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"The Great Propress debate"

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  • "The Great Propress debate"

    Greetings,
    So Of Course I have been lurking for some time, do you know if you Google propress that this forum comes up all the time in the search results. It has been fun reading the some 30 page threads on The propress debate, for some reason I feel like I know plumber Rick allready. So I have had a Propress Tool sitting in the garage for some time and decided to try it out just for kicks and giggles. Here is my Lowly humble take on it.
    I'm a tool guy And any new tool to make something easier I say go for, I do like Propress but here are some annoying points That I think anyone taking the plunge should Be AWARE of before.
    1.) I spent a buttload on fittings just to do a small shower.
    2.) Fittings often form a razor like crimp edge that will cut your throat if they could reach it.
    3.) The center of a tee fitting must be crimped at an almost 90 degree angle or else the the jaw hits the other legs. This seriously ticked me off, I prepped and fitted 4 tees under this house thinking I could crimp them from the side and no go, I would of had the gun almost straight up and down to crimp the center t, if they made the center t just a little longer you could crimp it from all sides??? Makes me think thank vieja is just pushing its partners tool purchases (Ridgid) (I could of crimped it with their almost 2,000 dollars crimp ring set.
    4.)The 1/2" jaw that I just took out the bag never used, would not line up proprerly and was leaving half of the fitting crimped higher than the other, (Really! I just took it out of the bag)
    5.) I found myself fretting over wether the seal would crimp over the super deep engraving that mueller stamps on it's crappy pipe every 12 inches! REALLY! and ended up cutting another piece every time I didn't see the engraving.
    6.) I ended up cleaning the pipe anyway, as the light patina often hides imperfections in the pipe that showed up with a quick scour and I often had to sand out pits and nicks because WELL copper pipe does not come to your house in perfect condition, after that I then fretted, oh no did I sand the pipe to much and the seal will be to loose now.
    7.) Street fittings Were so banged up straight out of the bag That I ended up using only one out of about a dozen I bought as I couldn't sand the pit and scar marks out of them.
    8.) The pipe entering My bronze male adapters would spin a little even after crimped Almost like they were more resistant to crimping, Tech said they have had same reports but no leaks as a result.
    9.) I actually had to spin one fitting, as per the system allows but felt like cutting it out and replacing would make me feel better.
    10.) I could go on if the propress newbs want me to?
    Truthfully I actually like the system, The type K long sweep fittings, No flame, No sweat when wet, No dealing with water soluble flux, GO CALIFORNIA! Offers some joint flexing for us Earthquake Califonians, 50 year Warranty and a tech line, You won't find that for solder fittings.
    Eh I am Split down the middle 50/50 on the subject.
    Pictures attached! Bring on the Grammer Nazis!
    Attached Files
    Last edited by Core.inc; 05-31-2012, 03:16 AM.

  • #2
    Re: "The Great Propress debate"

    You must be a retired engineer.
    Buy cheap, buy twice.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: "The Great Propress debate"

      very nice looking install not 1 burn mark or melted strap/ isolator. you could dry fit it all together and in a matter of minutes press all the joints and be done. very nice.

      the expensive fittings are your drop ear 90's.

      depending on which machine you have will dictate your swivel between 90- 270 degrees. i own a set of rings and rarely use them as with a little thinking ahead, you can fabb the difficult access joints first.

      the muller copper tubing is not something i use. but i can't imagine that their required markings are so deep to cause an issue. remember that the smart connect fittings/ green dot have a factory nick built in to allow for leakage if not crimped. the jaws press the o-ring into this nick and seal it. it should do the same for the copper tubing.

      i only sand old dirty pipe. of course working under a house you need to keep the fittings dirt free as the factory lubed o-ring can collect dirt if dropped in the dirt. but the same is true with a fluxed fitting.

      i can't picture your street fittings being so beat up that you're scared to use them. my truck stock drives around with me all day long and has not been an issue to properly crimp.

      as far as the little pinch/ nick goes, depending on the jaws, will determine the extent of the nick. there are some that are deeper than others. just make sure your jaws are clean. use the scotch brite pad for rust, not sand cloth on the jaws.

      overall, knowing where to buy your fittings from can save you a lot of money. talk with your distributor and have them set you up an across the board discount multiplier. plus buying by the box or bagful should also be a better price. it's the oddball fittings that can surprise you with the price.

      once again nice looking job

      where in calif are you? i might be able to steer you to a good supplier of fittings.

      rick.
      phoebe it is

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: "The Great Propress debate"

