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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > Where To Drill For Couplings?
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Old 08-24-2007, 08:12 PM   #1
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Default Where To Drill For Couplings?

Been away; too busy.

Want to drill kegs for couplings so they will be ready to just weld when I deliver them to the welder dude. Aiming to put in two per; do many people cut them in half and use as shorter couplings?

Guessing the down bend of tubing inside of keggle reaching into the lowest portion of bottom of keg determines how well it will drain, but to be able to easily weld the coupling into the keg wall, what do I use as a measurement for allowing ample room around the coupling for access by welder to the lower portion of the weld?

Guessing also that minimum diameter of hole to coupling OD will make welding easiest...?

Need a 'do this, don't do that...'

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Old 08-24-2007, 08:21 PM   #2
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First, I'm rethinking using couplings at all. As orfy argues, it would just mean you need a close nipple to connect your ball valve. I MIGHT go with 2" nipples instead. I'm not positive though because I already own the couplings.

You don't want to cut them in half. You need to be able to thread in to both sides.

If you're putting in a port for a thermometer and site glass, consider welding a Tee directly in. You'll need one anyway so why go coupling, nipple, tee when just welding the Tee in works?

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Old 08-24-2007, 08:49 PM   #3
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Thanks for the different slant Bobby.

I can see the nipple deal working outside for the valve, but on the inside, aren't you still having to use something to adapt to the tube? I'm not seeing male NPT going direct to tubing...

I saw...somewhere in 'net land, somebody had cut them and used them as shorter; I have access to NPT taps, just wondering if it is worth the extra hassle to try and save any space...

I can see the advantage to welding in a SS tee, odd leg up I presume, for the thermo, but guessing that any external lip on the internal leg of the tee should be removed, and smallest hole possible drilled....not sure if they have this, just remembering how black pipe ones look...

Interesting how you think that you are going in a direction that you have seen countless times, (just using couplings) and finding that the standard way is lacking....sure is nice bouncing things off others before embarkation...

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Old 08-24-2007, 09:24 PM   #4
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Here is some information on converting a keg:

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/wiki/index.php/Keggle

Cheers

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Old 08-25-2007, 06:36 PM   #5
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"This means the bulkhead/ball valve must be installed a couple inches above the bottom."

Okay, a generic, nominal 'two inches'...this is what everyone does?

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Old 08-25-2007, 06:49 PM   #6
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Here's the hieght I fitted mine and it works fine.
The picture also demonstrates the advantage of using a nipple instead of the more commonly used coupler.



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Old 08-27-2007, 12:06 AM   #7
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Thanks, Orphy, for the 2027 words.

Inside, do the compression fitting's threads match the npt thread pitch of the nipple without die work on the nipple's threads? Guessing that is a 1/2" brass barrel farrel(sp?) inside the compression nut...

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Old 08-27-2007, 04:19 AM   #8
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I was going to say that you'd have to use a fitting to adapt either a coupling or nipple to your dip tube. I would have never thought Orfy's setup would work, it's brilliantly simple.

On the tee, I was thinking of going with 1/4" FPT since I know I can get dial thermos with 1/4 MPT from Stpats. As soon as I verify that I can get 1/4 MPT to 3/8" tube compression fittings that is (for the sightglass). Yes, odd leg up for the sight glass, end leg for the thermo.

I've always drilled out the hole so the fitting fits really snug. It makes it easier for the welder.

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Old 08-27-2007, 07:25 AM   #9
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The compression fitting fits directly onto the nipple and seals hand tight with out the need for tape or a spanner. I don't know the sizes etc. but I think it's a tap fitting out of my spares bucket

I take a picture when I'm at home. (next week)

Here's another part saver. A compression elbow fits straight into the ball valve.

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Old 08-27-2007, 07:30 AM   #10
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Default T sucks ;)

Another thing to consider.
Using a T in order to have sight glass and inlet/outlet on the one hole means that you can have problems with siphoning/pumping. That is, as you drain/pump, air gets sucked in through the sight tube giving you bubbles in the line. As you drain/pump, the sight glass becomes inaccurate because of the suction, just when you might want to know how much liquid to move, meaning stopping and starting.
Many prefer to drill two holes, and mount the sight glass separately, avoiding all this.

Cheers,
Yorg.

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