what's this thing called? (sheetmetal ductwork)


was in my basement today because my laundry room is typically quite warm in the winter despite not having a heat vent. Figured there had to be a leaky duct joint somewhere, sure enough, I found it. Where the main supply trunk makes a 90 up by the ceiling, it connects to a plenum, and along the top of the duct it was connected with a Z-shaped piece of metal. Apparently it'd either been assembled wrong or at some point was flexed and put back wrong; the one piece of duct was completely outside the "Z" making a massive leak, and it was only (partially) held together with duct tape. I ripped all the tape off, disassembled enough stuff to get the "Z" piece out, and went to the store (I'd mangled the "Z" pretty badly getting it out.)
I was able to find a new "Z" piece but not replacements for the other pieces that hold the sides of the duct together. Those are like a "U" that's been flattened and closed, and the pieces of duct have the sheetmetal ends bent back on themselves. I'm sure those of you who have messed with HVAC stuff know what I'm talking about. I was able to mangle those back into shape enough to put the duct back together, but if I need to buy any of these in the future, what should I ask for, so I can call around and see if anyone has them rather than drive to a whole mess of different stores and be disappointed?
thanks
nate
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Nate Nagel wrote: ...

Straps are generally made on site by any tin shop I've seen...stuff like that's why they bring their mobile tinshop in the trailer w/ 'em to installations... :)
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Drive cleat..
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Rick wrote:

Thank you! What's the other bit called, just out of curiosity?
nate
(now I just need to find a store that sells them)
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S cleat...home centers should have both...
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Rick wrote:

I agree with you, however, Home Despot does not.
Of course, the fact that the Despot sucks big hairy goat balls is Not News. I chose my location badly; there are literally three Despots more convenient to me than any other store save for one small mom 'n' pop.
nate
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You could probably save yourself a lot of grief and time if you found a sheet metal shop and walked in with the mangled part or a dimensioned drawing of what you needed.
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Roger Shoaf

About the time I had mastered getting the toothpaste back in the tube, then
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Roger Shoaf wrote:

Well, there's the problem... all that stuff is miles away.
Like I said, I managed to mangle it back together, although my original plan, which was to clean off the ducts and tape the joints, is somewhat stalled due to running out of clean shop rags and lack of motivation. I did get the whole plenum properly assembled and taped however; we'll see if the bedroom stays warmer tonight. My original problem was poor airflow to the upstairs ducts; I'm sure the misassembled joint between the two big pieces of ductwork didn't help. Now if I'd slept in the laundry room, I'd have been nice and toasty :)
nate
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You can always buy aluminum flashing material and cut it to whatever you need and then use pop rivets to hold evrything together. Once you are happy with how that works, then you can use high-quality duct tape (metal covered) to seal any remaining leaks. ALso, if you run the blower continuously, you can even out the heating in various rooms in the house.
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If you want to seal up the ducts so they stay sealed from now on, use the mastic sealer made for ducts. Unfortunatly, the stuff HD/Lowes has is in quarts and costs about the same as a gallon costs at an a/c supply house. If you have access to an a/c supply houe that will sell to the public, there is a sealer that is actually made for outdoor use (like the ductwork on rooftop units). It costs a lot more, but IMO it is worth it, and a gallon does seem to go a little further than the regular sealer, so that evens it out a little. One name of the outdoor stuff is "AirSeal 11" Sealing straight, flat seams/joints with tape is easy and works ok, but this is the way to go with the kind of seams you are talking about. Good luck Larry
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Lp1331 1p1331 wrote:

The foil duct seal tape that has a black sticky layer works quite well and is a bit easier to handle than a paste product.
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They are cleats. HD has short ones in bags and 4 or 5 foot lengths that you cut as required.
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Slips and drives. Any good tin shop will have them. You can also seal all joints with "hard cast" - you paint it on with a throw away paint brush, one good brand is Childers:
http://www.fosterproducts.com/default.aspx?PageID=hvac&flash=mold&link=pds&width 0&height8&cat_id7
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