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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK, since I do work on my truck with pipe, thought I'd post a little info.


Pipe is Pipe and Tube is Tube, they are different.

Tube is measured by outside diameter and wall thickness.
Pipe is 'measured' by inside diameter and schedule (wall thickness)

However, pipe is still a standard OD, and the ID varies based on the schedule. So for a 1-1/4" pipe, the OD is 1.66". Schedule 80 would have a smaller ID than Schedule 40...etc..

There's a lot of misinfo about pipe, people thinking its brittle, weak, etc. Not really true. There are a lot of different types of pipe, just like there are lots of types of tube. So getting the right material, no matter what you do, is the key to getting strong material. You will find plenty of circle track cars with pipe-built roll cages, which are going to have higher impact forces than on most any 4x4.


There are lots of types of pipe out there. Going to the home depot and buying a 10 chunk of pipe you don't know what you are getting, and its propably crap. Some types of pipe might be butt welded, so there are butt seams in the pipe that may be weak. Some types might be a weaker iron that leads people to think of the pipes being brittle.


A common one used in building cages is ASTM A53 type S grade B.

This is a carbon steel pipe, with a yield strength of 35,000 psi, and tensile strength of 60,000 psi.


I personally use ASTM A500 grade B, which is a carbon steel pipe known as structural tubing. The A500 standard actually covers both rounds and shapes such as sqaure tubing, and is often what you are buying when you buy square & rectangle tube. It is known as tubing although the rounds are available in pipe sizes. It is specifically designed for use in structural applications, and not going to be brittle or weak like people think. Min yield strength is 42,000 psi, tensile strength is 58,000 psi.



For most roll bars, bumpers, sliders, etc, 1-1/4" schedule 40 makes a nice size. That is a 1.66" OD, with a wall thickness of 0.140". Currently, a 21 ft stick of A500b 1-1/4" sch 40 runs about $35 at Pontiac Steel.

I am using 2-1/2" sch 40 for my rear driveshaft, as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Nominal Pipe Size OD Nominal Pipe Sizes Wall Thickness

--------O.D.-----Sch. 5 Sch. 10 Sch. 40 Sch. 80 Sch. 160 XXS

1/4"---0.540”----N/A----.065-----.088-----.119-----N/A-----N/A--
3/8"---0.675”----N/A----.065-----.091-----.126-----N/A-----N/A--
1/2"---0.840”----.065---.083-----.109-----.147-----.187-----.294-
3/4"---1.050”----.065---.083-----.113-----.154-----.218-----.308-
1"-----1.315”----.065---.109-----.133-----.179-----.250-----.358-
1-1/4"-1.660”----.065---.109-----.140-----.191-----.250-----.382-
1-1/2"-1.900”----.065---.109-----.145-----.200-----.281-----.400-
2"-----2.375”----.066---.109-----.164-----.218-----.343-----.436-
2-1/2"-2.875”----.083---.120-----.203-----.276-----.375-----.552-
 

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So what you are saying is the right pipe and a cheap harbor freight pipe bender could be a cheap solution for someone that wants to do some tube fenders, bumper, etc... on the cheap?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
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.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Pontiac Steel
479 University Dr
Pontiac MI
248-858-2350

Usually about $35 for a 21 ft stick with two flame cuts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
mschaffer66 said:
How about welding? Pretty much the same strength as welding other mild steel?
Yes, its mild steel structural rated tubing, in pipe sizes.


Again, there is lots of types of pipe, just like lots of types of tube.


What I used in those pictures is carbon steel, not cast iron or anything.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
junk90xj said:
what size die did you use for that pipe

I realize this might be shocking... but I used the 1-1/4" pipe die for the 1-1/4" pipe.
 

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Haggar,

What were the dimensions of your main hoop? I would like to copy it but don't want to mess with all the damn prep work that any normal human would have to do, like measuring.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Dunno, I just measured, transfered the measurements in chalk to the garage floor, and fabbed it.

Considering I have a 2nd gen xtra cab on a 1st gen frame with modified body mounts and an indeterminant amount of body lift, I'd just measure your own truck and see.
 
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