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How we use Joist Trak...........(hb)

I did some similiar stuff on my basement floor only using the stamped, double-groove plates on top of the wood.
How would the price of the joist-trak compare to the the Rehau "Raupanel"?
I've wanted to try some of that. Lots more aluminum and it isn't covered with wood. Kevin
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Comments

  • heatboy
    heatboy Member Posts: 1,468
    When wood floors are used.....

    .....this is our preferred method of radiant. The owner on the East Hampton project is using white oak wide plank flooring from Carlisle. Wonderful heat transfer and lots of nailing surface for the flooring guys.

    Because of the pump used in the 311 PROpanel, we are able to run 1/2" loops of 400+ feet. It makes for fewer and smaller mainifold stations throughout the house and much less pipe used due to less runs to and from the manifold.

    hb

    www.climatecadvanced.com
    heatboy



    The Radiant Whisperer





    "The laws of physics will outweigh the laws of ecomomics every time."
  • Jeff Lawrence_25
    Jeff Lawrence_25 Member Posts: 746
    Looks Nice

    How do you fill in the returns? Cut half-circles in the plywood?
  • thfurnitureguy_4
    thfurnitureguy_4 Member Posts: 398


    Why not in the joist bays? This looks like a ton of work. Is there that much benifit to having your heat right next to the final flooring? Do you still have to insulate below the radiant? Is there a problem with heat striping of the finished floor, having the radiant right against it? NOT JUDGING just asking.
  • hr
    hr Member Posts: 6,106
    A few questions, Mr. Boy

    I have a 3000 square footer coming up with an "on top" system called out. Wicked crawl space make a below system near impossible.

    Do you do the plywood work also, or just the plate install. Looks like 12" oc?

    And what about the fill in for the loop ends?

    Do you relieve the bottom of the plywood fill in so it lies flat above the plates.

    400 footers has got me thinking. Sure is nice to cover as much real estate as possible with a loop. Grundfos Super Brute on speed 3?

    Nice work.

    hot rod
  • hr
    hr Member Posts: 6,106
    A few questions, Mr. Boy

    > Why not in the joist bays? This looks like a ton

    > of work. Is there that much benifit to having

    > your heat right next to the final flooring? Do

    > you still have to insulate below the radiant? Is

    > there a problem with heat striping of the

    > finished floor, having the radiant right against

    > it? NOT JUDGING just asking.





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  • jim lockard
    jim lockard Member Posts: 1,059
    I like it

    looks really nice. I would like to know how you do your ends? Did you use a pattern to keep you loop ends uniform? J.Lockard
  • Bob R
    Bob R Member Posts: 24


    Why not just use Wirsbos Quick Trac product. Your job looks great but it seems like an awful lot of extra work.
  • Boy of Heat;

    400' plus? HUH???

    I think your preferred method is right on "Trak" but by looking at the pictures, I wonder who’s the one filling-in all of those voids in what looks to be a great amount of return bends? I must not understand this, or I’m just working with far less forgiving general contractors. Was it in your contract to cut only the sleepers? Who's going to do all the fill-ins and how do you work this into the heating contract?

    Is there an extremely HIGH heat-loss in this upper level interior hallway? It seems like a lot of materials used for such a transitional area. Why couldn’t you run it length way and save all that T&M?

    My preferred method is much the same as yours. However, I won’t use "Joist Track". The other differences are; I do all the routing of my own return panels and leave nothing for any other trades to mess up. Further, I use original Thermo-Fin plates. Thermo-Fin U works even better but it’s not available around here and shipping costs. Surprised to see you’re not using RauPanel. That’s one great design.

    Exceptional installation. As always.


    Wallace Radiant Design

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  • Wayco Wayne_2
    Wayco Wayne_2 Member Posts: 2,479
    Like some of the others

    my ears perked up at the mention of 400 foot loops with 1/2 inch pex. What is the circulator? Did you have to air lift it into place. (just kidding) I have used joist trak the same way with good results. I worked side by side with the carpenter and the job rolled on pretty nicely. WW

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  • Bob Bona_4
    Bob Bona_4 Member Posts: 2,083
    gotta agree

    someone's physically handling the floor product (plates, returns, fillers, sleepers-and all seperately) way more times than needed vs. a QT job-screw down and done. I can see longer loop lengths this way but, still?

    Probaly want to stagger those plates for floor integrity:)
  • hr
    hr Member Posts: 6,106
    I have neve installed a Quik Trak

    or Climate panel, I have an adversion to that 5/6" diameter tube. Seen enough of the "long term" issues with small bore SolarRoll :)

    hb is working the opposite end with the 1/2 diameter. I like that plan better, as well as the top drawer transfer plates that actually encase the tube. I don't believe the above mentioned systems actually grip the tube?? No question these are the best transfer plates.

