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Get into the grooved

Grooved mechanical pipe joining is a no-flame joining technique of forming or cutting a groove in pipe ends and then joining them with bolted housings around a sealed gasket. Since being made commercially available in 1925 by Victaulic it has become a preferred joining method on many piping applications when compared with welding, threading and flanging, and is commonly used in water systems technology projects.

A mechanical joint is comprised of four elements: grooved pipe, a gasket, coupling housings, and a pair of nuts and bolts.

"By using complete grooved pipe joining systems it is possible to reduce required build time"

The pipe groove is made by cold forming or machining a groove into the end of a pipe. T

he key section of the coupling housings engage the groove and the bolts and nuts are tightened with a socket wrench or impact wrench and hold the housings together.


The coupling housings engage in the groove around the circumference of the pipe and encase the gasket. A pressure responsive gasket then creates a seal unified joint that is enhanced when the system i



s pressurised.

For engineers, the benefits of the grooved system are many: the design versatility of the joint can allow both rigidity and flexibility, or a combination of the two, throughout a system when necessary;


a mechanical joint provides noise and vibration attenuation, seismic relief, and accommodates for thermal expansion and contraction.

Added to these benefits, the system provides a union at every joint for ease of system maintenance and expansion.

The preparation method most commonly used today in mechanical piping systems is cold forming a roll groove onto the end of a pipe. This method, known as roll grooving, was invented by Victaulic in the 1950s and is used on 90% of grooving applications. Fast and clean, it is suitable for a variety of pipe sizes and standard wall thicknesses. Roll grooving is suitable for carbon steel, stainless steel, copper and aluminium pipe or tubing. With pipe that is roll grooved, any potential increase in pipe hardness, reduction in tensile strength or reduction in


elongation has no effect on the integrity of the joint. Pipe material changes are comparable to any other cold-forming


manufacturing operations.

For medium to large diameter pipes between 350mm and 1,525mm, the Advanced Groove System (AGS) offers enhanced strength and reliability through a more robust coupling housing and a patented wedge-shaped roll groove that is deeper and wider thus providing increased coupling-to-pipe engagement. The AGS design results in a 40% increase in end load carrying capabilities compared to previous joining methods.


Mechanical grooved pipe joining has been proven through research, testing and extensive


It has stood the test of time in some of the most impressive engineering feats of the last century, including the Hoover Dam, the Alexandria Library, and the Burj Khalifa.

Moreover, mechanical joining has been a reliable and rugged component of mission critical applications such as data centres, flammable chemical cleaning applications, the rigorous system demands required for high pressure applications in desalination plants, as well as mines, power applications, life safety systems, tunnelling and in hydraulic elevators.

By using complete grooved pipe joining systems it is possible to reduce required build time, allowing more space to commission, test and turn over systems. Maintenance simply requires the loosening of two bolts and nuts and no time is lost cutting out
sections of pipe and re-welding.

Grooved technology has been robustly tested by Research and Development engineers in the lab as well as in the field to consistently demonstrate its strength and reliability.

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