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  1. #1
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    Default Need to bend some tubing and don't have a bender or that particular die?

    I didn't have a die big enough to put an 8" CLR radius bend on some 3/4 X .120 wall 316. I even called pro tools and the biggest die they can make is 7" CLR. They said they could outsource it, but it would be over 2500 dollars. Not worth it for two 40 degree bends. Fortunately, my a buddy gave me some oak boards. I drew a semi circle on them.



    Missing a couple in process pictures, but then I clamped 2 pieces together, drilled and countersunk holes thru both, then cut out both pieces on the band saw. Then I took them apart and used a cove router to put a concave quarter circle on the curved edge:



    Bolt both pieces together and now you have a forming die:



    Soaked it in water for a bit so it wouldn't start on fire. Then filled the tube with sand and packed it tight, taped it off.

    ***If you try this, make sure your sand is baked dry. Even if it SEEMS dry, it's not and it can explode. Bake it for a few hours.***

    Next I added some heat to the area I needed the bend to occur and bent that shit up. If I had to guess I'd say the wood die would last between 5 and 10 bends. More if you soak it longer and between each.



    Checked the part to my 1:1 print, looks good a little off but:



    Nope it's basically perfect:



    Made a second one:


  2. #2
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    That's cool.... It's a good thing you had wood working tools.....

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tattooo View Post
    That's cool.... It's a good thing you had wood working tools.....
    Aside from the router which can be obtained from harbor freight for 50 bucks, no special woodworking tools are required. I countersunk the holes with a 2 dollar spade bit and just used my metal bandsaw.

  4. #4
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    nice job

  5. #5
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    jeez, I wish I had that table.

  6. #6
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    Smart! Good job.

  7. #7
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    Slick!

  8. #8
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    Super handy THANKS!!

  9. #9
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    Rad! Might be trying this. Anyone know how big those bits come? wonder if a good piece of wood could hold up to 1.25 od .120 wall. I only need 2 bends and really dont wanna buy a $200 die

  10. #10

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    excellent idea,was thinking of buying a bender, but with a garage full of oak you'e just given me another option,

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by nuklhd View Post
    jeez, I wish I had that table.
    Yeah, I was wallowing in envy. That's an old original H-D one, isn't it?

    Last time I saw one like that was at Randy Simpson's (Milwaukee Iron). Is he still in business? A humble guy for the skills he had.

    Nice work. Just goes to show what's possible at a lost cost with a little 'feel' and ingenuity.
    Last edited by None; 06-15-2016 at 6:32 AM.

  12. #12
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    Update!!! Bent almost 10 pieces with no heat with ZERO sign of wear on the die:



    Great way to bend those 8" CLR downtube bends...

  13. #13
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    Outstanding OP!

    You just cost JD Squared a bunch of sales. Thanks for the great write up

  14. #14
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    Very cool!

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