    I wonder about the delta t in a long loop, or the amount of circ to minimize the temperature drop in a long circuit.

    Time to pull out the HDS and model that loop :)

    hot rod

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  • Bob Bona_4
    Bob Bona_4 Member Posts: 2,083
    no question

    about those plates-they pack a lot of punch! I suppose in the hall, you can widen that delta..

    On the solarroll jobs, HR, mini tubes plugging? Open or glycol systems?

    BTW yer ears may have been ringing last weekend when I mentioned I know a guy fluent with wood burners/solar to a few clients. Keep you posted...
  • Done....

    According to Siggy's Software, by my calcs, using 400' circuit of 1/2", 9" OC in gyp to assimilate the action of the plates, the circuit would deliver about 15K btuH. Using 140 degree F water, and a 1558 on speed 3 that equates to a 25 degree F delta T. (EDIT) Siggys software does have a category for plates above the floor, and with that at 12" OC, the circuit will deliver 11,607 btuH, which with the pump on speed one delivers .89 GPM and a 26 degree delta T, still reasonable. Siggys software doesnt support the 5/16" tube or I'd run those numbers... ME

    Now, for a loop that is mostly internal to the core of the home, that seems VERY reasonable to me. It also sounds completely Germanic to me. The Germans typically run longer loops, and BIG delta t's, and if the delta is TOO big, they'll slap a reverser on the circuit to overcome human objections.

    As for not finishing the return loops filler board, if asked to do so, I will comply to the GC or HO's wishes, but do you really think its wise to use a pipe fitters wages to do a carpenters job?

    Based on the uniformity of what I'm seeing in HB's typical style, cutting fillers would be a simple redundant job, custom made for a carpenter.

    Great work Jeff. Another 10 on the Young hydronic scale...

    Sometimes, we as hydronic contractors get so used to doing things a certain way, we get "tube locked" and can't see the forest for the trees. Sometimes, you've got to think outside the tube...

    ME
  • heatboy
    heatboy Member Posts: 1,468
    Not a big fan of Quik Trak.

    It has it's place, but whole houses is not one of them, IMO. With the small tubing causing short tubing loops and lack of any real transfer it has a limited application. Running 400' loops in this home is not a problem with 1/2". With QT, it would have required twice the loops and more linear feet of tubing.

    I don't do any of the plywood work since............I'm not a carpenter. I get paid for mechanical work. The builder can have a guy ripping plywood for $30 or $40 per hour as opposed to $100 we charge. It makes much more economic sense to by the wood locally than to have it shipped all over the country.

    I reserve joist bay for small areas and retrofits. Working in joist bays is much too slow and expensive.
    heatboy



    The Radiant Whisperer





    "The laws of physics will outweigh the laws of ecomomics every time."
  • heatboy
    heatboy Member Posts: 1,468
    8\" centers, Sir hr.

    The plwood isn't relieved because on 8's there is no flex and it leaves a tiny gap between the yibing and finished floor alieviating any striping that could occur.

    The 311 panel incorporates an 011 for the radiant pump, so the radiant should be designed around the pump. A 26-64 would work with this layout.
    heatboy



    The Radiant Whisperer





    "The laws of physics will outweigh the laws of ecomomics every time."
  • heatboy
    heatboy Member Posts: 1,468
    I love ThermoFin.

    I have done many projects with both C and U. Ufin works better than C for top o' the floor work, but it is a two man operation. Plus, I can't get it.

    Size the pump for the radiant or size the radiant for the pump. Every job is different. All comes down to know how much H2O to flow. I don't know whoever came up with that dumb 250' for 1/2" limit thing.
    heatboy



    The Radiant Whisperer





    "The laws of physics will outweigh the laws of ecomomics every time."
  • heatboy
    heatboy Member Posts: 1,468
    Just chalk lines.

    We try to keep everything straight and uniform. The carpenters can set up a jig and just keep cutting since the end of loop to framing is the same throughout most of the project. I know I ask a lot from them , so I try to make life as easy as I can fro them.
    heatboy



    The Radiant Whisperer





    "The laws of physics will outweigh the laws of ecomomics every time."
  • Cosmo_3
    Cosmo_3 Member Posts: 845
    I always believed...

    Manufacturer's design instructions for radiant panels are a great resource, follow them and you should never have a problem, and if you do then blame the manufacturer.

    But once you understand the SCIENCE of how radiant panels, and simple hydronics work then I think you actually become a professional. Isn't it cool that Siggy's software lets us easily see what is going on here!!!!

