As a metal pipe bender manufacturer, every time a customer enquired for a pipe bender, we find that many customers do not know much about the bender, and the customer Only know that he needs to buy a tube bender, but do not know the types of tube bender, so here the hippo team summarized the common pipe benders(pipe bending machines) in the Chinese market and analyzed their advantages and disadvantages, hoping you feel helpful.
What is a tube bending machine?
A tube bending machine refers to a machine used to bend pipes and tubes regardless of their material. It can work on different metals such as stainless steel, mild steel, copper, aluminum, alloy, galvanized, iron, titanium, lead, etc, and then formed into different curves and angles.
In addition to bending “round tubes”, “square tubes”, “oval tubes” and “rectangular tubes”, the pipe bending machine can actually bend channel steel, angle iron，wire，bar，profile, etc., So it is widely used in car muffler, headrest, motorcycle chassis, exhaust pipe, industrial boiler, wheelbarrow, chair, fitness gym equipment, luggage frame, etc.
Tube bending machine types
1. Manual pipe bender
The manual pipe bender is a cold-formed pipe bender. It is an instrument that uses human power as a driving source and mechanical lever as a principle to perform pipe bending operations. In order to save more effort, the hydraulic element was added, and a manual hydraulic pipe bender was produced.
Manual pipe bender mainly has two support points and a hydraulic ejector point, the two pivot points have slotted rollers (in order to make the pipe is not easy to slip out). The apex is located in the middle of the 2 pivot points, and the apex can be changed with different dies according to the different pipe diameters, but the degree of bending must be controlled by yourself, and it is generally set by experience.
- Simple structure, small size, lightweight, easy to move and carry
- Low cost, suitable for small-scale production
- The bending degree can not be measured, can only be judged by experience
- Bending accuracy and the repeatability is not good
- The work efficiency is not high
- Large-diameter pipes cannot be bent
- Complex pipes cannot be bent
2. Roller pipe bender
Roller pipe bending machine is a perfect one for big radius pipe and coil bending. The common ones have three rollers, seven rollers, and nine rollers.
The principle of technology: the tube is held between rollers, two on the bottom, and one on the top. The top roller could be adjusted according to the vertical position and this means the connection with the formed radius. Several or all rollers are driven to make the tube passing through the rollers. So this method has no additional force for deformation except the rollers position and it helps to make better bends.
The radius of bending is connected with the machine possibilities, sizes, and roller positions but usually is big and could be obtained if more than five diameters of the tube.
- A variety of tube radii can be performed on the same machine including variable angles.
- Sections such as pipe, bars, and angle can also be formed with this method
- Slower process as each tube is manually processed with difficulty in obtaining exacting results.
- Thin-walled tubing can easily collapse if the bend radii are too small.
- Accuracy and repeatability are not very good
3. Numerical control pipe bending machine
In China, the single-chip NC-controlled pipe bending machine is also called a semi-automatic hydraulic pipe bending machine. The feeding and rotation are controlled by manual, the bending speed is controlled by multiple sets of solenoid valves to adjust the hydraulic cylinder output flow, thus reducing the cost of the machine.
NC semi-automatic pipe bending machines are divided into single-head pipe bending machines and twin-head pipe bending machines. The twin head pipe bender can bend both ends at the same time, which is more efficient and more suitable for symmetrical products, such as furniture chairs.
- The touch screen is simple to set up and easy to operate
- Compared with CNC, cost-effective
- Increased production capacity
- Accurate bending angle
- Rotation and feeding requires manual operation, which is difficult to automate
- Unable to bend complex pipe fittings
- The bending accuracy and repeatability are not that high as CNC
4. CNC tube bending machine
CNC tube bender adopts servo multi-axis synchronous drive technology, driven by the servo systems, the feeding and rotating is controlled by servo motor, the bending axis could be controlled by a hydraulic cylinder(to save cost) or servo motor. For the pipe fittings with different bending radii, use upper and lower die switching, left and right die switching to complete the processing of the bending operation.
The CNC pipe bender produces high precision and good repeatability pipes with an automatic bending process. The loading and unloading system can be added to achieve the real sense of automation, so it is widely used in automobiles and other high-precision manufacturing industries.
- High product accuracy and repeatability
- Easy to operate, suitable for high volume production
- Multi-layer dies can be installed for multi-curvature, multi-diameter, mixed bend, enabling the bending of more complex tubing.
- An automatic loading or unloading device can be installed for unmanned automatic operation.
- Relatively expensive
- Requires the operator obtain some expertise
Now on the Chinese market, according to the bending capacity of the pipe bender, the machine is divided into 25CNC,38CNC,50CNC,63CNC,75CNC commonly used models, and for these models, we could configure single stack die or multi-stack dies. For example, the SB38CNC-5A-3S means single bend, 5 axes (5 servo motors controlled),3 stack bending tools bending machine.
In addition to a single bend CNC bender, factories also developed double bend CNC benders for symmetrical products. It can feed and bend automatically, which improves the precision and efficiency a lot. It can be used to bend luggage frames etc.
The CNC pipe bender and hydraulic semi-automatic pipe bending machine are essentially the same, main difference is their application and processing environment are different. CNC pipe bending machine is a high-end assembly line processing equipment. Assisted with auto loading and unloading device, it can process complex products very quickly. One worker can take care of the two pieces of equipment like this. While for complex products, if we use a semi-automatic pipe bending machine, we need to measure the feeding size and calculate the rotation angle every time, it will take more time in production and the accuracy is not as good as that of a CNC pipe bending machine.
However, when bending a simple pipe, for example, a pipe only has one angle, or when it is bent at two angles on the same plane, we will prefer to choose a semi-auto hydraulic pipe bending machine, because the cost is lower.
Hope this article will be helpful for you to understand more of Chinese pipe bending machine, any questions, please contact our team at firstname.lastname@example.org.