3-Way LPG (Propane) Tank Adapter Fitting (Completed)

Discussion in 'My Favorite Mods, Tips, Tricks (and Blunders!)' started by Dubbya, Jul 17, 2013.

  1. Dubbya

    Dubbya Wherever you go, there you are...

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    Aug 2, 2011
    Steinbach, MB
    Finally! The last of my parts arrived from Amazon yesterday!

    I assembled a 3-way LPG fitting that allows me to connect the camper and the Eccotemp or a portable BBQ to the 20 LB propane tank at the same time. No more crawling under the bunk to swap out the fittings.

    Yeah, there's the extend-a-stay, but that only has one QCC fitting coming out of it. This lets me connect whatever I want while still having the LPG for the camper connected.

    [​IMG]

    I called a local plumbing/gas fitting distributor looking for QCC to 1/4" male pipe adapters. He said he'd sell them to me for $77 each. Yeah.. NO! I asked him if he could recommend a local shop that sold his products and that might be able to help me.

    Off I went to City Propane (in Winnipeg). After explaining what it was that I was hoping to do, the salty sales rep tossed me an ME519 (red) fitting, says they don't stock the other adapters, wishes me luck and sends me on my way.

    His reasoning was that with a 450,000 BTU rating, there wouldn't be any bottlenecks while supplying the additional line. It sounded like exactly what I wanted until I got home and read the fine print on the label. There wasn't anything at all that explained it, just a heading that read "ME519 WARNING". Curiosity got the better of me so I looked up the documentation on the manufacturer's website.

    Turns out that the warning clearly states that the ME519 is not to be used on RV's. It doesn't explain why but I'm confident that it's because it's a safety issue and they feel no RV should have any need for 450,000 BTU's per hour. Meh, I'll swap it out with the ME518 (green) knob and call it done. For now, I've got the ME519.

    On the plus side, when we go camping with our kin down South, we'll be able to run both burners on the still HOT TUB at the same time and it's all good! [CC] Seriously though, I don't have a hot tub. [Guitar] [LOL] [LOL]

    Having calculated my maximum BTU requirements, it appears that a ME518 (Green) QCC fitting rated for 200,000 BTU is more than adequate in this application.

    3 burner stove 17,600 BTU
    Atwood furnace 18,000 BTU
    Fridge 650 BTU
    Eccotemp L5 37,500 BTU

    Maximum BTU's REQUIRED: 73,750

    PARTS

    ME518 QCC Fitting (Green) 200,000 BTU $12.99 CDN
    1/4" Bronze Tee $3.96 CDN
    2 x Lasco 17-5381 QCC x 1/4" Male fittings $37 (includes shipping and import fees)
    Teflon Gas Piping Tape $3.99 CDN

    You can find these already assembled online for $54 US plus shipping and import fees. I already had the Teflon tape so assembling it myself, the total cost including shipping and taxes came to: $54 CDN,

    The Lasco fittings are readily available for $11.99 on Amazon.com.

    How long does my 20 lb propane tank last?
     
  2. jmullan99

    jmullan99 New Member

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    Sep 7, 2008
    Niagara Falls, ON
    Excellent DIY. I purchased a ready made that has the 2 different fittings (ACME Nut and high pressure appliance - I think I got that right). Does the job for me. But sometimes wish I could connect a 3rd device.

    Cheers.
     
  3. Dubbya

    Dubbya Wherever you go, there you are...

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    Aug 2, 2011
    Steinbach, MB
    Thanks, jmullan99. Sounds like you've got the Extend-a-Flow adapter - One QCC fitting and the QCC to 1/4" male with the 1 LB cylinder fitting. They run about $54 as well.

    Yep, I was really considering one of those but I already have a 10' extension hose with a 50,000 BTU (Black) QCC fitting, regulator and 1 LB cylinder fitting that I use with our Coleman stove and portable BBQ. These days, I only use the one pounders with the lantern anyway.

    If you wanted to, you could build the "holy grail" of adapters with a bronze cross fitting hooked up to an ME518 QCC connector, two QCC to 1/4" male pipe thread adapters and a 1 LB cylinder fitting without any problems.
     
  4. jmullan99

    jmullan99 New Member

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    Sep 7, 2008
    Niagara Falls, ON
    Well, I ordered up the 3 parts (2xQCC male and 1xQCC female). The tee or cross I can get at the local home improvement stores. If I go with cross I can take the high pressure appliance part of my existing tee. Or I can go tee like you and put it on my existing to get the same result, just more bulky.
     
  5. Mickeyrv

    Mickeyrv Week day camping is great

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    Jul 22, 2012
    How many BTU are in a pound of propane - The Q&A wiki

    wiki.answers.com › … › Elements and Compounds › Hydrocarbons

    1 gallon of Propane ~= 4.23 lbs 20 lb tank of propane holds approx 4 gallons of propane (approx 366,000 BTUs)
     
  6. Dubbya

    Dubbya Wherever you go, there you are...

