Featured Videos

New Tool Unboxing

Its always fun to get a new tool, or a couple new tools as is the case this time. The new Wera stubby hex key set will be a great addition to the Veto for service work. Now that the heating season has officially started here in MN I will also have many uses for Read more

Its always fun to get a new tool, or a couple new tools as is the case this time. The new Wera stubby hex key set will be a great addition to the Veto for service work. Now that the heating season has officially started here in MN I will also have many uses for the Wera Tool-Check Plus.

StreamLabs Control

StreamLabs Control water monitoring device Here’s an unboxing of StreamLabs water monitoring, whole home control valve. Come back soon for a full featured install video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PlkzMx056GE&feature=youtu.be Read more

StreamLabs Control water monitoring device

Here’s an unboxing of StreamLabs water monitoring, whole home control valve. Come back soon for a full featured install video.

Cordless Pipe Threader

Milwaukee Pipe Threader

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9uWMfazVTU Cordless seems to know no bounds, not according to Milwaukee. The M18 Pipe Threader is the only battery powered threader on the market that can cut up to 2″ threads on Sch 40 pipe. In an age when pressing technology seems to have eclipsed the need for another pipe threading machine along comes a Read more

Cordless seems to know no bounds, not according to Milwaukee.

The M18 Pipe Threader is the only battery powered threader on the market that can cut up to 2″ threads on Sch 40 pipe. In an age when pressing technology seems to have eclipsed the need for another pipe threading machine along comes a very capable and extremely useful tool no one, including myself, thought we needed. I was wrong.

First looks

The M18 Fuel Pipe Threader w/ One-Key is one beefy tool as it houses its gearbox in Milwaukee’s typically styled aluminum housing. The bright red cladding extends from mid-body to battery in an ergonomic layout with a comfortable rubber grip and well positioned forward/reverse switch.

The M18 Pipe Threader can cut up to 2″ threads on schedule 40 iron pipe, rigid metal conduit (RMC) and stainless steel. Performance is relative to size of pipe but Milwaukee is boasting 25+ cuts on 2″ and that’s impressive number.

Worth noting

The M18 Pipe Threader has what Milwaukee is calling AUTOSTOP Kickback Control. What that means is the tool can sense a sudden ans severe kickback and shut itself down immediately. I I have only seen this feature under controlled demos but if you’ve ever threaded with other portable threaders, particularly overhead then this feature alone may be the reason to invest. Broken knuckles and property resulting from an power tool mishap are never cool.

Details

M18 Threader Specifications M18 Threader Specifications
Viega Rapid Grid

Viega Rapid Grid A recent radiant floor install was the perfect opportunity to try out the high impact polystyrene foam board system for my first time. Rapid Grid is a 2’x4′ interlocking foam board system with raised knobs that hold 3/8″-5/8″ PEX tubing with minimal use of staples or the need for wire tying to Read more

Viega Rapid Grid

A recent radiant floor install was the perfect opportunity to try out the high impact polystyrene foam board system for my first time. Rapid Grid is a 2’x4′ interlocking foam board system with raised knobs that hold 3/8″-5/8″ PEX tubing with minimal use of staples or the need for wire tying to grid work.

Typically my radiant floor installs consist of using 2-1/2″ foam board staples to attach 1/2″ oxygen barrier tubing directly to 2″-25psi 4’x8′ foam board insulation. Normally the insulation is installed by the general contractor or another sub but I have done it many times so installing the Rapid Grid was useful for comparison purposes.

Our building code requires a vapor barrier, regardless of the insulation system used but the typical 4’x8′ foam board also requires a poly seam tape coverage on all joints. That’s the main difference I took away from the actual laying of the Rapid Grid. The Rapid Grid has a directional tongue and groove type of system that joins each piece to another. This overlapping joint system negates the need for sealing the seams and also holds the insulation together well.

I did go over each loop and staple where I felt needed, especially on each loop end. Staples are not entirely eliminated but mostly due to the memory in coiled PEX tubing. The tubing is held very well withing the Rapid Grid knobs however its not perfect. Watch close in the video and you’ll see very brief spots where I stapled in between loop runs.

Costs

In the end, after a cost comparison using current pricing available for 4’x8′ 25psi foam insulation board and my current pricing from a local supplier, Rapid Grid is higher price per sq. ft.

My thoughts

Given the labor savings, this system was installed in just over 3.5 hours verses an average 4.5-5 hours of my typical installs this size, I can see the Rapid Grid being competitive when typical foam board market pricing is elevated. This floor is just under 3K sq ft, smaller projects like slab on grade additions could be an excellent application.

Ford Transit Plumbing Van Video

This summer I made the move from a truck with a utility topper to a 2019 Ford Transit for my small plumbing and hydronic heating company. The mid-height, long wheel base Ford Transit is a huge upgrade of space for me but I want to get everything just right. Organization has long been a strong Read more

This summer I made the move from a truck with a utility topper to a 2019 Ford Transit for my small plumbing and hydronic heating company. The mid-height, long wheel base Ford Transit is a huge upgrade of space for me but I want to get everything just right.

Organization has long been a strong point for me with my vehicles but mostly by complete necessity, the Transit could easily lend itself to a huge dump and go ride but having a place for everything and everything in its place will keep me moving from one project to the next quickly.

Although my build-out is not yet complete I thought I’d share a walk thru of what has been done so far. The 2019 Ford Transit has over 10 feet of interior floor space, 6 feet of headroom and ample lighting. Here’s a look at its current state, additional storage solutions to come soon.