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Bronze for transition between galvy and copper?

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  • Bronze for transition between galvy and copper?

    Is a cast bronze fitting (like a ball valve or sweat/press adapter) considered an appropriate converter fitting? I know that both brass and bronze are alloys containing copper and other metals (zinc for brass and tin or other metals for bronze)

    In IL our code reads that section 890.350 b) "unions between dissimilar metals shall either be made with a brass converter fitting or be a dielectric type union."

    So is bronze similar enough to brass to be considered a converter fitting? I've been told both yes and no various plumbers and inspectors.

    I know there might be regional differences but I'm curious as to what you guys think or have heard.

    Also, when using brass as a converter/transition how long do you guys make the brass piece? I've been told minimum 3" , but I've also heard minimum 6" or 8"
    Last edited by Swade Plumbing; 05-24-2012, 09:50 PM.

  • #2
    Re: Bronze for transition between galvy and copper?

    Originally posted by Swade Plumbing View Post
    \Is a cast bronze fitting (like a ball valve or sweat/press adapter) considered an appropriate converter fitting? I know that both brass and bronze are alloys containing copper and other metals (zinc for brass and tin or other metals for bronze)

    In IL our code reads that section 890.350 b) "unions between dissimilar metals shall either be made with a brass converter fitting or be a dielectric type union."

    So is bronze similar enough to brass to be considered a converter fitting? I've both yes and no from different sources around here.

    I know there might be regional differences but I'm curious as to what you guys think or have heard.

    Also, when using brass as a converter/transition how long do you guys make the brass piece? I've been told minimum 3" , but I've also heard minimum 6" or 8"
    Shall is being used in your code so, it has to be brass or dielectric union. I would use brass as dialectic unions. I have pulled dielectric unions apart and found them almost 100% plugged. He'll, copper female adapters directly to the older nipples were not as bad after 15 years of service. I have never tried going from galvanized to bronze.
    AllurePlumbing.com
    • leak detection
    • drain cleaning
    • utility locating
    • conductor fault locating
    • and other specialties.

    Greensboro NC, Winston-Salem NC, High Point NC, Thomasville NC, Kernersville NC

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    • #3
      Re: Bronze for transition between galvy and copper?

      Why do we need to use dielectric unions on water heaters that have dialectic nipples...why not use dielectric nipples?
      AllurePlumbing.com
      • leak detection
      • drain cleaning
      • utility locating
      • conductor fault locating
      • and other specialties.

      Greensboro NC, Winston-Salem NC, High Point NC, Thomasville NC, Kernersville NC

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Bronze for transition between galvy and copper?

        Originally posted by Gettinit View Post
        Why do we need to use dielectric unions on water heaters that have dialectic nipples...why not use dielectric nipples?
        In theory, the dialectric unions are a "less noble" metal and sacrifice themselves to corrosion saving both the copper and the tank.....again "in theory" or so I've read. Also the outside wall of those dielectric nipples are very thin and the copper makes direct contact with the steel vs the plastic and rubber gaskets that the dielectric unions have.

        As I understand it, many if not most ball valves on the market are actually bronze body (mistakingly called brass),and inspectors never have a problem with a ball valve as a transition fitting....which is part of why I asked the question of brass vs bronze as they seem to be used interchangeably in our jargon.

        Personally, I don't use dielectric unions much, I prefer brass nipples or combination of nipples and fittings (I try to make the total developed length at least 3"-6").

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        • #5
          Re: Bronze for transition between galvy and copper?

          I've always been taught 6" brass nipple is minimum for dielectric connection.
          Buy cheap, buy twice.

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          • #6
            Re: Bronze for transition between galvy and copper?

            thanks ben
            I've always been told 3". I try to make them about 6" with a nipple (or some combo of nipple, fitting, valve) but sometimes space can be an issue.

            I'm still hoping someone has some insight into the brass/bronze question?

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            • #7
              Re: Bronze for transition between galvy and copper?

              https://www.ridgidforum.com/forum/t12314/
              Buy cheap, buy twice.

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              • #8
                Re: Bronze for transition between galvy and copper?

                Originally posted by gear junkie View Post

                Thanks Ben, I remembered reading that thread before but couldn't find it when I searched.

                I guess I need a lesson in why Brass is considered appropriate as a transition fitting. Copper and galvanized Steel are dissimilar metals. Brass contains copper and zinc. Is it because the brass alloy contains elements from both the 2 metals (copper and zinc in the galvy coating)? or is it some other scientific reason?

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