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  #16 (permalink)  
Old 08-31-2010, 09:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MARTINSR
That is a great layout to get rid of water, but a horrible layout for CFM. The air has to push it's way thru water.


Not sure how it has to push it's way through water but it is a very neat system for small garages, I have copied this design (with the addition of longer drops) on the last two systems I installed and it works great!

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Old 08-31-2010, 11:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldred
Not sure how it has to push it's way through water but it is a very neat system for small garages, I have copied this design (with the addition of longer drops) on the last two systems I installed and it works great!

When the bottom of the big "U" where the drain is gets filled with water the air has to go thru it. That goes against everything I know about air moving thru the system for PAINTING. I'm sorry, that is what I am refering too, it maybe doesn't matter a bit with "normal" air compressor duties. But when using an HVLP gun the "HV" is High Volume and when you mess up the flow of the air in anyway, it can make a BIG difference in the volume of air you have for the gun. But I would think the same could happen with air tools, some need a lot of volume as well.

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Old 08-31-2010, 12:42 PM
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I think PVC would be easier & cheaper than copper.
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Old 08-31-2010, 01:00 PM
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I think the idea behind Rambo's system is that the petcocks have to be drained often to avoid filling the "U" with water. Making the drops longer, as Oldred does, provides more volume for the water to migrate to, thereby staying out of the air flow path. I attended a steam boiler class last year and something I learned there is relevant to this issue. When steam or air is forced to make a turn it "throws" the water out. Since water is heavier than steam/air it can't make the turn as quickly and basically gets left behind. There is a difference between wet and dry steam. Wet steam is "saturated", same with air I'd guess.
I'd also think that Rambo should add a "T" about 4" to 12" down from the upper right corner of his grid and tap his final filter in there. The way it looks now he is taking air off the bottom of what is basically the last drop, which might have some water laying there. I need to build one of these for my shop soon.
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Old 08-31-2010, 01:27 PM
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Originally Posted by MRTS33
I think PVC would be easier & cheaper than copper.


PVC is the last thing you want use, in fact if PVC is all you can get then forget building a system because it is not worth getting killed or maimed for! This has been covered so many times I am hesitant to go into it all over again but using PVC is dangerous as a cocked pistol and those pressure ratings on the stuff don't mean squat when dealing with pressurized gas. Because of the numerous and serious accidents related to using PVC it has been outlawed by both OSHA and MSHA for use with pressurized gases except in special circumstances where the PVC is either buried or enclosed in heavy metal conduit. The longer a PVC system has been in use the greater the chances of a rupture and when that happens it can be disastrous since it will shoot razor sharp shards in all directions with enough force to kill someone. These PVC accidents do happen and people have been seriously hurt and even killed with the stuff, I am not going into detail again or looking up the links all over again so do a search if you are interested-there is a lot to find.


As if that were not enough reason not to use PVC it also is the worst possible choice for air line piping because of it's inability to radiate heat properly causing a PVC system to be extremely moisture prone, that's the main reason for choosing Copper in the first place.


If you are using PVC you are in danger whether you believe it or not because the stuff does rupture and it does hurt people, don't be one of them!
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Old 08-31-2010, 01:37 PM
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NO PVC - EVER!!! DO A SEARCH IN THIS FORUM!!

Regardless of what others say, including here, that stuff is dangerous for a compressed air system.

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Old 08-31-2010, 05:47 PM
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Nice clean air

I ran 50' of 1/2" copper sloped to drain condensed H2O back into compressor tank. My air is so dry it renders my desiccate dryer overkill.
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Old 08-31-2010, 06:07 PM
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Originally Posted by 001mustang
I ran 50' of 1/2" copper sloped to drain condensed H2O back into compressor tank. My air is so dry it renders my desiccate dryer overkill.

While that does work it is better to have a drop in the line to keep the water from draining back into the tank, much better to drain the water from a short length of pipe than have it standing in your tank all day!
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Old 08-31-2010, 06:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evolvo
I think the idea behind Rambo's system is that the petcocks have to be drained often to avoid filling the "U" with water. Making the drops longer, as Oldred does, provides more volume for the water to migrate to, thereby staying out of the air flow path. I attended a steam boiler class last year and something I learned there is relevant to this issue. When steam or air is forced to make a turn it "throws" the water out. Since water is heavier than steam/air it can't make the turn as quickly and basically gets left behind. There is a difference between wet and dry steam. Wet steam is "saturated", same with air I'd guess.
I'd also think that Rambo should add a "T" about 4" to 12" down from the upper right corner of his grid and tap his final filter in there. The way it looks now he is taking air off the bottom of what is basically the last drop, which might have some water laying there. I need to build one of these for my shop soon.
If I did it again, I would make the drops taller...but 2 years of running this "still" setup...by the time you get to the 3rd petcock theres little to nothing there - the inline filter is normally bone dry, unless I'm running the beadblaster non-stop for hours straight.

