Slip-on spout adapter's set screw DESTROYED my copper pipe - how to replace the pipe or alternative?

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by Serval, Jul 9, 2014.

  1. Serval

    Serval New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Leaking at the base of the tub spout so removed the current plastic spout adapter and found a dent and hole where the set screw pushes into the copper pipe. Leaks most when the shower diverter is on, no leaks when water is off.

    Unfortunately, tiling our other shower so today's leak means no showers at home tomorrow - I'll using the gym shower which is fine for me, my wife is not happy about it.

    I believe this leaves me with a few options, I'm leaning toward the second:
    1. Open the wall and replace the pipe at the valve. Time consuming, likely break tiles that I don't have replacements for, least preferred option.
    2. Cut the pipe back nearly to the level of the tile and sweat on a coupling to a new, longer piece of copper pipe. Sweat on a male threaded copper adapter to the pipe that the current spout can screw into directly.
      1. Issues with using a spout that came on a plastic adapter with threaded copper pipe instead?
      2. I'm not sure that's a good idea - is a threaded copper nipple appropriate for this application? Assuming it is okay, then:
      3. What's the best way to be sure to accurately cut the pipe so the threads will align the spout to the tile wall?
      4. I'll need a 1/2" copper coupling with a stop, a 1/2" copper male threaded adapter, and 1/2" copper pipe about 6" long, correct?
    3. Cut the pipe back nearly to the wall, the sweat on a brass Delta sweat-on adapter. But that means buying the part and a delta spout with the adapter while I already have a good spout I bought recently and like to looks of.
    Is #2 the best option? If so, what about the measurement and are those the needed parts? I already have a copper sweating kit and propane torch, I'll pick up a pipe/tubbing cutter too.

    Thanks for the quick replies, hoping I can get this done tomorrow after work!
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2014
  2. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,825
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    install the coupling and pipe stub. Loose fit the adapter on it and then the spout. Measure the distance between the wall and the spout, deduct a little bit for tightening the spout, and cut that much off.
  3. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,825
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    Personally, I would go with option #3, but that is just a personal preference.
    Serval likes this.
  4. Serval

    Serval New Member

    Messages:
    2
    I'm not certain there's enough room for either option - the damaged/dented portion of the pipe is only a 1/2" from the tile wall, I can pull it out another 1/4" if needed.

    I'm leaning toward #2 - coupling, pipe, and male threaded adapter. This is because all the parts are available easily, for little cost, and I can reuse my existing spout. If I had time and money to spare I'd agree with you HJ, but the wife wants a shower and doesn't want to do it at the gym.

    How can I (or a plumber if I need to call one) install the coupling or the Delta adapter with so little space?

    Also, anyone have a plumber to recommend for this in or near Napa, CA 94558??


    The plan is to:
    • Cut (or if too close to the wall, hacksaw) the nipple off just past the hole,
    • use a dowel (or ???) to re-establish or ensure the roundness of the opening,
    • clean the pipe with sanding fabric from sweat kit.
    • Sweat a 1/2" coupler into the old pipe
    • Sweat a ~5" length (more precise measurement later) of copper pipe into the coupling
    • Sweat a male threaded adapter onto the end of the pipe
    • Screw on the spout
    Is this a good approach?

    Photos - the nipple from below (looking up). You'll see the hole, ~1/2" from the wall.
    [​IMG]

    Photo - side view of the nipple, notice the large dent / divot - the hole is toward the center of that dent.
    [​IMG]
  5. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,121
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    You could also slide on a repair coupling with no stop to cover the hole.

    Any of those options work.
    hj and I like the Delta fitting and tub spout, or you can go with a end threaded spout.

    If you use the Delta, there is room for a coupling, either to cover the hole, or to cut it there.
    I run the copper a little past the end of the Delta spout and solder at the end.

    [​IMG]
  6. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,825
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    make the cut at the hole are little way in front of it, (the hole will be inside the joint so it will not be a factor). Then solder the coupling on to it.
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