Swaging Copper Tubing! Hydraulic, Manual, Spin, Hammer, & Standard Expanding Tools!

Hey guys this is Craig Migliaccio with AC
Service Tech and today what we’re going over is copper tube swaging. So we’re enlarging a copper tube to accept another tube to get ready to either solder or braze a
joint. So this is soft copper and we’re going to be making this opening in the
copper tube using each of these tools. So these are hammers swages, this is a
hydraulic swaging tool, a manual swaging tool, spins wages, a standard flare and
swage block, and we’re going to ream the tubing with a stick reamer, a unibit, and
the round reamer. Also make sure to check out our book the
Refrigerant Charging and Service Procedures for Air Conditioning. In this
book will go over the system preparation for refrigerant, refrigerant charging, and
also troubleshooting. This book is available over at amazon.com and also at our website acservicetech.com The direct links for the book are down in
the description section below as well as the tool links for each of the tools in
this video. I first want to go over what happens after you cut a copper tube and what’s going to happen is it’s going to be very sharp. So the copper tube is
going to be sharp on the end, it’s going to be indented inwards, and we need to go ahead and ream that. So I’m going to show you the different reaming tools that
we’re going to use. I have you up for a close-up, but we’ll usually spin this
tool so we go around once and we turn this wheel maybe about a quarter turn
and then we go around again and so every one to two turns you’re gonna just keep
edging this wheel in until this copper tube ends up falling off like that. So once we have this done and you see that this is very sharp on the end right there. I’m first
gonna use my stick reamer and a stick reamer just cuts right along the inside.
And this tool works very well. I use this very often, prior to swaging. So right there that’s done. Here’s another stick reamer and this one just has a larger handle so that’s also
nice. So once again you just go right around in the circle and then you’re
done. And here’s our unibit. So if we were going to ream copper tubing that’s very small we want to keep our fingers away from this edge because
the copper tube could spin while we’re reaming it and then you want to keep it
away from this side because that’s where our unibit is going to be coming in at
and you don’t want to have your fingers near there. So this is very simple to use. And that’s it. So you don’t need to spend
a whole lot of time so if you are reaming a lot of copper tubes a unibit
is a good solution. Here’s our reaming wheel so you just stick this right in
the inside and you just turn this. This is a very basic tool I always have this in the truck as well. And so you just tap that when you’re done. You want to
make sure that any shards that your reaming out of the inside of the copper
tube do not fall down inside the tube. If you have a line set that you’re working
on, you always want to do it in a downwards position so it all falls out.
This is a manual switching tool and here’s your die. What you do is you
just set this right on and you screw it on and as you put the copper tubing on
and you push this together you’re going to have this open up and that’s just
going to expand your copper tubing. Also, you want to notice that you’re gonna
have these little seams here, so I always turn the copper a little bit as I am
swaging. So this is 5/8 inch copper tubing so this is
OD 5/8 and this is also referred to as ECR tubing that’s a soft copper that’s
dehydrated. So we’re just going to go ahead and set that on here and then
we’re going to do about halfway and then I’m going to turn it. So that’s halfway And you don’t want to force it at the
end because what’ll happen is you’ll accidentally open this up too much and
then it won’t accept the copper very well. So it’ll be too big and then you’ll
have to fill in the joint in here while brazing or silver soldering.
So you want a nice tight joint you don’t want it to be too wiggly or have too big
of an opening in here. Here’s our hydraulic swaging tool and in this case you don’t have to screw it on very much you just turn it and it’s on just like
that. And you just take this copper tube and slip it right on but you also have
this little ridge on the end too if you need to open it up if the copper tube is
not fitting right on there. So it’s the same premise you’re just going to go
ahead and squeeze and it’s going to ream the copper tubing but I usually go ahead
and halfway through I turn the copper tubing a little bit. So it makes it very
easy I’m just gonna hit this button right
here and turn it. So then we’re just gonna go ahead and squeeze it again and
you don’t want to force it at the end once it starts to get snug then you know
that you’re done. So you press this button again right here and that’s it.
