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bending 2" stainless pipe?

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  • bending 2" stainless pipe?

    greets folks..
    i've got some 2" (maybe its 2 1/4") stainless pipe laying around and i'd like to turn them into RollBars for a pickup.

    i've got some curvy bits but, trying to avoid welded seams, i looked up a local guy with a hefty hydraulic bender. he's got the 2" dies.

    the radius looks to be about 1', though i would've liked tighter.. maybe 4"

    anyway when the guy found out it was stainless he said "forget it, that stuff'll buckle.. and mistakes are expensive"

    having no experience with this.. is that true? i'm not sure if it was kind-hearted advice or he just didn't want to go to the trouble (or take the risk?) of putting two bends in an 8' piece.


  • #2
    he is right, stainless is not the best , I have busted 3" solid bending it for a big statue.

    If shiny and nice looking is what you want use steel and have it nickel or crome plated.


    • #3
      Srtainless can be bent. How thick is your wall? What kind of bender?

      In the old days I did hydraulic piping on machine tools & automation. Did some food processing equipment that required stainless. Bent with just a little extra effort compared to steel, but split when I put the 37آ° flare on the end. Tried annealing where I work hardened the SS when I cut it off with the tubing cutter, flared much better, less scrap. Most of the work was 1/2" lines, but occasionally did up to 2"

      Weston Bye - Author, The Mechatronist column, Digital Machinist magazine
      ~Practitioner of the Electromechanical Arts~


      • #4
        I used to bend it long radius bends on a conduit bender and install it right next to the conduit.

        DOn't think you are going to bend in a 4" radius.

        Search out Model3 bender, they have dies that will tell you the minimum radius per wall thickness for a rolling bender. Rolling bends are much easier on the tube.


        • #5
          I bend a lot of 2" schedule 40 pipe- I have a whole arsenal of tools for it-and I have never had it buckle. Or break, for that matter. Its harder to bend than mild steel, but it bends just fine.
          I use a hossfeld bender, with pipe dies, and I can bend it by hand to any radius I want, down to about 4" or so.
          Brand new from Hossfeld, the bender is about $800, and that includes pipe dies.
          I think ibew was thinking about a JD2 bender-

          Its a lot like a hossfeld, but it will only bend pipe and tube- a hossfeld will do that, but also bend square, round, T, angle, railing cap, flat bar the hard way, and on and on.

          I also roll it in my 3 roll bender-you need a pretty hefty one to roll stainless, but many pipe shops have these.

          But if you are just doing a few, you might consider doing em hot. Make a radius die the size you want, from steel plate- cut a sandwich, 2 pieces at the radius, one middle piece a half inch smaller radius, weld em to your biggest steel table. Tack one end of the stainless to the table, up against the radius die, then hit it with the rosebud, and yank, repeat until it is snug up against the die.
          This is simple, cheap, manual, and repeatable.


          • #6
            If all else fails bend it over a mandrel. People that do aircraft part fabrication bend a lot of stainless.
            Herm Williams


            • #7
              Hey there, this site has some manual bending tips.


              • #8
                For that size tube and that small of a radius you will need to use mandrel bending.