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darryl
03-04-2008, 09:51 PM
This is a continuation of my torch saga. I've checked with various places locally and it seems the closest thing I can find to a hookup to my existing natural gas system is what they call a barbeque outlet. After I got back up off the floor, I asked about the legality of the homeowner doing the pipe fitting work. One older fellow said that the homeowner can do anything he wants, legally, including gas line work.

This would mean that I could shut off the gas, remove the copper line which is off the end of the iron pipe system, bring that all downstairs, and hook it up again. Turn on gas, check for leaks, etc. If needed, I would enlarge the hole where the copper comes through the floor so the fitting would also pass through. In this way I wouldn't be removing any ends, simply unscrewing the fitting and re-connecting it.

The end where the gas stove used to be has a shut-off valve and a female threaded end ready for the gas stove. I can live without using a quick disconnect, so I could just use a matching fitting, put a hose on that, and connect to a torch, jetted for n/g. I should be good to go, and legal- ?

There is no existing vent in the kitchen for a gas stove except the fan in the ceiling venting to the attic. The home was originally wired for an electric stove, and someone put the gas stove in later (and took it with when they moved). I don't know if a positive vent is actually required for a gas stove, but for my torch in occasional use, I don't see the need. If I was to build a heat treat furness, I would definitely put in a vent- I don't have a problem with that, nor with other regulations such as set-back from combustibles, etc.

It's been frustrating trying to nail down the details to comply with the law and the insurance company. I got some funny looks when I mentioned grade T hose at metal shops, plumbing and heating places, and industrial hardware places. My insurance agent had no answers, just a few looks of horror when I mentioned natural gas and propane. She was nice enough, but the lack of info left me wanting to leave some natural gas there. :) I think the pressure in my tubes was higher at that time than it is in my pipes at home. :)

Anyway, I'm just venting a bit and wondering if anyone has any more ideas on how I should proceed. And one other question- teflon tape suitable for sealing the fitting, or is there a special 'paint' for these connections? Is my nose good enough to test for leaking, or is there a preferred method- like light a match, put near connection, tighten connector til flame goes out- :)

tattoomike68
03-04-2008, 10:05 PM
There is special teflon tape for NG. to test for leaks make some soapy water with a spray jug with a little dish soap. Spray all the joints and look for bubbles.

I think you can do it just fine.

HSS
03-04-2008, 10:11 PM
Don't run natural gas thru copper tubing. It is illegal here to do so. Don't know about where you are. It degrades the copper and causes a flaking inside the copper that looks like graphite.
Leak check with dish washing soap and water on the joint. Don't use a match, it's not very safe.

darryl
03-04-2008, 10:36 PM
Thanks for the heads up on leak testing- that's what I'll do. I was only kidding about using a match, hope y'all knew that-

'don't use copper line'- that's what I have here already, about ten feet of it. Maybe it's not legal here now either. If it degrades the copper, maybe I'm in for a surprise one day when it starts to pinhole. I can sure see that cheap crap that was used several years ago doing that. Some of that garbage had pinholes in it from new.

If there's a problem between n/g and copper, I'll be stirring it up as I rebend the tubing to its new location. I'll also be compromising the valve- maybe it won't shut off fully. That won't be good. I think I will consider going with iron pipe all the way-

Doozer
03-04-2008, 10:43 PM
What kind of torch do you intend to run with the pitiful 1/2 psi of gas pressure typically found in a house?

--Doozer

J Tiers
03-05-2008, 12:18 AM
Gas company here has been "upgrading" gas service pipe from iron to copper for years.

Just recently it was discovered that they have blown up a few houses due to the copper being corroded from outside by certain soil conditions.

Apparently the soil strips out the odorant from the gas, so the gas leaks into the house and cannot be smelled. Then you flip on the light and go out in a blaze of glory (you hope, better that than 3 years of skin grafts & physical therapy).

Dunno about the interior corrosion.

darryl
03-05-2008, 12:55 AM
Doozer, my torch will again be a hsm made device. I will have to research the jet size and air supply ratio, and will make the air supply adjustable so I can hit the right mixture on the button. I learned a lot about this when I made the propane torch head. I also learned how to make very small diameter holes to pass the gas through. It will be a different ball game with such low gas pressure, but it will not be difficult to put the right math together.

As far as the torch body, I would like to make it easily held as well as easy to affix to whatever holding device, plus capable of free-standing in some way- possibly it will have a stem which would fit a hole in a stand. I want to make it difficult to knock over, or to send flying if I trip over the hose.

For the most part I'm considering that this will be a 'station'. I can set up things to be soldered or whatever, and be sure that I can't set things on fire inadvertently. The development of this would be to have different 'heads' that would suit certain jobs- one would be a ring flame for heating round things evenly, possibly in prep for a straight drop into a quenching medium. A line flame would also be good-

All this from a desire to upgrade the hose on my existing propane torch- I'm considering not having any propane at all in the shop, except to keep a typical 'cordless' on hand. I really don't like those, but sometimes they are the only thing that will do.

Evan
03-05-2008, 01:39 AM
Copper line is perfectly legal here for natural gas as it is for propane. Neither will corrode the line. All the various connectors and hoses are normally approved for both as well. I have done two full installations in my homes of natural gas, one with black iron pipe and one with copper. In either case a drip leg should be used if the line must run down to the appliance. That's a short piece of pipe teed into the line that is lower than the appliance gas valve. Natural gas is flowing at such a slow rate that it can't pick up and move much of anything. At a maximum pressure of 2 psi in copper it simply can't move very fast.

