If you think that brass tubing is difficult to manipulate, think again. Brass tubing can be used for a lot of things, especially around the house. Bending brass tubing could be challenging, since there is always the concern of maintaining the quality of the brass itself, but it is not difficult. Here are the ways in which brass tubing can be bent, while avoiding the dents and kinks handling it may entail.
- Plan the angle. Measure the area where you will use the brass tubing. When you’ve worked this out already, mark the area where you plan to bend the tubing. You can use a pencil so the markings aren’t permanent. Carefully measure where you want to bend the tubing, so you won’t have to redo anything. The best results come from careful planning. Make sure you have a clear picture of how your brass tubing should be bent.
- Get a propane torch. Propane torches can be found in your local hardware stores. Before using this, make sure that you have the proper protection for it. A propane torch will give off a very hot flame that could give you severe burns. Wear the proper gloves for your hands, and a protective mask for your face, to keep yourself safe. If you have long hair, tie and get it out of the way. Read instructions and safety guidelines well before you handle it.
- Heat the area where you want to bend it. Target the pencil-marked area and heat this section with your propane torch. The extreme heat from the propane torch will “soften” the brass tubing, allowing you to bend it quite easily. This happens when the extreme heat “excites” the molecules in the brass and disperses them to make it easier to manipulate. Continue heating the brass tubing to the point when the brass starts to glow red.
- Let the brass tubing cool. Do not bend it immediately after you have heated it, or you might find yourself over-bending the tubing. Let it cool to room temperature first before attempting anything. This will also allow you to handle the tubing without burning your hands. Either way, use gloves even after you have let it sit and cool.
- Bend the brass tubing. Now you can bend the brass tubing. Use cylindrical objects to help you achieve your desired curve. Use cans or bottles as patterns in which your tubing will be bent. Use your hands and carefully bend the brass tubing the way you want it.
- For more difficult angles, measure out sand or salt. If you want to achieve more severe angles, but is afraid to add kinks to the brass, simply put up the still-straight brass tubing on a table. Fill the hole with sand or salt. Make sure that the salt or sand is packed tightly inside. As soon as you fill this up, you can now bend the tubing in a more angled manner, without damaging it with kinks.
When you decide to bend your brass tubing on your own, just make sure that you have the materials to prevent yourself from getting injured. Be sure that you are not distracted when working on this, and that children are not running around near you.