    It is our job to know WHY, and not just enough to get us by........

    I think what everybody is wondering about (as am I ) is how the spaces around the return bends get filled, hb. I am willing to bet that these spaces are left open, and that the wood planking will be wide and strong enough not to flex over these spaces. I also assume that these loops will have constant running pumps so that expansion/contraction is minimal as the floor will maintain a very gradually increasing/decreasing temperature all winter. I have tried attempting this method on a whole house job I had a couple years ago but the GC wasn't having any part of it.......

    Nice job Jeff, as usual!!!!!!


    Cosmo Valavanis

    Dependable P.H.C. Inc.
  • heatboy
    heatboy Member Posts: 1,468
    Not worth...........

    the work to fill in the loop ends, IMO. There is plenty of nailing surface for the floor guys without filling it in. Besides, less chance of an oops if they can't nail there.

    GCs will almost always take the easy way out, if given the chance. That is part of the reason to deal directly with the owner, if at all possible. Don't get me wrong, most times I would rather just do gyp and then glue down engineered flooring. Much easier on me, but for real wood, this has turned out to be our method of choice. Doing gyp and real wood never seemed to work out as well for me.
    heatboy



    The Radiant Whisperer





    "The laws of physics will outweigh the laws of ecomomics every time."
  • stephen_4
    stephen_4 Member Posts: 22


    don't you think this is a better way to go?


  • dumb?

    with 250 or less, you can push flow for what, up to 75kBTUs at a 10 degree dT.. something like 175 at the dT you're running... with just a single superbrute.

    That's pretty sweet.

    I applaud what you're doing, but the dT you're running makes me nervous. I can't find any empirical info on what is a truly acceptable radiant dT, just the mfg reccomendations.. but nothing about what kind of a dT people will actually NOTICE. Have you been running high dT a lot? anyone notice "cool ends" or "warm ends"? Or is this experimental...?

    Having people with serious experience with high dTs could very well change the way I design systems myself. Of course, quik trak is 20 dT standard...

    I'd be VERY interested in hearing more feedback from others running higher dTs in other installation methods though. I think with quik trak the higher dT isn't such a big deal because transfer is a bit constipated anyway... but I'm just guessing there.

    Very clean install though.. kudos to you!
  • stephen_4
    stephen_4 Member Posts: 22


    Gary that was 2 yrs. ago from a project of ours in Weston, MA Rehau shot for their flyer. I will download and post more current pics when I get a chance.
  • JJ_4
    JJ_4 Member Posts: 146
    How did you cut the grooves?

    It looks like you cut grooves in the plywood for the panels to fit into. How did you cut the groves? I was thinking of doing something like this for a remodel where the old worn out wood floor is going to be covered with a new floor anyway.

    Most responses to my post in this regard were to rip up the old floor and replace with pre-fab panels or plywood. Your method, if I'm really seeing it correctly, looks like a lot less work.

    As others have said; more pictures and details of the install would be great.

    Thanks, JJ
  • stephen_4
    stephen_4 Member Posts: 22


  • stephen_4
    stephen_4 Member Posts: 22


  • stephen_4
    stephen_4 Member Posts: 22


  • stephen_4
    stephen_4 Member Posts: 22


  • heatboy
    heatboy Member Posts: 1,468
    Not sure what you consider.........

    ........ a high Delta T, Rob. 20°? The 311 has a 0011 as it's pump. Worse case scenerio with this system and a 20° drop is 15'. Well within the scope of the 0011 and this load. What's the issue? 250' loops would have been a waste of the pump, plus additonal costs to the owner with the extra manifolds and tubing.

    hb
    heatboy



    The Radiant Whisperer





    "The laws of physics will outweigh the laws of ecomomics every time."
  • stephen_4
    stephen_4 Member Posts: 22




  • Ah, I see. ya if you have a 0011 available already, might as well use it. I would consider 20 dT as high though.. though as I said I'm having a hard time finding good information on what is truly a "bad" dT in radiant floors, just guidelines with little explanation or research into the factors involved. Typically, I prefer to run lower dTs with lower supply temps.. the holy grail I'm shooting for though is to know how far I can push dTs to balance water temps across a system.

    Do you often run 20's in installations other than quik trak? If so.. does anyone ever notice?
  • heatboy
    heatboy Member Posts: 1,468
    Delta Ts are.........

    .....just a design principle. Nothing more. Control logic has a huge inpact on Delta Ts and overall comfort levels. Near continuous circulation will always have a smaller difference across the loop than set point type systems. I use 20° as my criteria and have never had any comfort issues. Again, I always use near continous circulation and reset on big projects, so I really can't speak to the performance of a set point on/off system.

