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Edmonton Valve & Fitting Blog

Weekly posts for northern and central Alberta engineers, plant operators, and buyers.

Swagelok Socket Weld Fittings: It Pays to Learn the Differences

by Katie Dennis, on Thu, Nov 26, 2015 @ 10:11 AM

The concept is the same for tubing and pipe, but the parts aren't interchangeable


To help you remember the difference between the Tube weld vs the Pipe weld, download this PDF that breaksdown the information with images.


There are some severe applications in fluid systems where a welded system tube fitting is preferred. Then it's time to break out the welder. A good, solid weld is completely leak proof. It's just the thing if you are running toxic fluids, for example, where even a tiny leak could cause big problems.

If you are welding pipe, you have two options. One is the butt weld, with the end of one section of pipe joined straight up against another section. It's something of an art form, requiring the pipe to be solidly fixed in place before welding, to assure perfect alignment. If you are merely continuing a piping system, you'd probably use a butt weld.

The other option is to use a socket weld fitting. You slip the end of the pipe into the fitting and make the weld there. This is the kind of weld you'd typically make when installing a valve in the line.

Big difference

But here's the key point: Tube socket weld fittings are not the same as pipe socket weld fittings. It's something you might not think about if you rarely have to weld. We sometimes discover that our customers are asking for one type of socket weld fitting when they really need the other.

So the next time you want to place an order, don't be surprised if we start asking questions. We want to make sure you get the right parts for the job. We might even ask you to measure the socket of the valve and measure the fitting to confirm that it will fit.

To help you remember the difference between welding pipe and welding tubing, we've put together a simple one-page illustration. We've highlighted the part numbers for the socket weld fittings, so you can always keep them straight. Download the Pipe Weld vs Tube Weld PDF here.

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