Copper pipe heater without fire.

So I had this brilliant idea.

I recently became an unlicensed master plumber. I can plumb anything in my house.

I’ve done it the harder way with copper, and the simpler way with pex.

Sure there’s black iron and probably other sorts of materials I don’t even know about, but I know enough to run copper and pex. That will solve any problem I will ever have.

Copper is obviously better than pex. It’s more expensive, it’s harder to work with, it lets you play with fire. It’s a MAN’s materal. GRRRRRRRR! METAL! FIRE!

Once you get over yourself however, you realize what a pain in the ass it is to have to worry about setting various parts of your house on fire by blowing a torch near flammable things like insulation and wood joists  when you’re trying to solder pipes resting on those joists, or near that insulation.

So they invented pex. And crimps and sharkbites that take all the effort out of plumbing. If there’s any question that it’s simpler easier and cheaper, just check out any discussion board where real plumbers talk to each other and by their inherent fear and poo-pooing of pex and sharkbites, you know it’s gotta be good.

But there is value in copper. You can pull it out of your house and sell it and retire.

But let’s say you still wanted to work with copper. The torch is the problem. I know there’s something manly about playing with open flame, I get that, I like setting things on fire more than most people. But in all the decades people have been using copper pipes, I don’t see why nobody’s come up with a less risky solution.

I only wonder this because it took me about a day to come up with something better.

Imagine an electrically powered hand held tool much like a soldering iron who’s electrically resistant tip (the part that gets hot) is a semicircle of the size that would fit around a 1/2″ 3/8″ 3/4″ pipe or whatever you want to solder.

If you could press a stick against the pipe you want to solder, you could press this thing.

You cup the heating element of this tool around the pipe, wait for it to heat up to 480 degrees Fahrenheit, apply solder, and voila. Plumbing.

No open flame, it contains the mess, no singeing any nearby wood, no need for tin to protect behind whatever pipe you’re working on.

Yeah it may draw a lot of amperage, but it would make it so much easier and safer.

Well. It seems it already exists. Google is truly amazing. Gotta get me one of those.


Leave a Reply