    Designing to a higher than 20° would allow for even smaller pumps and piping, but would also require more accurate information input. Aslo, more counterflow loops (as pictured below) would be needed instead of traditional serpentine layouts.

    hb

    www.climatecadvanced.com
    heatboy



    The Radiant Whisperer





    "The laws of physics will outweigh the laws of ecomomics every time."


  • We use PWM w/OR or indoor reset on pretty much all of our jobs. the hard info I'm after that I can't find anywhere is exactly what is a noticeable temperature variance on a floor, either loop to loop (for counterflow) or across a distance (for serpentine). Unfortunately no one seems to have studied that, so we're stuck with anecdotal info. It's good that you point out the importance of control strategy there though, I hadn't really thought about that.

    I'm not so much worried about loop lengths or pipe sizing.. it's primarily about AWT manipulation for me, area to area. Though occasionally you have one of those high load rooms and I will nudge up to a 15 dT to reduce design flow.

    I'm skeptical a 20 would be a problem with our (and your) types of systems and I'm inclined to start using such a dT for design more often myself. But beyond that... 25? 30? at some point it would have to start becoming a problem, constant circ or not. I'd be really happy to know how far I can push that dT!!
  • Ditto..

    I use 20 degree delta T on all of my RFH designs, use continuous circ with ODR, and non elctric TRV's which cause an even greater delta T, and I've had but one complaint. That complaint was that the floors weren't warm all the time. After some questioning, she admitted that she was overall more comfortable than she'd ever been in her whole life, but was looking forward to "warm floors" ALL the time. Education is key. After I explained to her that she would possibly only feel warm floors in certain parts of the house at certain conditions, she was fine with that.

    As HB said, it is only a basis of design. It's not a reality. And it is RARELY an issue. The Germans typically use a 30 to 40 degree delta T and reverse the flow if need be to cover the cool spots.

    When are we going to quit being chicken and start thinking outside of the box and quit covering our bases with excess parasitic operating costs, low delta T's and over sized pumps??

    We Americans have a tendency to over engineer, and under design our systems:-) ALL of us. None of which is backed up by reality...

    The podium is now free...No offense meant to any one in particular. Hopefully none taken.

    ME
  • J_8
    J_8 Member Posts: 1
    out of the box

    My thoughts on the box thing is rather that of looking down the road, when we design systems we need to consider sizing and the cost of operating that circ,as far as what upfront costs would be.
    A larger loop&circ would run the costs far higher,we need to concisly look down the road for ten to fiffteen years when selling products remember it's service that leaves our mark. Thanks J
  • heatboy
    heatboy Member Posts: 1,468
    It's a matter of labor...........

    .....vs. operating costs. Like I said, the panel came with a 0011. It would be foolish not to design my system around it's capabilities. But even If I was to design this with my choice of pump, I would still have chosen a larger pump to cover the friction loss of THIS PARTICULAR system with longer than normal loops. If I was to stick to the 250' per loop rule, it would have caused me to double the loops for that particular manifold station. The extra labor to drill the holes and pull the additional tubing, plus the upcost for the larger or second manifold would never be recouped by using a smaller 008 as opposed to the 0011 present. Figure an additional 1/2 day labor (minimum) at $100 per hour plus equipment, that equates to more than $600.00.

    hb

    heatboy



    The Radiant Whisperer





    "The laws of physics will outweigh the laws of ecomomics every time."
  • hr
    hr Member Posts: 6,106
    who wrote the 1/2\" 250 rule??

    that you refer to hb?

    I use 300- 330 footers on my 1/2" loops. Seeing as the MultiCor tube I use comes in 300 or 1000' coils this works out nicely.

    250' was the "rule" from the 3/8 rubber guys :)

    Pretty easy to switch out circs, or request the want you prefer from the manufacture. Three speed circs make adjustability even flexible:)

    hot rod

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  • stephen_4
    stephen_4 Member Posts: 22


    bathroom
  • Stephen,

    Youre set-up looks like a much better way to go than HB's "preferred way" . The RauPanel is a great system. The problem I have with this install is; he's succumbed to using the rip-off extrusion plate. It's up-side down and,,, Where do we draw the line? Patented ideas that get swallowed up by BIG biz are increasingly acceptable. Why publicize the BIG brand name of "JT" when everyone knows where the product really came from.
  • Gary...

    Read his lips..."Plus, can't get it"

    Why you trying to stir up a hornets nest again?

    To each is own.

    JMHO

    ME
This discussion has been closed.