Plumbing question

This forum seems to have a wide range of expertise, so I was wondering if anyone knows whether the handles on ball valves such as the one in the picture are all the same size fitting? I have the valve installed and would like to add a handle for ease. It doesn't seem possible to buy just a handle, so I would need to buy a new valve and take it off, but that only works if it will fit.


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Comments

  • pblakeney
    pblakeney Posts: 26,169
    Probably, possibly, no guarantees.
    Take a photo on your phone and a tape measure/rule with you.
    Width, screw diameter, and locking cl to bend and folded length sizes should do.
    The above may be fact, or fiction, I may be serious, I may be jesting.
    I am not sure. You have no chance.
    Veronese68 wrote:
    PB is the most sensible person on here.
  • briantrumpet
    briantrumpet Posts: 18,431
    pblakeney said:

    Probably, possibly, no guarantees.
    Take a photo on your phone and a tape measure/rule with you.
    Width, screw diameter, and locking cl to bend and folded length sizes should do.


    I'd be cheeky, take the nut (if you have one) and a spanner with me, and ask if I can see if it fits one of the ones in the shop. Or I might just take a chance with ebay, and buy one with a spare handle, and hope it fits, having looked as closely as possible at photos.

    I hate plumbing, as I normally end up one washer (or similar) short, and end up driving back to the plumbing place to spend 10p on said washer.
  • monkimark
    monkimark Posts: 1,666
    What do you currently have installed? Is it an isolation valve with the flathead screwdriver slot or an handle one where the handle is broken?
  • TheBigBean
    TheBigBean Posts: 20,895
    Unfortunately, I don't have the nut for the handle either (nor a collection which I could use to determine the size of the thread). The ones I saw in a shop were all bagged which makes it a bit harder.

    I guess I could measure the one attached to the valve by trying lots of fixed sized wrenches to see which works. If it fits that that is half the problem solved.

    I'm not very good at this sort of thing!
  • TheBigBean
    TheBigBean Posts: 20,895
    edited April 2022
    Ebay was a good idea. This listing confirms that they are not all the same size.

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/114628244574

    And also confirms that I need to find the size of the thread and the size of the nut.

    So, any ideas how to measure the thread size?
  • rjsterry
    rjsterry Posts: 28,145

    Ebay was a good idea. This listing confirms that they are not all the same size.

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/114628244574

    And also confirms that I need to find the size of the thread and the size of the nut.

    So, any ideas how to measure the thread size?

    Threads for that sort of thing are likely to be standard for the size of nut. Otherwise the manufacturer would have to get their own bespoke nuts made up. Can you stretch to just ordering one of each.
    1985 Mercian King of Mercia - work in progress (Hah! Who am I kidding?)
    Pinnacle Monzonite

    Part of the anti-growth coalition
  • TheBigBean
    TheBigBean Posts: 20,895
    rjsterry said:

    Ebay was a good idea. This listing confirms that they are not all the same size.

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/114628244574

    And also confirms that I need to find the size of the thread and the size of the nut.

    So, any ideas how to measure the thread size?

    Threads for that sort of thing are likely to be standard for the size of nut. Otherwise the manufacturer would have to get their own bespoke nuts made up. Can you stretch to just ordering one of each.
    This bit from the listing implied otherwise. Still, I think I have a plan now so thanks everyone. Measure the valve by trying different wrenches. Order handle. See if it comes with a nut that fits the thread. If not, either buy a collection of nuts or "invest" in a measuring thing on the basis that amassing tools is what life is about - I have a crimper and compression tool for coax which I used once, but was still cheaper than paying someone else to do it.

    *** Sometimes*** we may send a nut with them but they may not screw onto your valve as many have different threads ***
  • TheBigBean
    TheBigBean Posts: 20,895
    monkimark said:

    What do you currently have installed? Is it an isolation valve with the flathead screwdriver slot or an handle one where the handle is broken?

    Handle one with no handle - so it looks like it can just be turned with a wrench. No idea why it doesn't have a handle. The other five in the same place have handles.

    I guess taking the handle off another one and trying it out would be another solution for finding a nut to take to a shop, but they are all a bit inaccessible with a high risk of dropping the nut somewhere I can't reach it.
  • briantrumpet
    briantrumpet Posts: 18,431

    monkimark said:

    What do you currently have installed? Is it an isolation valve with the flathead screwdriver slot or an handle one where the handle is broken?