All you have to do here to install your own system is pass inspection. Darryl, if you want to do it yourself then do what I did. Go directly to the inspector and ask him what he thinks and what he will want to see in your installation so that he will pass it as safe. That will set him back I bet 'cause it did the inspector here. But then he warmed up to the idea and gave me his three pet peeves regardless of who does the installation, more elbows on the gas meter, more pipe hangers and a 24 hour pressure test instead of one hour. When he came to inspect he saw exactly what he wanted to see and passed it on the spot with no corrections require.

It isn't safe to depend on your nose to detect gas. Even if you can smell it the ability of people to identify that odor varies from ultra-sensitive (hyposmia) to complete anosmia.

Fasttrack
03-05-2008, 01:43 AM
I take it your not planning on using this for a cutting torch, right? In which case, sounds like a pretty neat idea for soldering, maybe brazing, heating stuff up etc.

I'd run iron pipe the whole way. More than safe enough, easy to work with and cheap! You can buy 10' of 1/2" around here for 7-8 bucks. Not too bad for the extra peace-of-mind. I sure thought i read somewhere about not mixing natural gas and copper but maybe i was wrong...

Evan
03-05-2008, 01:59 AM
The only reason for using black iron pipe for natural gas is physical strength so a clueless homeowner can't easily fold spindle or mutilate it with hammers, drills and saws.

Natural gas is mostly methane but it does contain ethane, butane and propane as well. Propane also contains ethane, butane and methane.

The difference is the proportions which vary depending on source. That is why the natural gas billing has a heat value adjustment included.

darryl
03-05-2008, 02:11 AM
Thanks, Evan. I did think to go directly to the inspector after I talked to some clown here in the gas business, but then I thought this is such a minimal change- what would I gain? This leg is already here and all I'm doing is moving it down- there's no change in the hardware (unless I do go with black pipe), just the location. If I was willing to cut a larger opening in the floor behind the stove, I could push the valve through it into the basement, and besides mounting it solidly, the job would be done. No disconnection needed at all.

I don't intend and never did to have this be a cutting torch. I could probably rake in a retirement fund overnite if I found a way to cut metal with 1/2 psi of n/g. Maybe if a added in a fine mist of powdered aluminum and magnesium, and had grandma bring her oxygen over. :) No, I just want to be able to solder and silver solder, and heat treat in the very small part range, as I do now. I would like to have a workable oven though at some point.

Your Old Dog
03-05-2008, 05:53 AM
According to Natural Fuel Gas people in Erie Country NY the copper tubing/nat gas issue has to do with minerals in the dirt. In this area it is legal to run copper in nat gas and if underground, it has to be encased in sand. Now that copper cost so damn much I'd use black iron pipe.

My friends new home build in Akron Ohio nearly blew up. The contractor didn't do a 24 hour leak test and a straight section of hard drawn copper had a long crack in it midway down the section. The leak was in a wall. The house was not occupied so when the homeowner opened it up the following day they said the smell was so bad you couldn't go inside.

Just call the gas company and ask if it's allowed to use copper if that's what you want to use.

DENedbalek
03-05-2008, 06:10 AM
In my experience (30 years of working on air conditioning and heating systems) I would not use copper on a gas line for my stuff. In my younger days I made a lot of service calls early in the heating season every year to clean out the oxidized (?) black copper flakes coming from the copper line and blocking the inlet screen on the automatic gas valve on their heater. This showed up as low or no gas pressure to the pilot flame or very low burner flame. Same on gas water heaters.

I've never seen the copper fail and / or start leaking, except due to mechanical damage, but you will get some copper flakes after a few years. This would not be any problem in your application I think. To repair a plugged up gas regulator / valve, I simply blew out the flakes and reconected the line.

Dwayne

gld
03-05-2008, 09:17 AM
Be sure to throughly clean the soapy water off iron pipe after use....

If not, rust will set in very quickly especially on those new cut pipe threads.

Evan
03-05-2008, 09:23 AM
In my experience (30 years of working on air conditioning and heating systems) I would not use copper on a gas line for my stuff.

It may have been a problem many years ago because of sulphur content but the regulations have required the removal of sulphur to a very low level for a long time now. Also, propane has always been piped in copper and there is no difference in that respect between propane and natural gas.

HSS
03-05-2008, 10:02 AM
Darryl, if you do happen to open up the copper, tap on the line with the wrench and see if any black flaking like graphite comes out. Evan may be right about the reaction of sulphur with the copper, but I would still be interested to know if anything comes out of the copper.

rfrey
03-05-2008, 10:43 AM
more elbows on the gas meter, more pipe hangers and a 24 hour pressure test instead of one hour.

Evan mentioned the 24-hour pressure test in passing, but just to be clear - don't use soapy water as anything but an initial check of your joints. To check them properly, put a pressure gauge somewhere on the system and a bicycle tire valve somewhere else. Use a bicycle pump to pump the pipe to 20-25 psi. Then check the next day to make sure that there has been no pressure drop.

Evan
03-05-2008, 11:00 AM
"Black flaking like graphite" is exactly what to expect from copper exposed to sulphur. It is the same reaction that is used to antique copper using Liver of Sulphur, also known as postassium sulfide. It turns copper black on contact. All natural gas for home delivery is desulphurized. Here is where they put it in Vancouver. :eek:

http://www.pixelsandwidgets.com/images/2002-12-03-sulphur_pile.jpg


Note on the pressure test: For black iron pipe it has to be pressurized to 100 psi.

pcarpenter
03-05-2008, 11:05 AM
When this came up the last time a couple of months ago, I mentioned that my local utility discourages the use of copper as it will produce scale. A drip leg in iron pipe is a must, before the gas valve if you insist on using copper.

