of Boston.
    Just trying to learn what I can do myself and what I just shouldn't touch
  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 10,342
    edited April 2020
    @pecmsg
    It's made like the tube on a non freeze silcock. The od is.6890 it's not 1/2" copper. @Alan (California Radiant) Forbes got it right
    HVACNUT
  • HVACNUT
    HVACNUT Member Posts: 4,205
    @Alan (California Radiant) Forbes that was some fine detective work!
  • "Often wrong, never in doubt."

    Is it time to change my signature?
    Often wrong, never in doubt.
    Solid_Fuel_Man
  • rick in Alaska
    rick in Alaska Member Posts: 1,243
    According to your caliper reading, it is actually less than what the od of 1/2 copper is. It should be .625 inches for 1/2 inch. Did you try deburring the outside of the pipe and sanding it down to bare copper?
    I would be nervous about trying to unthread it as it might break something in the wall. My luck anyway.
    Rick
  • It may help to know if the water piping in his house is predominately copper or galvanized iron.
    Often wrong, never in doubt.
  • BillyO
    BillyO Member Posts: 274
    This falls under the category of plumbing isn't so hard, anyone can do it. Just saying guys
    Zipper13Solid_Fuel_Man
  • Zipper13
    Zipper13 Member Posts: 214
    edited April 2020
    The calipers are cheap plastic so they have some give in them and are not very accurate past hundredths, so I think it's pretty likely that the "new" pipe I found back there is really 1/2. @rick in Alaska I share that same concern, especially after demonstrating my clear ineptitude on this so far, but it looks likes a sweat fitting and doesn't appear to be threaded on. I think I could get it off safely. Or maybe I'll call someone...

    All other readily accessible and visible pipes are copper.

    @BillyO can't argue with that! with what I've spent in parts I've tried to finagle and jerry rig plus the down time of the bathroom and frustration of my wife, I think a pro would have been the best option. But it seemed like such an easy swap out! and with this whole COVID thing going on, it seemed reasonable to try for a do it yourself option.

    The transition was just before the drywall and had some joint compound and other crud on it so I dint even notice that it was a different material/diameter. I did some googling and found a thread somewhere else about how Westinghouse made 11/16 OD briefly and used it mostly on the west coast. I latched onto the idea that my house here in New England somehow got it too and never considered the idea that the valve and nipple were a packaged deal. when the caliper reading on teh chrome plated portion came back close to 11/16, that fed the confirmation bias enough for me to be sure that's what i must have had there.

    I'm honestly a bit embarrassed about this, but man this is a great example of how you don't know what you don't know!
    New owner of a 1920s home with steam heat north of Boston.
    Just trying to learn what I can do myself and what I just shouldn't touch
    SuperTechCTOilHeat
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 15,048
    Sand the outside well and see if a Sharkgrip type stop will slide on
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,978
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • Alan (California Radiant) Forbes
    Alan (California Radiant) Forbes Member Posts: 2,969
    edited April 2020
    It's beyond me why anyone would want to use a one-piece angle stop with a sweat connection with the valve and escutcheon already installed when you rough it in because
    - it has to be protected from damage during construction
    - installing the drywall is a pain
    - and as we can see from Mr. Zipper, it's very difficult to replace

    Apologies if it is a sweat connection. I thought it was a threaded connection in the wall and am glad you didn't put a wrench on it.
    Often wrong, never in doubt.
    rick in Alaskamattmia2
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 15,048
    Here is what I might try. These seem to have a bit more tolerance for large OD tube.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
  • Zipper13
    Zipper13 Member Posts: 214
    @hot_rod a friend recommended I look into those too. I spent a lot of time trying to find specs on the dimensions to see if I could figure out if it would accept this pipe or not, but couldn't find the details.

    for now I think I'm just going to get a replacement like the one @ChrisJ noted and install that. I'll have to chunk out some to sweat this off an put on the replacement, but we've been talking about paining the bathroom anyway so no time like the present!

    I have a 1/2" compression shutoff handy that I might put on for now after removing this chromed piece just so we can get the water back on up there.
    New owner of a 1920s home with steam heat north of Boston.
    Just trying to learn what I can do myself and what I just shouldn't touch
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,978
    Zipper13 said:

    @hot_rod a friend recommended I look into those too. I spent a lot of time trying to find specs on the dimensions to see if I could figure out if it would accept this pipe or not, but couldn't find the details.

    for now I think I'm just going to get a replacement like the one @ChrisJ noted and install that. I'll have to chunk out some to sweat this off an put on the replacement, but we've been talking about paining the bathroom anyway so no time like the present!

    I have a 1/2" compression shutoff handy that I might put on for now after removing this chromed piece just so we can get the water back on up there.

    They have them in right angle to I believe.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • Zipper13
    Zipper13 Member Posts: 214
    New owner of a 1920s home with steam heat north of Boston.
    Just trying to learn what I can do myself and what I just shouldn't touch
    ChrisJ
  • rick in Alaska
    rick in Alaska Member Posts: 1,243
    Why not just clean the fitting back a little, and put a compression 1/4 stop on it? Millions in use, and you only need two wrenches to install. Takes about 1 minute, and you don't have to mess with what is there.
    I sure wouldn't waste my time soldering on a valve unless it was for visual reasons.
    Rick
  • unclejohn
    unclejohn Member Posts: 1,751
    You should be able to solder some 3/8 inside that pipe.
  • george_42
    george_42 Member Posts: 98
    I can not believe that you plumbers don`t know that the valve is sweat on to 1/2 copper as one piece. heat up the chrome section with a torch and it will slip right off . Then clean up the copper tube and sweat on new valve.George
    MikeL_2SuperTech
  • GW
    GW Member Posts: 4,319
    Ouch that’s gonna be a pain to remove
    Gary Wilson
    Wilson Services, Inc
    Northampton, MA
    [email protected]
  • george_42
    george_42 Member Posts: 98
    service plumbers do this all the time, george
    SuperTech
  • george_42 said:

    I can not believe that you plumbers don`t know that the valve is sweat on to 1/2 copper as one piece. heat up the chrome section with a torch and it will slip right off . Then clean up the copper tube and sweat on new valve.George

    Good luck!

