Solving water heater left hand thread thermocouple problem

The thermocouple on my 7yo Whirlpool water heater went out Sat. The stores open on the weekend had only right hand thread thermocouples, and as far as I could find out, the manufacturer would sell me a conversion kit for $31 which would take 10 days to receive. (out of warrantee)
My solution: I carefully clamped the threaded fitting on my old thermocouple end-to-end in my vice so one face was up, then used a 1" cutting disc in my dremel tool to cut a slot into the fitting so I could slide it off of the tube. I slid the threaded fitting on my new thermocouple down out of the way, then slipped the slotted one over the tube and carefully screwed it into the valve fitting. It works perfectly.
If you have a several years old Whirlpool or American Products water heater, you might want to check to see if it has the left hand thread on the thermocouple. If it does, and it is still in warrantee, contact the manufacturer now so you can get the conversion kit for free ahead of the time you really need it.
The early symptom of failure on my thermocouple is that it took 1 1/2-2 minutes of holding down the pilot light to get it to re-light and stay lit. The new one took about 20 seconds.
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Bob! Late night fix. Worked great. Going to get me by until I can order a new left hand thread thermo.
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On Sat, 29 Jul 2017 21:23:49 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

I don't know what the suggested fix was as this seems to be an orphan post, but what I do just about every couple of years with the proprietary thermocouple of my hot water heaters is I remove it, sand it, return it, and it works again (for about two years).
I'd replace it with the hardware store type, but mine is a proprietary shape so it can only be replaced with the original part.
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On Sunday, October 28, 2012 at 9:56:49 AM UTC-7, Bob F wrote:

On Sunday, October 28, 2012 at 9:56:49 AM UTC-7, Bob F wrote:

Was confronted with same problem, and made same conclusion. A simple cut and all worked well. Glad to see others still thinking "Outside the Box"
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Life saver! Thanks
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Thanks, did the fix as you explained, my water heater is 3 years out of warranty. As far as i can tell it all works fine. Happy to have this as an option especially on a tank that may not have many more years ahead of it. $10 fix.
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U rock. Funny how the obvious somtimes is not.
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On Sunday, October 28, 2012 at 11:56:49 AM UTC-5, Bob F wrote:

You are a genius. You are a hero. Thank you for saving my family from 5 days shipping time for that part.
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On Sunday, October 28, 2012 at 10:56:49 AM UTC-6, Bob F wrote:

Bob F. Thank you!
I did this on a John Woods hot water tank. It worked flawlessly.
The stores were telling me to replace my entire burner assembly. They wanted $170 Canada bucks. The new thermocouple was $7. You are my hero.
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On 12/19/2017 11:03 AM, snipped-for-privacy@oberle.ca wrote:

If your house burns down because of your cheapskate hack, your insurance company could refuse to pay the claim.
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You saved our weekend & we can now bathe and wash dishes! The guys at the hardware store looked at my husband like he was from Mars when he asked the m for a left-handed thermocouple. Had never heard of it. We bought the th ermo., discovered it was RH in the parking lot, returned it, and then went back and bought it again after reading your article. We promised the store we wouldn't be back today! It worked! Thanks to you!
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On Sunday, October 28, 2012 at 12:56:49 PM UTC-4, Bob F wrote:

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I had the same problem, no one has a simple LH thread thermocouple. Replac ement is a pilot and thermocouple unit for about $35, but an hour and a hal f away, or it can be shipped at additional cost. I followed your lead, cut a slot in the nut lengthwise, put it above the nut on a new thermocouple a nd it works fine. My water heater is a 16 year old whirlpool, so I hated t o sink much more into it. Thanks for the insight.
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Awesome fix! Had my water heater back up and running same day. Saved us a week of cold showers, or a new $500 water heater. THANK YOU!!! P.S. I was able to perform the same fix with a reciprocating saw, and I am sure a hacksaw would work too.
On Sunday, October 28, 2012 at 11:56:49 AM UTC-5, Bob F wrote:

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