pipefitter welding pipe

What Tools Do Pipefitters Use?

pipefitter welding pipe

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A pipefitter fits and fixes pipes to ensure they can transport substances without leaking.1 What tools do pipefitters use to get the job done?

Here are six tools you might find in a pipefitter training program or in use by pros in the field:

  1. Welder’s gauge1
  2. Pipefitter’s square2
  3. Fitter grips3
  4. Centering head4
  5. Flange aligners1
  6. Pipe wraps1

1. Welder’s Gauge

A welders’ gauge is used for quality control. Using this tool, a pipefitter can check for issues at the source of the pipe, such as angle of preparation, alignment, fillet weld throat and fillet weld length.1

A welders’ gauge can be used before a pipe fitting job to determine the pipe material, quality of the pipe and dimensions. This tool can also be used to double-check alignment after a fitting job is complete.2 The gauge is extremely important because any small error could cause leakages or other issues.1

2. Pipefitter’s Square

This tool is used to make sure a pipe is aligned properly. The two most common angles for a pipe to be bent are either 45 or 90 degrees. Pipes sometimes have different angles, though. A pipefitter’s square is an essential tool used to fit pipes at uncommon angles.2

3. Fitter Grips

Fitter grips are used to lock two pipes together while they are being welded. This tool can also be used to lock a pipe in place as it is being welded to a joint.2 Fitter grips are important to a pipefitter’s daily work because they allow a pipefitter to work hands-free as the pipe is being securely held in place.3

4. Centering Head

A centering head is a pipefitter’s tool used to establish angles or points on pipes, which are cylindrical surfaces. It is often used to find centerlines on a pipe, such as top dead center or bottom dead center, but it can also be used to find other angles. This tool is extremely important for precision marking.4,5

5. Pipe Wraps

Pipe wraps help a pipefitter make a straight cut on a pipe. This wrap is placed around the pipe to make sure that all the edges are aligned before cutting. Then a pipefitter will draw a line around the pipe with a sharp piece of soapstone, following the wrap to ensure a precise cut.1

6. Flange Aligners

Flange aligners help pipefitters align joints before welding. This tool can also be used during routine maintenance to check for joint misalignment.1 Flange aligners can be attached at the point of misalignment, then used to pull the flanges back into correct alignment.6

Learn More in Pipefitter Training

pipefitter at work
This is not a complete list of pipefitter tools, but some of the common tools many pipefitters use.

Interested in learning more about pipefitter tools? Pipefitting training can be a good place to get some practice working with these tools. It can also serve as a starting point for preparing for an exciting career as a pipefitter. Contact Tulsa Welding School to learn more about its welding and pipefitting training programs. Call 855-806-4921.

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