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Standard Pipe Showdown: Continuous Weld vs. Electric Resistance Weld

Nick LaMonto, piping superintendent at Chicago-based Atomatic Mechanical Services, threads pipe every day. As an experienced piping professional, he knows the importance of tool longevity and what it can cost when working with an inferior product.

We put Nick’s machines to the test, threading both types of steel standard pipe: continuous weld and electric resistance weld.


First up, Nick threads continuous weld standard pipe.

“It cuts awful nice,” Nick said, “without any hard spots.”

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Save Money on Cutting Tools and Reduce Labor Costs with Continuous Weld Pipe

Have you ever noticed how quickly you go through a set of dies when you’re threading pipe? Do you find that today’s pipe is harder to bend in the field? If so, you’re probably using imported electric resistance weld (ERW) pipe — and you’ve probably already noticed that this type of pipe can wreak havoc on your tools and increase labor. Continuous weld (CW) pipe may be your answer.

While ERW pipe does meet industry standards, it’s a known fact that CW pipe has a more uniform grain structure, making it easier to bend, cut and thread — while still meeting all industry standards.


Easier on tools

The uniform grain pattern and smooth surface mean that CW pipe will cause less wear and tear on tools and dies than ERW pipe. In a recent contractor survey, 72 percent of respondents indicated they believe CW pipe is easier on tools. A new engineering study confirms it: Threading tools use 22 percent less wattage while threading CW pipe (compared to ERW pipe).

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