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.
March 10, 2011
Lasers have been in use for industrial purposes for decades, and their capabilities continue to develop. Many machines these days can cut sheet and tubular sections, and fabricators are finding that the laser’s programmability really broadens their capabilities.
November 1, 2010
A Wisconsin tube shop invests in an unusual, freeform bending technology that can bend tube sections with no straight sections between bends. Different radii requires no tool changeouts or complex tooling setups. Instead, an operator changes the code in the controller.
October 21, 2010
Challenged with shorter product life cycles and increased global competition, OEMs and job shops are looking for more flexible design and production equipment. All-electric, multisense tube benders are designed to meet their needs.
September 16, 2010
A tube bender can be considered a collection of power presses and, as such, it needs more than just a few conventional barriers between the operator and the machine. Safety mats, interlocked switches, emergency-stop switches, and interlocked side plates are a few of the safety devices available to machine tool manufacturers.
September 10, 2010
Cold sawing, widely used for cutting tubes, pipes, bars, and profiles for decades, has evolved steadily over time through advances in materials, coolants, coatings, tooth forms, and cemented carbides. However, new tube, pipe, bar, and profile materials are harder to cut than conventional materials, so some factors such as sawing speed and noise haven't improved much. A new machine and blade design has the potential to help fabricators substantially.
July 9, 2010
Whether a bending process starts with a cut length of tubular product or a coil, gravitational or torsional forces can lead to unwanted variations in the finished product. In the case of gravity, tube supports can counteract it; for torsion, it’s a matter of matching the coil’s output to the bender’s input.
June 4, 2010
Since its start as a supplier of a single fabricated item in 1936, Zeman Manufacturing Co. has expanded its fabricating services to include all manner of cutting, bending, end forming, and finishing processes. In response to growing competition from companies in low- cost-of-manufacturing countries, it took a journey down the lean path and became a nimbler company in the process.
April 29, 2010
Loading and unloading tube for fabricating often is a manual process. Because labor rates in the U.S. are higher than those in many other countries, manual loading and unloading isn’t competitive. Using an automatic loader/unloader can change that, moving an operation from red to black.
April 1, 2010
Tube bender operators could rely on complex mathematical formulas and rules of thumb, but it’s much quicker to use a tooling chart. This sort of chart lists the two main bending criteria, D of bend and wall factor, on the X and Y axis, respectively. However, these charts have just two axes, and usually are based on bending mild steel to 180 degrees. Tube bending comprises many more variables, materials, and bend angles. Knowing how to make adjustments to compensate for additional factors is critical for successful bending.
February 9, 2010
Vertical compression tube benders have been around for more than 50 years (see Figure 1). Historically associated with high-volume bending, these benders continue to play a role in production environments where parts have just one or two bends. Also known as press benders, they have stood the...