You open up this and there’s your copper tubing. Here’s an up-close view of the
the manual swage and the hydraulic swage. So it does make a round swage, but you
do see it’s marked up on the inside for where the the dye is pressing up against
the copper tubing to expand it. Here’s our standard flare and switch block and we have a 5/8 inch swage right here mounted onto the head. So these are
interchangeable and we want to make sure that the copper tubing is out the
correct distance. So basically the amount that you’re gonna be wanting to swage it,
plus this small part right here because this small part is going to be
going into the copper tubing inside the the block right here and the rest is
going to be swaged. So you tighten these wing nuts right here with this the
end of this and you just go ahead and put it on just like that. So that’s how
it’s on there like this and then you’re just going to go ahead and turn it. I
might just reposition this camera a little bit but for now I think it’s good. You can see that this takes a little bit
more effort than some other things such as the manual swager, but it’s not bad.
You have this long rod and you can just go ahead and turn this. I’m just trying
not to lose lose the video right here with taking this out of the site. So that’s it right there and then you
just back it up and then you can take it out. So that’s our swage. So here you see
that when we put a copper tube in there it’s snug.
All right, so it’s not too open and that one will be ready to go. You want to make
sure they’re not over-tighten these either of us are going to be really
squishing the copper tubing where the block is holding on to the tube at. So
that’s where the tube was being held at. You see that it’s squished down a little
bit but it needs to be able to hold it so that as you’re swaging the copper
tube it doesn’t just push through. So you want to make sure that it’s tight enough
but not over tight. So here we have our tube and our spin swage and you want to
hold the tube with gloves and the reason is you don’t want the copper
tube to spin and the other thing is you want to protect your hands because it’s
going to really really heat up fast. So here we go. You really need a high-powered drill.
This is not high power drill. So now we’re going to put it in low speed. And there we go. So the object is to spin
it very quickly, have enough torque to get in there, and you’re spinning it
quickly in order to heat the copper tube up in order to expand it. So here’s our
copper tube and you can see in the inside one nice thing about this is it’s
prepared on the inside for brazing. So you see it’s nice and clean on the inside
and you want to make sure to hold the drill as straight as possible otherwise
you’re gonna get slop. And basically the copper tubes gonna be moving a little
bit. You don’t want to have that much room in between this copper tube and the
swage. So you want that as small as possible and the other thing is you
don’t want to continue drilling it for a long period of time because what will
happen is, that bit will rub up against the copper and you could end up having
some copper dust go down into the inside of the tube. You also want to have this
tube downwards as you’re doing this procedure. So you might see a little bit
of the little pieces of the copper and stuff like that but it just depends on
how quickly you can do this. So you want to heat it up fast and use your drill and get it done quickly. Last but not least are the hammer swages. So I’ve been using these for as long as I’ve been in the trade. Now these are newer
but my older ones in the truck I just end up grinding the ends down where they mushroom out from hitting them but I’ll show you how to use this. They are
very reliable tools as well so I have each of the different sizes in the truck. So that as you are hitting this what you
want to do is you want to hold on to this with maybe three fingers and hold
onto the swage with two. The thing is as you are hitting what’s going to happen
is if you don’t hold onto the swage it’s going to bounce back out so you want all
the force from your hammer to actually go into the copper tube. Now you could
also put a flare and swage block on this as well to help hold it but that’s
what you need to do. So that’s how you do it. So as I put this
in here you can see that there’s not a lot of slop. So you want to hit your
swage in straight as you’re hitting it. So that’s good right there and I’ll take you up for a close-up image of this swage as well. So here’s a close-up of that swage
and you see that that fits in real well and there’s not much space around the
the tubing. So that would make a good swage in order to braze with. So remember that we have all these tools linked down the description section below
and check out our book and also our ebook these are available over at acservicetech.com and we have a full outline and sample pages posted there. This book is also available over Amazon.com Hope you enjoyed yourself and we’ll see you next time at AC Service Tech channel!

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