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Anonymous

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I've been lurking for some time, but this is the first I've posted. I was on holiday in USA recently and took the opportunity make some purchases at a nearby Rockler store (as you do!) One of the items I purchased was a pair of their pipe clamps, meaning to get the pipe over here (my first mistake!)
I've managed to get an engineering colleague at work to get me 2 x 1.5m lengths of conduit and get threads tapped. However, when I tried them out, the movable end is slipping and the clamp won't clamp! The movable end is the normal type which has a sprung clutch arrangement that is supposed to grip the pipe. The conduit I have is a nominal 1" outside diameter, and has been tapped properly, so it can only be marginally too slender. It may be that the finish in the pipe (it's a bright finish galvanised type appearance) rather than the black stuff doesn't help.
My plan is to try a thin metal sleeve, with sandpaper stuck to the side in contact with the pipe, but I'm not sure how I can retain it in place. Alternatively should I be looking for a different type of pipe?
Anyone come across this before and have a better solution?
 

Ian Dalziel

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try taking your clamp heads to your local gas/ steam pipe supplier, there should be a local BSS (british steam supplies) or plumb centre in your area or not to far from you, gas and steam pipe vary in thickness ie gas being quite thin walled and steam being medium to heavy wall, gas is usually the prefered galvanised, steam usually black but you might not have an option with your bore size these are normally measured in 'inside diameters' so its worthwhile taking youre clamps for a comparison. american pipe threads are normally NPT where as we are BSP, bsp will seem a fit for a couple of threads then go tight there sizes are very close but you might have been lucky to get it threaded on enough as only one end is required to be threaded if you have difficulty in getting your clamps to fit onto the threaded end drop an email and i'll try and help
 

Noel

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Hi Tycho,

I've only used pipe clamps with the black stove finish. Presume you have the orange Ponys. I came across something a while back on the merits of using black / galvanised / bare metal pipes. I'll try and find it for you later. In the meantime you could try and key or completely remove a small portion of the galvanising and see if the clutch plates get better purchase on the pipe.

Rgds

Noel
 

Alf

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Welcome to the forum, Tycho.

Noely prodded a brain cell into life, and I remembered a piece on pipe clamps in the last Axminster Review. They supply packs of 1/2" and 3/4" pipe with a "passivated finish" that's s'posed to be good. (Anyone understand why exactly? :? I mean, I believe them, but it's just blind faith. :roll: ) FWIW.

Cheers, Alf
 
A

Anonymous

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Thanks for the response guys

The posts on the subject were very interesting, Noely. I've just tried roughening the surface, but it didn't have any effect. I suspect that the galv surface is too slick, but I think there may be a diameter issue as well. I just wish I could find the OD of a pipe that works! The last guy promised to measure his, but didn't report them!

Thanks for the info on suppliers, Ian. I think I will need to seek another source of pipe that is slightly bigger OD. My friends at work didn't have the right tap for the thread, so they turned them on the lathe! They screw on very well, so it was a good job done. I'm wondering if I've got the brass neck to ask them to cut threads on another set of pipes once I've found them!!
 
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