I also posted a link to a study done in California. It appears that the rate of thinning of the pipe is dependent on the sulfur content in the gas. Several replied that their natural gas was "low" in sulfur so it was no problem. I don't know how anyone can say this since most utilities buy it from all over the place.

I also know that I don't ever want to whack a soft copper line and then have to scramble for the shutoff. The accidental nature of this sort of thing is exactly what makes them accidents:D I think that soft copper lines tend to get shoved on a lot in their life...meaning they are subject to stress cracks after being flexed enough.

Paul

FrankC
03-05-2008, 11:13 AM
In Canada and most of the US, copper is allowed for natural gas (methane) and LPG (propane, butane) services IF it is of the type approved by CSA (Canada) / NFPA (U.S.A). This is a polyethylene jacketed copper alloy tubing (alloy C12200) which is corrosion resistant, not your plain old vanilla type L soft annealed tubing. This is allowed as long as the gas contains no more than 0.3 grains of Hydrogen Sulfide per 100 SCF of gas.

The mercaptain added to natural gas and LPG as an odorant so that you can smell a leak is sulphur based. If used to excess it will cause copper to discolor. In Alberta and B.C. most of the Natural Gas and LPG is processed from very sour natural gas and will contain trace amounts of Hydrogen Sulfide and Sulfur Dioxide, as the processing plants can not strip out 100% of the contaminants. With the addition of a little moisture this will form a weak Sulfuric Acid in the pipeline. Sulfuric acid corrodes copper, producing copper sulfate i.e. the black stuff you may find in the copper tubing, and eventually the "pin holes" and resulting leak. Incidentally as I am sure you are aware this gas is distributed throughout Canada and the US so the effect is not isolated to Western Canada

Personally I would not consider the use of standard copper in gas or LPG service inside of any enclosure, particularily my house or garage. It's probably "good enough" but a fire inspecter and insurance adjuster, not to mention coroner, probably wouldn't think so.

Evan
03-05-2008, 11:21 AM
I don't know how anyone can say this since most utilities buy it from all over the place.
Actually they don't. It's easy to say because nearly all of it is produced and delivered from and in North America where the regulations all call for the sulphur to be removed to a very low level. The current requirement is a very low 20 grains per 100 cubic feet which is equal to 1.3 grams per 2831 liters. [edit] Note that the 20 grains is ALL sulphur compounds, not just hydrogen sulphides. Hydrogen sulphide limits vary from around 1 grain maximum or less.


as the processing plants can not strip out 100% of the contaminants.
Ten years ago they were stripping out 99.9% of sulphides. They are much better now.


It's probably "good enough" but a fire inspecter and insurance adjuster, not to mention coroner, probably wouldn't think so.
What they think is irrelevant if it is passed by the gas inspector. It is approved for use here which is where Darryl lives and no jacket is required. Copper pipe carrying natural gas must be marked in yellow every three feet or less.

BTW, 1 grain =0.00014 lbs

pcarpenter
03-05-2008, 12:58 PM
In my case, in my shop, its LP and not natural gas that is in question and I know nothing about just how much corrosion to expect. Given that both the moisture content and sulphur compound contents weigh in, I don't know just what results I would have gotten with copper. In any case, its in a shop and I don't want a 2x4 or anything else to be able to easily pierce a soft copper gas line. With the exception of the LP provider who does a full inspection at the time of install (to cover *their* butts not mine), there is no "gas inspector" to presumably go to bat for me (not really likely anyway) with my insurance company if the shop burns down.

Here is the thread from some time back:

http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net/showthread.php?t=26721

Here is the study I referenced:http://www.copper.org/applications/f...nal_report.pdf

I can't help but notice that its put out by copper.org :D They seem to reference a service life of 20 years. Note to self....go replace all the copper piping in 20 years. I don't think my electronic calendar goes out that far, nor do I want to do it all over again when I hit my 61st birthday.

Personally, where highly flammable gasses are involved, I will err on the side of caution. I am an engineer by degree and by nature. We never use a 1/4" bolt where a 1/2" bolt will do.

Paul

darryl
03-05-2008, 02:12 PM
When I get about to doing this, I believe I will use black pipe anyway, because of it's resistance to damage. It will be exposed in the shop (as all of it is already) but simply to minimize the risk factor. It is conceivable that a chunk of aluminum could fly out of the table saw and according to Murphy's law it will have a very sharp end and will head directly to the copper gas line. There will be a puncture, and a static charge will ignite the gushing gasses. The shutoff valve will be hidden by the flames as well, according to this law.

I may over-do the instal to satisfy my own safety requirements. Mostly this will be in the form of impact protection so it won't be possible for say a swinging 2x4 to nail any part of this drop.

Thanks for the advice on testing procedures. Nothing will be hidden in a wall in this case, so I will have direct access to all junctions that need to be tested. It wouldn't be easy to use a pressure test because the system is already in use for the furness and hot water tanks. Only thing that confuses me is the special n/g teflon tape- teflon tape is teflon tape, no? Maybe this refers to a version that is resistant to stripping off inside the line?

FrankC
03-05-2008, 03:21 PM
Darryl - I think that makes a lot of sense, just because something meets code doesn't always make it practical. I still question if type L copper is acceptable, the CGA code clearly states that for gas, including LPG, copper must be designated as type "GAS" which has a different ASTM number than type "L". I am at work so didn't look at the chemistry of them. Maybe there is a local ordinance in your area allowing it.

