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Old 01-11-2010, 10:53 PM   #1
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Crack in Cast-Iron Wye


Howdy.

Some background:
Had a growing stain on the ceiling of my 1st-floor living room, directly under my 2nd-floor bathroom. Tore up a floorboard in the bathroom near where the supply lines to the claw-foot tub came out of the floor. Sticking my hand inside, i could feel a small hole or crack in the tub's cold water line. Thinking it would be a quick copper chop-and-patch, i took off the toilet (which the cold supply ran right under), tore up the floorboards, and discovered that the lead closet had a huge gash running almost the whole way through, with 2 or 3 inches left of the bottom, along which all (almost all) the waste water ran. At this point, I tore everything out, leaving a half-foot or so of lead pipe sticking out of the wye in the soil stack. Then, i found a crack in the side of the wye, running through the bell (and only the bell) where the bathroom waste had emptied. (sorry if that's unclear. pictures attached)

My question:
Does this seem like a job for JB Weld? the crack is not leaking (though i don't know if that will still be the case once i take everything out and put in the Fernco donut to transition to PVC) and i think the reason for the crack is the same as the reason for the crack in the top of the lead closet--lack of proper floor support for the weight of the toilet. So will adding proper floor support for the toilet and JB-welding the crack be sufficient? Or am i looking at having to chop out that wye? *OR* should i not risk disturbing the not-yet-leaking wye and and just leave a lead stump hanging out that i can no-hub to pvc?? If so, i may have more questions. thanks to everyone in advance. this site is a godsend.

here's the pics: http://www.flickr.com/photos/35221512@N03/
only the first four are the bathroom in question. the rest are old jobs.


Last edited by sonofthetonsured; 01-11-2010 at 11:01 PM. Reason: for sake of clarity
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Old 01-12-2010, 08:09 AM   #2
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Crack in Cast-Iron Wye


From my experience, cracks in just about anything are like icebergs and you only see part of them. They have a way of getting wider and longer no matter how harmless they seem and what you try to patch or disguise one side of them with. If it were me, I would bite the bullet and replace when you can get to things. It will be MUCH more expensive later!!!!

And any lead you can get out before abatement issues get worse will help in selling the house too.

Floor support for the toilet is another almost more important issue. What is up with that? Subfloor is rotted because of a slow leak? Insufficient joist support to start?

You compromise any plumbing fixes if the floor will not support the toilet and anyone over 8 pounds sitting on it.

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Old 01-12-2010, 08:57 AM   #3
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Crack in Cast-Iron Wye


<<From my experience, cracks in just about anything are like icebergs and you only see part of them. They have a way of getting wider and longer no matter how harmless they seem and what you try to patch or disguise one side of them with. If it were me, I would bite the bullet and replace when you can get to things. It will be MUCH more expensive later!!!! >>

dog-gone it. that's what i suspected, but i was hoping to get a confident "JB Weld is a miracle!"-type reply.

<<Floor support for the toilet is another almost more important issue. What is up with that? Subfloor is rotted because of a slow leak? Insufficient joist support to start?>>

Yeah, i don't know if you can see in that first pic there, but what looks to be a joist running under where the front of the toilet used to be, is actually just a 2x4, sidenailed to an L-shaped piece of wood, which then sort of rests on the top plate of a 1st-floor wall. Looks like there was a joist there at some point, but then some plumbing was done, and someone must've figured that joist just looked kinda funny sittin there, so he chopped it out. Oh, don't get me wrong, it's much prettier, but when function is a consideration, it just doesn't pass muster.

Last edited by sonofthetonsured; 01-12-2010 at 08:58 AM. Reason: grammar
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Old 01-12-2010, 09:32 AM   #4
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Crack in Cast-Iron Wye


so i guess that brings me to my other question.

the stack pipe is recessed into the brick wall, with no more than an inch clearance on any one side.

if i am looking at having to cut the bad section out, what is the best way of securing the area above and below the bad wye? i know of riser clamps, and have seen them installed, but it's usually in a stud wall where the arms of the clamp can rest on 2x4 sections attatched to the studs on either side.

a friend suggested that i fill the area around the stack with cement, securing it semi-permanently into the recess. please advise.
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Old 01-12-2010, 06:25 PM   #5
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Crack in Cast-Iron Wye


Spray foam will hold it.
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Old 01-12-2010, 11:01 PM   #6
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Crack in Cast-Iron Wye


is their a hub above it that you can wedge a board under to hold temporarily?
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Old 01-13-2010, 07:37 AM   #7
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Crack in Cast-Iron Wye


Is it possible to attach a riser clamp to the pipe where it exits the roof and put some wood down to support the clamps so they don't dig into the roof.

