A crucial factor that can have a big impact on tube bending is the material used. Different materials are much easier to bend, and there are different contributing qualities to the final product. The most common materials used in tube bending services are aluminium and variants of steel, so this article is going to be based on these two materials.
So how does the material affect the finish of the bent tube?
The quality of the chosen material, no matter what size or grade, will always affect how it performs in bending machines. When you bend low quality materials what can happen is; higher rates of scrap, poor bend quality, and much higher chances of fracture, breakage, and other damage. If the use relies on a sturdy and strong metal tube, it needs to not fail on the end user.
Both aluminium and steel fall into certain grades. Each of these performs differently when treated, welded, or bent. It is important to identify the grade before moving on to bending as it will determine vital properties like strength, formability, and corrosion resistance.
The thickness of the wall can affect the ease of bending. Generally, a thinner wall is easier to bend, whereas thicker materials need more consideration to keep the bend and meet the precise requirements. Care must be taken with thinner walls to ensure the pressure for bending does not cause the wall to collapse or warp.
The length of the material can also affect the bend quality. Longer tubes are much easier to stabilise and keep in control to minimise and overcome springback. For a rotary draw blender, enough length on each side is necessary for the machine to grip properly. If the material is particularly short, a different type of bending needs to be considered.
Multiform Tubes are highly experienced providers of tube bending services and can offer detailed advice on what material works best for your requirements. If you need our help, please get in touch with us today.