Soldering Copper Pipes

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Doug Miller wrote:

I've commented about this before, most of the time your way will work but a newbie is more likely to screw up heating the fitting only. If the interior pipe is not up to temp the solder will not amalgamate with the pipe. The result is a weak joint and sooner or later a leak. My formal training comes from a Carrier Corp. factory training class, with an instructor who spent years on their condenser assembly line. To sum up the two days I spent on this part of the training. Use plenty of torch, start heating the pipe, keep the torch moving, when the pipe is hot move the torch onto the fitting and use the flame to draw the solder into the fitting. Your way may be easier but it's not better. Dave
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Which is exactly why you heat the fitting, and apply the solder to the pipe. If the pipe isn't hot enough, the solder won't melt, and you keep heating. Nothing difficult about that...

Easier *is* better. :-)

-- Regards, Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
Nobody ever left footprints in the sands of time by sitting on his butt. And who wants to leave buttprints in the sands of time?
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Doug Miller wrote:

Maybe for the installer, but not for the owner. :-(

Dave
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...snip disc^h^h^h^h argument over "pipe-first" or "fitting-only" solder technique...
I'll side w/ Dave here, Doug...similar experience w/ training for production work, same technique.
The amount of heating required to heat the pipe to solder-melt point isn't enough to expand the pipe to the point of constricting the gap between it and the pipe and it's much easier to ensure both are hot enough more quickly by adding hit to the pipe initially rather than relying solely on the (relatively) poor conduction across that same gap between the two not fully contacting surfaces...
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I'm averaging everything I've read here. The practice begins this afternoon, and it's show time tomorrow. I'll let you all know if the basement's dry, or if I'm online looking to buy trout to stock my new pond. :-)
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Doug Kanter wrote:

:)
Good luck, it really isn't <that> hard...like most things, people have their own preferences...
BTW, I intended to point out to the "close up the gap" faction that when the fitting is heated, it will expand as does the pipe so the differential expansion is essentially the same between the two mating pieces--ergo, the gap doesn't actually close.
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Right - but if the pipe is heated, and the fitting not heated (or heated less than the pipe), then the gap *will* close (or at least shrink), and then expand as the joint cools. That's not good.
-- Regards, Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
Nobody ever left footprints in the sands of time by sitting on his butt. And who wants to leave buttprints in the sands of time?
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On Sat, 26 Mar 2005 16:08:28 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@milmac.com (Doug Miller) wrote:

Never mind the "yeah, but's" and the "what if's".
You can not make a good joint unless BOTH the pipe and the fitting are hot enough to melt the solder. If either of them is not at least that hot, you will not obtain a good joint. PERIOD!
rusty
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You can make your soldered joints any way you like. But you should realize that you're doing newbies a disservice when you advise them to heat the pipe and the fitting: that's *not* the best way to make the joints. The joints are easier to make, and less likely to leak, when only the fitting is heated. It's just plain silly to advise someone who's never soldered copper before to heat the pipe first. There is a better and easier way to do it.
-- Doug, the people who make copper fittings and the people who make soldering alloys do test soldering all the time. They use different methods to see what is the best way. Then they cut the joints apart to see which way makes the best joints. They also pressure test ant stress test the joints till they fail. I have been to a number of seminars in addition to doing soldering and brazing for the last 35 years. The research shows that it is best to heat the pipe first, then the fitting. Keep the torch moving all the time. That will make the strongest, leak free joints. The best way to start is to do it the best way.
Stretch
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On Wed, 23 Mar 2005 07:19:07 -0800, "SteveB"

The first time I sweated a joint, after I was done it looked like a lead candle. Solder was everywhere running down the pipe. When it was tested to see joint would even hold, it sprayed water everywhere.
Less is better.
thx,
tom @ www.WorkAtHomePlans.com
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My guess: not a clean enough joint or not enough flux. Gobs of solder on the outside of the joint have absolutely no effect on the watertight seal necessary inside the joint. Some of my first joints were really globy, but they sealed nicely (to this day).
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050322 1536 - HeatMan posted:

I'll have to agree with that. I've used a propane torch on the same types of copper and have had the same successes that you have had. Soldering copper pipes is almost as much an art as it is a mechanical project, and a degree of carefulness is as relevant as with just about any other art.
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com says...

Hand torches come in quite a range of sizes and styles. A turbo torch with propane easily puts out enough heat for lead-free solder on 1" copper pipe. MAPP puts out more heat, no doubt, but propane in a properly-sized torch is more than adequate. You can even braze with propane given a torch sized appropriately for the work.
--
snipped-for-privacy@phred.org is Joshua Putnam
<http://www.phred.org/~josh/
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wrote:

It doesn't either. Propane works just fine.
-- Regards, Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
Nobody ever left footprints in the sands of time by sitting on his butt. And who wants to leave buttprints in the sands of time?
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wrote:

I'll settle this on Saturday and let you know. Worst case: I end up with a propane torch that'll be useful for lighting the newspaper in my BBQ chimney starter in a high wind, when matches and everything else fails.
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It is a bit tricky to get soldering right, but the good news is it's very cheap to get a book and a little spare copper pipe and fittings with your purchase, and then practice on your workbench until you've got it down pat.
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TO HELL WITH IT ALL. Get some Copper-Bond, a 2-part epoxy made for the task, and damned good at it, replace the squarish sticks with Q-tip sticks without the cotton, and do the joints. A 2 liter bottle cap makes a pretty good mixing container.

flood
error
pat.
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Michael Baugh wrote:

I've not used this....how easily does it come apart when the time comes? Or do you just cut the section out?
Joe

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What is copper-bond? Harry
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The time never comes to take it apart.
I had used a torch, and was quite good with it. No fitting was a problem. Then I had a redo alongside Styrofoam, had to set up shrouds, heat sink, etc. Or try something else. Started asking around, found a fireman that told about someone in the same situation that used Copper-Bond. I suspect that it's similar to the fast version of JBWeld (JBKwik). Anyway, it's what I use for everything plumbing-wise.

welcome.
very
your
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