Tube and Pipe Fabrication Articles

The tube and pipe fabrication technology area covers sawing (band, circular, and friction) and other cutting processes, such as abrasive, flame, laser, oxyfuel, plasma, and waterjet. It also discusses forming processes, including bending and end forming. Finally, it includes a handful of miscellaneous processes, such as trimming, beveling, finning, grooving, threading, and spinning.

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Aerospace parts manufacturer upgrades bending capability

September 8, 2014

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Bending tubular parts for the aerospace industry isn’t easy. OEMs continue to push the envelope, designing increasingly complex parts made from pricey materials. Fabricators are under continuous pressure to improve their capabilities, turn orders around faster, and minimize scrap. To that end, SL Engineering recently invested in a second all-electric bender from Unison.

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Success on two wheels

September 4, 2014

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Firefly Bicycles, a 2011 start-up in the custom bicycle business, is thriving despite the sluggish economy and a competitive marketplace. The company’s three founders are using their previous work experience in bicycle fabrication and their enthusiasm for cycling to stay ahead of the competition.

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Consumables Corner: Lowering weld hardness in SAW

August 26, 2014

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Q: We manufacturer dual submerged arc welded (DSAW) pipe for API use. Some jobs require that the weld hardness be below 250 Vickers. We are having trouble meeting that requirement. What can we do? A: Weld hardness restrictions generally are found in pipelines designated for sour service and are...

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Cutting opportunities in hollow structural sections

July 21, 2014

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The construction industry’s use of hollow structural sections (HSS) has been on the rise since the recession. Because of their high strength, HSS allow engineers to use less material, extending the maximum unbraced length between structural members. It’s in this environment that the tube cutting laser is beginning to open up new opportunities.

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Plasma cutting pipe in the water mist

May 5, 2014

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An Iowa pipe fabricating shop discovers it can eliminate secondary grinding on stainless steel material by adding water misting to its plasma cutting operation.

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Machine bends and cuts tube in one process

March 14, 2014

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A typical bending machine process is feed-bend-feed-bend, or maybe feed-bend-feed- rotate-bend, until the feedstock is used up. However, this isn’t the end of the fabrication process, which includes a subsequent cutting step. The cut often means waste, especially for short-length parts, and the problem is compounded when the volume is high or the material is expensive. Read about how one bender manufacturer changed the process to feed-bend-separate-feed-rotate-bend-separate.

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tube bending

Tube and pipe basics: How to achieve the perfect bend

February 24, 2014

Although tube bending technology has evolved significnatly over the years, the process still boils down to four factors: the material, machine, tooling, and lubrication.

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Technology Spotlight: Quick-release hose clamp seals 360 degrees

January 13, 2014

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Need to connect a flexible hose to a rigid metal nipple? The worm gear clamp has been the standard for decades, but they aren’t ideal for the soft, thin-wall tubing used in aircraft environmental control systems.

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Shortening the concept-to-market timeline for tube fabricators - TheFabricator.com

Shortening the concept-to-market timeline for tube fabricators

September 2, 2013

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Fabricators have quite a few bending processes to choose from—rotary draw, compression, hydraulic ram, and so on—and the variety of bent components is infinite. Matching a process to a specific application isn’t easy, and only will become more difficult as the use of tube and profiles continues to spread. This paper shows how fabricators can classify bend criteria to determine the optimal process.

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Process Pipe Welding

Process pipe welding: Filler metal options to improve productivity and quality

August 6, 2013

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When welding process pipe, welders need to determine which wires can provide the most appropriate results for every weld pass—root, fill, and cap—and be certain that they are selecting the highest-quality filler metal.

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Heavy equipment manufacturer

Better tube bending cuts production time, improves consistency for heavy equipment manufacturer

July 8, 2013

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After decades of using an old manual tube bender with no features, Kress Corp. took a huge leap in technology when it purchased a new bender with CNC, full-color interface, and stacked tooling capability. The result is a 10-fold productivity improvement.

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Fabricator brings smiles to Sunshine State - TheFabricator.com

Fabricator brings smiles to Sunshine State

June 28, 2013

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After his yacht-building business dried up in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, entrepreneur Scott Gerber decided to build a simple sculpture from tubing. Based on a basic stick figure, the first one was a fisherman. Gerber placed a few around town, encountered some interest, and suddenly a new business was born.

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Nets to catch and protect - TheFabricator.com

Nets to catch and protect

June 3, 2013

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When Industrial Laser Systems was asked to fabricate a tubular frame for a military vehicle, it rose to the challenge to cut, makes some holes, bend, and swage the tube ends. The result is a tubular frame that is affixed to the outside of patrol vehicles; combined with Kevlar® netting, the system prevents explosive projectiles from hitting the vehicle, with great success.

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Material handling in a tube cutting process - TheFabricator.com

Material handling in a tube cutting process

April 30, 2013

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A tube is a tube, as most in the industry would declare. But getting that tube from point A to point B isn't a simple proposition. That's why fabricators need to keep in mind key factors when looking to set up a material handling system for a tube cutting operation.

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CNC tube bender provides precise bends for monocoque frames - TheFabricator.com

CNC tube bender provides precise bends for monocoque frames

April 17, 2013

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Industrial Laser Solutions, Atlanta, has carved out a niche as a firm that engineers and develops its own products. During the downturn that followed the financial crisis of 2008, the company decided to take on some additional work, and it found itself in the fabrication business. This article tells the story of its first fabrication project, including some problems and practical solutions.

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