Evan - This is totally off topic - Gas Processing plant recovery efficiencies are licenced by the EUB and are dependent on an number of factors such as when the plant was built, inlet gas quality and total volume. A quick review of some facilities which we built in Alberta over the years shows a range of overall Sulfur recoveries from 92 to 98.3%. Some of the older facilities such as the Fort Nelson and Chetwyn plants in your area may be less than that, I didn't bother to check. Latest changes to the EUB requirements require new facilities to meet 99.3% overall recovery, a target that is virtually impossible to meet economically which is why there have been no new sour gas plants of any significance constructed in recent years. The 99.9 % number which you referred to is a typical recovery rate of sulphur from the tail gas stream, i.e. the sour gas that was stripped from the inlet, and that is pretty much the limit with current technology.

Pipeline specifications allow 2 ppm of H2S specifically plus varying amounts of SO2, CO2 and other nasties in unodorized gas. Odorization raises that level. If we assume 2 PPM of H2S in a typical sales gas stream of 300 MMSCFD that is a significant volume in the pipeline and is turning out to be a major cause of "sweet gas" pipeline failures due to hydrogen embrittlement.

Evan
03-05-2008, 07:59 PM
Hydrogen embrittlement is caused by the hydro-carbons as well as hydrogen sulphide. This is especially so at the compressor stations where the gas comes out of the compressors red hot and must be cooled before reentering the pipe line. Of course there is an economic tradeoff as to how much to cool the gas vs how much damage it will do while hot since the hotter it is the more reactive it is but the hotter it is the cheaper the cooling system and the higher the throughput.

Pipelines aren't made from copper so any comparison to pipeline hydrogen embrittlement is also not relevant.

BTW, Fort Nelson isn't very close to being in my area as it is 1055 kilometers from here to there. This is a big province.

meho
03-05-2008, 09:25 PM
All my information on gas regulations comes from the International Fuel Gas Code.

Copper and brass tubing may be K,L or ACR.

Copper or brass tubing shall not be used if the gas contains an average of .3 grains of H2S per 100 cu sq ft. Your local provider has this information.

The test pressure shall be no less than 1.5 times the proposed max working pressure but not less than 3 psi. Duration- single-family dwelling, shall be not be less than 10 min or more than 24 hours. 1/2hour for each 500 cuft of pipe volume.

There is no such thing as special teflon tape for gas that I know of.

barryvabeach
03-05-2008, 09:53 PM
Darryl, no one addressed venting that I saw so I am throwing in my 2 cents. So long as there is an adequate supply of oxygen to allow complete combustion of the natural gas, the byproducts will be carbon dioxide and water vapor. I spent a few days with a natural gas expert and he explained that no direct venting is needed for open flame natural gas devices, such as a stove, where certain requirements were met for fresh air makeup so that the stove, and the occupants, had a sufficient supply of oxygen. Apparently the building code has specs for how a room must be contructed to allow makeup air if a certain type of gas appliance is located there so technically, by moving the pipe to another room, you would need to verify that that room has sufficient makeup air. For example, if I sealed up my kitchen extemely well, and then ran the stove continuously, the stove could use up most of the oxygen, then the gas would no longer combust completely and the stove would then give off soot and deadly carbon monoxide. If you move the pipe to another room and you only use it sparingly, for example like a stove top burner is on a most less than an hour a day, you probably won't need a vent. If you use it very much more than that, you will introduce a lot of vapor in the room which way not be good for a variety of reasons. To be on the safe side, buy a carbon monoxide detector. Barry

doctor demo
03-05-2008, 10:17 PM
Virgin teflon paste is what Pacific Gas and Electric Co. suggested when I was running a new line for my spa heater and barbeque, and when I was finished with the installation they came out as a free service to leak check and light up. I thought it was a good idea to have someone that does that on a daily basis look things over, especialy since the county inspector signed off that portion of my permit befor the work started.


Steve

macona
03-05-2008, 11:03 PM
Copper is used all over around here. But the really nice stuff is the stainless flexline with compression fittings. THATS the way to do it and almost every new installation I have seen used that stuff.

J Tiers
03-05-2008, 11:57 PM
The copper being Ok if buried in sand is probably several things.....

1) tends not to have corrosive stuff in contact (cinders, clinkers, etc)

2) tends to cushion and avoid sharp stuff in contact

3) warns you when you suddenly hit sand when digging.

A number of local house explosions with loss of life have been traced to the use of copper pipes which corroded.

Up in Minnesota, they replaced all the in-ground gas pipes around my father's neighborhood with a thick plastic pipe. It's one of the toughest plastics I've ever seen. And NO corrosion problem.

Evan
03-06-2008, 12:49 AM
Latest changes to the EUB requirements require new facilities to meet 99.3% overall recovery, a target that is virtually impossible to meet economically which is why there have been no new sour gas plants of any significance constructed in recent years. The 99.9 % number which you referred to is a typical recovery rate of sulphur from the tail gas stream, i.e. the sour gas that was stripped from the inlet, and that is pretty much the limit with current technology.

I invest in this sector so I make it my business to know what is up.

Altagas:



2005 Investment: $90.2 million

Acquired a 100 percent working interest in the Blair Creek Gas Plant, a 25 Mmcf/d sweet gas processing facility northwest of Fort St. John B.C.
Internal expansions projects in the field gathering and processing component, including: 31 Mmcf/d at Marten Creek and 14 Mmcf/d at Windfall.
Began construction on a 20 Mmcf/d sour gas processing plant near Princess, Alberta.
Began construction of a 15 Mmcf/d sweet gas processing plant near Clear Prairie, Alberta.
Acquired the assets and liabilities of iQ2 Power Corp., a privately-held, Alberta-based power retail business.

