Overview of Roll Groove Fittings & Pipes

09 March 2023

We have already presented several sorts and combinations of threaded fittings, which have been around for over a century. Another typical method of joining pipes is to use grooved fittings.

Using “mechanical” connections allowed for speedier pipe joining in 1919. Only a few years later, the Victory Pipe Joint Company changed its name to Victaulic (a mix of “victory” and “hydraulic”) and expanded the technology globally. Manufacturers now provide grooved fittings commonly used for pipes in fire sprinkler systems. Today, it is typical for both main and branch lines to be grooved.

What are typical grooved fittings, and how do they function? Let us begin by introducing them.


Let us begin with the pipe. To allow grooved fittings to “grab” the pipe and stay in place, they must withstand the pressure of the water attempting to “tear away” the pipe from the fittings that connect them. Steel can be “rolled grooved” or “cut grooved” to produce a groove in a pipe. Roll groove pipe is made by pressing an indentation into the pipe at the end. This enables a grooved fitting to glide over the pipe’s end and fit into the groove. Roll groove pipe has the benefit of not lowering pipe thickness, allowing for more corrosion tolerance than thinner pipe, comparable pipe with threads, or pipe with cut grooves.

Pipe groove cutting entails cutting into the pipe rather than pushing it. This procedure eliminates a part of the pipe wall, resulting in a thinner but smoother internal pipe wall. This thinner wall makes it more prone to corrosion; nevertheless, for pipe systems with a modest slope, the smooth inside of the pipe prevents water from sitting and corroding the pipe.

Tees & Elbows

Elbows can be bent at 90 degrees (the most frequent), 45 degrees, 22 1/2 degrees, and 11 1/4 degrees. Why not consider every potential angle? What if you have a structure that requires a 60-degree bend? For starters, it would be impractical to design a fitting for every curve. Second, by joining two 90-degree elbows back to back, we can form a “swing joint” and make whatever angle we desire by altering the pipe’s height.

A “Drain Elbow,” which has the elbow but incorporates a drain outlet at the bend of the elbow, is a remarkable specialisation with the grooved elbow. This is frequently utilised with fire department connections that run down a wall and must be drained (to avoid water-charged pipe freezing and bursting).


unlike threaded fittings, the actual pipe connection is accomplished by a grooved coupling. Malleable iron bumps on the coupler hold the indent of one groove (pipe/fitting) and link it to the second groove (the other pipe/fitting).

Additional Fittings

There are several additional sorts of fittings. Reducing Tees with a Groove is less prevalent. Depending on contractors who know all the price intricacies, less frequent might mean more costly.

Other Frequently Encountered Grooved Fittings

Reducing fittings are concentric, single-cast pieces of metal with a big groove on one end and a smaller groove on the other. One word of caution: when employing them in the vertical orientation, it is much better, more stable, and stronger to utilise a reducing-fitting rather than a reducing-coupling. One of my clients even advises against decreasing couplings (where the coupling has two different groove sizes).

If you want to see the full range of available grooved fittings, browse our catalogues or contact us for grooved sprinkler pipe fittings. Our product data may be quite helpful in comprehending what has been manufactured and listed for usage in sprinkler systems.

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