Old rad valve tails

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I was trying to take out some old rad valve tails yesterday to fit TRVs. They are 3/4" with the rounded union and the TRVs are 15mm. The old tails have two "nibs" inside rather than a hex. In the past I have been able to get then out with my radiator key (like a big allen key) using the short end which has a square intended for taking out bleed plugs. The long arm has grooves in it that look as if they are supposed to fit the nibs, but won't go in. Presumably the wrong size.

Even when I took the rad off, and knelt on it on the floor to get more purchase, I couldn't shift them. Eventually I broke the corner off my rad key. I tried a socke set ratchet handle, 3/8" was too small and 1/2" too big. Is there a better tool that I can get? I was considering an allen key that fits the socket set and would be better steel than the rad key. Is there a proper tool made?
 
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cmother1

A chunky engineers screwdriver might fit. One you can get a grip on with a pipe wrench. I've taken out some of these 2 nib unions in the past with the tang of a big file & and 15" adjustable spanner (Don't tell the purists on me , though!)
 
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Is there a proper tool made?
radiator allen key
61618_m.jpg
 
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gassafeman

Use copius amounts of heat! You'll have them out nae bother.

Paul
 
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I looked one of these up and the description says:

Rothenberger 7.3297 Radiator Uni-Spanner Features
Unique combination spanner ratchet for all radiator valve trails, lugs, nipples, tank connectors etc.
Size 3/8in, 1/2in, 3/4in and 1in.


However if they are just squares, I have already tried a 3/8" square drive (too small) and a 1/2" (too big) :(

If I could find a tool with grooves for the nibs, I reckon that would do it. The grooved end of my rad key is too big though :mad:
 
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as mentioned get cooking with the blow torch easy :rolleyes:

but if ya still struggling :idea:

rothenburger do a universal rad key with a ratchet its very good ;)
 
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You want a "spud" I used to have one somewhere :oops: Heat the union sticking out for 4-5 mins until the hemp burns out ;) won`t hurt the rad... a Oxy torch is a LOT hotter than a propane lamp. That might melt the rad
 
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:!: That looks like it has grooves in it that might do the trick

Has anyone used one on these old tails?

Can I borrow one for a week (I'll pay costs)?
 
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John, the one i posted earlier should have the grooves as well you just can't see them on the pic. I use the exact same tool and its not failed to fit a rad tail yet.
 

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