My plan is to still add a refrigerated line dryer - but, Im waiting until the Hudson is ready to primer and paint.
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Old 08-31-2010, 08:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldred
While that does work it is better to have a drop in the line to keep the water from draining back into the tank, much better to drain the water from a short length of pipe than have it standing in your tank all day!
I don't quite follow. The compressor already produces water in the tank.
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Old 08-31-2010, 08:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 001mustang
I don't quite follow. The compressor already produces water in the tank.


It does and I did not mean you should run right out and change your set-up, I just meant that I prefer not to use the tank as a storage compartment for water. Internal rust is a tank's worst enemy and the less standing water that it is exposed to over it's life the better but that is probably no reason to modify what you already have, just a suggestion for anyone else to maybe consider adding the drop if they slope their pipe toward the tank.
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Old 09-02-2010, 05:31 PM
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thanks again for all the tips,
I have sketched up a layout of the piping. This plan has it running across the back wall of the garage, high on the wall. I have a work bench on that wall and my air compressor is just outside of that wall in a storage building.
In the main piping I can get around 38 feet of length, mounting it above the window does make the drain pipes long,, I am thinking of setting the drain valves about eye level using 1/2 in copper or galvanized, then having a plastic tube from the valve down to a catch basin,, there is no pressure after the valve.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/1371835...7624741920317/

I'll have three "qualities" of compressed air
1) through the cooling pipes and a desiccant dryer and a filter
2) through the cooling pipes and a filter / oiler
3) through the cooling pipes

Last edited by DadTruck; 09-02-2010 at 05:39 PM.
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Old 09-02-2010, 08:25 PM
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Looks damn good to me!

Brian
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  #29 (permalink)  
Old 09-03-2010, 06:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TubeTek
We ran copper by the tractor trailer loads during the 40 yrs we were in the mechanical contracting business.

My take on soft soldered copper tubing.....

-use a fitting brush to clean the ID of fittings. Cheapest ones have a simple wire loop handle and are about half the price of the ones with a wood or plastic insert in the handle. The brushes don't last long enough to need any sort of fancy handle. Spin the brush in one direction, not back and forth, and it will last longer and do a better job. Easiest way to clean a lot of fittings is to take a pair of side cutter pliers and clip the handle loop off the brush so you can insert the shank in a cordless drill. About 2 seconds per end, and the fitting is clean.

-use sand cloth or sanding screen (preferred) for cleaning the OD of the tubing. Its too easy to contaminate an OD brush and not realize it until you have multiple leaks that have to be taken apart and re-cleaned. I never allowed anyone to use an OD brush regardless of their preference, and if we had one leak in a thousand joints it was rare. Use the sanding material in a shoeshine motion. Don't grab it in one hand and wring it around the tubing because you'll end up with the oils from your hand transferring to the sanding media and from there to the tubing. Natural oils from your skin are the #1 cause of leaks in soft soldered copper.

-Nokorode (no corrode) paste is one that's been around for years. Its a very weak paste in that its not self cleaning. Pastes which are strong and self cleaning tend to keep on cleaning, or attacking the surface of the tube or fitting over time. Easiest way to spot joints made with self cleaning paste is an accumulation of green crud around the joint a year or so later. Some will say you avoid that by wiping the joint down with a wet rag after soldering. To that, I ask them how they wipe the inside? I picked up a tin of paste at Lowe's recently, marketed by Lenox, the bandsaw blade people. As far as I can tell, its identical to Nokorode. Probably made by them since Lenox isn't in the chemical business AFAIK. Pick up some acid brushes to use for applying the paste. Apply sparingly to both the fitting ID and the tube OD.

-can't make any recommendation for a good soft solder. We didn't do any potable water piping, just hot and chilled water for HVAC and process applications, so we used 50/50 (lead/tin as mentioned above). If you can find a roll, its the easiest to use. Probably can't, but the general opinion seems to be that there are decent lead free solders on the market today.

