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How to bend 5 inch standard channel

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  • How to bend 5 inch standard channel

    I Need to bend channel 25 degrees for trailer frame I bought plasma but no torches is there any other way or do I have to get the torches?

  • #2
    Opinion based on observation only. From studying quite a few of the true heavy equipment trailers, it appears as though those channels were all press (machine) bent. Of course all the ones I've noticed off hand were also gusseted to support the radious after bending.

    With that said I've played with the bending of smaller channels and it's doable. I did manage to bend a 4 inch, 5.4 channel with my cheapo 20 ton press but one flange split because I was bending where there was a small hole previously drilled in that flange. I had about a 12 inch gap and probably a 1 to 2 inch punch. I don't recall the punch size for sure. A 5 inch heavy channel would probably be a chore with a larger press than mine but doable with enough planning and care in set-up.

    Cold bend BTW.


    • #3
      Originally posted by newyork View Post
      I Need to bend channel 25 degrees for trailer frame I bought plasma but no torches is there any other way or do I have to get the torches?
      It will bend easier hot, but you can probably do it by cutting notches in the flanges and bending it cold. Using something like a come-a-long might help pull on the ends.

      Miller MM 210
      Miller Dialarc 250P
      Airco 225 engine driven
      Victor O/A
      Lots of other tools and always wanting more


      • #4
        notch it, bend it then weldit.....................
        Miller trailblazer 301G
        Miller S22P12 feeder w/ss case
        K&K 300 amp 15' .035-.045 (Bernard)
        Miller HF-251D-1, Weldcraft AC torch pkg
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        Harris DLX STLWKR
        O/A & chemolene
        WARNING These stunts are performed either by professionals or under the supervision of professionals. I insist no one attempt, recreate, or re-enact any activities performed.


        • #5
          Does it need to be bent on an arc or bent on a "line"?

          If line, I have had luck in the past with cutting into the steel with a grinder on the bend line, and then bending it, welding it, and re-enforcing everything.

          1981 Hobart Beta-Mig 200
          Hypertherm Powermax 600 Plasma
          Victor O/A


          • #6
            Trailer manufacturers look at "time spent" for each step of building a trailer. Cold bending 4", 5", or 6" channel iron, in the proper machine, is certainly less "time spent" then any other method of making the bend. We used to make trailers frames in 100 count batches, then store them outside until each was needed. IF we were to be making a special order in which we had to cut out a notch in the web of the channel iron, then physically bend it, we would gouge and weld the area where the cut-out met, and add a gusset inside. IF the piece to be notched could be handled into the iron worker, we used that to do the notch, clean lines. Building a one-off trailer would depend on your skills and the equipment you have on hand to do the work. Think each step through and it will probably be easier to do. David