Tapping Into Innovation

Since 1856, A.Y. McDonald has adopted the role of being problem solvers for the industry. In fulfilling this responsibility, we are prepared for the inspiration of a new product to come from just about anywhere. Therefore, it is no surprise that the concept behind A.Y. McDonald’s new No-Lead Service Saddles stemmed not from our own customers, but from the potential of attracting even more.

The service saddle is a product comprising a structure that fully encompasses a pipe and an outlet boss used to attach a corporation stop to a water main to make a service line connection. Even though a small part of the saddle contacts water, a few states (Vermont, Maryland, and Louisiana) require the use of a no-lead saddle, with these locations favoring a ductile iron or all stainless steel product. Since A.Y. McDonald is no stranger to altering our products in order to solve industry pain points, we gladly took on the challenge of creating a lead-free brass saddle option. Our experts started the process of developing such a product in late 2017 and the No-Lead Service Saddles were launched in August 2018.

Recognized as the 73875, 73876, 73885, and 73886 series, A.Y. McDonald’s new No-Lead Service Saddles came straight from the Innovation Center in order to ensure a long-lasting, durable solution that lives up to industry standards. While the change of material started off as an obstacle, we managed to work these challenges to the customer’s advantage. Continue reading to learn how the creation of this saddle led to improvements of the product itself:                              

  • In order to provide optimum support, the 73875 (AWWA tap) and 73876 (FNPT tap) service saddles contain a wide stainless steel band and the 73885 (AWWA tap) and 73886 (FNPT tap) service saddles contain two stainless steel bands
  • Intended for use on service line connections to cast iron O.D. PVC pipe/AWWA C-900 water mains
  • Pressure capabilities equal, but do not exceed, the working pressure rating of the pipe (up to 200 PSIG)
  • Designed with slots on one side of the saddle top for ease of installation
  • Stainless steel nuts and washers are corrosion resistant, which reduces galling
  • Contains the standard EPDM O-ring seal, which is known for its long-lasting material and ability to stay in place
  • Offered with an optional EPDM flat gasket or Viton O-ring gasket
  • Since no-lead brass is not as ductile as leaded, the 8”, 10”, and 12” saddle tops were created shorter

How long does it take to bring a no-lead brass service saddle from concept to creation? For A.Y. McDonald, the answer is less than a year. Created out of a material that now matches all the other no-lead parts in the water service lateral, we hope those states that required such a product are taking notice of ours and appreciating the journey it took get to a finished design. Needless to say, the new No-lead Service Saddles allowed us to tap into innovation like never before!

Do you have an innovative product/concept you want brought to life or an industry pain point that you think should be addressed? Give our Innovation Center a chance to create a solution by emailing us at Innovations@aymcdonald.com.