View Full Version : Bending Square Brass Rod

08-03-2006, 04:09 PM
Hello group:

For one of my projects I'd like to bend some 1/4" x 1/4" square brass rod. The brass will be the usual run-of-the-mill stuff that one gets at a hobby shop or Metal Supermarket type place. All the bends will be in one plane.

One bend will be just about 90 degrees but with a radius of about one inch, maybe a bit less.

How do I go about doing this? Will the brass significantly work harden? Will I have to take a torch to it? Thanks in advance.


08-03-2006, 04:21 PM
It will act like copper and will work harden. It depends on what state it is in when you get it. It would be a good idea to anneal it first. It will compress on the inner circumference of the bend a bit and will not remain quite square.

08-03-2006, 07:11 PM
here's almost the same thing you were asking about done in steel, its a 1" radius iirc. I did this by putting a 2" round bar horizontally in the vice and used the end sticking out of the vice as a former. Careful work kept it in the same plane. I left enough material on each side of the bend to be used as handles Being steel, I used heat iirc, but with brass it will be easy, just keep annealing it when you feel it hardening up. Annealing copper metals is easy, just heat to a dull red. you can quench it but its not necessary, just lets us get back to work sooner.


08-04-2006, 07:03 PM
Hi John,

I bend a lot of brass rod just as it is from the store, mainly because I want the finished part to be hard. Annealing shouldn't be necessary, but if you do it you should know that the finished part is going to be quite soft, even with work hardening. Mcgyver's method will work just fine, but make the diameter of the rod a bit smaller than you want to compensate for springback. Annealing will cut back on the amount of spring.

Good luck,

08-07-2006, 11:58 AM
you make a number of good point Stuarts. on the annealing, you're right only do so if its hardening up on the bend to the point where you'd make a mess of it without annealing. I have had pieces of brass that were unbelievable hard (pedigree unknown) so it might depend a bit on what you're starting with but if you've done it (with i guess 1/2 hard brass) that's the proof!

08-07-2006, 12:54 PM
here's almost the same thing you were asking about done in steel, its a
Alright, Mcgyver, that looks cool. Now what is it?


08-07-2006, 01:36 PM
sorry Mark, thought it was obvious :D its looking down on my Rider Ericsson hot air engine, those bent bars support the displacement cylinder. here's a link with a more complete view