Yup.. Funny, I posted this info 6 months ago..not sure why the joke was made today..
But, yes, proper graded pipe is quite strong. If you take your time, you can get some good results.
Not as nice as a bender, but I can get close to 90* bends pretty well. All of the tube work on my truck is done with it.
The bender looks like this:
So, you can see here, when I did the main hoop, you can do fairly complex parts
Its actually easier, IMO with a pipe bender than a tube bender, to get your piece correct, because the center of the bend stays at the center of the die, instead of the camming action of a real bender, where its 'grabbed' and 'pulled' around the die. On a real bender, you need to learn where the reference points will end up after you bend a piece.
BTW, the pics, thats 1-1/4" Sch 40 A500 grade B, so thats 1.66" OD with a 0.140" wall, which is stronger than the usual mild steel HREW 1-5/8" 0.120" wall that most people use.