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-   -   Who needs welding?? This is easier! (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f11/who-needs-welding-easier-65030/)

Ewalk02 05-06-2008 07:39 PM

Who needs welding?? This is easier!
 
The other day I decided to make my own keggle but didn't have the right equipment to weld on a ball valve or sight tube....here is my solution!

http://www.acehardware.com/product/i...Id=27763797203

This stuff worked amazing, no leaks and is tough enough for my application, best of all it was cheap and EASY!! If you can solder copper you can solder stainless steel.

What do you guys out there think, have I come up with a cheap solution to welding and weldless fittings or have I set myself up for poisoning by using this stuff?

olllllo 05-06-2008 07:43 PM

Quote:

450 F. melt
That's the concern, I guess.
It shouldn't be a problem if you always have liquid in the keg, which should aways be the case.

Ewalk02 05-06-2008 07:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by olllllo (Post 667636)
That's the concern, I guess.
It shouldn't be a problem if you always have liquid in the keg, which should aways be the case.

I saw that but figured it would never get that hot as you pointed out.

Lil' Sparky 05-06-2008 07:56 PM

I remember other people saying they'd used silver solder in the past with good results. I'm not very good at soldering - I always make a huge mess - or I would've tried this myself.

Liquidicem 05-06-2008 08:03 PM

I'd be interested in hearing Bobby_M or Yuri's comments on this stuff for those of us with any welding skills. I went with weldless fittings on mine but am still contemplating getting someone to do the welding for me. I work with a lot of contractors at work and could probably find someone willing to do the work for pretty cheap.

Yuri_Rage 05-06-2008 08:12 PM

Silver solder is a fine way to join stainless parts, assuming you get a properly "wetted" joint, which can be a challenge. This appears to be a very soft alloy; as such, I'd be a little concerned with strength and durability. However, if the joint is solid enough to withstand the stress of wrenching a fitting onto it, then it's probably strong enough to last. Never let your keggle run dry, or you risk heat damaging the joint.

Funkenjaeger 05-06-2008 08:13 PM

Stainless is not the greatest heat conductor, so it can get a lot hotter than the liquid in it. The lower side walls of my keggle stay above the boiling point for several minutes after flameout - I spray them down with water and it takes quite a lot of spraying before it no longer instantly steams off the water. 450F is still relatively high though. Silicone O-rings, for example, are usually rated for something like 400-500F, and plenty of us use those for weldless valves without them melting.

So, you're probably safe, especially if you're not trying to solder a fitting EXTREMELY low on the keg.

Obviously a trial run is in order - let us know how it goes! If this actually stands up to the heat I may very seriously consider it myself, especially for adding a sight glass or similar, since buying the additional fittings and silicone o-rings for an additional weldless install doesn't sound so appealing right now.

conpewter 05-06-2008 08:35 PM

I'm interested in this though I don't know how it would be used to install a port on a keggle. Seems that it would be fine for fitting together pipe etc but I figured you needed the extra strength and material of welding to fill in the gaps from your coupling to the hole in the keggle.

Ewalk02 05-06-2008 08:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Funkenjaeger (Post 667694)
Obviously a trial run is in order - let us know how it goes! If this actually stands up to the heat I may very seriously consider it myself, especially for adding a sight glass or similar, since buying the additional fittings and silicone o-rings for an additional weldless install doesn't sound so appealing right now.

I've used the keggle since I put in the sight glass and ball valve...works great! I didn't see any leaks and the solder seemed to hold up to the heat. I'm 100% satisfied with how its worked so far.

Funkenjaeger 05-06-2008 09:02 PM

First off, any chance you can give us some pictures? I'd love to take a look at the joints.

So what was your process? Sand and clean the joint area, apply flux, and then solder with a blowtorch?

I assume you were soldering a SS fitting to the keg, not brass or something? What kind of fitting did you actually solder to the keg - half coupler? full coupler? Did you solder it on the surface, or drill the hole so the fitting was a close fit in the hole?

I'm thinking a 1/4" NPT SS full coupling soldered into a close-fit hole would be a good solution for adding a sight glass on my keggle.

And as others have asked, how's the durability? I assume you can't wiggle the fitting with your hand or anything, but will it withstand a bit of strain/impact (ie - threading in a fitting tightly, smacking the side with a hammer, etc) without the joint warping or cracking?


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