Viega’s megapress provides ideal solution for the needs of the National Gallery

The Megapress connection technology has been chosen for a section of pipe relocation work at The National Gallery

Viega’s Megapress connection technology has been chosen as the optimal solution for a section of pipe relocation work at The National Gallery in London. The industry-first press connection system for thick-walled steel tube, ensures that the installation of the pipework for the building’s heating and chilled water HVAC systems could occur without disruption to the gallery space which remained open throughout the project.

The work was necessary in preparation for a gallery extension which took place earlier this year. Before the building work could take place, it was vital that all pipe routes were relocated, bypassing the location of the extension, so that the other gallery spaces could continue to remain open during the planned building work with minimal interruption to visitors and staff.

Megapress allowed us to carry out the work quickly, cleanly and efficiently

Colin Garbutt, contracts manager at Capri Mechanical Services Ltd. selected Viega’s Megapress due to the specific range of requirements that the gallery space and its displays necessitated. Colin highlighted the difficult circumstances which involved moving the pipework up a riser and across the top of the gallery through a ventilation and services space.

‘For this installation, speed, cleanliness and minimal noise were key requirements to make sure we did not disrupt the gallery space which remained open below us,’ Colin commented.

‘Hot works were not an option in this environment, and it would have been incredibly difficult for us to get the machinery needed for a screw system into such a tight space. Megapress allowed us to carry out the work quickly, cleanly and efficiently – which was ideal.’

The Megapress range has been designed to deliver the speed and safety benefits of press connection technology for thick walled steel tube – a preferred choice amongst contractors for heating, cooling or gas applications because of the durable 3-5mm thickness of the wall. Consisting of over 60 different fittings including those certified for gas installations, Megapress can be used on tubes up to four inches in diameter.

The system also avoids the need to use heavy threading equipment and lubricating oils which provides a cleaner and more efficient installation that vastly reduces the risk of fire or contamination.

Crucially, press connection technology in comparison to threading can reduce the install time by around 60% and for larger diameter tube (up to 4 inches), where welding would have been the conventional approach, the reduction in assembly time can be up to 80%.

In total, more than 100 Megapress connections were installed in the National Gallery including 2″ connections for the chilled water system and 1¼” to 1½” connections for heating pipes.

‘I had previously worked with press connection systems, but I had not tried Viega’s steel press connection before,’ Colin continued. ‘To secure the specification it was necessary for us to gain the permission of the gallery management team, so I performed a demonstration with the help of Viega’s technical team.

‘The staff were impressed with the system as steel press connections had not been used at the site previously and it fulfilled all the access and safety needs required by the job.’

Megapress fittings include Viega’s SC-Contur technology, which incorporates a flow path channel proven to deliver a 100% positive leak if the fitting is inadvertently unpressed. The missed connection is clearly discernible during leakage testing or when the system is filled for the first time.

Ensuring a reliable method of detecting these issues early in the process is critical to avoiding costly remedial work once the project has been completed.

As a preferred choice for contractors when working with thick-walled steel tube, press connection technology is being increasingly used amongst landmarks projects.

Offering a faster processing rate and improved safety compared to traditional forms of pipe connection methods, systems such as Viega’s Megapress are an ideal product for applications that have a small workable footprint, where minimal disruption is a key requirement.

For more information on Viega’s Megapress, please visit