    Handle one with no handle - so it looks like it can just be turned with a wrench. No idea why it doesn't have a handle. The other five in the same place have handles.

    I guess taking the handle off another one and trying it out would be another solution for finding a nut to take to a shop, but they are all a bit inaccessible with a high risk of dropping the nut somewhere I can't reach it.

    Hey, you can't go stealing my tricks!! The trouble with plumbing is you can get properly screwed if you get it wrong, and you can't isolate the bit you just got wrong. You always need a Plan B. Well, a Plan A would be a start...
  • monkimark
    monkimark Posts: 1,666
    There are sometimes different thread pitches for the same nut size but you'd be unlucky to have a non standard one on an isolation valve.
    I'd just buy a bag of nuts of various sizes, it'll come in useful at some point.
  • rjsterry
    rjsterry Posts: 28,145
    monkimark said:

    There are sometimes different thread pitches for the same nut size but you'd be unlucky to have a non standard one on an isolation valve.
    I'd just buy a bag of nuts of various sizes, it'll come in useful at some point.

    I mean what kind of civilised human being doesn't have a box of odd screws, washers and mismatched nuts and bolts - oh, and half a dozen IKEA Allen keys?
    1985 Mercian King of Mercia - work in progress (Hah! Who am I kidding?)
    Pinnacle Monzonite

    Part of the anti-growth coalition
  • TheBigBean
    TheBigBean Posts: 20,895
    monkimark said:

    There are sometimes different thread pitches for the same nut size but you'd be unlucky to have a non standard one on an isolation valve.
    I'd just buy a bag of nuts of various sizes, it'll come in useful at some point.

    This very much sounds like the solution.

    I was struggling for a nut/bolt combo for toe clips the other day (yes, I know, no one has used them since Kelly) and thought having a collection of nuts and bolts would be useful. I managed to find a rusty couple in my bike remains bag though I doubt that will help here.
  • TheBigBean
    TheBigBean Posts: 20,895
    rjsterry said:

    monkimark said:

    There are sometimes different thread pitches for the same nut size but you'd be unlucky to have a non standard one on an isolation valve.
    I'd just buy a bag of nuts of various sizes, it'll come in useful at some point.

    I mean what kind of civilised human being doesn't have a box of odd screws, washers and mismatched nuts and bolts - oh, and half a dozen IKEA Allen keys?
    If you don't know by now that I fail the civilised human test, then what can I say? I do have a complete set of allen keys though because they are useful for bikes.

  • monkimark
    monkimark Posts: 1,666
    I also have a credit card sized metal thingy for measuring nuts, bolts and thread pitches. I don't think I have ever been able to find it when required...
  • diplodicus
    diplodicus Posts: 713
    edited April 2022
    Do you know what the valve turns off?
    There are certain things that for safety reasons shouldn't have a valve, but for practical reasons it is useful to have one, (combined vent and feed on a heating system is one example)
    Some plumbers in these instances put a valve there and remove handle to stop it being accidently turned off and cause a safety issue
  • briantrumpet
    briantrumpet Posts: 18,431
    monkimark said:

    I also have a credit card sized metal thingy for measuring nuts, bolts and thread pitches. I don't think I have ever been able to find it when required...


    It'll be along with the useful little tool to stop the things that hold chainrings together from twizzling round when you turn the allen key on the outside.
  • TheBigBean
    TheBigBean Posts: 20,895

    Do you know what the valve turns off?
    There are certain things that for safety reasons shouldn't have a valve, but for practical reasons it is useful to have one, (combined vent and feed on a heating system is one example)
    Some plumbers in these instances put a valve there and remove handle to stop it being accidently turned off and cause a safety issue

    One cold water inflow, so I do need to be able to turn it off, I think.
  • rjsterry
    rjsterry Posts: 28,145

    monkimark said:

    I also have a credit card sized metal thingy for measuring nuts, bolts and thread pitches. I don't think I have ever been able to find it when required...


