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post #1 of (permalink) Old 10-19-2007, 08:19 AM Thread Starter
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Question Bending small tube ? ?

i was attempting to bend some of the new fuel lines for my 2A last night....5/16" line, aluminum.

I have one of those cheapy benders with no moving parts.....looks like a small scale conduit bender.

the tubes kept flattening out. it didnt support the sides of the tube well enough for the 5/16" tube.....would probably work better on larger tube though.

I tried packing them with sand, which is an old trick some aircraft guys taught me, but that didnt work....



is there a hand held bender that works better?

i did a search online and found something like this:
KD Tools Tubing Bender - Model KDS2189 at Sears.com

this:
Imperial Triple-Head Tube Bender with Roto-Lok Indexing Handle - Model 47299 at Sears.com


and also this:

Tubing Bender - LIS44000


are those any better?

it wont be the last time i have to bend tube for brakes or fuel so i dont mind buying a good part this time. the cheapy bender i've had since high school.

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Last edited by JeepnGreg; 10-19-2007 at 08:23 AM.
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 10-19-2007, 09:12 AM
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I prefer the 2nd link you posted. I have always used this type. Just make sure the tubing size matches the bender size.

Rick
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 10-19-2007, 09:12 AM
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When I did the fuel lines I used a bender similar in function to the Imperial, but not as fancy - only two parts joined by a link. It cost $32 and worked fine.

I wouldn't use aluminum, though. Isn't it either going to be soft or fatigue-prone? I got enough SS for the supply and return lines for $29.

EVERYTHING's easy for the guy who doesn't have to do it.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 10-19-2007, 09:34 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim_Lou View Post
When I did the fuel lines I used a bender similar in function to the Imperial, but not as fancy - only two parts joined by a link. It cost $32 and worked fine.

I wouldn't use aluminum, though. Isn't it either going to be soft or fatigue-prone? I got enough SS for the supply and return lines for $29.

I'm going to use steel or stainless for the tank to pump, but i figured aluminum would be ok between the pump and carb ince its just going to be short stubs of tube attached with hose....

something like this:

pump->tube stub->hose->filter->hose->pressure regulator->hose->tube stub->carb

i wanted to bend the tube up and away from the pump so the hose didnt have to make the bend and rub against the inside of the fender.

I'm starting to think i may plumb the pressure regulator directly to the carb using a 5/6" male to 1/4" male fitting . will make mounting cleaner and a bit more rigid. shouldn't be too bad since I've seen people mount a fuel-water separator directly to the carb too.

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post #5 of (permalink) Old 10-19-2007, 10:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim_Lou View Post
I wouldn't use aluminum, though. Isn't it either going to be soft or fatigue-prone?
We had this discussion recently... and IIRC, it ended with Jeepgod challenging everyone to find out what's being used in most of the operational aircraft in the world today... AL

An application that requires *nothing* to be "fatigue prone"!

Oh, I used the $5 ChinaZone variety "tube bender" to replumb the rear axle... it did VERY well + it's small enough to fit in the bottom of my toolbox for inclusion on trips

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Last edited by Caver Dave; 10-19-2007 at 10:52 AM.
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 10-19-2007, 11:14 AM
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I have had all three and I think the one your describing as well. The first one you list is my newest one that I am still trying to get used to. It dosen't beend a very tight radius and everything seems backwards to me. The second one is similar to the one I liked but left under the hood of a project vehicle and never saw again. It was simple and smooth.



I have used the third and did not like it but I never gave it much of a chance. I am ufortunately not perfect at everything on the first try so every NOW AND THEN have to practice a bit to get it right. Brake line bending is one of those things that I have to relearn how to do every time I do it.

Jeff

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post #7 of (permalink) Old 10-19-2007, 11:20 AM
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I used my fingers and thumbs. work it slow, but that was steel line. Alum. may be trickier.

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post #8 of (permalink) Old 10-19-2007, 11:42 AM
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Quote:
We had this discussion recently... and IIRC, it ended with Jeepgod challenging everyone to find out what's being used in most of the operational aircraft in the world today... AL
Very true, but:

Aircraft get pre-flight, 100-hour and annual inspections, and more.
The tubing is supported by structural components frequently along its run.
The tubing layouts are designed by engineers who have studied that sort of thing in airframe applications.
The material is spec'd by engineers who ditto.
The material is certified by the manufacturer to conform to spec.
And finally, light weight is an important consideration.

Not a single one of those conditions apply here, so I wouldn't use it. Especially in this case where there are un-mounted vibrating components, and the tube is carrying gasoline under pressure next to the engine. The only factor in its favor is that it's easy to work with.

On the other hand, it will likely never cause a problem. But on the third hand, if it does ever cause a problem it will be a particularly nasty one,

EVERYTHING's easy for the guy who doesn't have to do it.
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 10-19-2007, 12:05 PM
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I've had a set of the spring-type like this in my box for years. Probably not the best, but they've worked when I've used them, and they don't take up much space.

Good luck,
Pete

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post #10 of (permalink) Old 10-19-2007, 12:21 PM
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A few years ago a local parts house carried some SS brake lines - they were about double the cost of "regular" stuff. But - You could bend them with your hands, and they were almost impossible to kink or collapse. You could even bend it, straighten it out and bend it again.
It sure made things easy.

I used them for brakes, clutches, fuel, most anything that needed a solid line. I'm not sure, but I think they were double walled.

They came in pre-cut, pre-double flared lengths 'cause it took a special double flaring tool. A standard double flare tool only split the ends.

The new owner doesn't carry them, and I haven't been able to find them since!

Anybody seen them anywhere? It sure would be nice to have a source.
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