The reduction in construction of sour gas processing plants of late has little to do with technical feasibility. It's a political issue and any guidelines that can't be economically met are intended to limit construction, not ensure cleaner gas. It has nothing to do with what is in the gas when it is delivered.

From the Energy and Utilities Board (EUB) , 2001



Actions weíve already taken:
ïinvolved extensive stakeholder consultation on the issue of sour gas plant proliferation and preventing
unnecessary construction of facilities. The EUBís Sulphur Recovery Guidelines Review, to be completed
mid-year, solidifies the foundation for Albertaís regulatory guidelines on sour gas plant proliferation,
and will contribute to an ongoing review of the issue (#6)
ïestablished requirements for all new or modified sour gas plants and critical sour gas well applications
to include expanded details of the applicantís development approach, and ensures that all are reviewed
in detail prior to issuing a well licence (#35)

http://www.publicsafetyandsourgas.org/implementation/SourGasImplementationBooklet.pdf


Last year:



In implementing the recommendations, the EUB has (among many other actions):
1. toughened rules around compliance and enforcement for sour gas development
2. assisted in the development of comprehensive health effects information around H2S exposure
3. improved coordinated planning for sour gas development in both rural and urban areas
4. initiated an extensive upfront technical review of all critical sour gas well applications and a 100% inspection rate for critical sour wells while drilling
5. launched a Customer Contact Centre manned by EUB staff to answer public questions
6. tightened regulations around sour gas pipelines regarding inspections and testing
7. created a Public Safety Group within the EUB that consists of a Community and Aboriginal Relations Section to increase consultation and understanding, and an Emergency Planning and Assessment section dealing with emergency response
8. upgraded the EUB's air monitoring unit to state-of-the art specifications and purchased a second unit. These units utilize infrared cameras that can detect volatile organic compounds.
The EUB has also changed regulations so landowners are consulted earlier and more comprehensively than ever before by companies proposing sour gas development in their area (including creation of a landowner's guide with 40 questions the public have the right to have answered).
There are over 6,000 sour gas wells, approximately 250 sour gas processing plants and over 18,000 km of operating sour gas pipelines in Alberta. In 2006, over 33 percent of Alberta's annual natural gas production was sour gas (1.6 trillion cubic feet).
The EUB ensures that the discovery, development, and delivery of Alberta's energy resources and utility services take place in a manner that is fair, responsible, and in the public interest.


http://www.ercb.ca/portal/server.pt/gateway/PTARGS_6_0_320_0_0_43/http%3B/ercbContent/publishedcontent/publish/ercb_home/news/news_releases/2007/nr2007_22.aspx

dockrat
03-06-2008, 01:52 AM
Up in Minnesota, they replaced all the in-ground gas pipes around my father's neighborhood with a thick plastic pipe. It's one of the toughest plastics I've ever seen. And NO corrosion problem.

It aint tuff enough to withstand a bobcat bucket. :D lol been there :eek:

camdigger
03-06-2008, 05:00 AM
FWIW, gathering lines are usually some kind of mild steel unless the operating pressure is low enough to use thick walled plastic line. Steel lines are typically jacketted in a plastic and checked for coating holidays before being placed in the trench. Lines were historically buried in a predug trench, but there has been increasing amounts of pipeline placed with a gigantic plow. All steel lines are subject to some level of X-ray weld inspection (10% for sweet and 100% for sour) and all gathering lines are subject to a pressure test at, IIRC, 40% above Max Op Press.
Locally, rural residential distribution lines are plastic with a tracer wire that is placed with a plow with about a 20' long steel transition piece/riser to the meter. The transition pieces installed on my property were also jacketed with plastic. The 25 year old transition piece that was dug up was jacketted too.
Plastic line comes into favor because it is flexible enough to be plowed without long curves in the plow arch, is not subject to corrosion issues, and is joined with a hot plate style fusion weld rather than relatively expensive arc welding most steel lines require, reducing open flame/spark producing processes and skilled/certified welding trades.
On a cost of installation note, there is a recent (15 year old or so) development in joint technology for steel lines that use a belled end and an epoxy joint sealer (trade name Zaplok?). The joints are forced together with a special crimper after the pin is slathered with the epoxy compound. IIRC, it is approved for sweet lines with operating pressures up to 750 psi and available in sizes up to at least 6".

camdigger
03-06-2008, 05:30 AM
A 20 million cf/day sour gas plant in an industry with an annual production rate of 1.6 trillion cuft hardly amounts to a significant contribution. Also, the H2S levels at Princess at 5-10% are almost an order of magnitude lower than foothills areas like Pincher Creek, Caroline, Ram River, Gold Creek at 30 - 90%. Solution gas in the oil production in some mature reefs can reach 40% in central Alberta. I don't remember a high H2S/ high throughput gas plant built here since Shell Caroline almost 10 years ago.
Foothills wells can have 10,000,000 cuft/day flow rates EACH. An excellent well at Princess might make 750,000 and more often 50,000 - 100,000 to get to 20 MMCF/d that plant at Princess could have 200 wells tied into it.

Apples, Oranges, Cumquats

Editted P.S.
I found some throughput figures for the Shell Caroline plant for comparison to the Princess figures in a quick Google seach here; http://www.eub.ca/docs/documents/memo-of-decision/md-1996-06-27.pdf numbers are quite large by comparison Raw Gas inlet volume 383,162,000 cuft/dy; Sulfur rate 5450 metric tonnes/ day; molten sulfur sales 5445 Tonnes/day; Sales gas volume 126,425,000 cuft/day

Evan
03-06-2008, 08:20 AM
A 20 million cf/day sour gas plant in an industry with an annual production rate of 1.6 trillion cuft hardly amounts to a significant contribution.

