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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Thinking about an equipment upgrade?

September 14, 2004

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Products change, and so do manufacturing methods used to make products. In the tube and pipe industry, however, manufacturing changes have been few and infrequent over the past few decades.

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Lean times call for mean tactics—Part 1

September 14, 2004

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Ron Stange looks back on his 50 years in the tube-bending industry and provides his insight on the one thing tube bender operators must know to be successful: Ironclad rules for successful bending do not exist. Tube bender operators must start with guidelines and incorporate their own experience to be successful.

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Tips for welding preparation

August 10, 2004

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The increasing use of advanced equipment and applications (such as orbital welding for high-purity systems) requires better weld preparation. A thorough understanding of equipment, tool bits, and materials—including advanced alloys—helps to achieve better end prep.

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Bending and handling tube

July 13, 2004

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Three main types of tube bending equipment are dedicated, CNC, and automated bending cells. Understanding the advantages of each is crucial to deciding which type to purchase.

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Is your bend good enough?

July 13, 2004

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Bending tube or pipe so the finished product conforms to one of two bending standards can help to reduce rejects and improve relations between fabricators and their customers. The standards can facilitate the use of bending terms, and promote an understanding of bending tolerances and acceptable defects before starting a bending project.

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Flying high with orbital welding

March 11, 2004

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Orbital welding first was developed in the late 1960s by a group of engineers from McDonnell Douglas to join aerospace tubes. These engineers were aware of the problems associated with producing repeatable welds for their critical applications.

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Low-tech system mechanizes pipe welding: Backing device allows GMAW on open root

March 11, 2004

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Welding technology has changed dramatically over the last few decades. Although skilled welders always will be needed in manufacturing, mechanical welding devices can provide improvements over manual welding in terms of repeatability and throughput.

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Documenting welds from an orbital welding power supply

February 12, 2004

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Weld inspection, weld logging, and weld recordkeeping always have been a part of quality assurance (QA) procedures for certain industries, particularly aerospace, nuclear power, semiconductor, and pharmaceutical.

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Choosing the right robotic weld cell for your operation

January 29, 2004

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Your company's first robot may cause more trouble than expected. This doesn't mean that the robot will not work, but it is a piece of

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Troubleshooting compression bending

January 13, 2004

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You can achieve nearly trouble-free bending by being aware of the causes of typical compression bending problems and by correctly operating and maintaining the compression bender.

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Structural tube on campus

January 13, 2004

Central Washington University in Ellensburg, Wash., is known for its strong science programs. "Flying Bridge," a structure designed by artist and sculptor Ed Carpenter, physically and metaphorically spans the biology and chemistry departments in the university's new Dean Science Building. Carpenter, who designed the bridge with engineering consultation from Peterson Structural Engineers Inc., teamed up with Albina Pipe Bending Co. Inc. to tackle the project's material bending and fabrication requirements.

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Taking tubular aluminum scaffolding to new heights

December 11, 2003

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For the company that broke the world record for building the tallest freestanding structure with a 320-foot scaffolding (the Statue of Liberty restoration project in 1984, see Sidebarat bottom of page)designing and constructing the scaffolding for the Washington Monument restoration project was just a natural next step.

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Selecting a welding frequency

December 11, 2003

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Early power supplies for contact and induction welding for tube production, which were introduced in the 1950s, operated at 300 to 400 kHz. Modern power supplied, introduced in the 1990s, are variable from 200 to 400 kHz. While using any frequency in this range can produce acceptable welds for most applications, finite element analysis can be helpful for finding the optimal frequency for a particular gauge and material.

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Laser tube processing

November 20, 2003

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The introduction of lasers to the manufacturing process has changed the fabrication of tubing. Today, many manual processes can be replaced with laser processing techniques. Using the flexibility afforded by lasers, a bundle of raw tubing can be loaded into a laser tube cutter; parts can be cut with high accuracy, quality, and speed; and then finished parts from the machine can be sent directly to the final assembly.

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Zero to sixty in the blink of an eye

November 20, 2003

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The engine roars to life, and Bruce Van Sant inches the motorcycle forward, stopping about 25 feet from the starting line. Alan Geetings, crew member of the Van Sant racing team, sprays the asphalt with water. Bruce revs up the engine. The engine's torque breaks the rear tire's grip on the asphalt and it spins furiously. The air is suddenly filled with a cloud of smoke and the smell of burning rubber. After heating the tire, Bruce approaches the starting line.

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