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Mystery Pipe Expander

Printed From: TheAMCForum.com
Category: The Garage
Forum Name: Tool Time tool review and eval area
Forum Description: Tool reviews, evaluations and tips only please.
URL: http://theamcforum.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=101121
Printed Date: Jul/14/2020 at 1:44pm


Topic: Mystery Pipe Expander
Posted By: MacGyver
Subject: Mystery Pipe Expander
Date Posted: Jul/24/2019 at 8:31pm
Wondering if you guys could help identify this tool I came across!
 
It's obviously a pipe/tube expander, but for what application??
 
The expanding range is very small...   1-1/4" - 1-1/2" if I read it right...
The knurled jaws on it confuse me...
 
Google is not my friend on this one!!  I came up with nothing!!
 
Anyone seen or used something like this before??
 
 


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Replies:
Posted By: billd
Date Posted: Jul/24/2019 at 8:47pm
I have a larger one for exhaust pipes. We used to use it in the Rambler shop - the boss gave it to me when he retired.

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Posted By: MacGyver
Date Posted: Jul/24/2019 at 10:32pm
I have a couple of different sized ones for exhaust pipes, too!
 
But this one is so small, I can't figure out what it's purpose would be!!
 
And why would you want a knurled finish on the inside of the expanded pipe??
 
I'm baffled by this thing!!


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Posted By: billd
Date Posted: Jul/24/2019 at 11:26pm
I think we've been looking at this wrong. I wonder if it's a tube extractor for chillers, boilers, heat exchangers, etc..... Tubes need to be replaced now and then - how do you get them out? A puller.

I had a hunch, having worked on that sort of equipment and similar and looked up "tube puller" and found this link -

https://www.tcwilson.com/product/107/manual-tube-puller" rel="nofollow - https://www.tcwilson.com/product/107/manual-tube-puller

It would explain the knurling - GRIP for pulling!


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Posted By: MacGyver
Date Posted: Jul/30/2019 at 8:00pm
Hmmm.....   Interesting!!!
You could be on to something there...
 
But all the tube pullers I saw doing a search, have an "EZ-out" sort of threaded end to bite into the tube, and then a collar to surround the tube that butts up against the end plate so that when you tighten the nut at the end it will effectively pull the tube out!!
 
If this tool were designed to do that, I would think it would need some sort of slide-hammer action to do the pulling??
This thing would require you to pull on a very short stub to try to tug the tube out!
 
I don't think that it would be very effective in that application.... 
Unless you have an amazing kung-foo grip!!  LOL
 
You could be right about the inside grip!!!
But for what?!?


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Posted By: billd
Date Posted: Jul/30/2019 at 8:17pm
Do you see slide-hammer provisions in the picture below?  
Is the tool you have new? Could it be simply a different version of this one below?

I've watched guys in HVAC with chillers and electric boilers, and even in steam restoration using tools to pull tubes.
There's certainly enough grip area for a gloved hand - in fact the tool you have has a knurled area where the hand could go.
Just using comparisons and logic to see if it's possible that it's a comparable tool.

The knurling is meant to grip - tighten it up and that baby will stick in a tube - it could be simply a different patent or version or company.  Slip this in, expand into the tube and pull.

Just my take on it of course -  but it almost matches this picture save for the tube end. Knurling would grip without hurting the tube.

Compare to this - 




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Posted By: MacGyver
Date Posted: Jul/30/2019 at 10:31pm
I don't see a slide hammer provision in that pic...
 
That tool will force the tube out by tightening the collar against the end plate of the heat exchanger....  Kind of like "pressing" out a ball joint on a newer vehicle...
 
I showed this tool to an HVAC guy I know...   He'd never seen one before...
 
This tool is probably 30 years old or more, but brand new!!  NOS if you will!  LOL!!
It came from a shop that shut down many years ago...
And as far as I know, that shop never did any HVAC stuff...
Mostly small power tool repairs...
 


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