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So There's This Nice Woman....

Who has 2 radiators tied together in tandem in a 2-pipe system. For as long as she can remember the left radiator would never heat, and the right radiator barely. They look like this:



We tested the trap, and it was fine. We tested the TRV, and it was fine as well. Curious, we pried up the box that concealed the connection. This is what we found:



You can't make it up.

So the guys went to work and an hour or so later, both radiators are now nice and toasty.



Yet another example of how steam gets it's undeserved reputation. Incompetence.


New England SteamWorks
Service, Installation, & Restoration of Steam Heating Systems
newenglandsteamworks.com
pecmsgLordZenLS123PC7060CanuckerYoungplumberluketheplumberEdTheHeaterManicy78StuckWithSteamTurbo Dave

Comments

  • nicholas bonham-carter
    nicholas bonham-carter Member Posts: 8,456
    Good job!-how did you bend the pipe?—NBC
    Robert O'Brien
  • Robert O'Brien
    Robert O'Brien Member Posts: 3,306

    Good job!-how did you bend the pipe?—NBC

    My first thought, I was expecting a 45
    To learn more about this professional, click here to visit their ad in Find A Contractor.
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 15,746
    Nice catch, @New England SteamWorks ! And no, these crazy bay windows aren't nice 45s. Be nice if they were...
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    CLamb
  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 6,359
    Nice catch, Ryan. And nice custom fabrication.

    Had the knucklehead heated the copper to where it was cherry red, it could have been bent to the necessary angle. Not that copper is the right material.

    You can't fix stupid.
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
    EdTheHeaterMan
  • SomeTradesJack
    SomeTradesJack Member Posts: 3
    Nice bend. Very satisfying outcome!
  • Hap_Hazzard
    Hap_Hazzard Member Posts: 2,355
    Ironman said:

    Had the knucklehead heated the copper to where it was cherry red, it could have been bent to the necessary angle. Not that copper is the right material.

    Bending copper is easy with the right tools. I have one that looks like a spring that you drop inside the pipe to keep it from collapsing. After you bend it, it slides right out. No heating required. An electrician's conduit bender might work too, but I don't have one of those. But I agree it's not the right material for this.
    Just another DIYer | King of Prussia, PA
    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S | 3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 4,926
    edited March 3
    Very Nice! Is @New England SteamWorks is gonna leave us hanging until after work to tell us about the pipe bending?
    I can't tell, but I wonder if the rads are going to start moving back/forth now that they'll both be heating up.
    Looks like they were moved at least once to finish the hardwood, probably when they damaged the pipe/replaced with copper.

    steve
  • Hap_Hazzard
    Hap_Hazzard Member Posts: 2,355
    Don't you guys know how to use a pipe vise?

    :D
    Just another DIYer | King of Prussia, PA
    1983(?) Peerless G-561-W-S | 3" drop header, CG400-1090, VXT-24
  • Had the knucklehead heated the copper to where it was cherry red, it could have been bent to the necessary angle. Not that copper is the right material.
    By the discoloration of the copper, it looks as though they tried...............and failed.
    Often wrong, never in doubt.
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 8,265
    I have a seldom used Greenlee hydraulic bender, shoes for only rigid SCH 40 steel. (another auction buy of course.)
    Install the nipples and unions, so to do something like this I bend a piece of soft 1/2" copper for the pattern. Measure the length of the copper. Cut and thread the iron pipe. Then bend to copy the pattern.
    Minor adjustments can be made with the close/short nipples in the ends of each rad.

    Anyone interested in the bender.....1/2 up to 2" rigid??
    Hap_HazzardAlan (California Radiant) ForbesratioEdTheHeaterMan
  • Ironman
    Ironman Member Posts: 6,359
    @JUGHNE
    How much $?
    Bob Boan
    You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 8,265
    Ironman, $500.00 plus shipping.
    Heavy steel box 25 x 26 x 8"........113 pounds.

    Just to clarify, the shortest 1 1/2" pipe you could put in the shoe and catch the rollers might be +24" long.

    For the pipe above, you could bend it, then cut and thread the ends, not in a rotating vice like the 300 of course.

    I have had it for 35+ years, maybe used it 15 times. Mostly 1 1/4" gas line for UG install.

    PM for more details.
  • bucksnort
    bucksnort Member Posts: 109
    edited March 3
    I'm surprised it wasn't 1/2" PEX and some sharkbites that was in there. Very nice fix. You really don't need the box anymore.
    EdTheHeaterMan
  • rick in Alaska
    rick in Alaska Member Posts: 1,178
    I'm going to bite. Your New England Steam installing, big armed guys, just took the pipe and bent it over their knee. Right?
    Nice job
    Rick
    ethicalpaulEdTheHeaterManicy78
  • SteamingatMohawk
    SteamingatMohawk Member Posts: 475
    From information earlier in this discussion, the system is steam, not hot water. From what I could find, PEX is rated for no more than 200F, with the exception of TP valve outlets (presumably) at no pressure and only hot water presumably near 210F or a few degrees higher.

    Perhaps, if the system were a vacuum system staying under 200F, it would be acceptable, but from my minimal knowledge of vacuum steam systems, that is not be the case.

    I am not a PEX or steam heat expert by any means, but if anyone can prove me wrong, please do.





  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 8,857
    Come on @New England SteamWorks were dying here

    Tell us how you bent that. I would have heated it with a oxy acytelene torch but the pipe doesn't look discolored and doesn't look like you painted it so my guess is


    A Muffler Shop
    ethicalpaulLS123
  • New England SteamWorks
    New England SteamWorks Member Posts: 1,411
    Lol. With a hydraulic pipe bender...
    New England SteamWorks
    Service, Installation, & Restoration of Steam Heating Systems
    newenglandsteamworks.com
    JUGHNEethicalpaul
  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 8,857
    @New England SteamWorks

    bent, cut and threaded by hand or with a 700 I would guess
  • BillyO
    BillyO Member Posts: 264
    WOW, what a great job!!!!! Thanks for sharing that one
  • Shahrdad
    Shahrdad Member Posts: 93
    That's really cool how that pipe was bent so perfectly. But I thought that two steam radiators should never be connected like this, but rather, the steam pipe should have a T to the first radiator, then continue under the first radiator and then connect to the second radiator. I think I saw drawings of in in Dan's book about steam heating.
  • SteamingatMohawk
    SteamingatMohawk Member Posts: 475
    Page 158 of LAoSH
    Shahrdad
  • unclejohn
    unclejohn Member Posts: 1,716
    I was wondering that myself as the steam would condense in the first rad and roll through to the second as water. The first KH could have at least gave it a squeez with some channel locks and opened it up some.
  • SteamingatMohawk
    SteamingatMohawk Member Posts: 475
    What's the chance of squeezing splitting the copper and having to start all over again? 50-50, 75-25?
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 2,869
    1%?
  • SteamingatMohawk
    SteamingatMohawk Member Posts: 475
    Failure or success for a KH?
  • But I thought that two steam radiators should never be connected like this, but rather, the steam pipe should have a T to the first radiator, then continue under the first radiator and then connect to the second radiator.
    Seems like the pipe size can incorporate both steam and condensate.

    The TRV actuator should be horizontal, no?
    Often wrong, never in doubt.
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