I didn't want to excessively bore people with more quotes. Altagas has been expanding many of the facilities rather than building new ones because it is much more cost effective and much easier politically. That's just one company and not one of the big ones either. The real problem regarding the EUB is the NIMBY problem. People literally don't want a well in their back yard so the pressure is on to make it harder to do just that. Unlike in the US you don't own the mineral rights when you own a piece of land here. If you happen to be sitting on a valuable resource some big company may come along some day and inform you they will be digging up your yard and oh yeah we will pay you a few hundred a year in tresspass fees.

camdigger
03-06-2008, 10:39 AM
Evan

Depending on when the surface title was assigned, there are incidents where the minerals and PNG rights are privately held, in Alberta at least. I know, my family holds some. AFAIK, BCs minerals are all held by the province. My neighbor doesn't have his. The other neighbor's land's mineral rights were held by the CPR (yes railroad) and are now the basis of the Encana empire - just think.... Pay yourself royalties.. No wonder Encana is profitable (sigh).

Cam

Evan
03-06-2008, 01:45 PM
The people that actually hold mineral rights to their land in Alberta are a very small minority. The land must have been continously held in the family I believe since before WWII at some time. My wife is from Alberta. Her family homesteaded there and they don't have rights. One day an oil company showed up and stuck a well right in the middle of one of her uncle's hay fields, right in the middle of the view of the lake from the main house. It sat there for many years and as far as I know they never hooked it up even though it was a producer. Just the christmas tree and some dirt around it until one day they came and plugged it and removed the hardware. My brother in law is a senior long time gas plant supervisor and trainer although I'm not sure who he is working for now. He used to travel all over the planet setting up new facilities.

Seems to me that the CPR got one of the sweetest deals ever negotiated for putting in the line. Something like being granted every other section of land (sq mile) along the right of way alternating on both sides of the track for a major portion of the line.

camdigger
03-07-2008, 12:21 AM
Evan
I beg to differ....
According to a petroleum landman (deal maker) I spoke with recently, and by personal experience, the minerals title does not have to be transferred within the family. My folks land was homesteaded in 1905 and the minerals title went with the surface title when my father bought it from the original, unrelated homesteader neighbor in the 50's. This landman guy has made his living doing land deals for over 35 years (he's 68) working for major energy companies and now for one of the largest land companies in western Canada. We meet socially at least once a week for coffee.
WWII ain't early enough for the minerals title to be tied to the surface title here, it's prior to 1930 at least. 1915 or so IIRC.
Since at least the 1940's, energy companies have had the right to enter private land for petroleum exploration IF they have a valid claim to the mineral rights. HOWEVER, they have consistently paid the surface title holder market value (that's purchase value) of the land used as initial payment, plus annual rentals, plus miscellaneous inconvenience fees. Most land holders who have a well on their land are paid annual rentals for all of the leased area which is usually only +/- 30% utilized after year 2 of the term, the rest of which is returned to the farmer for production (for it's orginal use) The point being, most are paid rental by the energy company for land they are farming and generating revenue from. The monies that change hands are NOT trespass fees, it is RENT. The surface leases are exactly that... LEASES. They are legal documents like easements and are attached to the title and produce annual rentals far in excess of any possible revenue the land is capable of generating in agricultural use. Trust me, I live this argument DAILY.

Editted p.s. The surface title holder does have the right to go to arbitration if they are not happy with a deal presented by the energy co. Most don't go that far because the arbitration board looks at market value and productivity and awards payment on that basis (typically %60 of the original offer). Energy companies are willing to pay a premium for the lease up front to avoid paying a lawyer and usually a representative to be present at all the proceedings.

Editted P.P.S. Some surface rights holders let their mineral rights be transferred back to the crown in exchange for having their property tax arrears cleared in the 1930's. Others, like my folks, worked themselves, their farm equipment, and livestock (read draft animals) for the municipalities building roads in the slower (if there is such a thing) summer season to clear their tax debt and avoid losing their minerals title. First the minerals title was seized, then the surface title.

Evan
03-07-2008, 12:37 AM
Trust me, they didn't pay for the land at my Uncle in law's place. That would be 2 or 3 sections. They paid him to push some dirt around with his crawler and they paid an annual tresspass fee. That was all from what he has told me. It wasn't a serious inconvenience as the well was capped with no chance of a leak but the idea that somebody actually has the right to invade your property without your permission is more than a little upsetting to many. The sour gas issue is being pushed to try and slow development which is an out of control freight train at the present.

My son and daughter and their families live in Alberta and the situation is unprecedented except perhaps by the previous gold rushes. Another issue that is being used to slow the drilling is the issue of excessive noise from oilfield gas turbines used to supply power and heat. On the sour gas issue one of the major concerns is venting. Few people know that on some occasions major sections of a pipeline will have to be blown down, releasing all the gas to the atmosphere.

camdigger
03-07-2008, 01:25 AM
Evan

1.) The only people that have the right to enter private land here without compensation are surveyors and even they have to get permission or at least advise the land owner prior to entry. Even so, the person requesting the survey is liable for damages to crop etc.
2.) The only way an energy company can get a well licence here is to hold a valid, duly executed surface lease. To drill a well without a license is grounds for trespass both on surface and subsurface. The last I heard, the current fine for even drilling through a zone that was not held legally was $500,000. Because it affects minerals evaluation, each well is reviewed pre and post drilling for trespass by the EUB/ERCB. All daily contractors operations records are submitted to the ERCB by law.
3.) What is the legal land description of the well. I can pull up the well licence from the public record tomorrow. Also, FWIW, I can pull up operator details, operation summary, and production history and can even go up to a data library and have all the daily activity reports copied and send to you, just send me a SASE 9 x 12 preferred. For about $10, I can pull all the ERCB/EUB correspondence on the well on microfiche or digitally if it's new enough too. Just enclose the cheque with the SASE.
4.) the ERCB has a well file on all of the nearly 400,000 wells (the last one I licenced was +/- #382800) drilled in Alberta stored in a facility just North of the U of C here in Cowtown.

