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Old 10-04-2016, 09:48 AM   #1
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1965 17' Caravel
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Repairing copper lines in '65 caravel

Hi,

Need some direction. I had to replace the rotted plywood of the wet wall of our '65 Caravel. Now am ready to button up but have found that local supply houses do not have copper connectors for the 3/8 " lines. Any help in finding source for them would be appreciated.

Thank you
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Old 10-04-2016, 10:02 AM   #2
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1973 31' Excella 500
Vicksburg , Mississippi
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Sharkbite connectors will work in a pinch, I've never used them in a rv but many do.

Did you try amazon?
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Old 10-04-2016, 10:23 AM   #3
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While you have it apart, you might want to take the time to replace all the copper with pecks. The copper in my 69 was so badly warped from freezing that the shark bite fittings would not work.
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Old 10-04-2016, 10:33 AM   #4
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1972 31' Sovereign
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IMHO, ditching the copper in favor of pex is a smart move.

In many ways I prefer the old proven ways, and I was considering going back with copper in my trailer, but I am so glad I opted to go with pex.

It is easy, fast, and effective. And should the need arise, it will be easy to repair.


Gradiens super tenui glacie.
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Old 10-04-2016, 11:56 AM   #5
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Replace with PEX. The copper will just get worse with time. PEX is easy to install and more resistant to temperature extremes.
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Old 10-04-2016, 12:19 PM   #6
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1977 31' Sovereign
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Quote:
Originally Posted by repairsart View Post
.....local supply houses do not have copper connectors for the 3/8 " lines.
You've got copper tubing, not copper pipe. There's a difference. Ace Hdwe should have what you need in the way of brass fittings.

Freezing is an important consideration. When water freezes, copper expands easily. So if your pipes were frozen at some point, new fittings will not fit.

Compare outer diameter(s) with calipers to see if OD is uniform throughout. Compare pipe OD with a new fitting's ID.

Tom
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Old 10-04-2016, 12:23 PM   #7
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1969 23' Safari
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I agree with SilverFlames. We had all the copper replaced with pex and once it was all out it was obvious that we would have been in for constant repair of copper lines as well as the associated water damage. They were worn and aged to the point that they were literally falling apart with bulges and weak spots the entire length. The pex is nice because it isn't as subject to damage with a light freeze as the copper was. We left 12" or so of the copper at the faucets and there was some copper we simply could not get to in the back but it still looked okay. We were all done with that and then we had a wet floor in the back of the trailer one night. Sure enough the water heater was leaking, it was the original water heater so there we went with that replacement also along with a new water pump. So far it is great with no leaks in the full system. The copper was really awesome though and it was clear that these trailers were literally hand-built one at a time with that copper being custom fit to each trailer. It was sad to see it go - Good luck!
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Old 10-04-2016, 12:32 PM   #8
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If I ever needed a reason to move to pex, it was apparent when I gutted my 1972 streamline. I found no less than four locations where water had pooled in the copper supply pipe and busted it.

Pex rules.
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Old 10-04-2016, 03:26 PM   #9
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I've replaced almost all of the copper in the Silver T*rd with Pex. As soon as I fail to properly winterize the remaining copper, I'll replace that too.
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Old 10-04-2016, 03:52 PM   #10
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I agree with those who say go ahead and replace all the copper with PEX. We did that for our '66 Safari back in 2008, and it hasn't given us a bit of trouble since.
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Old 10-04-2016, 05:08 PM   #11
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1974 Argosy 26
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PEX is a great idea

Just finished doing my 1974 Argosy 26' with PEX. The only place I have small leaks is with the 3/8 PEX To copper Sharkbites. I'm going back to remove the rest of the Copper. about 4'. But if you must...the plumbing pro at Home Depot showed me that many times the fittings used on copper in older trailers(usually compression fitting) were gas items, not usually used for water. Might look there.
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Old 10-04-2016, 06:03 PM   #12
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Pex

When I restored my 64 Globetrotter 2 years ago, I replaced all copper with Pex. Worked out great, highly recommend using Pex.
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Old 10-05-2016, 05:59 PM   #13
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1960 24' Tradewind
Savage , Minnesota
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Copper to PEX

I just finished changing all my copper to 1/2 inch PEX.
I found that the PEX fittings that are quick type (You do not have to use the compression tool) would leak if the 1/2 inch PEX did not go perfectly into it. By that i mean, if i came around a corner, and then went into the quick connect, the pressure from the side would cause the fitting to leak. I had originally not wanted to use the compression type fittings because the tool is so big and a lot of my work was inside cabinets. (Like under the bathroom sink or under the kitchen sink). But after i finally changed to the compression type, i finally got a leak tight system.

I know i am kinda thick headed. It took me a while:-)

The stores close to me did not carry sharkbite brand. I probably misspelled that.
John
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Old 10-05-2016, 07:10 PM   #14
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Repairing copper lines in '65 caravel

Copper is good sh!t, no doubt, but..... all in all, pex is better for a trailer.... truth is truth,,, as much as I hate to admit it, some newer technologies are better than the old standbys.


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