pvc vs. abs *not plumbing related*

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by thedanned, Sep 25, 2008.

  1. thedanned

    thedanned New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Hello

    Got a couple three questions about ABS vs. PVC piping. First, I would like to mention that this is not for an actual plumbing project. But after reading up on a few threads, it seems like you people know your ish when it comes to building materials. And yes, I have gone to home depot and the like to ask these questions and all I get is a blank stare then the guy just repeats himself "well, like I said, this here ABS is for drains..."

    What I am doing is making a shipping container for tripods (you know, like for a camera but heavier duty). Im making about 25 of these. I ship the tripods out over and over again via FedEx. I have made one prototype case out of 6" PVC. Its 30" of pipe, cap on one end and a threaded pipe cap on the other (like this one http://jjgeisler.com/reeftank/images/projects/kalkwasser/top_cap.jpg ) to remove the tripod from the case. So about 34" overall. It has gone out and come back twice and survived. I just sent it back out again today, so were working on number three here!

    My quesiton is, which do you all think would hold up longer? This case is 15lbs by itself, 21 lbs with the tripod in it. Im concerned that PVC will shatter if dropped too hard by FedEx. Reading different places online, ABS seems to be lighter and more flexible than PVC as far as impact resistance. And I'd like to cut down on weight a little bit. But 6" ABS is hard to find (at least in New Mexico) whereas 6" PVC is readily available.


    So, in order of importance, what Im working with is

    Impact resistance (dont want the case to shatter out there somewhere and loose my tripod)
    Longevity
    Weight
    Also, black ABS looks better and I dont have to paint it.


    Any input would be greatly appreciated. Also, I know this really isnt the purpose of this forum, but I dont really know where to go for an answer.



    Thank you!
  2. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,450
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I consider PVC to be much less likely to break than ABS.
    In cold weather it does get brittle though...
    Bottom line...
    If they want to destroy your package they will do it quite well.
    I once had a 3/4" round steel bar that was returned to me bent like a horseshoe. It was straight when shipped... Thanks Brown!
  3. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,319
    Location:
    New England
    A heavy duty paper tube won't shatter in the cold and might be about the same price. Don't know which would be lighter. The foam core pvc is lighter than the solid stuff.
  4. 99k

    99k Radon Contractor and Water Treatment

    Messages:
    460
    Location:
    Fairfield Co.,Connecticut
    I would go with the PVC for impact resistance. If you don't like the color, you can buy a lighter schedule called SDR and comes in a turquoise color.
  5. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    27,255
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    pipe

    Use SDR and you have to have adapter bushings for the adapter and cap, and you might as well say goodby to the tripod also because that material has almost no strength.
  6. Cass

    Cass Plumber

    Messages:
    5,980
    Location:
    Ohio
    They do have a SCH 80 that would be more durable in cold weather but you will be paying dearly for it...the SCH 40 is very brittle in cold weather and shatters...there is electrical PVC but I don't know if it is any better or worse.
  7. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    27,255
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    Pvc

    Electrical PVC is the same as sch. 40 plumbing pipe, it is just gray instead of white. Either one is going to be heavy, but it would take a real effort to break them. A cardboard shipping tube, filled with packing foam to provide support to the walls would be the lightest, without sacrificing durability.
  8. 99k

    99k Radon Contractor and Water Treatment

    Messages:
    460
    Location:
    Fairfield Co.,Connecticut
    The other material you could use is for drains and is made from polyethelene. and I believe many refer to it as (hard core). This stuff is bullet proof and would never break. You cannot solvent weld it though, but instead use silicone. If you did use this, use silicone and also mechanical fasteners such as screws or pop rivets.
  9. thedanned

    thedanned New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Thanks to all for the advice, I think this was what I needed to decide on PVC. Cost, availability, ease of use, and the feedback make for a pretty good argument.


    Thank you all!
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