New generation alternatives
Tube bending has traditionally been undertaken using viscous lubricants and a mandrel for tight bends. Mandrels have given way to plastic plugs for shorter, high diameter tube bending. Now a new generation of meltable, re-cycliable solids are being used in tube bending. Supplied as flake or crumb, these products are melted and poured to the tube with one end sealed usually on a thick steel plate that speeds cooling. Once the resin is solid, tube bending proceeds. HC70 melts around 70degC and is used for decorative tubes, whereas HC88 melts at a higher temperature is very hard and useful in bending stainless steel alloys. To remove the products after use, HC70 can be heated and the solid rod removed. HC88 again should be heated to remove, but due to it's hardness it is necessary to melt most of the resin before the final solid rod can be removed.