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Old 02-22-2013, 12:10 AM   #1
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Default Bending SS for a chiller ?

I'm making a SS chiller to go inside my kettle. I tried bending around a smaller diameter than my kettle but it started to kink. Any tips on how to bend this right-without a 3 wheel tubing bender?

It's 1/2 OD, welded SS tubing, 75 feet, that's already in a 2-3 foot coil.

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Old 02-22-2013, 12:14 AM   #2
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I have read that if you fill the tube with water and crimp the ends before bending it will keep from collapsing.

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Old 02-22-2013, 01:08 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lumpy5oh View Post
I have read that if you fill the tube with water and crimp the ends before bending it will keep from collapsing.
Not sure how well water would work, but I have used fine grain sand to bend 1" steel tubing before with great success. And all you need to do is duct tape the ends
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Old 02-22-2013, 01:15 AM   #4
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+1 to the sand method. If you're going to put water in the tube, it needs to be a sort of brine and then frozen. That's how they make french horns and trumpets. but the sand method is easier for our uses. There are also bending springs, but I don't think that would work very well in this situation.

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Old 02-22-2013, 03:25 AM   #5
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Go to Harbor Freight with your coil of SS tube, and "try out" the wheel bender.

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Old 02-22-2013, 03:35 AM   #6
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Try on a test piece: fill, not so much that it bursts when bent....rem'br, volume decreases at bend. BUT fill with something HARD but water-soluble. Helluva lot easier to remove than sand. Good luck.

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Old 02-23-2013, 06:41 PM   #7
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The harbor freight bender only goes to 3/4 diameter.
I've heard of using water & sand before. I just wasn't sure of the success or how messy it may be. With sand in SS, can you still bend ny hand? I thought it would be too hard?

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Old 02-23-2013, 06:43 PM   #8
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I can tell you from experience, trying to bend stainless at home sucks. I tried to make a 50' coil I got from grainger smaller for use in a herms system and it was a bastard. I just put it in the recycling and will be buying some copper.

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Old 02-23-2013, 06:51 PM   #9
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Spring tubing bender
Lowes, home depot and Harbor fright should have them.
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Old 02-23-2013, 07:04 PM   #10
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^^great for copper, stainless not so much

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