It's probably worth the education value to ask what the "trespass fees" are relative to what the rest of the section produces annually.

In 30 years in the energy industry, I have never seen more than 20 acres of 160 compromised for a lease. The leases are a portion of the total land.

The only situations I know of where all the land area was compromised was in a disaster class unplanned incident, and the land owners were well compensated. Google Atlantic #3. +/- 1947....
Cam

HTRN
03-07-2008, 02:18 AM
Anyway, back to Darryls project.

I think running a torch on Propane is a great idea - you see it in scrap yards alot because Propane is cheaper than Acyetline. Still gotta buy OX though. Most torches have tips available for using OX/Propane.

I do however, think he's gonna find that the 11"wc regulation that is typical of house installations isn't going to come anywhere near what he needs - that's less than 1 PSI.

I think a better idea is to use a high pressure regulator (http://www.tejassmokers.com/gasregulators.htm), and a 100lb propane bottle, and call it a day.


HTRN

Evan
03-07-2008, 05:10 AM
1.) The only people that have the right to enter private land here without compensation are surveyors and even they have to get permission or at least advise the land owner prior to entry. Even so, the person requesting the survey is liable for damages to crop etc.

I didn't say "without compensation" I said "without permission". You cannot legally deny them the right to enter your land if they hold the mineral rights.

2.) The only way an energy company can get a well licence here is to hold a valid, duly executed surface lease. To drill a well without a license is grounds for trespass both on surface and subsurface. The last I heard, the current fine for even drilling through a zone that was not held legally was $500,000. Because it affects minerals evaluation, each well is reviewed pre and post drilling for trespass by the EUB/ERCB. All daily contractors operations records are submitted to the ERCB by law.

Uh huh. Who said anything about not having the proper paper work?

3.) What is the legal land description of the well. I can pull up the well licence from the public record tomorrow. Also, FWIW, I can pull up operator details, operation summary, and production history and can even go up to a data library and have all the daily activity reports copied and send to you, just send me a SASE 9 x 12 preferred. For about $10, I can pull all the ERCB/EUB correspondence on the well on microfiche or digitally if it's new enough too. Just enclose the cheque with the SASE.

I have no idea what the legal description is. I don't live there and it isn't my land.

4.) the ERCB has a well file on all of the nearly 400,000 wells (the last one I licenced was +/- #382800) drilled in Alberta stored in a facility just North of the U of C here in Cowtown.

That's nice. It makes no difference to anything, especially the right to tresspass on private land.

oldtiffie
03-07-2008, 06:16 AM
Anyway, back to Darryls project.
I think running a torch on Propane is a great idea - you see it in scrap yards alot because Propane is cheaper than Acyetline. Still gotta buy OX though. Most torches have tips available for using OX/Propane.

I do however, think he's gonna find that the 11"wc regulation that is typical of house installations isn't going to come anywhere near what he needs - that's less than 1 PSI.

I think a better idea is to use a high pressure regulator (http://www.tejassmokers.com/gasregulators.htm), and a 100lb propane bottle, and call it a day.

HTRN

Thanks HTRN.

The/this thread - like so many others - has effectively been hi-jacked onto/into/by a "limited number of persons" rant.

It now bears little or no resemblance to the original post (OP).

You may as well give up trying to get it back to the OP.

Just and let it go and it will eventually blow itself out.

Evan
03-07-2008, 07:33 AM
Darryl has the answers to his questions based on the rules here which is what he needs to know.

camdigger
03-07-2008, 11:32 AM
I give. Evan wins even though he doesn't live here, know the industry, nor have accurate information.

JCHannum
03-07-2008, 02:16 PM
I give. Evan wins even though he doesn't live here, know the industry, nor have accurate information.

Perhaps you are familiar with that old conundrum; "If I make a statement and Evan does not refute it, does that mean I am still wrong?"

Evan
03-07-2008, 02:26 PM
You are when you attempt to refute many of my statements Jim.

Both of my natural gas installations here passed inspection without problems or needed corrections. How much do you know about BC natural gas utility regulations?

HTRN
03-07-2008, 06:32 PM
Evan:http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v516/HTRN/Emoticons/beat-dead-horse.gif
Please stop.


HTRN

darryl
03-07-2008, 08:06 PM
Well I don't care if my thread has been hijacked. It's been interesting and informative. I do have the answers I need, and when the time comes to do the system, it will be safe, legal, and usable. I will be making a vent right away as part of the project, and I hope to make that a heat exchanger as well. I would like for all air that exits the workshop to be replaced by fresh, using probably a blower motor with two squirrel cages on it. One pulls air in, the other expells it. This will be something I can run at any time, and it will help to 'clear the air' in the shop, so to speak, without the fresh having to come in cold.

