Installing Bulkhead Tips

Discussion in 'General Equipment, Hardware, Filtration' started by AZDesertRat, Jan 10, 2010.

  1. AZDesertRat

    AZDesertRat Well-Known Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award

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    As I mention many times in this thread, I do not and will not use slip bulkheads. I have seen far too many of them cut apart and thrown away.

    As redfish mentioned though, if the slip is on the inside you should not glue the standpipe or fitting in as it will need occasional disassembly and cleaning. If it is external, and slip is what you have and your only choice, not mine though, then do glue a union somewhere close. If you ever have to remove it it will still require cutting apart but you can disassemble it.
    I would find thread by thread bulkheads if it were my tank so you can unscrew any fittings in the future and not have to waste a bulkhead.

    Silicone does not permanently adhere to plastic or glass and the seal can be easily broken. I would remove it and take the time to investigate why it was dripping and do a proper fix. It's usually some excess plastic in the threads or the flat flange surface that needs filing or sanding smooth.
     
    metrokat likes this.

  2. metrokat

    metrokat High Heeled Reefer

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    Thanks AZ
     
  3. mrvn

    mrvn Well-Known Member Build Thread Contributor

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    How tight do the bulkheads need to be? I'm setting up a reef ready 60 gallon tank and I'm not sure if I need to use a wrench or only do it by hand
     
  4. tom reilly

    tom reilly Well-Known Member

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    Gasket and flange in the box. Silicone between box and tank. Do not over tighten.
     
  5. cromag27

    cromag27 anemone whisperer & acrylic/wood expert R2R Supporter Gold Sponsor Article Contributor

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    Never use silicone with bulkheads.
     
  6. funkyrxman

    funkyrxman Active Member

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    One of my overflows has a second bulkhead in it that was originally put in as a dry pvc pass through for cords. It has a 2" thread on the outside (bottom). I wanted to cut the dry pvc pipe in the overflow and put an elbow on the outside thread to use as a backup overflow to safely restrict overflow drain to reduce noise. No way to plumb to that outside thread on the bulkhead for a super short run of pvc?
     
  7. AZDesertRat

    AZDesertRat Well-Known Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award

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    The outside threads on a bulkhead are not NPT tapered pipe threads. Even if you could find something to fit over the outside it would leak since it is the tapered surfaces that seal as you tighten them up. Bulkheads are designed to use only the interior threads or slip/socket.
     
  8. Dave1045

    Dave1045 Active Member

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    With a 1" Bulkhead and overflow- roughly how many gallons per hour can it support in siphon- to the sump?
     
  9. esquare

    esquare Member

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    AZDesertRat, i just got a stick of the plasto joint stick. I checked the SDS and it says it is a skin irritant, is this reef safe?
     
  10. AZDesertRat

    AZDesertRat Well-Known Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award

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    It does not carry a NSF label but I have never heard of any problems using it. More than likely it has not been subjected to the very expensive and time consuming certification process. Doesn't mean it isn't safe though.
    LaCo has another product called Pipetite that does carry a NSF label if that is a concern to you though. It is more of a general purpose thread lubricant versus the Plasto Joint which is specifically for plastic threads. Not much difference though.
     
  11. esquare

    esquare Member

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    Thank you, I appreciate it.
     
  12. fragit

    fragit Well-Known Member Build Thread Contributor

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    @AZDesertRat, I need some help STAT! Just went down to my sump for something (diy 40 breeder). It's been running fine no leaks since last August(almost a year). My bulkhead is all of a sudden leaking. What should I do? I tried reseating it which did not work. I cleaned all surfaces and made sure they were dry. I don't have another one and will have to order one. Best thing I could come up with for a quick fix is to use some aquarium silicone and seal the outside. Do bulkheads suddenly fail often? Any guesses on how long my fix will last? What would your recommendations be?
     
  13. ca1ore

    ca1ore Well-Known Member CTARS Member

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    FWIW, I only use slip bulkheads. May mean the occasional sacrificing, but less likely to leak than threaded ones. If you use threaded, no tape, use the liquid thread sealant. Although it should not be necessary, there is nothing inherently wrong with using silicone sealant. If I have an application where the bulkhead would be inconvenient to reset I will silicone it in (uninterrupted bead on both side of the gasket). Makes them tougher to remove certainly, but almost leak proof. I recently replaced my 25 year old ATO reservoir (an old plywood box) which had a siliconed bullhead from the start.

    BTW, if you go to places like flex PVC they do sell bulkhead replacement nuts that are actually 90 degree fittings that will accept NPT piping. Never used them, so cannot vouch for how well they work, but in an application where rear clearance is a problem it's an option to consider.
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2017
  14. ca1ore

    ca1ore Well-Known Member CTARS Member

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    Depends on the 'drop'.
     
  15. Engloid

    Engloid Well-Known Member VRJ Member

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  16. ca1ore

    ca1ore Well-Known Member CTARS Member

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    It makes a HUGE difference. Think of drop as 'anti-head pressure' if it helps.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2017
  17. KStatefan

    KStatefan Well-Known Member

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    The velocity of the water will be the sqrt (2*g*h) where g=gravity and h=height the flow will then be v*area of pipe.

    If you double the height you get about 1.4 times the flow.
     
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