        How deep of a pit or scar do you think the seal will fill in? The street fittings were just banged up normal But I know they always tell you that the pipe must be free from defects. I didn't think of the smart connect hole although I think it probably is logistically positioned to fill in.
        I'm in the bay area, Contra costa county.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: "The Great Propress debate"

          you're in tools/ toolaholic's neck of the woods.

          check with your local supplier and see what discount factor/ multiplier they are using from list.

          see if you can get an across the board number so you can figure out what cost what before you get sticker shock.

          rick.
          phoebe it is

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: "The Great Propress debate"

            Just like any other materials you purchase for a job they're priced into the job. I don't care how much they cost, I'm not paying for them.
            Propress is safer, cleaner, and it's quicker. I don't think I've ever had the problems with Propress as described above. I did have a jaw break once but was replaced under warranty. From that day on I carry and extra set of the smaller jaws.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: "The Great Propress debate"

              So is life, full of unexpected events and delays, I called the local ridgid rep about replacing the jaws I have that are crimping one half higher than the other ,and he said something about they couldn't do that to one of their distributers especially without looking at the jaws eh, I wasn't really impressed. I was by far very impressed with Vieja technical support even thought they differed me to ridgid they seemed to be as helpfull as they could, I talked to Jeremy and troy I believe at the triaining facility I believe.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: "The Great Propress debate"

                Originally posted by ironranger View Post
                I did have a jaw break once but was replaced under warranty. From that day on I carry and extra set of the smaller jaws.

                Say Ranger, were you outside Propressing on a -30F day again? You know how metal snaps on those medium temp days here in Minneeeeesota.

                Seriously, one day, (not this last winter), I grabbed a jaw from the truck one COLD day and my hand was a little wet. Darn hand froze to the jaw for a few seconds. So cold it burned. I had to let the propress and batteries warm up for an hour or so before I could use them.
                Time flies like an arrow.

                Fruit flies like a banana.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: "The Great Propress debate"

                  nothing like leaving the snap cutters or cast iron/ no hub in the sun

                  rick.
                  phoebe it is

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: "The Great Propress debate"

                    It's not exactly a great debate.

                    it gets kind of old seeing legendary plumbers, advocating this tool.

                    All this talk about a better connection. No, that's not why you use it. It's because it's fast. If you were striving for the best, you would be hard piping brass in. it's just about speed. And I understand there are times when it's a home run. But, I've not noticed any situation where I said, well shoot. I can't do this without a pro press.

                    you may be able to lie to the average home owner, but why are you bringing that bullshit here?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: "The Great Propress debate"

                      I actually feel like I want to take these out and solder it, Boys looks like a probably got a defective jaw on my hands and welp from the sound of it the local ridgid rep might not honor warranty because I used the jaws with my nibco gun which Nibco says are compatible.
                      Rick do you know who owned the original technology?
                      I assumed the original guns were working under the same patent because the old ridgid 320e and nibco pc-100 jaws are intercompatible.
                      I notice alot of the tools are the same like rothenberger and nibco both sell the same compact press but with there own names on it, anybody know who really is making these particular tools?

                      As regards the press vs solder, In the end What I want is consistent, predictable, reliable connection.
                      Last edited by Core.inc; 06-02-2012, 12:23 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: "The Great Propress debate"

                        Originally posted by stolen View Post
                        It's not exactly a great debate.

                        it gets kind of old seeing legendary plumbers, advocating this tool.

                        All this talk about a better connection. No, that's not why you use it. It's because it's fast. If you were striving for the best, you would be hard piping brass in. it's just about speed. And I understand there are times when it's a home run. But, I've not noticed any situation where I said, well shoot. I can't do this without a pro press.

                        you may be able to lie to the average home owner, but why are you bringing that bullshit here?
                        like i've already mentioned before and on other post. we are all required to use water soluble flux. i know for a fact that 90% of the plumbers here do not abide by the national code and 1/2 of them were not aware of the code for the last 15+ years.

                        so tell me, how do you and everyone else make wet connections to live pipes with water soluble flux? and don't tell me that a jet sweet works on everything because they don't. speed is 1 thing and being able to do the impossible is the other thing.

                        what did we do before propress? sit around and wait and use a non water soluble flux or braze it and hope it doesn't start popping with steam.

                        are you also knocking roll grooving/ victaulic too? so basically every fire springler system should be threaded and screwed together. every waste line should be a poured lead joint. every lawn sprinkler system should be copper or galvanized.

                        there is absolutely nothing wrong or cheap about using propress. go onto their website and see what universities, hospitals, hotels, government buildings, housing, office buildings and so on are using it and spec it.