This will be a future project as it will be a bit involved, so for now- well here I am back at the original propane tank and hose to the torch. All I wanted to do was replace the hose before it became a problem. Look where that got me :)

J Tiers
03-07-2008, 10:57 PM
If you do that "counterflow", it will be quite efficient, and probably will suffer very little from condensation and freeze-up.

I have considered it, but have yet to find a "round-tuit". For that, and for the fall/spring solar air heater as well.

Evan
03-08-2008, 03:33 AM
I have often wondered if there is any benefit to a heat exchanger for direct makeup air to a heating appliance that burns a fuel. Cold air is denser and therefor contains more oxygen per unit volume. In the case of a wood burning stove this would mean more efficient combustion. In the case of a gas burning furnace this would mean leaner burning which is much hotter. On my natural gas heater I have the makeup air duct fed directly to the air inlet to the burner so it receives cold air. The difference between air at room temperature and at -10C is about ten percent more oxygen, not an insignificant amount. Raising the flame temperature with extra oxygen may well be more efficient than recovering the heat of the outgoing air. The flame temperature is very sensitive to the amount of oxygen available.

An extreme example is of course a rocket engine that uses liquid oxygen.


HTRN,

Perhaps you should ask Jim to stop?

A.K. Boomer
03-08-2008, 10:11 AM
Back to what to run NG in, Maybe things have changed with NG since I worked for a plumbing and heating shop many years ago but I still would not use copper just because of what I seen, just about every time someones pilot light went out it was either because of copper or galvanized pipe, both caused flaking BAD, and of course just like a cars Idle circuit its the smallest jets that go first, pull the copper line off and all kinds of black crud falls out, it would coat the entire inside of the pipes, Also seen my share of underground leaks due to the stuff either just plain corroding or getting electrically attacked through electrolysis --- (there's a reason its used for grounding rods) The best way to go underground is plastic, no worries, even black pipe wont stop a backhoe or trencher, in fact -- more apt to cause a spark when it inevitably gets severed if someones digging without knowing whats down there, Iv had to trench over live buried high voltage lines many a time, you just pray that the power company guys did there job correctly and its buried at the depth they say it is,
nobodys really going to be that deep with a shovel as common practice, want to know what cutting through copper feels like with the ditch biatch? --- Ooops whats that shiny gouged up material in the dirt pile?
Plastic is a fraction of the cost, it will outlast copper 10 to 1 and there are no negative interactions with the NG -- worried about not being able to find it later --- bury it with a cheap used up electrical extension so it can be detected and marked, and always backfill half depth and then add your caution tape, I re-did my entire gas line from the meter to the house, I dont have one piece of copper, the only thing underground is either plastic or where the risers meet the meter and house its corrosion proofed black pipe, then black pipe throughout the house....
Copper is spending allot of money for a material that can not only get attacked externally but internally as well, save it for the electrical trade or water lines.

J Tiers
03-08-2008, 10:37 AM
When they did plastic in my father's area, they didn't even dig.

They had a trench in the street, but for the side lines they just "shot" the pipe up to the house with a "banger head". They hit the right spot every time.

Try THAT with copper or steel........

A.K. Boomer
03-08-2008, 10:42 AM
That would be interesting to watch, Iv pounded my way under sidewalks and even driveways but never from a street to a house... Something tells me your pops dont live in colorado..

camdigger
03-08-2008, 10:46 AM
Boomer
Up here, it is strictly legislated that there will be no mechanical digging within several feet (can't recall the exact figure) of the line locator's markings until the line is exposed by hand or other acceptable means. Nobody wants to hand expose with a shovel anymore, so Hydrovac is the norm. Think pressure washer/wet/dry shop vac combo on steroids... 5 gpm 2000 psi water jet with an 8' wand and a 50 barrel vacuum tank with a large volume vacuum pump (+/- 1200 cfm??) boom mounted 4" suction line mounted on a tandem or triaxle truck.

Jim Tiers

What's a bang head?

Cam

J Tiers
03-08-2008, 10:53 AM
Boomer


What's a bang head?

Cam

Air operated head with a point on the end and some sort of pneumatic hammer inside. it bangs it's way through the ground dragging the pipe behind, just as if you were hitting the backside with a sledge hammer.

Colorado would have more rocks / solid rock. Small ones are no problem, but boulders would stop it. Up in MN they have glacier-ground black soil that is good for farming and digging...... not like southern clay.

Up even at the in-law's, I recall digging holes for small trees. Got the shovel, put it down, stomped hard on it, as I would here. Dang thing nearly disappeared in the ground....... sandy loam, not clay.

Dig those holes by just 'spooning" the dirt out..... just about drop the shovel and it sinks in.

A.K. Boomer
03-08-2008, 11:15 AM
Cam we cant do that here, some area's youd get about a foot deep and then plug Your 4" tube with a 40lb boulder, The power companies are the main concern and those guys go through the pains to give you precise location both fore and aft side to side and most important depth --- sometimes they may say to hand dig the area and you have to, generally your at least a couple feet above where they are but you actually stay much higher and just shovel the rest out.

darryl
03-08-2008, 02:49 PM
I used to make holes under sidewalks, etc, with a 'water torch'. Just a garden hose hooked to a length of copper pipe pinched off at one end to leave a small opening. The water jet would 'melt away' material in front of it, leaving a hole for us to string wire through. It was pretty easy when you already had a trench dug up to the edge of the sidewalk- just line up and guide it in.

We didn't have pressure washers then either. These days you could probably drill to china with one of those :)

J Tiers
03-08-2008, 05:40 PM
I've run a considerable amount of pipe with a "water drill". Works very well.