-M copper should be fine for your air lines. I'd use a Bernz o Matic type torch for this work. They'll work fine and the heat is easy to control. A Prestolite torch works well to, but too much money for occasional use. Avoid the temptation to use oxy acetylene even if you have it. The heat is too hard to control on small tubing, even for someone who does it for a living. Burning the paste is a sure recipe for a leak.

-assuming you'll be using threaded valves at your takeoffs, make the joint at the tube and male adapter before screwing the adapter into the valve. This keeps the heat off the valve and off the pipe dope or tape at the joint. People who run copper every day tend to avoid using female adapters to the greatest extent possible, because they're far more prone to leaking than male adapters. To follow this principle, you need quick disconnects with female pipe threads. Female threads are the most common, but they're available both ways so its worth mentioning.

Unless you're absolutely sure you won't want to modify your piping sometime down the road, the main line should be mounted a couple inches clear of the wall, or hung from overhead, rather than clamped tight to the wall. A bit of clearance will allow you to take a compact cutter and cut a tee into the main anytime you want. Tight to the wall, and you end up trying to cut the line with a hacksaw and pry it away from the wall sufficiently to clean the tube and make the joints. If I had only one tubing cutter for small tubing, it would be this one. http://www.toolup.com/ridgid/40617.h...m=ridgid+40617 It will handle anything up thru 1" copper, works fine for all cutting on a small job, and gives the necessary clearance for cutting in a takeoff in a tight area later on.

One final thing is reaming of the tube after cutting. I've used the built in reamers that are a part of some tube cutters (worst type of all), rout-a-burr deburring tool (better), and my favorite copper deburring tool which is a pocket knife. On air lines, you're reaming primarily to keep any moisture flowing rather than having a series of steps that act as small dams for moisture. 5 minutes of practice with a reasonably sharp knife, and you'll cut the burr right out with a single twist of the tube. Ream before cleaning as you need to be able to hold onto the tube while reaming.
Most sensible advice given in this thread!

Sand screen is my preference also, but some of my guys prefer emery cloth.
We use Silvabrite 100 solder & Oatey #5 flux if the spec book doesn't call for a specific product.

Those molded plastic stiff bristle brushes work fine the first few times but wear out fast and are to expensive to justify their use imho.
A tip on those old worn out fitting brushes. after the handle is cut off and the brush has served its useful lifetime cleaning the id of fittings, use it to help clean the OD of your short pups!
Say you are needing to clean the ends of a few short pieces of 1/2 inch tubing. Chuck up your worn out 1/2" fitting brush in the cordless drill. Insert he brush into the ID of the pup. Hold your sand cloth on the opposite end and spin it with the drill. A second or two and the tubing is clean. I really like the technique for those short 2" -3 " pups that are such a pain to clean.

Over heating the fitting is a common mistake of beginners as well as letting the flame melt the solder instead of the solder melting from the heat of the copper.
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  #30 (permalink)  
Old 09-03-2010, 06:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldred
PVC is the last thing you want use, in fact if PVC is all you can get then forget building a system because it is not worth getting killed or maimed for! This has been covered so many times I am hesitant to go into it all over again but using PVC is dangerous as a cocked pistol and those pressure ratings on the stuff don't mean squat when dealing with pressurized gas. Because of the numerous and serious accidents related to using PVC it has been outlawed by both OSHA and MSHA for use with pressurized gases except in special circumstances where the PVC is either buried or enclosed in heavy metal conduit. The longer a PVC system has been in use the greater the chances of a rupture and when that happens it can be disastrous since it will shoot razor sharp shards in all directions with enough force to kill someone. These PVC accidents do happen and people have been seriously hurt and even killed with the stuff, I am not going into detail again or looking up the links all over again so do a search if you are interested-there is a lot to find.


As if that were not enough reason not to use PVC it also is the worst possible choice for air line piping because of it's inability to radiate heat properly causing a PVC system to be extremely moisture prone, that's the main reason for choosing Copper in the first place.


If you are using PVC you are in danger whether you believe it or not because the stuff does rupture and it does hurt people, don't be one of them!
+1

Another safety concern of pvc is the oils in compressed air attack the pvc and it is more susceptible to catastrophic failure.
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