Tubing is simpler, lighter, easier to install, and has fewer potential leak points; it also costs less when you factor in tools, labor, and maintenance.
Historically, piping was the way to get fluid from Point A to Point B for any system more than an inch in diameter. It's even written into a lot of specifications. But once you've tried tubing for small-bore applications, it's hard to go back. Tubing is simpler, safer, and faster.
Comparing tools, labor & maintenance needed.
Consider the tools needed for building a typical threaded piping project: Pipe stands, dies, cutting oils, sealants, and PTFE tape or sealant. Then there is assembly, testing, disassembly, rework, and reassembly. For a welding job, you need a qualified welder and welding equipment. Depending on the job, you may need weld permits, air tests, firebox, tacking, weld quenching, finish welding, purging, passivation and inspections.
To make the same system out of tubing is much less complex. Aside from the tubing and fittings, you need only a tube bender, a deburring tool and a wrench. On a big job, a hydraulic swaging unit might come in handy instead of the wrench. With a little instruction, anyone in the plant can assemble and install Swagelok tube fittings correctly the first time, and we do offer classes if you are looking for extra support and training.
"Safe Product Selection: The complete catalog contents must be reviewed to ensure that the system designer and user make a safe product selection. When selecting products, the total system design must be considered to ensure safe, trouble-free performance. Function, material compatibility, adequate ratings, proper installation, operation, and maintenance are the responsibilities of the system designer and user.