Tube bending tools engineering

2017.06.25

Tube bending for lot of people seems to be a very easy job. That is why there are a lot of discussions when the case is to sell the modern and high technology tube bending machine. Manufacturer tries to explain what all the options for, what are the problems and why finally the machine cost so high! Sure thing all the things are clear enough for the people in really productivity industries like automotive. But when the story is for other applications…

Tube bending tools could be quite expensive as well. Mainly there are two main principles – main sizes and complexity of development and production. Any even simple tools for big diameters for oil and gas lines, shipbuilding etc. when the diameters are nearly hundred and more cost lot of money. For small diameters the cost could be for complicated tools with the special surfaces, short clamping parts for tight block of the tube, multi-stack tools with several radiuses on one tool to work with different planes…

Moreover the responsibility is high! There are no unification and standardization; tooling is only for the specific machine and specific job to do. Even sizes of the tools are different – all manufacturers have their own connections to tie the customer with the future tooling supplies. And for bending tools there is only one result – to bend the tube with proper requirements. Yes, a lot of depends on the machine and the operator skills for setup but tool is main and general part you can’t ignore.

Complicated tube bending tools are really look impressive. And the jobs with them are the really wonderful view to explain for potential customers all the possibilities and functions. A sure thing, a lot of depends of the costs but if you run the machine for half of million USD with the thousands of parts for daily production you can’t ignore the quality tools. Otherwise why do you purchase the machine?

Original and non-original tools

DSC_0155

All the producers of machine tools, in particular tube bending machines, punching machines or press brakes offer the possibility to purchase original tooling together with the purchased machine. The advantages are quite simple – under original tooling the manufacturer tries to convince about the high quality of tooling and absence of any faults or problems for the customer. Moreover it is better to get the machine with tooling from one hand, so like the “key turn purchase” where you can start the production immediately after receipt of the machine.

So if everything so good why customer should study the “non-original” tooling not marked with the manufacturer of the machine? The answer is also simple – 90% of manufacturers do not have the real production of the tooling, sometimes they do the project and drawings development but the manufacture takes place outside. Moreover it is the question of the investments – “original tools” are totally more expensive against other competitive offers for these types.

Yes – every manufacturer is not the reseller – finally they are responsible for the machine and tooling is the important part of it. Moreover sometimes, like for tube bending tools it is not just the way for simple installation of tooling on the machine but the question of fine adjustments.

Sure thing if the customer requires from the manufacturer of the machine the guarantee to make his parts with required precision and quality the manufacturer can’t guarantee nothing without supply of tooling from his hands. So it is good for everybody to buy tools and the machine together. But in a lot of cases it is not so important and moreover not so complicated for the customer if he buys his second or third machine. In this case we can also help and offer – high quality press brake tooling, punching tools, tube bending tools from Italy to produce the quality parts.

Special tube bending tools

tube

Besides all different principles of tube bending the execution of special tools is real “state of art”. What is the necessity? Some tubes, in particular in automotive industry require not the standard principle of tube bending performed by tube bending machine as “bend – straight part in min. length as straight part of the clamps – second bend…” Some tubes have no any straight part so the area of this bending is named as “bend in bend”. It is quite impossible to perform this technology with standard tube bending tools and mandrel tube bending machine – there are no possibility of clamping! The solution could be only to manufacture the special tools for the required part where the clamps dublicate the first bend in the groove to make the second one. Tooling to make these parts is really expensive so this is the big question for investments but there is no other way to do the part without the special tools.