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Old 01-31-2015, 06:56 PM   #1
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Cutting NG piping


Greetings:

I'm in the process of remodeling our 100 year old money-pit. This house was originally built as a 2-flat and we are converting it into a single family home.

Some years ago, someone ran two 1/2" black iron pipes across and perpendicular to the tops of the floor joists in the first floor. None of the original framing was notched thankfully as the planks that were used for the subfloor were simply laid on either side of the pipes and the T&G hardwood finish floor was applied over atop 1/4" sleepers. These lines provided NG to fireplace inserts that were removed prior to us buying the property.

The old plank subfloor was removed and I mended all defects in the floor joists. My intent is to lay down a new subfloor consisting of T&G 4x8 sheets and accordingly, the gas lines need to be removed (they serve no purpose as the lines for the gas stoves are run separately). The plan is to shut off the gas, remove the piping and plug the existing fittings where they connect.

What is the best way to cut each of the pipes? There is no way to vent these lines and I am concerned about cutting into them using a reciprocating or hacksaw, i.e. anything that may create a spark. I would simply use a wheel-based pipe cutter but unfortunately, the lines are run so close together that there would be no way to rotate it around either separately (and the tie in point to gas lines occurs between two floor joists).

Thanks in advance for the help!

Jimmy
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Old 01-31-2015, 07:06 PM   #2
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saws all with hack saw blade once gas is off.
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Old 01-31-2015, 07:15 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghostmaker View Post
saws all with hack saw blade once gas is off.
Thanks for the reply Ghost. So I needn't worry about any remaining gas that is in the lines once it is shut off? Am I being overly concerned about a spark igniting any remaining gas?

Thanks,
J
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Old 01-31-2015, 07:15 PM   #4
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sawzall with metal blade or hack saw.....either one is fine ..don't worry about venting line...just make sure gas is off....and mentioned...
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Old 01-31-2015, 07:17 PM   #5
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Depending on the space, a 3 wheel cutter may work. Might pay to check with a tool rental for their smallest. If the pipe cutter will work you'll like it much better.
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Old 01-31-2015, 07:56 PM   #6
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You could cut it even with the gas on. There would not be enough air/gas mixture to create an issue.

What you smell when you shut the gas off, is the additive that gives it a smell. If you have a standing pilot water heater or furnace, there is actually very little gas left in the line when you turn off the valve at the meter.



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Old 01-31-2015, 08:59 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregzoll
You could cut it even with the gas on. There would not be enough air/gas mixture to create an issue. What you smell when you shut the gas off, is the additive that gives it a smell. If you have a standing pilot water heater or furnace, there is actually very little gas left in the line when you turn off the valve at the meter.
Thanks, Greg and others. When I had to modify the gas piping to the upstairs kitchen, I lit a burner on the stove prior to shutting off the gas to burn up whatever was left in the line before I went at it with my Sawsall.

Thanks again,
Jimmy
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Old 02-01-2015, 03:41 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigJimmy View Post

What is the best way to cut each of the pipes? There is no way to vent these lines and I am concerned about cutting into them using a reciprocating or hacksaw, i.e. anything that may create a spark. I would simply use a wheel-based pipe cutter but unfortunately, the lines are run so close together that there would be no way to rotate it around either separately (and the tie in point to gas lines occurs between two floor joists).

Thanks in advance for the help!

Jimmy
Why cut them? Why not unscrew the sections which are in your way, then plug the last fitting (or cap the last nipple) ?
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Old 02-01-2015, 07:04 AM   #9
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always turn gas off when working on pipes ...no exceptions.....
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Old 02-01-2015, 08:01 AM   #10
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Quote:
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always turn gas off when working on pipes ...no exceptions.....
Gee Ben you take the fun out of everything don't you.
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Old 02-01-2015, 01:49 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregzoll View Post
You could cut it even with the gas on. There would not be enough air/gas mixture to create an issue.

What you smell when you shut the gas off, is the additive that gives it a smell. If you have a standing pilot water heater or furnace, there is actually very little gas left in the line when you turn off the valve at the meter.

Greg..............Not me.....
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Old 02-01-2015, 01:59 PM   #12
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really don't know why anyone would tell a homeowner you could cut a gasline without turning it off 1st.... again no telling what you may hear..
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Old 02-01-2015, 02:06 PM   #13
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Well.... I've heard about guys welding/repairing their automotive gas tank...





(Think I read about it in the obits)....
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Old 02-01-2015, 02:34 PM   #14
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Gee Ben you take the fun out of everything don't you.
I'm sure the plumbers here have some fun gas stories but I won't share mine-- might end up making the Darwin Award headlines......
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Old 02-01-2015, 06:37 PM   #15
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really don't know why anyone would tell a homeowner you could cut a gasline without turning it off 1st.... again no telling what you may hear..
Haha! Yeah, I totally agree. Fortunately, I tend to err to the cautious side when working with NG as I am not a plumber. In fact, I always turn off the gas at the meter before working on that system and I mentioned in my OP that shutting off the gas was indeed part of the plan.

I assumed that due to a lack of oxygen in the line, I was probably OK chopping away at the pipes (again, with the gas shut off). But again, I don't do this every day and therein, I always like to get input from the professionals (and I've spent enough time on this site to get a good feel for who those people are).

At any rate, I shut off the gas today, cut the lines, unscrewed the pipes and fittings and installed plugs in the existing tee's (using yellow PTFE tape).

Thanks for all of the comments, guys. I always appreciate the advice.

J
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