How do I Open up a 1.5" Pipe?

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SteveHGraham
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How do I Open up a 1.5" Pipe?

Post by SteveHGraham » Wed Aug 14, 2019 5:33 pm

Help me save my garden tractor.

The muffler on my John Deere 430 tore off its mounting points, and I do not want to replace it with an OEM part. They tend to break, and they cost about 4 times what they're worth. Also, I'm pretty sure some related bits that are part of the tractor are gone. I can't really tell, because I can't get my head under the tractor. I am replacing the muffler with a 1.5" pipe (actually an exhaust pipe tip) with a motorcycle baffle dropped in.

I need a small elbow between the exhaust tip and the Deere exhaust pipe (pipe that leaves the manifold). I found one on Amazon. The ID is 1.5". It has to slip over the exhaust pipe, which is the same size. I had read that I could open one end with an exhaust pipe expander, so I bought it. It turns out exhaust pipe expanders will not fit in this thing. An expander that's supposed to go from 1.5" to some bigger size actually starts at something more like 1.6".

I took the pipe to a muffler shop. They said they couldn't expand pipes that small.

What do I do with this thing?

I considered heating it and trying to beat it down over the end of a 1.5" brass bar, but I have serious doubts about that approach. I have a tiny railroad track anvil that might help me get it started.

I thought I might cut a couple of slits in it to open it up, and I could then weld one of the slits shut, but this thing is pretty thin, and my welding skills are less than stellar. Also, I am concerned that a weld would not be flexible, so it might crack when the elbow is clamped to the exhaust pipe.

Obviously, the elbow that needs to be expanded is at the bottom of the photo.
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08 14 19 John Deere 430 jerry rig muffler on counter small.jpg
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John Evans
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Re: How do I Open up a 1.5" Pipe?

Post by John Evans » Wed Aug 14, 2019 6:13 pm

Learn to weld ! LOL !!! Easy cut the tip off just beyond it's expanded section and insert the elbow there,weld with Oxy-act. Or cut 4 slits in the elbow and with a little help from the hot wrench expand it a bit. Can you turn down the pipe expander OD enough to make it work?
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SteveHGraham
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Re: How do I Open up a 1.5" Pipe?

Post by SteveHGraham » Wed Aug 14, 2019 7:14 pm

Learning to weld better would be helpful.

The pipe expander is a loaner from O'Reilly auto parts, so I probably shouldn't change it. I did think of the idea.

I came up with a solution. I realized I already had a pipe here. The old muffler had a perfectly fine pipe hanging off of it, complete with an elbow. I cut it off, wire-wheeled it with my new buffer, and cut it to size.

Unfortunately, I mutilated the only 1.5" exhaust clamp I had, thinking the T-bolt was too long. Now it's too short. I have to go back to O'Reilly anyway, so while I'm there, I'll get a new clamp.

I'm out $13 for that tiny SS elbow, but it beats trying to get a new John Deere muffler attached.
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08 14 19 John Deere 430 jerry rig muffler elbow small.jpg
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BadDog
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Re: How do I Open up a 1.5" Pipe?

Post by BadDog » Wed Aug 14, 2019 7:23 pm

In other directions...

Make a slip on sleeve that the pipe will slide into on each side and silver solder (or similar). I did this for a 1" pipe that had to be pieced together.

Doesn't look like you have enough straight, but a sleeve clamp would work if you did.

I just got done welding up a complete turbo crossover and down pipe extending behind the firewall from a bunch of mandrel U bends butted end to end. It can be done. And a sleeve clamp joins it to the tailpipe.
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SteveHGraham
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Re: How do I Open up a 1.5" Pipe?

Post by SteveHGraham » Wed Aug 14, 2019 7:37 pm

It turned out the new elbow is just the right size to cover the slit in the exhaust tip's upper section, so I'm pretty happy about that. It won't leak much. Not that I care. It's not like leaks matter in this situation.

For a while I thought the answer was to get a butt clamp, cut off the top of the exhaust tip, weld the exhaust tip to the butt clamp after tightening it, and then attach the upper part of the butt clamp to the Deere's exhaust pipe. Then I found out how hard it is to find a 1.5" butt clamp.

I do not want to weld to the original Deere exhaust pipe. I might damage it. I don't feel like buying any more jewelry...I mean parts.

Glad I bought the buffer. The rust and diesel smut on this pipe were beyond the reach of dishwashing liquid and brushes.
Every hard-fried egg began life sunny-side up.

spro
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Re: How do I Open up a 1.5" Pipe?

Post by spro » Thu Aug 15, 2019 11:11 am

I think at some point you will need your own pipe expander. Some are dead crap and some very good. The lead bolt is high grade fine thread but too often they cheesed the octagonal tapered nut. It was softer metal like the one under the bolt head. We can see that the pipe had already been swaged or expanded from its base diameter, so there are tools to do that. It isn't just your tractor, may be your pristine daily driver vehicle. The welded exhaust piping has failed at a joint. It is on a lift so they show you the leak. It is also near the fuel tank- need I say more. They have you. The muffler is still good, 99% of the pipes are good. All you need is an adapter sleeve which isn't quite right.

spro
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Re: How do I Open up a 1.5" Pipe?

Post by spro » Thu Aug 15, 2019 11:17 am

I mean that you have the tool but when it comes to serious expansion, it fails. There are better potable tools now which can accomplish this task.
Think about an impact tool which works in reverse. Pulling a taper thru the expansion sleeves.

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