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Old 01-27-2010, 06:48 PM   #1
TAftw
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Default Best kind of tubing bender?

I didn't want to hijack the Show us Your Tubing Benders thread, but what is the best kind of tubing bender for $300 or under? I have a chance to buy one of those ones with the bottle jack and different sized dies for $50, but I heard they can crimp and kink the metal. What should I look for in a tubing bender? any link or places I could rear more about them?
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Old 01-27-2010, 07:11 PM   #2
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Default Re: Best kind of tubing bender?

I have a Pro Tools 105.



I got it from...

www.rockbuggysupply.com

It's a nice bender and they had the best price.
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Old 01-27-2010, 07:42 PM   #3
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Default Re: Best kind of tubing bender?

Pro-tools 105 or JD2 Model 3 are your only choices in that price range. Note that won't get you a die, just the bender.
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Old 01-27-2010, 07:50 PM   #4
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Default Re: Best kind of tubing bender?

JD2 benders are pretty good, Ive been using one lately. Keep in mind you need a different die for each size tubing and they certainly arnt cheap. In the 200+ range
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Old 01-27-2010, 07:53 PM   #5
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Default Re: Best kind of tubing bender?

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Pro-tools 105 or JD2 Model 3 are your only choices in that price range. Note that won't get you a die, just the bender.
x2. From what I've seen they're both relatively comparable, any brand loyalty is just that - Ford vs Chevy, etc.

I got a JD2 'cause it came up used at a good price. I woulda just as quickly grabbed a PT 105 under the same circumstances.

The bottle jack setups are really pipe benders, suitable for basic, non-structural work. And yeah, they tend to kink or ripple the pipe. Any alleged way to avoid this will cost a great deal of time, so figure out what your time is worth.

A quality tube bender like a JD2 or PT is really a great investment. There are DIY plans, like the gottrikes version and probably others - a web search will turn up a lot.

If you're not in a great hurry, lurk the classifieds on various forums like off-road sites, race car/chassis building etc. I've seen several on CL, too. You can usually get a "package" of the bender and several die sets for a decent price - as always, baby-on-the-way deals are great. Check w your local Jeep club and see which forums they frequent.
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Old 01-27-2010, 08:03 PM   #6
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Default Re: Best kind of tubing bender?

all good advice. I have a JD2 myself, with a hydro setup made from a scrounged ram, scrounged powerpack, and a spool valve from a log splitter. Works nicely.
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Old 01-27-2010, 08:26 PM   #7
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Default Re: Best kind of tubing bender?

^^^That was going to be my next question- how hard is it to turn into a hydro unit? How hard it is to actually bend? I'm a small kid, and not very strong lol, so this could be a serious problem if I were to get it.

What would the most common die size be? And what is the difference between "tubing" and "pipe"?
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Old 01-27-2010, 08:44 PM   #8
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Default Re: Best kind of tubing bender?

its not that hard. If its too hard, just use a longer cheater. The biggest problem with manual benders is not the effort, but the fact that they have to be bolted to something substantial, like the floor. A hydro powered bender can be on casters.

The most common die size depends on the application. If you're making a roll cage 1.5 or 1.75 would work, depending on what its going into.

Difference between tube and pipe are 1. size (tube is measured on OD and pipe on ID) and in most cases 2. strength. Most pipe is made for transmitting fluids or air, while most tube is structural. You can find structural pipe (or what most people refer to tube in pipe sizes) but it is not common.
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