                        compare the weight, sweep and quality of a press fitting to a solder fitting. there is no comparison.

                        i have other plumbers call me to do their press work because they can't do it the old fashioned way.

                        there is no debate. propress is here to stay and it's just a matter of time before insurance companies start to require it. propress doesn't burn down buildings.

                        rick.
                        phoebe it is

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: "The Great Propress debate"

                          I just spent a couple hundred on fittings and a couple hundred on L copper and I crawled around eating rat ... Under a house for who knows how long and it turns out, I got a bad set of jaws straight out of the bag. To top it off they might not even replace the jaws because well that would break the company!
                          A LITTLE HELP HERE, Does anybody know who holds the patent to the press technology and why are so many different press tools able to use different jaws?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: "The Great Propress debate"

                            Originally posted by PLUMBER RICK View Post
                            like i've already mentioned before and on other post. we are all required to use water soluble flux. i know for a fact that 90% of the plumbers here do not abide by the national code and 1/2 of them were not aware of the code for the last 15+ years.

                            so tell me, how do you and everyone else make wet connections to live pipes with water soluble flux? and don't tell me that a jet sweet works on everything because they don't. speed is 1 thing and being able to do the impossible is the other thing.

                            what did we do before propress? sit around and wait and use a non water soluble flux or braze it and hope it doesn't start popping with steam.

                            are you also knocking roll grooving/ victaulic too? so basically every fire springler system should be threaded and screwed together. every waste line should be a poured lead joint. every lawn sprinkler system should be copper or galvanized.

                            there is absolutely nothing wrong or cheap about using propress. go onto their website and see what universities, hospitals, hotels, government buildings, housing, office buildings and so on are using it and spec it.

                            compare the weight, sweep and quality of a press fitting to a solder fitting. there is no comparison.

                            i have other plumbers call me to do their press work because they can't do it the old fashioned way.

                            there is no debate. propress is here to stay and it's just a matter of time before insurance companies start to require it. propress doesn't burn down buildings.

                            rick.
                            Rick sorry to break in on your thunder. There is some merit in what is claimed but on the up side there is also a thing called progress. Yes the old ways are good but they have been found to have "issues" which society is not comfortable with. Yes everyone wants and needs water. Thye say they dont care how it gets there but it better be there when they turn on the tap. Of course dont let the wate come into contact with lead or other, make sure it is clean etc etc. For years we used to run water through Gal pipe, all screwed. Then they said it was not good so we changed to copper. This got expensive so they gave us plastic. now we have all different types and manufacturers to boot. So this is progress my son. Yes I wish we could retain the old ways but we must move forward and learn as we go. As an apprentice we were told high pressure water was good. now we know it isnt so.
                            I can go on and on but save being accused of ranting again I would just say progress is something we will never stop. We just have to work on making sure it is in the right direction, for the better of what we do and not for the financial gains of some at the expense of many(bit philisophical one might say).
                            Final word - As Master Plumbers we need to still teach the old ways as well as the new. I personally would love a lesson in lead wiping but cant find anyone here to show me.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: "The Great Propress debate"

                              Originally posted by Core.inc View Post
                              I actually feel like I want to take these out and solder it, Boys looks like a probably got a defective jaw on my hands and welp from the sound of it the local ridgid rep might not honor warranty because I used the jaws with my nibco gun which Nibco says are compatible.
                              Rick do you know who owned the original technology?
                              I assumed the original guns were working under the same patent because the old ridgid 320e and nibco pc-100 jaws are intercompatible.
                              I notice alot of the tools are the same like rothenberger and nibco both sell the same compact press but with there own names on it, anybody know who really is making these particular tools?

                              As regards the press vs solder, In the end What I want is consistent, predictable, reliable connection.
                              Sounds like you've run into a brick wall, as far as the Ridge Rep is concerned, and wasted your valuable time trying to get it resolved.
                              For me job one would be to rectify the issue with the work. I'd probably buy a new jaw that I tested before I left the supply house and fix the problem.
                              Then I'd total up all my costs with doing the repair, including another plumbing professional whom I paid to witness the event.
                              Then I'd head to Small Claims Court. I'd sue up to the Maximum allowed, taking into consideration every minute of my time and every item I used to make the job right. I'd also bring along the Nibco Rep., as well as other professionals who have successfully used a Nibco tool with a Ridgid jaw.
                              Make sure that you include your time for filing with the court and the trial itself on your damages.

                              As I've mentioned before, I'm not a lawyer, but I play one on tv.

                              Please note: I am 100% advocate of the ProPress System. But right is right and fair is fair.

                              Comment

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