Improved Method of Tapping and Connecting Branches With Pipes.
The object of the invention illustrated herewith, in Plate I, Fig, 2, is to provide a means for tapping the plugged branches and pipes of water mains, and for connecting branch pipes to them without stopping the supply, or causing any inconvenience to manufacturers and householders.
The plugging of the branches placed in the street water mains at spots where at the moment no immediate supply of water is required and no branch pipes are to be connected is, as is well known, accomplished by the insertion in each of a short length of pipe with a web or bottom extending across, constituting a hollow metallic plug B, Plate I, Fig. 1, tightly calked into place, and ready to serve as a plug, stopping the branch entirely for as long a period as may be required. When it become, necessary to connect a branch-pipe to such spurs or branches (in order to obtain a supply of water) the plugs must be removed.
Now there are two ways of doing this : First, the old way, as shown in Fig. 1. A trench is dug and the branch unearthed ; the water being shut off, the plug B is then broken with a heavy hammer. As may be supposed, the water C in the mains and pipes rushes out and fills up the trench. Before the plug can be further removed and a valve and pipe connected, the water in the trench must be bailed out. This operation often occupies a period of several hours, thus causing much loss of time and inconvenience to manufacturers and consumers, and considerable risk to property or life in the event of an outbreak o fire. By adopting the new way, Fig. 2, all this trouble, inconvenience and risk, it is claimed, is avoided, and much time, labor and money saved.
The method is as follows : A valve D is provided and prop’erly secured, either directly to the exterior of the plugged branch or to the metal plug fitted therein ; the choice may turn on whether the plug is of sufficient length and properly constructed to afford a convenient hold (such as shown in Plate II, Figs. 2 and 3). If the plug is short, the valve D is secured directly to the exterior of the bell of the branch (as shown in cut). It is jointed with lead and tightly calked in place. Then the tapping machine, Fig. 2, is bolted to the other end at line M. This machine consists mainly of a supporting frame E, a crank F, gear-wheels J, feed disc K, stuffing-box L, shaft G, cutter bead H and drill I, and is operated as follows :
The cut-head H and drill I being in the position shown, power is then applied to the crank F, which causes the wheels J and shaft G with cutter-head H and drill I to revolve. The shaft works through the stuffing-box L and is pressed forward by the feed disc K until the drill I has peiforated the centre of the plug P. The feed disc K is now revolved rapidly until the cutters which are attached to the head H are brought into contact with the bottom of the plug, and a circular groove is sunk quite through the disc cut out. The drill I is equipped with a spring catch which engages with the metal disc and insures its retention on the drill so that when the drill is withdrawn it brings the disc with it. It is only necessary now to withdraw the cutter-head H back to the outer end of the valve case, screw down the valve, detach the machine and the job is finished. The above described machine will tap from 2 inches up to io inches by simply changing the cutter-head H to the required size. The machines are made of any capacity to tap either branch or pipe from 2-inch up to 48-inch when desired. The improved plug and cap shown in Figs. 2 and 3 of Plate II are now extensively used instead of the old style Fig. 1, B. and C. Fig. 4, Plate II, is a short connecting piece, sometimes used as an intermediate connection between the plugged branch and the valve. By employing either of the above an ordinary valve can be used in tapping.
Plate III illustrates very plainly in cross-section and perspective a simple and substantial double branch-sleeve connection. This is made either double or single, of any size or capacity from 2-inch up to 48-inch ; can be bolted together anywhere around a pipe jointed with lead, and calked tightly into place, as shown. Fig. 3 is a side view, showing the flange outlet K, to which the valve B is securely bolted. The tapping machine is attached to the other end, and opera ted as before described. When a piece has been cut out from the wall of the pipe of the desired size, and withdrawn, the valve is closed and the machine detached, leaving the hub of the valve ready to be connected with a length of pipe.
The inventor of this method and machine is Philip Eley of 32 East Twenty-fifth street Bayonne, N. J.