Another way to support it would be to bend the riser clamps on 90 deg angles and drill holes in them and then use a masonry drill to drill into the brick and run tap cons thru the clamps into the bricks.

Just throwing stuff out. Trying.
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Old 01-13-2010, 09:26 AM   #8
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Crack in Cast-Iron Wye


Have you given any thought to bringing in a masonry expert before you make a total DIYer mess out of this? Seems to me the guys I work with could take apart your wall so you had access, build it up again, and seal your new pipe for you for less effort and money than what you are considering here?

Some projects, are just not DIY. Sorry.
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Old 01-13-2010, 09:57 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sonofthetonsured View Post
Yeah, i don't know if you can see in that first pic there, but what looks to be a joist running under where the front of the toilet used to be, is actually just a 2x4, sidenailed to an L-shaped piece of wood, which then sort of rests on the top plate of a 1st-floor wall. Looks like there was a joist there at some point, but then some plumbing was done, and someone must've figured that joist just looked kinda funny sittin there, so he chopped it out. Oh, don't get me wrong, it's much prettier, but when function is a consideration, it just doesn't pass muster.
Too funny. I have great plumbers I work with but they have little respect for construction. They do carry giant axes and will chop any structure out of their way to get to things if I do not calm them. I can see 2x6 floor joists missing if they were once in there way.

I wouldn't mess with hangers and 2x6s to fix anything. 2x4s are elegant, they are easier to mange. Make it a mother in law toilet. Use 2x4s toe-nailed. don't bother to end nail in for support underneath the front of her throan. One day you will here this scream as the toilet collapses forward and she hits her head on the tub. All your troubles will be over.

Love the concept of a 2x4 el shaped thing just sort of resting on a top plate too.

Last edited by user1007; 01-13-2010 at 10:02 AM.
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Old 01-13-2010, 05:16 PM   #10
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Crack in Cast-Iron Wye


ok. first, thanks to everyone for the help. i've decided to go with filling the recess with expanding spray foam, then bolt half a riser clamp into the brick right snug up against the underside of a hub, 3 or 4 feet above the wye. then, it's off to rent the chain cutter. for anyone who's interested i'll probably post some pics once it's all done, regardless of whether it works, or all comes crashing down. carpe diem.
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Old 01-13-2010, 05:20 PM   #11
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Crack in Cast-Iron Wye


Sounds like a well thought out plan. Good Luck.

Please post back I need the experience.
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Old 01-13-2010, 07:08 PM   #12
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Crack in Cast-Iron Wye


try a saw zall with some good metal blades much easier than crushing the old pipe with snappers
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Old 01-15-2010, 12:17 AM   #13
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Crack in Cast-Iron Wye


nice & secured & ready to be cut
http://www.flickr.com/photos/35221512@N03/

i used GreatStuff expanding foam in the cavity behind, and a one-size-too-small riser clamp (half of one), on the front. the clamp is secured onto the brick with a concrete wedge anchor on the right, and a lead shield & lag bolt on the left.
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Old 01-15-2010, 07:40 AM   #14
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Crack in Cast-Iron Wye


That is good DIY engineering can't wait to hear the end of the story.
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Old 01-15-2010, 09:41 AM   #15
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Crack in Cast-Iron Wye


Quote:
Originally Posted by SULTINI View Post
That is good DIY engineering can't wait to hear the end of the story.
Me too.

But are you not pleased you got the cracked plumbing out of the way and are approaching this right. Postings on this site save you a fortune.

Just pulled a piece of pipe like yours. Hairline crack showing on the surface. The fracture was along the diameter of the pipe and ended up on the other side a few inches away.

And, you got rid of extra lead from your house appropriately?. As posted elsewhere, I just toss anything I am not sure about into a neighboring yard. If its lead, that their dogs and cats like and chew on? And their offspring become really dull and deformed. Not my problem.

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