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Old 02-03-2013, 01:25 PM   #31
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Is it fairly easy to sweat copper if never done it before?


I laughed when I saw this post. Newbie here so feel the need to contribute as I have gotten some great advice here.

Beware of dripping solder. Don't make the rookie mistake of having your hand under the joint as solder drips out. Somebody I know had a nice hot drop or two of solder drip into the palm of their hand. Thank goodness it was not his dominant hand

Lesson learned was hold your hand above the joint you're sweating.

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Old 02-04-2013, 11:30 AM   #32
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Is it fairly easy to sweat copper if never done it before?


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Originally Posted by CosmicMiami View Post
I laughed when I saw this post. Newbie here so feel the need to contribute as I have gotten some great advice here.

Beware of dripping solder. Don't make the rookie mistake of having your hand under the joint as solder drips out. Somebody I know had a nice hot drop or two of solder drip into the palm of their hand. Thank goodness it was not his dominant hand

Lesson learned was hold your hand above the joint you're sweating.
I did this as well. Back of my hand though. The scar is a helpful reminder to not do that.
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Old 02-04-2013, 11:48 AM   #33
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Is it fairly easy to sweat copper if never done it before?


Wait for the time the drip falls right into the torch head-----I know how to clear one of those--learned the hard way---
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Old 02-04-2013, 11:55 AM   #34
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Is it fairly easy to sweat copper if never done it before?


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Wait for the time the drip falls right into the torch head-----I know how to clear one of those--learned the hard way---
You'd think it would just pour out.........
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Old 02-04-2013, 01:00 PM   #35
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Is it fairly easy to sweat copper if never done it before?


Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmicMiami View Post
I laughed when I saw this post. Newbie here so feel the need to contribute as I have gotten some great advice here.

Beware of dripping solder. Don't make the rookie mistake of having your hand under the joint as solder drips out. Somebody I know had a nice hot drop or two of solder drip into the palm of their hand. Thank goodness it was not his dominant hand

Lesson learned was hold your hand above the joint you're sweating.
It's more fun to be working in a crawl space, lay the torch down after sweating the pipe and then lay your bare arm on top of the tip.......

Or....be sweating pipes and wearing flip flops.....AMHIK
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Old 02-04-2013, 02:25 PM   #36
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Is it fairly easy to sweat copper if never done it before?


Fingernail, had it happen its just now getting back to normal!
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Old 02-04-2013, 02:59 PM   #37
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Is it fairly easy to sweat copper if never done it before?


I like to wear gloves when working- I wear the brown jersey gloves- especially with copper. It's like having a rag handy all the time- makes it real easy to quickly wipe off running flux or a solder drip. The only problem is when that solder drip finds it's way into a hole in the glove a makes it's way to you're finger tip- can't shake that glove off fast enough!!
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Old 02-07-2013, 07:48 PM   #38
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Is it fairly easy to sweat copper if never done it before?


Finally got around to buying some fittings and pipe to practice on. Forgot to buy a fitting that would allow me to connect to the hose to test though!

Had trouble finding a way to get the pipe to stay put while I work on it (wont really be an issue on plumbing that's in place) but managed to rig something up. The end cap I bought also had solder in it already, is this normal? It was actually in a plastic package and everything.

Anyway, how does this look for my first solder? Do I need more solder on that?

Also is it normal for the blow torch to sound like there's something loose inside? Kinda like the little ball in a can of WD-40.
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Old 02-07-2013, 08:23 PM   #39
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Is it fairly easy to sweat copper if never done it before?


