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willowgirl 01-24-2010 12:42 PM

Help, help, help, trying to cut old drain & keeps crushing.
2 Attachment(s)
Help, help, help, trying to cut old drain & keeps crushing.

Each time I try to cut this drain it just starts to crush. I'm going to change it all out, but getting concerned about being able to cut it. I don't want to keep crushing it and causing material to build up inside the drain line. Plus I need to be able to attach the new pipe into sewer line not sure yet how to do that.

I have discovered that there its not located to the vent so its not getting air. I'm thinking of putting a cheater vent in to help for now till the kitchen is moved in June. I'm just concerned about one thing, Can that allow sewer gas to home into house since there's no P trap below a cheater vent? Or can I put a P trap below it and it still work ok.

majakdragon 01-24-2010 01:00 PM

looks like the cutter you are using is a pipe cutter, not a tubing cutter. The cutter wheels are probably too rounded over to actually "cut" the copper pipe. You may be able to sharpen the cutter wheels and go slow when twisting the cutter handle. Do 2 or 3 rounds before turning the handle a small amount. AAV's (Air Admittance Valves) only allow air (or sewer gas) in, not out. Like a one way valve.

arcticbouncer 01-24-2010 01:04 PM

I dont know if the coppoer is that thin keep cutting to you find a solid piece or you will be doing another repair next weekend . Go slow with the pressuer adjuster on the cutter. Can you flex the walls of the copper by hand or with a pair of channel locks .. if so cut it out and replace all rotted copper .

DangerMouse 01-24-2010 01:11 PM

i'd consider a hacksaw.... even with the right type of cutter, the crushed part will make it very difficult to continue.


Thurman 01-24-2010 01:17 PM

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say: That looks to be a fairly new cutter, but a cheap one which means that the cutter wheel probably is not sharp enough to cut that older thin copper. As mentioned, if you can get the wheel off, and have a way, try sharpening it. Also as mentioned, go slow, apply pressure a small amount each turn. Just turn the tool, let the wheel cut into the copper gradually. IF, and only IF, that section of copper is very stiff- -you might be able to cut it with a fine toothed hacksaw blade. I save dull hacksaw blades just for this very reason, they don't dig into the copper. Good Luck, David

willowgirl 01-24-2010 01:18 PM

The pipe is really soft, that's where the water was bubbling through the pipe. I could probably crush it with my hand which I didn't realize before I tried cutting it. It just crushes as soon as i start to tight the cutter. I'm removing all of it down to the main line, but was going to cut above and below the floor to make easier to pull it through. I scared to crush it to much the the pipe pieces may fall down into the main line.

DangerMouse 01-24-2010 01:22 PM

maybe you can pinch it flat/closed before you cut it?
(cut ABOVE the pinch, of
then just snip it with tin snips.


willowgirl 01-24-2010 01:24 PM

4 Attachment(s)
Heres some more pics so you can see more what I mean. I have cut the copper lines and put in shut offs which was a nightmare. As my house shutoff doesn't work the best I found out, on top of that the first set I had purchased in a kit didn't seal properly so had someone bring me new ones.

nap 01-24-2010 01:28 PM

try squeezing the pipe with your hand to try to find a more solid spot that the cutter may work on without crushing the pipe.

other than that, I think you are relegated to a fine toothed hacksaw and light pressure.

heck, as thin as that is, you could probably stab a hole into the side and use tin snips to cut it.

DangerMouse 01-24-2010 01:34 PM


Originally Posted by nap (Post 388209)
heck, as thin as that is, you could probably stab a hole into the side and use tin snips to cut it.

i'm wondering if it's crumbly? if so, lots of crap will go down the tube....
try to find the thickest spot to work.


nap 01-24-2010 02:00 PM

if it is that bad, simply put on some gloves and grab some pliers and tear it piece by piece outward. Then OP could put a rag down the pipe and whack away at will (hopefully will will duck:wink:)

D'Brie 01-24-2010 03:17 PM

Hi Willow,

If you going to the trouble of removing your sink and faucet (in photo) don't worry about cutting the copper, why not replace it all with ABS (or PVC)? Take a sawzall, cut it out and repipe it. Just a thought, good luck!

rudolph58 01-26-2010 01:19 PM

you might want to add a vent

willowgirl 01-29-2010 01:58 PM

1 Attachment(s)
There was many obstacles with this fix / change. I was insulating when i noticed bags tied to the drains. I looked and saw the main taps were leaking and the drain right through the pipe. Where you see the copper and ABS joining above its not sealed, it just slid off. (The old copper lines are inside that ABS lines, which i'm not sure why)

I finally have the sink put back together. I was finally able to find a part of the drain that I was able to cut, just had to be very gentle not to bend it.

You may notice the baskets are different types and one is lower than the other. So I had to compensate using a tailpipe ( I think its called ) so that the drain will still have the drop it needs from one side to the other where it connects.

I was able to get shut offs on and the new taps but that will be an update for another day as it had its own set of problems, one being the main shut off to the house well you could say it didn't work very good. :)

nap 01-29-2010 02:49 PM

wow, you even put a p trap with the little drain on it!!

so, the big question is: does it drain well and not leak?

but as another asked: what about an air vent?

I am not a plumber (which, believe it or not is why the screen name; it's an acronym of "Not A Plumber":)) and maybe the real plumbers will hop into this but I though a vent was at least preferred if not required.

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