Capillary Tubing Support Guides..

About: My situation keeps me a home at great deal of the time and as such, I generally have a lot of time on my hands. That said, a while back I swore an oath to myself that I would not be 'that guy' that lay on hi...

I ran across a situation where I needed to provide a rigid support system for a drip line made of capillary tubing. The biggest issue was not to kink the tubing as it is rather fragile. Fig1 shows an O.D. of just 1.57mm and Fig2 gives a good view from the end-on. What I needed was something that would allow for some movement yet keep the tubing from getting kinked or knocked about.

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Step 1: Desperation

Out of sheer desperation & after having kinked the line more times than I'd like to admit, I opted to route the tubing through some eye screws till a better solution came along. Then it occurred to me that if I soldered a bit of larger tubing into that eye screw, it would provide the support needed while allowing the capillary tubing to flex a bit.

Step 2: Kitchen Brazing..

If you haven't picked up a creme brulee torch for small brazing jobs & such, you are doing yourself a grave disservice [Fig1]. A while back I picked up a 'hobby pack' of metal tubing shorts [Fig2] at our local HobbyLobby that saved the day on this project.

This instructable is not intended to show anyone how to gas weld so suffice to say, I centered a short bit of tubing in the eye screw & soldered the lot together as neatly as possible. Fig3 shows the end product.

FYI - I picked up a piece of ceramic floor tile [from a trash pile] that has made an excellent heat shield for small hot work jobs. Generally speaking, if it's a small job like this I will put my piece of ceramic tile on the kitchen stove & do my hot work there. Seems to make sense to me - that area of the kitchen is used to seeing some heat so the odds of catching something on fire unintentionally are slim.

Step 3: Miniature Flaring Tool..

Once the support guides are completed, all there is to do is to screw them in & route the tubing through them. As you may have surmised, opening up the end of this tiny tubing after it has been kinked and broken can be challenging. Luckily I discovered that by using a pair of pointy tweezers, the kinked end could be coaxed open and by giving the tweezers a twist - flare the end of the tubing. So awesome!

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    Pragmatic Man

    6 years ago on Step 3

    Variations of this can be used to run tension cables and wiring for example. In this case, I ran drip line to provide drinking water for our honey bees.