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Old November 3rd, 2012, 02:59 PM   #1
vickiebrian
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Default bending aluminum tubing ?

My tig welding skills are improving by the day, and I got to thinking that I would like to try making some tube fenders, I have heard aluminum tubing doesn't like to bend without cracking. Anybody tried bending tubing ,I am thinking 1 1/5" by ? wall , what is best process ,heating ?.grade ?.
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Old November 3rd, 2012, 03:13 PM   #2
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It will depend on what grade you get. I think you want a 30xx series so it can be bent. Besides that you can get as thick of a wall as possible to help with the cracking.
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Old November 3rd, 2012, 03:24 PM   #3
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This will be bent with a legit tubing bender, by the way. Do you think it will need to be filled with blasting sand or heated at all ?
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Old November 3rd, 2012, 04:43 PM   #4
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Thicker wall will prevent filling with sand and I would think that if you heat it it will anneal it and make it too weak. I would get some and try a test bend. It's obviously possible with all the aluminum fenders out there now.
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Old November 3rd, 2012, 05:08 PM   #5
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Make sure your dies are all smooth. It tends to snag and gall more in the softer tempers. Use lube.
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Old November 3rd, 2012, 06:08 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tab View Post
Thicker wall will prevent filling with sand and I would think that if you heat it it will anneal it and make it too weak. I would get some and try a test bend. It's obviously possible with all the aluminum fenders out there now.
After annealing it seems like you could heat treat it and get it back to its original strength.
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Old November 3rd, 2012, 06:27 PM   #7
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I'm sure you could but I doubt all the manufactures using it now do it so it must be possible to do without annealing it.
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Old November 4th, 2012, 07:23 AM   #8
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bending Alum. tubing?? - Great Lakes 4x4. The largest offroad forum in the Midwest
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Old November 4th, 2012, 10:51 AM   #9
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Guess I need to use the search function a little more often.
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Old November 4th, 2012, 11:28 AM   #10
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Good site for this stuff is Offroadfabnet.com lots of info there
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Old November 4th, 2012, 06:32 PM   #11
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I built a boat radar arch style rod holder out of 6061 T6 1.75x.120 aluminum tube using a JD2 bender....you cant do it cold....it will just break.....i took a weed burner and put a sharpy mark on the area to be bent (read it online after some research, when heated evenly and the sharpy dissapears its good to start bending) I put a lot of vasaline on the tube to try to keep it from getting to gouged up....it worked. I was able to bend 4 90s without any issue at all....cold bending just wasn't doing it....the research I did said it will go back to its original temper or close to original overtime....I would of went with a series that was easier to work with for cold work but 6061 t6 was the only series and temper my local supplier was able to get.

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