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  • Black Iron Pipe

    What is the secret to cutting pipe threads in black iron pipe? I am doing it manually and using lots of cutting thread oil. I am having quite a few of the threads being damaged or being broken off as I reverse the cutter. This is being used for propane so I want the threads to be correct. I can borrow an electric Model 600 Rigid to do the job. Are they better for the job or am I better off doing them by hand. I have a feeling the cutter I used was dull to cut the threads. How does one tell? I have enough pipe to do, that the Model 600 would make it a lot easier. Is there something that I should know using it sucessfully?

  • #2

    Look closely at the cutting die on your head. Its possible that they are chipped or broken. If you have access to new dies try replacing them and I think your problems will be solved.

    If you can borrow a power threader the best thing to do is to ask the owner to show you the proper methods for using the tool. First hand experience and seeing it done in person is far better than any explaining we can do here. The owner of the tool will probably feel better about you using it if he knows you can use it successfully and SAFELY. This type of tool can cause serious injury and worse.

    You are actually pretty luckey as most folks will not loan out that type of equipment to a non professional.
    Work hard, Play hard, Sleep easy.


    • #3
      I've throughly checked the cutters and they seem to be in good shape. They have no chips nor teeth missing. Can they just be dull or on the verge of needing to be replaced? I have taken a lot of time trying to make them work but no luck!


      • #4
        The dies are probably mis-aligned and need adjusting.

        Make sure the numbers on the dies correspond to the numbers in the slots (they should be the same). Loosen the screws so that dies are somewhat loose. Then put the head on an already threaded pipe and make the dies thread it, the dies will be pushed out slightly and at this time you can tighten down the screws again. The protrusions of the cover should be firmly placed within the slots on the dies. Then try threading a new piece of pipe (unthreaded) to see if you have proper alignment.

        Plumber is correct, you should at least read the manual and familiarize yourself with a 600 or 700 power threader before you use it. But if you can borrow it, by all means do, it will save you heaps of time long as you have a vise or tristand to use with it. Make sure you properly secure pipe and brace the machine against a pipe wrench with handle or use Ridgid's devise. I've never used a 600 but I have a 700 I use from time to time and it's the next best thing to a real machine like a 300.


        • #5
          Big suggestion:

          Hire a plumber.

          Nothing personal, but I don't give advice to non-professionals. I, personally don't make a dime either way, I don't work in the service and repair industry. But I think that plumbers are there for a reason. Use them.

          the dog
          the dog


          • #6
            Plumbdog-if you really have no constructive advice to give then, just don't say anything! I am "sure" that everything you have attempted in your life has been done by a professional like yourself! Give me a break!!!!!!!


            • #7

              Having reread my post I admit it was pretty harsh. For that I apologize.

              It just kind of irritates me when someone asks a trade person to use their years of experience and knowledge to lead someone through a process, so they don't have to hire the very tradesman giving advice. But, you're correct I shouldn't have responded at all.

              That said, your problem could be one of many (most listed above). If you only need to thread a small amount of pipe you might consider measuring it and having it cut and threaded at a supply shop.

              the dog
              the dog


              • #8
                Apology accepted! Thanks!!!!


                • #9
                  I have that problem at times,
                  one pipe will tear and the the next one will not, or one portion of it will tear and the other end will not, when cut in to short pieces,
                  and I think it is the cheap forgein made pipe. for the most part that is all I can get in my area.
                  but if your die is dull it will tear as well,
                  Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
                  "The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good."
                  attributed to Samuel Johnson
                  PUBLIC NOTICE: Due to recent budget cuts, the rising cost of electricity, gas, and the current state of the economy............the light at the end of the tunnel, has been turned off.


                  • #10
                    Never had that problem even with foreign pipe. And I thread ALOT of black. I would think it safe to say something is wrong with your technique or dies.

                    I have had problems with fittings splitting though, and pump flanges that crack if bolted down too tight. Never happened before to me with US made ones, just recently now with this Taiwanese and whatever stuff, and like you, it is often the only available thing from local supply.

                    I don't know how well this bodes for the industry, it's part of the whole globalization trend that continues to consume American jobs, industry, and now obviously, quality.


                    • #11
                      Before you reverse the head, make sure all the filings and metal shavings are removed. Sometimes they can get caught between the dies and the pipe and cause damage. Also, try using oil as you reverse the cutter.


                      • #12
                        Re: Black Iron Pipe



                        • #13
                          Re: Black Iron Pipe

                          I agree that it's probably dull dies and it may be that foreign pipe is contributing to the problem - lots of pig iron mixed in, and that is hard on dies. It's why plumbers don't let electricians borrow their dies. (That, and the fact that electrician's dies aren't tapered.)


                          • #14
                            Re: Black Iron Pipe

                            You know he's pulling up old threads.

                            I do it from time to time.But I don't know about this bold move