Serving his community for 35 years, Don Bohiler is the manager and water operator for Diamond Valley Water District (DVWD), located in Yavapai County, a few miles north of Phoenix, Arizona. Serving approximately 760 customers, the utility’s infrastructure consists mainly of 2- to 6-in. pipe made of asbestos piping with some C900 PVC pipe.
An asbestos water main that was originally installed over 55 years ago needed an isolation valve installed to connect PVC 900 piping to infrastructure within a new subdivision. Making the connection, however, involved adding in several angled connections of varying degrees, requiring many hours to install.
After going to a workshop where a variety of different products were being shown, Bohiler found the HYMAX GRIP SwivelJoint, which connects and restrains any two pipes at any angle between 0 degrees and 90 degrees. DVWD crews could adjust the fitting to the exact angle needed and tighten it into the desired position.
The SwivelJoint comes with a stab-fit design and radial gripping system that prevents pipe motion. The DVWD crew removed the GRIP chain on the end connecting to the asbestos pipe to prevent the coupling from crushing the pipe, and the GRIP chain remained in place to connect to the C900 PVC pipe. The coupling also allowed up to 4° dynamic deflection per end to help reduce future pipe damage caused by ground shifts. Without the SwivelJoint, Bohiler estimated that his crew would have had to experiment with several fittings of different angles to make a proper connection.
“Using the SwivelJoint helped us save a ton of time,” said Bohiler. “If I had to install multiple fittings, it could have easily taken my crew an additional four hours. By installing the SwivelJoint, I just had to move the joint to the angle of the connecting pipes, stab-fit it to the pipes, close it up, and go home.”
It took the DVWD service crew less than an hour to install the joint and return water service to customers. By reducing the installation time, they were able to minimize water shutdown time for affected residents and make the repair safer with reduced time in the ditch. By Bohiler’s estimate, using the new fitting saved the utility between $2,000 and $3,000.
The universal gripping system is designed to restrain metal and plastic pipes and has a transition capability of up to 1.1 in. It can work with a wide range of pipe diameters, meaning that the utility had extra flexibility to use the grip for a variety of other pipe sizes that might have been found.
The patented gasket effectively transforms the pipe joint into a flexible connection and allows dynamic deflection of up to 4 degrees per side. The product can adapt to an out-of-round pipe shape (up to 0.16 in.) for optimum fit on pipe ends with its innovative radial closing design and sealing system that can eliminate installation errors. Even if pipes are just a bit out of alignment, the dynamic deflection can still allow for the connection, reducing the chance of mistakes during installation.
The HYMAX GRIP chain provided a circular restraint around the C900 PVC pipe. As the pipe applies axial pressure, the GRIP chain increasingly tightened around the pipe to prevent pullout. The radial closing mechanism also held the pipe tightly in place during installation.
The GRIP Swiveljoint can withstand working temperatures of up to +125°F and is made of ductile iron. It meets or exceeds standards AWWA C219, NSF-61 and NSF-372. In addition, the nuts and bolts have advanced anti-galling using a unique dry treatment process with Molecular Anti-Galling (MAG) based on embedded zinc to prevent galling and enable repeated bolt tightening. The fusion-bonded epoxy coating inside and out provides enhanced corrosion protection.
Stan Pachorek is Territory Sales Manager for HYMAX, a Mueller brand.