Being Aware of the Difference Between Piping and Pipe » Construction Reunited
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by on November 25, 2021

Lap joint pipe flanges and piping are terms that refer to tubular conveyances that are used to transport fluids over long and short distances in a variety of industrial, commercial, and residential applications, ranging from gas transmission to sewage disposal, in the traditional sense. Although the term pipe flange has a structural meaning in architectural settings, where it is used in applications such as handrails and columns, the term pipe also has a structural meaning in construction settings, where it is used to construct sign poles, bumper posts, or to be installed as casing pipe, among other things.

The nomenclature used to describe the different products can be overlapping and inconsistent between suppliers and manufacturers, making it difficult to understand the products. This makes it even more difficult to understand the products themselves. Typically, when comparing pipes and tubing, pipes are distinguished by their nominal size and wall thickness, whereas tubing is distinguished by its actual outside dimension and wall thickness, as well as the fact that it is flexible or bendable in some cases. Depending on the situation, tubing can be thought of as a product that is used to transmit a fluid or gas, whereas in other situations, the word tubing may have a more structural connotation to it. Tubing, in contrast to pipe, can be supplied in long length coils in addition to straight lengths, whereas pipe is typically sold in straight lengths.


Steel pipe can be formed into the desired shape using a variety of materials such as metal or plastic, as well as a variety of manufacturing processes such as welding or casting, to achieve the desired result. Pipe dimensions and industry types were previously standardized in the United States. Examples include pipes intended for domestic use and pipes intended for industrial use, such as in power or chemical plants, where the materials may be subjected to high-pressure process fluids. Designing piping systems is a distinct engineering specialty in and of itself. It encompasses many aspects of mechanical engineering, from weld processes to corrosion control, and from sizing pressure drops to dealing with earthquake loads. It is intended to serve as a starting point for anyone who is interested in learning more about or purchasing pipe by providing an overview of the Blind pipe flanges industry.

Despite the fact that socket weld pipe flanges will be discussed extensively in the context of fluid handling and transmission, only a few words will be said about the structural aspects of pipe or the characteristics of piping products.

More information on pipe fittings, which are used to join sections of pipe together, can be found in our related guide to pipe fittings (available in English and Spanish).

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