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Thread: lead closet bend

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member Robert C1's Avatar
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    Default lead closet bend

    I have a bathroom with several layers of work over the years.

    The structure was built in 1962, the subfloor is 2x6 car decking.
    Cast Iron waste system with a lead closet bend.

    At some point someone removed a second layer of plywood and installed durock. I'm guessing this left the closet flange a 1/4 inch proud of the floor which caused a rock and a leak. Later, someone else cut out a 2' square section of rotted wood around the toilet, supported it underneath the car decking with 2x4's and plywood then poured cement flush with the top of the durock. Then they made a 2' diameter mound of a finer cement mix around the toilet flange, laid a vinyl floor and set the toilet.

    The old toilet did not leak or rock, but had some pretty nasty caulk gaps at the base (3/4" in spots).

    I've pulled the toilet and removed the vinyl floor.
    I plan to remove the fine cement, drop some self leveling compound to smooth out the floor, new vinyl, and set a new Toto Drake toilet.

    I'm not sure of the best method to connect to the closet bend.

    The lead is currently barely bent over the inside lip of a rusted metal flange.

    My grand idea is to cut the lead bend flush with the finish floor (removing about 3/4" of lead) and drop an abs closet flange coated with silicone inside the lead pipe, then fasten the flange to cement with tapcons.

    Thanks for any and all advice.

    Rob
    Last edited by Robert C1; 06-23-2009 at 09:25 AM.

  2. #2
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default flange

    That seems like a good "handyman" solution and an almost guaranteed leak in the making. The proper way is to get a brass flange and solder the lead to it. The next best is to get the flange and then beat the lead onto the top of it. You want the wax seal to be between the lead and the toilet.

  3. #3
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    If the lead is no longer long enough to do that, you need to either replace the entire lead bend with a new one, or tear that out and replace with either CI or PVC or ABS.


    I normally just pull the lead out of the cast iron tee, and use a 4x3 flush bush into a insert rubber pipe donut.

    Last edited by Terry; 06-14-2010 at 10:01 AM.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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    DIY Junior Member Robert C1's Avatar
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    Thanks for the replies, a couple of questions:

    How much of the lead pipe does one need to have above the finished surface to use the beat over the flange approach?

    Why is the ABS approach guaranteed to leak?

  5. #5
    I&C Engineer (mostly WWTP) Lakee911's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert C1 View Post
    My grand idea is to cut the lead bend flush with the finish floor (removing about 3/4" of lead) and drop an abs closet flange coated with silicone inside the lead pipe....
    Much to the dismay of others here, I did this exact thing using a cast iron flange that had some rubber orings/gasket on it and it fit snuggly. I put a liberal amount of silicone too. It's held up now for a few years.

    My only regret is that I didn't put a SS worm drive clamp around the contraption from below when I had the oppurtunity to access it.

    Jason

  6. #6
    DIY Junior Member Robert C1's Avatar
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    The soldered lead connection sounds like a good connection, provided I learn how to properly solder lead. But I'm having a tough time understanding the downside of the abs connection. With the 2" of overlap and lots of sillicone it seems like it would make a better connection than the beat over the lead technique with less risk/learning curve than soldering lead. What am I missing?

  7. #7
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    Default

    You are mixing terms. Soldering and poured lead/oakum are totally different. Soldering is done with a relatively small hand propane or Mapp gas torch and is used to connect copper water lines. Cast iron drain pipe joints are first packed with oakum then molten lead is poured into joint over the top of the oakum. This is not a DIY process for 98% of us. You can not get a reliable drain seal with ABS or any other pipe with silicon caulk. I believe you are in over your experience level and it would be wise for you to have a professional do this job. Otherwise, I fear you will be tearing out the whole job very soon to redo it right. It's a wise DIYer that knows when it's time to punt!

  8. #8
    DIY Junior Member Robert C1's Avatar
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    Thanks Gary, but I meant solder. I was referring to soldering the lead pipe to a brass floor mounted flange.

  9. #9
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default flange

    You solder it with a soldering iron, not a flame. The problem with the PVC/ABS flange routine, is that there is no way to verify that it is sealed, until the day that the sewer backs up. We are not DISMAYED that the other person did it, nor that it has not leaked, because so far he may not have encountered the situation were it will leak.

  10. #10
    DIY Junior Member Robert C1's Avatar
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    I'm sold on the soldered brass flange technique. I picked up a couple of flanges today.

    I'm thinking soldering lead has some different techniques to it. Is anyone willing to offer a primer on how to solder this connection?

    Thanks,
    Rob

  11. #11
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default lead

    Control your heat or you will melt the lead before you can apply the solder. Waste lead is very thin and will melt almost instantly if you use a flame improperly. Use the lowest temperature solder you can find, 40/60 is ideal, but 50/50 works.

  12. #12
    DIY Junior Member Robert C1's Avatar
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    I'll pick up some 40/60 solder at the plumbing supply store.


    Iron or torch?

    Should I apply heat to the brass or the solder? or does the first question answer the second

    Any tips on controlling the heat?

    A particular type of flux?

    Rob

  13. #13
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    I wouldn't want that to be my first experience with soldering! While you'll melt solder with the torch, you won't get a good joint. You want to make the junction between the lead bend and the flange hot enough so the solder will melt and flow. Putting the solder in the flame will just emulate dripping wax from a tipped candle...it will cool off too much and too fast to flow into the joint. One of the pros can give you more of the details. If you use a soldering iron, it needs to be one with significant tip, not one you'd use for electronics...I'm talking big here.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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    DIY Senior Member gardner's Avatar
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    I think HJ mentioned that an iron should be used rather than a torch a few posts up.

    I'm curious about this myself as I once was in a position to do this job and wound up simply peaning over the edge of the lead bend within the ring rather than soldering it.

    For an iron, would one of those iron adapters that fits on a torch be suitable? Or would you want to go get one of those ginormous 2-foot long 200+ watt electric jobs my grand dad used to have?

  15. #15
    I&C Engineer (mostly WWTP) Lakee911's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hj View Post
    You solder it with a soldering iron, not a flame. The problem with the PVC/ABS flange routine, is that there is no way to verify that it is sealed, until the day that the sewer backs up. We are not DISMAYED that the other person did it, nor that it has not leaked, because so far he may not have encountered the situation were it will leak.
    I think you all were dismayed when I suggested it on another thread back in the day. I think he ended up doing it though too....

    It's above the flood level of the basement drain, basement sink, washer drain, and the kitchen sink. If I get a clog in the closet bend (< 2' of horizontal before it goes vertical) then I'm in trouble. If I get a clog in the stack I'm sure i've got bigger problems to worry about...

    Thx,
    Jason

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