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Discussion Starter #1
When the toilet was first installed in this house 40 years ago, they used a heavy metal flange ring that was larger than the drain pipe and soldered it to the outside edge of the pipe - no rubber flange, just the soldered on ring, then attached the wax ring and toilet. The underlay wood has rotted underneath this flange ring.

How do I remove the solder to get the ring off the drain pipe so I can rip up the rotted wood underlay, replace it & install a good flange that fits like it should?
 

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Sounds like a cast iron closet flange, cast iron pipe, and lead joint to me.

Post a picture to confirm.
 

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its a brass or copper flange if its soldered. when i started plumbing back in 1971 thats what we used on the second floor, 3 inch copper with a copper or brass flange soldered to it. you will need a saw or a torch to get it off. if you go the way of the torch make sure you have a fire extinguisher handy also. are you sure this one is soldered. could it be cast iron like alan said and what you are seeing is the lead used to attach it? if its lead about 1/4 inch wide or so you can drill a series of holes in it( lead is fairly soft) all the way around and that should loosen it up a bit so you can wiggle and pry it off. a picture or 2 would help a lot. if the floor is rotted it should come apart easy. depending on your skills it might be easier to leave it and replace the floor with it in place.
 

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Or you could leave the flange in place as-is, carve out the rotted wood around and under it, and slice the new plywood subfloor panel in half across the drain pipe hole so the new pieces will slide under the flange.
 
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thats a cast iron flange with lead poured around it. wont be easy to get off so if there is anyway to replace the floor and leave it there you might be ahead doing it that way. but you can drill holes through the leadall the way around to loosen it up and probably get the flange off but then you have to put a flange back on there. they do make some flanges that make it easier to replace an old one. there are other types besides these also

http://plumbing.hardwarestore.com/51-291-closet-flanges/closet-flange-replacement--645944.aspx

http://www.dalspc.com/Sub/cat/printpages/closetFlange.htm
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Underlayment prep for large vinyl tile

I have cut out just the rotted wood areas and am leaving the flange as is. Now the trick is to get the replacement plywood cut and fit. I am going to lay vinyl tile so wondered if I shouldn't put an embossing leveler over the full underlayment of plywood before I lay the vinyl.
 
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