Tube and pipe bending equipment is widely used in manufacturing plants and production facilities where it’s utilized for the construction of rolling stands, handrails, gates, and numerous sheet metal fabrication processes. And since there are many applications within multiple industries, different kinds of bending tools and machines are available with diverse specifications.
Hydraulic pipe bending machines are one of the best bending machines on the market, typically used in the automotive and mechanical industry. These devices are made out of high-quality steel and are primarily used to create rolling cages, handrails, etc. Two other sectors that also heavily rely on top-quality pipe bending processes are the aviation and aerospace industry. Within these two, bending must be 100% precise since there’s no room for any mistake, and the curves must be produced with pinpoint precision.
Simultaneously, electric hydraulic pipe benders and tube benders commonly require huge diameters and wall widths. Consequently, it makes them more suitable for operations that are demanding high power and excellent angle accuracy. It’s of significant importance to understand the process of how hydraulic pipe bending machines work before putting your hands on such tooling and obtaining one for the needs of your company.
In this article, we’ll walk you through the whole process of pipe bending. Furthermore, we’ll give you the key insights to better understand pipe bending’s most critical operations.
Preoperative Safety Measures
In every machining process, there’s a set of given instructions that must be taken into account and implemented before the preoperative safety measures are taken. Hydraulic pipe bending machines make no exception and also require the following precise safety measures, including:
- Always checking the hydraulic pipe bending machine before each use and repairing any found faults. This way, you will reduce the chance and risk of failure accidents, electrical severe shock injuries, or simply avoid damaging the machine.
- Cleaning any dirt or grease from the hydraulic pipe bending machines such as controls or the handles. This will allow better control of it, preventing the device from sliding off the holder during its use.
- Inspecting the machine for any hydraulic leaks that might have happened during the previous operating.
- Doing a check-up for the hydraulic fluid levels and adjusting if necessary. Also, check for any crack, bent, broken, or missing parts that might prevent the machine’s safe operating.
- Ensuring that the power cord and electric plug are in good shape. If any issues are detected during the pipe bender’s hydraulic inspection process, you mustn’t use the machine until the problems are resolved.
How To Properly And Safely Load The Pipe In Your Hydraulic Pipe Bender: A Step-By-Step Guide
- First, you must ensure that your hydraulic pipe bending machine and the working area around it are appropriately set up and free from people standing by or similar distractions. In the beginning, the on and off switch should be standing in the off position. If necessary, you can mark the bending pipe on the fitting location and then open the above bend frame.
- Select the suitable bending shape for the pipe that’s ready to be bent. The shapes are permanently stamped with their size and catalog number. Place the shaper on the ram’s end.
- Place the pipe to be bent and, if needed, place some support under it to keep it in the proper bending position. Support the pipe correctly in order not to cause damage to it.
- Afterward, make sure to spread grease on the side of the angle bracket where the pipe makes contact. Put the brackets in the fitting holes as it’s marked on the bending frame. The nook support must be set in the correct symmetrical gaps, as this is important to prevent the machine from becoming damaged by the pipe during the operation.
- In the end, all that you have to do is to close the bending frame and fully insert the assisting pins in the corner through the wings of the bending structure. Line up the corner brackets so that the mark on the upper wing aligns with the zero marks on the angle indicators. And finally, make sure that the pins are entirely placed on both sides of the machine’s frame.
The Bending Operation: How It’s Properly Done
When operating a hydraulic pipe bending machine, you should stay away from the cylinder and stand on the releasing handle’s side. Don’t stretch over the device while it’s operating. Move the ram forward. Once the bending part touches the pipe, very carefully and gradually start moving the slider to align the curve with the first one completely. Continuously move the actuator till the tube reaches the perfect bend.
Please don’t place your hands, fingers, or any other part of your body in a position that might get trapped or pinched. Assure that the corner brackets are correctly positioned for pipe bending, and the pins are fully inserted into the frame. To prevent the pipe from slipping during the bending process, you must place its ends outside the corner brackets adequately.
Proceed with moving the cylinder and bending the pipe. Maintain your distance from the moving tube while continuously watching the angle indicators. Continue to watch as the ram expands further. In case you see an unpretentious groove in the cylinder, stop the moving of the cylinder immediately. This way, you’ll avoid hydraulic leakage and unwanted damage to it.
It’s quite important to understand and follow the safety measures when using a hydraulic pipe bender. However, before using it, the first thing you should do is to carefully read and understand the instruction manual that comes with it. For any further questions or any possible issues like the ones we mentioned above, it’s always recommended to consult a hydraulics professional or address your machine dealer.
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