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The Pipemaster soldering tool probably came from this idea, familiar to everyone who’s ever soldered copper pipe: “If I could just heat the whole thing at once, I’d be done by now.”  Its jaws close around pipe to heat it up and make an even seal, rather than heating with open flame.

Just mount the correct heads for the pipe size on the Pipemaster –- the heads for 1/2″ pipe are standard — then plug it in, lay it on its steel bracket rest to keep it elevated, and let it preheat for a minute before use. Place the heads around the pipe close to the joint. Let the solder flow into the joint once the pipe is hot enough, and remove the heads from the joint. After cooling, the joint should be ready.

It sounds pretty easy, but we wonder if it works even half as well as it sounds.  Has anyone had some firsthand experience with it?  Let us know in comments.

Street pricing starts at around $95.

Pipemaster [Antex]
Street Pricing [Google Products]
Via Amazon [What’s This?]

 

12 Responses to Hot or Not? Antex Pipemaster

  1. _Jon says:

    I’ve always wondered if this type of thing exists.

    I really hope it works well.

  2. George K. says:

    Interesting, but…
    Most of my pipe work experience has been in crawl spaces, cramped areas (often wet) or other situations where this could be more of a burden or hazard.
    In new construction applications, this could be wonderful…

  3. David P. says:

    Having run copper in 100s of houses during the Atlanta building/remodeling boom, I can say that this’d come in handy for remodeling. When you are sweating pipe under some lawyer’s $650,000 bungalow with a 10″ crawlspace, the last thing you need is a MAPP flame blasting all over the place, setting the joists or paper insulation on fire. This would be a lot safer.

    In new construction, I always crank the torch and just burn the hell out of the studs. Who cares? Some drywall crew is going to be defecating in the bathtubs anyway.

  4. Old Coot says:

    David P.: Apparently we use the same drywall guys! And what they leave in the bathtubs is relatively easy compared to the mess they make everywhere else. Real slobs, every last one of them.

  5. Gough50 says:

    When you’re hiring a drywaller, the most important question is not how much they cost, nor is it whether or not they do quality work. The most important question is: “Are they housebroken?” To the average drywaller, anything with a drain is a toilet.

  6. Asbestos says:

    I think this would be the thing in places where you could set stuff on fire.

    Damn, I’d hate to hear what you have to say about the foundation guys.
    I always thought you were supposed to find out how many had outstanding warrents

  7. Nick says:

    Man you guys are harsh on us rockers Its not all crews like that, I think the ones that are tweakers are like that though, I have always gotten rid of them though.

    Me personally, worse ill do is piss in a bottle (up on a scissor lift, or haging off a giant steel kicker 80 feet in the air), otherwise its all bathroom for me.

    Im also wondering how well this works, as this would be an awesome addition when doing remodels.

  8. brew says:

    well guys in vegas its every bottle is full and every elavator pit is a waterfall and dont step in dark corners–and i wonder if that tool really works–be safe for home projects…..

  9. Ash says:

    I have an old, brandless 150W version of this tool. It doesn’t work well on water pipes that actually have some water left in them, and it flat out refuses to melt solder outside in a breeze. In perfect conditions it’s about as effective as a pencil torch, but with no flameouts and a neater-looking join.
    The antex is a 220W device which would suck less, but I wouldn’t call it a replacement for a proper gas torch that can output ten times as much heat, it’s more of a companion tool.

  10. fred says:

    we have a couple of the black-handled versions. They work OK in warm indoor conditions – but we stick mostly to air/acetylene torches

  11. Captain Obvious says:

    Antex is quite different from all other soldering irons:

    they put the heating element IN the tips.

    “normal” irons wrap the heating element around the outside, so much of the heat is thrown away!

    Couple a higher output element with the elements-in-the-tips, and I’d expect this to work right.

    ( obviously, not if the pipes are full of coolant/water )

    Antex irons rock, completely.

  12. AndyOwen says:

    The New black 220w version is a great companion tool when the flame is not the best solution. Don’t know about the sheet rock guys, that sort of activity give us contractors a bad name.

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