Introduction: Large Wire Bender

Picture of Large Wire Bender

I needed to consistently bend 1/4" steel round bar which proved to be quite difficult without a bender. As a result of this need, a large wire bender was built. The following is the construction process of the wire bender using scrap material found around the shop.

Step 1: Materials and Tools

Picture of Materials and Tools

Materials:

  • (2ft) 1X1" 11GA steel square tube
  • (6in) 1/2" round steel rod
  • (3x4") 6/8" steel plate
  • 3/4"-10X2" bolt
  • 3/4"-10 uncoated nut
  • 3/4" washer stack as wire clamp*** (did not have any to try, used Vise-Grips instead)

Tools:

  • Drill press (1/2"and smaller pilot drill bits)
  • Angle grinder with cutoff and grinding disk
  • Welder
  • Hammer and center punch
  • Bench vise to hold the bender

***The original plan was to use a stack of washers (>4) on the 3/4" bolt with the top washer welded to the bolt head and the bottom washer welded to the nut. The wire could then be clamped between the washers when the bolt is tightened into the nut. I could not find enough washers so the Vise-Grips was used to clamp the wire.***

Step 2: Bending Arm

Picture of Bending Arm
  • Cut square tube to 2ft
  • Mark center of tube 1/2" and 1 3/8" from one end
  • Use center punch on marks
  • Drill through tube using pilot drill bit
  • Drill through tube using 1/2" drill bit

Step 3: Drill Baseplate

Picture of Drill Baseplate
  • Drill pilot hole centered with 1" offset from 3" end
  • Drill 1/2" through-hole

Step 4: Add Pivot Rod to Baseplate

Picture of Add Pivot Rod to Baseplate
  • Chamfer end of 1/2" rod
  • Insert rod into baseplate and weld end
  • Slide bending arm over rod and cut rod leaving ~1" extending above bending arm

Step 5: Add Nut

Picture of Add Nut
  • Position nut centered with 1" offset from other 3" end
  • Weld around base of nut

Step 6: Add Bar to Bending Arm

Picture of Add Bar to Bending Arm
  • Grind small chamfer on end of 1/2" bar
  • Insert bar flush in second hole from end
  • Weld around bar end
  • Slide bending arm onto base
  • Cut 1/2" bar to same length as baseplate bar

At this point clean up any sharp edges and problems with the angle grinder and insert the 3/4" bolt into the nut.

Step 7: Use

Picture of Use
  • Hold the bender in a bench vise
  • Insert the bar using the contact point with the pivot as a measuring datum
  • Secure the bar to the 3/4" bolt using a Vise-Grips or tighten between stack of washers on bolt (This step is not critical but the bar will shift while bending)
  • Pull bending arm until desired angle is reached

(Several tries were needed to find a method for consistent bends)

Enjoy!

Comments

I AM AGREE WITH DANIELON ESTRADA, BUT YOUR PROJECT IS SO GREAT FOR ANY OTHER APPLICATIONS AND YOUR INVENTION MAKES EASIER TO FOLD OTHER FERROUS MATERIALS TO MAKE ANY OTHER SHAPES MOVING SOME CENTIMETERS THE PULLING AND PIVOT.... CONGRATULATIONS!!!! NICE JOB AND EXCELLENT WORK!!!!

Thank you!

Danielon estrada (author)2017-01-06

Creo que si añades otro perno un poco atrás del mismo que está deteniendo el tubo este le servirá como ancla evitará que tengas que poner una mordaza pues al ponerla detiene el desplazamiento del mismo solo una observación pero grandioso proyecto, saludos!!!

271828- (author)Danielon estrada2017-01-07

I will have to think about the second pin the next time I use it, thank you!

OctavioB (author)2016-04-09

Good job ~ I'm making one and I needed the basic principle, by parts. Excellent slim design, the simpler, the better, Less parts to make and guess (figure) into the works.

271828- (author)OctavioB2016-04-10

Thank you!

Ralphxyz (author)2016-02-23

thanks, close to what I need.

I need to make multiple 360° bends.

A spring bend but not with spring steel just mild steel.

Some thought with what you have done will get me there.

_soapy_ (author)Ralphxyz2016-03-08

You might do better with a roller system if you want hoops.

Ralphxyz (author)_soapy_2016-03-08

Do you have a picture? I am not sure what you mean.

But thanks for the reply!!

271828- (author)Ralphxyz2016-02-23

Good luck!

_soapy_ (author)2016-03-08

Nice job.
This is probably actually better than the powered one I've got. Certainly likely to be more controllable!

271828- (author)_soapy_2016-03-08

Thank you!

sdzucev (author)2016-02-24

Отличная работа!
Единственно, мне
кажется некоторые рычаги слишком длинные, например на оси вращения). И
не совсем понятна роль болта, почему именно болт?

Great job!
The
only thing it seems to me some leverage too long, for example on the axis
of rotation). And don't quite understand the role of bolt, why bolt?

271828- (author)sdzucev2016-02-24

Thanks!

The longer bending arm allows for better control of the bend with less force. Chose a length that works for you.

The bolt was designed to have a stack of washers that would clamp the wire during bends. I did not have enough washers at the time.

OctavioB (author)2016-02-23

fantástic project i want a bender so bad but im tight and other tools take my budget away. cool! to tha batwelding cave!

271828- (author)OctavioB2016-02-23

Thanks and have fun welding!

techie66 (author)2016-02-23

Did not made it yet, but yes this has a lot of potential also for flat material like tie-fasteners, love it !

271828- (author)techie662016-02-23

Thanks!

николайм (author)2016-02-23

в кузне очень часто таким инструментом пользовался. И сейчас используем подобный инструмент, только не установленный на основу

Aussie58 (author)2016-02-22

Brilliant. Love it. A project I can get my high school students onto designing and making.

Any reason why you couldn't just put a nut on either side of the base plate for the 3/4" nut to save welding it? Not a criticism just an inquiry. Or maybe just plug weld a piece of 3/4" rod into place from under the baseplate.

271828- (author)Aussie582016-02-22

Thank you!

The original plan was to use a stack of washers on the 3/4" bolt with the top washer welded to the bolt head and the bottom washer welded to the nut. The wire could then be clamped between the washers when the bolt is tightened into the nut. I could not find enough washers so the Vise-Grips was used to clamp the wire.

Any of your ideas should work if using a Vise-Grips or something similar. Clamping the wire is not even necessary but results in more consistent bends.

Watch me make (author)2016-02-21

This looks great can I ask what the bent rod is for

271828- made it! (author)Watch me make2016-02-21

Thank you!

The bent rod will be used for a couple LED light fixtures currently being built.

About This Instructable

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Bio: Hi! You can call me Matt. I'm a problem solver with interests in many fields. Sites like this are a great resource, therefore I ... More »
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