    It'll be along with the useful little tool to stop the things that hold chainrings together from twizzling round when you turn the allen key on the outside.
    Without doubt one of the worst 'standard' fixings. Why on earth they don't just machine the holes in the chainring with flats so that the 'nut' can't rotate I don't know. As annoying as something that comes with a mixture of Phillips and slotted screws in the same assembly.
    1985 Mercian King of Mercia - work in progress (Hah! Who am I kidding?)
    Pinnacle Monzonite

    Part of the anti-growth coalition
  • rjsterry
    rjsterry Posts: 28,145
    edited April 2022
    ...
    1985 Mercian King of Mercia - work in progress (Hah! Who am I kidding?)
    Pinnacle Monzonite

    Part of the anti-growth coalition
  • diplodicus
    diplodicus Posts: 713

    Do you know what the valve turns off?
    There are certain things that for safety reasons shouldn't have a valve, but for practical reasons it is useful to have one, (combined vent and feed on a heating system is one example)
    Some plumbers in these instances put a valve there and remove handle to stop it being accidently turned off and cause a safety issue

    One cold water inflow, so I do need to be able to turn it off, I think.
    Ok cool, carry on then :)
  • briantrumpet
    briantrumpet Posts: 18,431

    Do you know what the valve turns off?
    There are certain things that for safety reasons shouldn't have a valve, but for practical reasons it is useful to have one, (combined vent and feed on a heating system is one example)
    Some plumbers in these instances put a valve there and remove handle to stop it being accidently turned off and cause a safety issue

    One cold water inflow, so I do need to be able to turn it off, I think.
    Ok cool, carry on then :)

    It controls TBB's water feature, by the sound of it.


  • monkimark
    monkimark Posts: 1,666
    Oh, I know exactly where it is now, because I have no use for it currently.

    monkimark said:

    I also have a credit card sized metal thingy for measuring nuts, bolts and thread pitches. I don't think I have ever been able to find it when required...


    It'll be along with the useful little tool to stop the things that hold chainrings together from twizzling round when you turn the allen key on the outside.
  • briantrumpet
    briantrumpet Posts: 18,431
    I actually bought myself a small, dedicated tool bag for bike bits like this. Now I just have to train myself to always return tools straight into it. I do like my dedicated set of proper allen keys on their own rack - much better than the ones on a bike tool.

    But I think we might be digressing from plumbing...
  • mully79
    mully79 Posts: 904
    i'd take a punt on either buying just the handle or a similar valve and swapping the handle over. I give you a 98% chance of getting it right.
  • Defblade
    Defblade Posts: 140

    monkimark said:

    There are sometimes different thread pitches for the same nut size but you'd be unlucky to have a non standard one on an isolation valve.
    I'd just buy a bag of nuts of various sizes, it'll come in useful at some point.

    This very much sounds like the solution.

    I was struggling for a nut/bolt combo for toe clips the other day (yes, I know, no one has used them since Kelly) and thought having a collection of nuts and bolts would be useful. I managed to find a rusty couple in my bike remains bag though I doubt that will help here.
    Many moons ago (like maybe 25 years), I wondered into a hardware/fixings place and asked about mixed bags. I ended up walking out with a heavy bag of their sweepings for something like £20 (ok, I guess that was more then). Spent an evening with a big sheet of newspaper in front of the telly sorting out screw, bolts, nuts etc (and trying to pair up the nuts and bolts (and don't try and tell me they're "set screws" or "machine screws" or anything. They are bolts, and nuts go on 'em!)) from the dust, paperclips and fag ends. I think I did it again a year or so later... and I'm still using the same tubs of stuff now. I can find you a nut for pretty much any bolt you care to hand me ;)
  • TheBigBean
    TheBigBean Posts: 20,895
    edited May 2022
    I finally got around to measuring the nut in question (14mm) and have now discovered it doesn't work how I thought. The nut in the picture simply unscrews.

    So back to square one. Anyone know how to turn it off?

    image

  • TheBigBean
    TheBigBean Posts: 20,895
    And for the avoidance of doubt, that big yellow handle is on another pipe.
  • masjer
    masjer Posts: 2,607
    edited May 2022
    The 14mm nut isn't used for operating the valve. Just turn the central threaded part 90 degrees and it should shut off. Is there a flat section on the threaded part? If so, a small spanner (or worse a small adjustable) or even pliers should do.
  • veronese68
    veronese68 Posts: 27,492
    What Oxo said, make sure it's a good adjustable so you don't round it off.
  • TheBigBean
    TheBigBean Posts: 20,895
    Thanks both, you are right and that works. I was being an idiot and didn't think the flat bit would be on the threads. (Not much of a defence, but the viewing angle isn't great).

    The upshot of all that is I can turn it off, but finding a 6mm lever with nut would be even better.