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  • Advice for using K-1500B snake

    Hello,

    I'd like some advice for using a K-1500B snake to unblog a drain with roots in it. I can't work out how the snake feeds itself into the job.

    The drain is at my house and drains only the kitchen. It is 4" earthenware. It is straight and about 30 yards long, maybe 35. There is good access to both ends. I have hired a Ridgid K-1500B snake from a local hire place. Given the time of year, I have it for several days for the price of one. It came with 5 sections and 6 heads. That's enough sections, given I can work from both ends. Three of the heads are coils of various diameters withe a prong at the end that sticks outwards. The other three are cutters, one that looks a bit like a holesaw and two of different diameters that have two blades that stick out like flower petals or cupped hands facing each other. It also comes with the hose that fits on the front of the machine.

    I cannot work out how the cable feeds itself into the job. I can see how the three jaws grip the cable and spin it, but I can't see what feeds it along. The instructions that came with the machine say, "allow the cable to self feed into the pipeline" and "let the motor do the work, the self feeding action of the cable will exert pressure against the obstruction". I've been out there running it and the cable spins nicely but does not feed itself. I have been using the small coil head. Maybe I have not pushed the cable in by hand far enough first. I have wondered about putting a curve in the outer hose and pushing sideways on that to try to force the cable in. But there is obviously something I am doing wrong and I hope you blokes can help me.

    I accept that because I am a farmer, not a plumber, some people might say that I should be leaving this to an expert. But I have spent a lifetime working with dangerous machinery of all kinds and still have all my fingers and toes. I would like to think that results from care, not just luck. And I understand about having a feel for the machinery when dealing with obstructions.

    Thanks,
    Roger

  • #2
    Roger,

    First be very careful with the K-1500. It is a great machine but if it gets away from you it can cause some real harm to you. The K-1500 is not self-feeding you have to feed the cable yourself. I tried to find a training video on the Ridgid web site for this machine but could not find one. They do have however, a training video for the K-60 which operates much the same as the K-1500.

    http://www.ridgid.com/Tools/Training-Videos

    Search for the video on the K-60 and it will give you an idea of the method for using a sectional machine.

    Good luck and use caution.

    Mark
    "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

    I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks Mark.

      I see how it can get away from you and twist up. As dangerous in its own way as any other machine I have used. I took a lot of care. I think I've worked it out now. You pull out a few inches of slack in the cable from the machine to the drain opening, engage the clutch, and sort of push the cable up the drain with the fancy gloves. Then disengage and pull out a few more inches of slack and go again. I got a heap of tree roots out of it and it seems to be flowing nicely now.

      Roger

      Comment


      • #4
        farmer roger, the key word here is the hose on the front of the machine.

        it sounds like the machine is turned around. the hose is typically the rear of the machine and contains the excess cable till it is fed into the line. there is an option for a front guide hose assy, but i rather doubt you have that assy. it's very awkward and expensive, especially for a rental unit.

        you need to have a couple of feet of slack in the front cable. this will allow you to spin and push the cable into the drain. the cable will feed into the open line as it engauges a turn in the pipe or edge of the cleanout opening. the open wind will thread onto the pipe or fitting. only use reverse when stuck or backing out. i usually keep it running foward all the time as the cutters i use are designed for the foward rotation cutting only. they do make non directional cutters that will cut either direction.

        just like you guys down under drive on the wrong side of the road, doesn't mean that you have to run the machine from the wrong side or direction

        rick.
        phoebe it is

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks Rick,

          Yes, I did initially have the machine the wrong way round. I tried to use it on Friday night. Nowhere in the instructions provided by the hire company did it say which way round the machine should go and the man there did not know. I just kind of assumed which way it went, and I assumed wrong. But after sleeping on it, I realised that I was trying to go against the "thread" of the cable. Once I had the machine the right way round on Saturday morning, it all made sense.

          I found I could feed maybe a couple of feet at a time in easy going, but less in tough going. When the going was tough the snake seemed to fight me more, and the less slack I was trying to guide, the less chance of it kinking up and doing me some damage. I only needed reverse once, when I had a spiral head stuck. At that point I realised that I was at the mercy of a long thin piece of steel and if I got it really stuck or it broke then I would have needed the help of a real plumber.

          Roger

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Farmer Roger View Post
            Thanks Rick,
            I would have needed the help of a real plumber.

            Roger
            i was ready and willing to go downunder to help you. glad you got things turned around

            keep up the good work and look out for the wrong way drivers from america

            rick.
            phoebe it is

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