To be honest, it does not look like you shined up the nipple very well. You have to get it really clean, but this joint may be OK. I like to see a drip under the collar. Use tinning flux.
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Old 02-07-2013, 08:25 PM   #40
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Is it fairly easy to sweat copper if never done it before?


concretemasonry made a great point since you are sweating at a low point in your house. Drain as much as you can, but that heat just calls any excess water to come to it and screw up the joint. A little bit of white bread stuffed up the line a few inches will collect any last bits of water and will break apart when you turn the water back on. Has saved me a lot of aggravation through the years, and honestly, what else is Wonder bread good for?
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Old 02-07-2013, 08:57 PM   #41
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Is it fairly easy to sweat copper if never done it before?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Red Squirrel View Post
Finally got around to buying some fittings and pipe to practice on. Forgot to buy a fitting that would allow me to connect to the hose to test though!

Had trouble finding a way to get the pipe to stay put while I work on it (wont really be an issue on plumbing that's in place) but managed to rig something up. The end cap I bought also had solder in it already, is this normal? It was actually in a plastic package and everything.

Anyway, how does this look for my first solder? Do I need more solder on that?

Also is it normal for the blow torch to sound like there's something loose inside? Kinda like the little ball in a can of WD-40.
The joint looks pretty good Whats on the outside only has to do with cosmetics- inside the fitting cup is what counts. Look down inside the fitting, see any solder at the end of the pipe? A lot of times you'll see a little- thats a good thing.
Don't know why your torch rattles unless you got a drop of solder in there. If so, it messes with the flame- it hardens up like a BB and the tip needs to be disassembled
The pre soldered fittings are a consumer gimmic - never used them but assume they're OK
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Old 02-07-2013, 08:57 PM   #42
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Is it fairly easy to sweat copper if never done it before?


The flux I have is fairly thick, it's like a paste, been spreading it out so I see it, but not so there are chunks.

Here's the one I did after that.

I put water in there and it does not leak, but this is kinda a poor test. I'll need to get another fitting tomorrow so I can hook it up to the faucet and do a true pressure test.

Also burnt my thumb! Bad habit of touching the pipe without even noticing. Ouch! I really should get some gloves lol.
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Old 02-07-2013, 09:10 PM   #43
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Is it fairly easy to sweat copper if never done it before?


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What do you do if there is water in the line?
If you have water in the line and can't drain it, push a piece of bread inside the pipe will help absorb the water long enough to sweat it...be sure to use enough flux. That is what help draws the solder into the fitting.

Good luck!

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Old 02-07-2013, 09:24 PM   #44
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Is it fairly easy to sweat copper if never done it before?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Red Squirrel View Post
The flux I have is fairly thick, it's like a paste, been spreading it out so I see it, but not so there are chunks.

Here's the one I did after that.

I put water in there and it does not leak, but this is kinda a poor test. I'll need to get another fitting tomorrow so I can hook it up to the faucet and do a true pressure test.

Also burnt my thumb! Bad habit of touching the pipe without even noticing. Ouch! I really should get some gloves lol.
You're getting it After the solder sets, don't forget to wipe the flux off. I like a damp rag- seems to shine it up a little. As for flux, you only need enough to cover the areas with a film. Any more then that gets pushed out when assembling the joint and runs down the pipe or splatters in your face wile soldering. As mentioned- solder follows flux so keep it inside the fitting

you could cut that fitting lengthways, smash it flat with a hammer. The mating surfaces should separate and you'll see how well you did
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Last edited by TheEplumber; 02-07-2013 at 09:27 PM.
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Old 02-07-2013, 09:28 PM   #45
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Is it fairly easy to sweat copper if never done it before?


I think I'm starting to get the hang of this, at least assuming I'm doing it right... here's a few more pics, let me know how it looks. I guess I should have shown one with the flux too to give an idea how much I'm putting. Made sure to sand more this time.

Also when I put in the fitting I always twist it at least one full turn to spread the flux around.

As for bread, I usually don't have any in this house as I live alone so it would just go to waste, no way I can eat a whole loaf in a few days. Would toilet paper work? I can always grab a chunk out of a sub too. Just need to make sure I get white and not whole wheat. haha.
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Last edited by Red Squirrel; 02-07-2013 at 09:31 PM.
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