November 9, 2012
Seeing bins of parts lying around in your shop? Maybe it’s time to get away from the large-batch method and try one-piece flow. Rather than make a large quantity of Component 1, then Component 2, then Component 3, while a welder downstream waits for Component 3, you could set up a system of one-piece flow that sends a kit of three components. The key to implement this strategy is the bender software.
December 9, 2011
Large-radius bends are used in many places, such as appliance handles and automobile components. For measuring large-radius bends, fabricators have at least three options: go/no-go fixtures, entering the bent part’s measurements into a CAD program and using it to calculate the radius, and a depth gauge.
June 24, 2011
There are a few popular ways to affix the clamp die and pressure die to a rotary draw bending machine. All aim to accomplish the same thing: provide precise vertical alignment to the mating bend die and provide rigid support for the respective die during the bending process so it resists the...
April 27, 2011
A collet closer, commonly found on CNC or NC tube benders, serves an important role in the bending process. When quality is good, little attention is paid to its operation. When one or more quality parameters fall outside of acceptable limits, often the collet closer again is overlooked. A...
November 1, 2010
Accounting is straightforward, but it’s not iron-clad; fabricators have latitude in the accounting system they use to bid on contracts. A bottom-up approach, one that analyzes all the costs that go into making a component, is suitable for many parts. A top-down approach looks at the part and asks how much the market will bear. Choosing one or the other is a matter of understanding the market for the part.
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.
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.
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.
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...
January 1, 2009
Continuous improvement and statistical process control are useful,time-tested techniques—they have been used since the 1950s—buttheir use must be tailored to specific applications. For example, atypical manufacturing metric is parts per minute, but many rollformers should measure feet per minute. This and other tips can helproll formers accurately evaluate their productivity and measure theimpact of process improvements.
November 25, 2008
Bending serpentine profiles—successive 180-degree bends, which typically are used in refrigeration systems—can be a challenge. By their nature, they tend to cause interference among the various bend dies, and they can be difficult to handle. Good planning in selecting a bender, planning the process, and paying close attention to infeed and outfeed options, can help make a serpentine project successful.