    Even though you're heating the chrome part, it's likely to char the baseboard and turn the paint black from flame spread. And what about the lath that you can't see. Get that hot and you may wake up in the middle of the night to fire engines.

    And how do you know how far back in the wall the fitting is located? It could easily be 4" and it would take a LOT of heat to melt the fitting so far away. Then comes the fun part to try to heat and apply solder to the fitting that you can't see to sweat the new fitting.

    Personally, I don't like living dangerously and would open up the wall so I could see what I'm doing.
    Often wrong, never in doubt.
    Larry Weingarten
  • GW
    GW Member Posts: 4,319
    Service plumbers deal with “that” all the time? Really? How many times have you are someone cut the valve off of a sleeved stop on your life? This one is a first for me. Best of luck whoever tackles this one😀. It’s a bummer
    Gary Wilson
    Wilson Services, Inc
    Northampton, MA
    [email protected]
    Alan Welch
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,978
    There's no need to make fun of someone for trying to learn.

    For thinking they know everything, yes but for learning and asking absolutely not.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • GW
    GW Member Posts: 4,319
    Chris who is making fun of whom? I missed it
    Gary Wilson
    Wilson Services, Inc
    Northampton, MA
    [email protected]
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,978
    > @GW said:
    > Chris who is making fun of whom? I missed it

    I'm sorry, I took this as a shot "I can not believe that you plumbers don`t know that the valve is sweat on to 1/2 copper as one piece."

    Sometimes things are lost in text so I may have misinterpreted.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • rick in Alaska
    rick in Alaska Member Posts: 1,243
    I stand by my post. Clean the fitting off and put a compression stop on it. I would be incredibly surprised if it didn't work.
    And yes, if I wanted to have a sweat valve on there, I could easily solder a new one on with out causing any damage to baseboard or anything else. Just heat the fitting, and not the baseboard. Easily done within 1/2 of the wall in my experience.
    I just wouldn't sweat a valve on though. Personal preference.
    Rick
  • Intplm.
    Intplm. Member Posts: 1,336
    Zipper13 said:

    well shoot! @Alan (California Radiant) Forbes might be on to something here. I took the bell off and pulled the pipe out a bit from the wall and what do you know.

    There's 1/2 pipe back there!




    OD of the pipe this thing is attached to.



    @Zipper13 Take a good look at your top pic here. What you have is a product that a company by the name of brass craft makes. It is A Valve with a chrome plated tube attached to the valve by the manufacturer, escutcheon is also included.
    This is installed by cleaning and fluxing the inside diameter of the chrome plated tube attached to the valve. You would also clean the 1/2" copper tubing that is stubbed out of the wall in your picture. Then you would slide the CP tube over the copper pipe and solder it.
    The thing is you cut the valve off, leaving the CP tube and the copper together still soldered with nothing to grab on to.

    To get the CP tubing off to install a new valve, you will have to peal away the CP tube. It will take some doing but it can be done with a torch and some patience. You wil need to cut a edge in the tube to grab the CP piece with a pare of pliers. Heat the tube and pull it off.

    brass craft cs40bx I believe is the model number of what you have.
    Look it up, and best of luck.
  • GW
    GW Member Posts: 4,319
    I’ve soldered a ton of stuff in my day, if that thing pops off I’ll be a monkeys uncle- there’s nothing to grab there. Too much heat- you’re done. Squeeze too tightly to try and twist, you’re done.

    Rick you think that sleeve will easily come off, especially by a non plumber guy? No new valve goes on until that sleeve comes off
    Gary Wilson
    Wilson Services, Inc
    Northampton, MA
    [email protected]
  • Larry Weingarten
    Larry Weingarten Member Posts: 2,291
    Hello, If you could find a Parmelee wrench, the job would probably be pretty easy. And then you would have another good tool!

    Yours, Larry
  • Big Ed_4
    Big Ed_4 Member Posts: 1,775
    edited April 2020
    Larry , What is that wrench for ? I just googled it, I never seen one .
    I have enough experience to know , that I dont know it all
  • MikeL_2
    MikeL_2 Member Posts: 292
    I've installed, and removed hundreds of those Brasscraft sleeved valves, mostly for toilet supply piping. The CP sleeve is extremely thin walled and easily heated for installation or removal, and, many of those were installed in the days of 50 / 50 solder. We pack the hole in the wall with plumbers putty to prevent an errant flame from entering the opening. Very occasionally, we will make an access hole around the pipe to inspect, or make certain no damage or fire occurs in the wall cavity; it's a part of the repair process and customers are warned beforehand.......
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 3,987
    If the attached tube is just soft soldererd in to the tube you could take apart the valve, unsolder the tube, rebuild the valve with a new washer and packing washer or string packing, file the chrome off the stub and sweat it back on. If it is brazed or pressed it will be a different story.

    You could also anneal a small piece of tubing and stretch it out to fit over the od to make an adapter.

    I think you could heat the tube and heat the joint through conduction without damaging the wall, but getting to to not bind up or also melt the joint in the wall would be difficult without practice. As someone else mentioned you could potentially form a flair on it and use a flari fitting.
    Intplm.