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Heavy Duty Pipe bending.
Big Stu - 11/4/05 at 03:21 AM

Anyone suggest a good heavy duty pipe bender that will bend 2" tube. I need it to make suspension mounts for new project.
Or I was considering hiring one.
How much are these to hire?

dmottaway - 11/4/05 at 03:29 AM

be careful if you go to hire one.

Pipes are measured by internal diameter.
Tubes are measured by outside diameter.

Using the wrong bender will not give the desired result.


[Edited on 11/4/05 by dmottaway]

niceperson709 - 11/4/05 at 06:02 AM

For just a couple of bends find a local fabricator who can bend them up for you I did that for my roll bar it turned out perfect cost relitively little and saved a lot of agro.
best wishes

danro - 11/4/05 at 08:57 AM

This will do the job, but maybe missing the "locost" spirit of things...
It's 106 but you could use it again and again and again....



clbarclay - 11/4/05 at 01:06 PM

You can get them new of ebay (theres useually 1 or 2 on there) for the ex. VAT price.

Peteff - 11/4/05 at 01:39 PM

Don't get one unless you're using heavy wall pipe, they are first rate tube kinkers and there is a definite knack to using them so get ready to experiment before you commit yourself to the job. There must be loads of these things rusting away in sheds all over the country. We had a go at one and took it back a few years ago.

gazza285 - 11/4/05 at 05:48 PM

Don't buy a Machine Mart one. I tried one for work and it blew the seals after bending three pieces of inch nominal bore handrailing, the replacement managed five.

Most hire companies will carry hydrolic pipe benders. Try HSS, Speedy or Hewden amongst others.

irvined - 11/4/05 at 06:22 PM

I've got a machine mart one, its not great, but its not bad, im happy enough with it.

The problem i had was not kinking the tube, the way i accomplished this was to hammer a couple of shims into the side of the former after it was fairly tight against the tube, this gave the walls better support, i suspect this was because the former was for different sized OD.

Other than that its quite good. I've heard stories about people packing the pipes with sand and welding them shut before bending to stop it collapsing, i've not tried this though.



gazza285 - 11/4/05 at 06:57 PM

Better than sand if you've got the facilities is fill the tube with molten lead. My old man has managed some rediculously tight turns in stainless for Triumph Tiger Cub trials bikes using lead filled tubes and formers.

owelly - 11/4/05 at 07:47 PM

Those cheap benders are not too good at getting good results. If yo do happen to get a good fit in the former, the rollers will dent the outside of the radius.
They kink thin walled pipe and dent thick walled pipe! If you want a bend in thick walled stuff, use weld-on bends. If its thin stuff, get a fab company to do it for you.

Big Stu - 11/4/05 at 08:36 PM

It will be thick walled stuff that I am doing. about 10 or 8 gauge I think. Would the one in machine mart be able to bend this at 2". I need about a 170 degree bend but needs to be as tight as possible.

Peteff - 11/4/05 at 11:41 PM

Speaking from experience, no chance of doing tight radius stuff with one and you'll struggle not to kink it with less than 4mm wall pipe.

Rorty - 12/4/05 at 05:02 AM

Originally posted by gazza285
Better than sand if you've got the facilities is fill the tube with molten lead. My old man has managed some rediculously tight turns in stainless for Triumph Tiger Cub trials bikes using lead filled tubes and formers.

There are fusible alloys with a melting point of just 70-75C especially for this purpose. The alloy is poured into the tube, then after the tube's bent, the core metal is removed by immersing the tube in hot water!

As peteff says, forget using a hydraulic pipe bender if you want even half reasonable bends in tube.
There's quite a bit of info on tube bending on my site, including a page on sand bending; Tube Work.

jambojeef - 17/4/05 at 10:50 PM

Totally agree with the above - me and Liam tried as hard as we could to be a couple of benders lsat week and we just couldnt do it!

All the ingredients were there - 12 tonne hydraulic pipe bender from machine mart and a beautiful bit of 50mm OD 3mm wall CDS.

Having done a couple of test bends on some skinny toob we decided to go for it!

Bender sort of ran out of puff after putting the tiniest bend in then after lots of cranking it finally just buckled!!

Dunno where we went wrong! All we were trying to do was put a 90 isg degree bend on?

We found the reverse though - skinny little toob = easy, fat hard toob = kinky.

clbarclay - 18/4/05 at 08:15 AM

Would they work any better with the tube heated up first (a few minuits with the oxy-acetaline). Would the pipe bender take this? (the paint will probably suffer) and would the quality of the bend be improved?

Simon - 18/4/05 at 07:59 PM

I ordered the MM bender. Got all excited about making my own exhausts - biggest pile I ever used.

Told them to collect next day - which they did.



NS Dev - 19/4/05 at 12:04 PM

I have a pipe bender not dissimilar to the MM one, just a lot older and with proper dies.

Point no. 1) You need tube dies to bend tube with the MM bender, it comes with PIPE dies which are for nominal bore pipe and will not bend tube!

Point no. 2) thinwall tube like exhaust tube needs a full od support type bender like the one Rorty outlines.

Point no. 3) most CDS/CFS tubing (coldd drawn of various types) is not annealed, and to bend without kinking in a simple hydraulic bender will need local annealing. A propane lamp applied until the tube is dull red, then bend while still hot seems to work fine. The tensile strngth of the tube is regained by work-hardening during bending.

I have bent rollcage tube (45 x 2.5 and 45 x 3mm ) with my hydraulic bender, but then never needed more than 90 degrees for cages.

Big Stu - 20/4/05 at 12:51 PM

Cheers for all the advice guys. I have made a decision that I will get someone else to do it for me. I figured that it would take me at least a couple of days to get the hang of it, and once I was finished the bends it would gather dust.

Getting them made for me at the cost of a machine mart bender. More time for me to spend down the pub!!!