Pipe bending and tube bending allow you to transform a length of pipe into a useful component for home or industrial use. Whether you need a rollbar for a dune buggy, legs for bar stools or outdoor furniture, piping for your sprinkler system, or a handrail for your porch, pipe and tube bending is the ideal way to bend metal and even PVC. For DIYers and companies that do not have pipe bending capacities in-house, a local sheet metal fabrication shop can produce the parts you need.
Pipe Vs. Tube
Pipes carry fluids under pressure, whereas tubes are often used for structural purposes. While pipes are sized based on their normal outside dimension and wall thickness, tubes are sized based on an exact outside dimension and wall thickness.
Used in several applications such as automotive, furniture, and railings and handrailings, the requirements and specifications for each type of pipe or tube varies according to the demands put on it. Pipes and tubes come in various wall thicknesses, currently measured in schedule numbers. The wall thickness might be referenced as standard weight (STD), extra-strong (XS), double extra-strong (XXS) or standard, extra-heavy (XH), and double extra-heavy (XXH).
When selecting piping or tubing, make sure to buy products strong enough to do the job and that meet industry standards.
Processes Used for Pipe and Tube Bending
As with many other processes in a modern shop, pipe and tube bending is CNC-controlled to cut, form, fabricate, and finish the work. Typical processes include:
-High-Speed Cutting to achieve the right length
-Pipe & Tube End-Forming: To give the pipe the function to make it ready to use, other processes such as Beading (including Marmon Beads), Reducing, Expanding, Flaring, Swaging, and Threading come into play.
-Fabrication: Welding, Notching, Punching, Coping, and Drilling help incorporate the bent tube or pipe into the finished product.
-Finishing: Anodizing, Polishing, and Powder Coating ensures that the pipe will have the desired finish with the appearance you want.
Selecting a Sheet Metal Shop for Pipe and Tube Bending
Whether you are a business looking to outsource bending or a hobbyist or DIYer looking for components for a project, a local sheet metal fabrication shop can be a good source for pipe bending or tube bending. The professionals there can tell you more about pipe schedules and other pertinent information for selecting products with the specifications you need. They will also show you the type of equipment they have and the processes they can perform.