Bending Articles

The bending technology area includes all manner of machines and processes for bending sheet metal, including press brakes, folders, panel benders, corner formers, ironworkers, notchers, orbital formers, and roll benders. It also has information on accessories such as gauging and backgauging systems.

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Minimum versus recommended inside bend radius

April 1, 2015 | By Steve Benson

A material’s minimum inside bend radius shows the smallest radius that’s physically possible in an air bend, though your machines and tooling may not be able to handle the tonnage. The recommended inside bend radius, such as those found on bend allowance charts for air bends, shows you what’s optimal in typical applications

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How a punch press acts like a press brake

March 4, 2015 | By Dan Caprio

Traditionally bending high flanges on a punch press just hasn’t been practical, but new machines and software are changing the situation. Today, flanges up to 3 inches high can be bent not by the press brake, but by special tooling on the punch press.

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4 ways to improve time per bend

March 4, 2015 | By Jamie Crandall

The time that a press brake operator spends walking to a control or maneuvering a part is time the customer is not paying for. Those seconds add up over the day and cut into a fab shop's profitability. New approaches to bending, however, can help to remedy that.

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Bending Basics: 6 steps to successful die selection for press brakes

February 16, 2015 | By Steve Benson

Choosing the right die for an application hinges on the tooling and press brakes you have, and the tonnage limitations of both.

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Automated tooling setup for press brakes

January 22, 2015 | By Dan Davis

As metal fabricators look to increase throughput in their bending departments while also facing a dearth of seasoned press brake operators, they may find their answer in the form of automated tooling change technology now found on the latest generation of brakes.

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Pass it on

December 12, 2014 | By Amanda Carlson

Ron Covell’s 50-year career manually building autobodies for street rods, dragsters, and motorcycles is impressive, to say the least. But he doesn’t plan on hoarding all of the expertise he’s garnered over the years. His latest passion, of the last 20 years anyway, has been sharing information in his traveling workshops to current or up-and-coming autobody enthusiasts. It’s what he hopes is his longest and most impactful legacy.

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Where is your press brake tooling?

October 30, 2014 | By Jeff Middlebrooks, John Waller, Steve Brown

An organized workspace is an efficient workspace. Press brake technicians should have all the tools they need to perform a changeover. Unlabeled punches and dies, stored haphazardly on a rack, on the floor, or in boxes, only make their jobs harder.

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Keeping safe while bending parts fast on a press brake

October 20, 2014 | By Paul LeTang

Customers want parts right away, and newer laser cutting technology is producing parts quicker than ever before. If a fabricator wants the bending department to keep up, it needs press brakes that can bend parts quickly. Even with the increased bending productivity, however, fabricators don’t have to sacrifice safety.

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The economics of small-parts bending

August 27, 2014 | By Casey Schlachter

Bending small parts presents various challenges for press brake technicians, who need to make sure they can bend these small parts quickly and, most importantly, safely. Although the best approach to bending depends on the application, the electric press brake can help make the job much easier.

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Is a press brake or plate roll the right tool for the job?

August 4, 2014 | By Kyle Jorgenson, Matt Moore

Some metal fabricating shops rely on press brakes and bump forming to make cylindrical shapes, while others are more adept at using plate rolling machines. This feature explores the factors involved in determining whether a press brake or a plate roller is the right machine for the job.

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Bending Basics: The hows and whys of springback and springforward

July 9, 2014 | By Steve Benson

Why exactly does springback occur, and how can a technician predict it? Press brake guru Steve Benson covers the basic factors.

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Bending tube greener and cleaner

June 9, 2014 | By Jeff Jeffery

For many, ideas such as green and sustainability are synonymous with recycling, but recycling is just one small part of doing things in a greener way. Minimizing the consumption that later needs to be recycled (waste) is an important aspect, too. Among tube and pipe fabricators, one area that can yield big benefits is lubricant consumption.

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Bending Basics: Strategies for forming offsets

May 12, 2014 | By Steve Benson

If you pick the right offset tool for the job, you'll find you will be able to produce many different offset geometries quickly and safely.

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The next level of air bending

April 3, 2014 | By Wim Serruys

In this excerpt from Sheet Metalworking: State of the Art, the concept of adaptive forming, a special form of air bending, is introduced and explained.

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The wiper die’s role and rake

April 3, 2014 | By William Q. Tingley III

Properly setting up the tooling on a tube or pipe bender can be a straightforward process, but misunderstandings and shortcuts can lead to poor setups. The wiper die’s rake angle is one such setting. Operators should beware that setting the tool to a specific gap at its trailing edge can lead to inconsistent setups.

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