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    Aug 2, 2011
    Steinbach, MB
    Not sure what you mean by exisiting tee, but if you're using a cross, as long as you use the red QCC at the tank, you won't have any problems running three additional fittings.

    Most of the cross fittings I've seen have two additional QCC with one of the Coleman throw-away adapters, like the extend-a-stay adapters do.
     
  7. jmullan99

    jmullan99 New Member

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    Sep 7, 2008
    Niagara Falls, ON
    Oh, my "existing tee" is the one I mentioned further up that has QCC female to connect to tank, 1 QCC male and 1 coleman throw-away adapter (wasn't sure what to call it).

    Basically I want to build one like you just described, 2 QCC + 1 Coleman using a cross.

    But what I was also trying to say is that I "could" make just a tee with 2 QCC just as you have built (I'll call it the Dubbya Adapter). I could attach the female of the existing (because it's a black nut) to the male on my future Dubbya Adapter (green nut), attach the Dubbya Adapter to the tank, which would give me the 2 QCC + 1 coleman. The Dubbya Adapter first in line since it supports more BTU. It would also mean I could use both separately with a second tank should I desire such an arrangement giving me 3 QCC + 1 coleman total ports.

    Hmmm. I suppose I could get myself another green to replace the black one.

    Anyway, I hope I explained that properly [8D]

    I will try to post a picture of the existing item. No need to post the one I will build since you beat me to it. [:D]
     
  8. poncho62

    poncho62 New Member

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    Jul 1, 2011
  9. Dubbya

    Dubbya Wherever you go, there you are...

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    Steinbach, MB
    That's the beauty of the QCC adapters and why they're so perfect in this project. You can use one or both and you don't have to worry about leaks.
     
  10. jmullan99

    jmullan99 New Member

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    Sep 7, 2008
    Niagara Falls, ON
    Finally took the picture. Here is my "existing" tee.

    [​IMG]
     
  11. Dubbya

    Dubbya Wherever you go, there you are...

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    Aug 2, 2011
    Steinbach, MB
    jmullan99, you'd just need one more of the QCC x 1/4" male fittings, a ME519 (red) or ME518 (Green) knob, the cross fitting and you'd be good to go with the "holy grail" of all LPG fittings. [:D]
     
  12. generok

    generok Well-Known Member

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    Feb 7, 2013
    Anchorage, AK
    I like your adapter, and I'm sure it will work.

    I thought you had to use POV fittings on RVs though to be legal. Not that I'm poo poohing it at all, I just wonder because I've yet to see the new style fittings on anything but BBQ grills.
     
  13. Dubbya

    Dubbya Wherever you go, there you are...

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    Aug 2, 2011
    Steinbach, MB
    Really? My camper came with a QCC fitting, I've only ever seen POL fittings on older campers and tiger torches.
     
  14. jmullan99

    jmullan99 New Member

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    Sep 7, 2008
    Niagara Falls, ON
    When looking for a cross fitting, do I need to be mindful of a certain type? That is, if it is a brass fitting, can I be sure it will handle the high pressure?
     
  15. Dubbya

    Dubbya Wherever you go, there you are...

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    FWIW, I asked that question myself. Brass or bronze, I was told by a Tech at a local propane parts and service company that it doesn't matter. The tank's built in safety valve will pop at 250 psi anyway.

    From what I've read, it's better to choose forged over cast fittings if they're available. Makes sense but FYI, I used a cast tee because that's all I could find locally and haven't had any problems.

    Just use gas piping tape (yellow teflon) or pipe dope, don't over tighten the joints and check the joints for leaks prior to using the fitting in the field.
     
  16. jmullan99

    jmullan99 New Member

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    Sep 7, 2008
    Niagara Falls, ON
    Excellent. As soon as my parts arrive, I will go to my local shops and grab a fitting and try it out. Picture will follow. Everyone likes pictures, right? LOL.
     
  17. kmh1596

    kmh1596 Wilbraham, MA

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    Aug 20, 2007
    Western MA
    This is what I bought, but then I added another Tee and Acme Fitting. I am left with an extra Acme fitting, and extra high pressure fitting. This allows us to hook up our Road trip Grill, as well as a Lobster steamer, all the while using the propane from the camper appliances as well. Will snap and post a few pictures later today, though I would swear I documented it on here long ago, just can't find it. [?:~{]

    EDIT: Here it is: http://www.popupportal.com/index.php?topic=25326.msg146107#msg146107

    [​IMG]
     
  18. GregCruess

    GregCruess Just happy to be here ;)

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    Feb 24, 2012
    Very good read. We are having trouble getting enough propane to both the tabletop grill and 2 burner camp stove using the tee from camping world. Thanks for the tips and part #s!
     

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