A brief explanation of induction bending

Posted on: 10 July 2017

Induction bending is an important process in many industrial settings. Read on to learn more about it.

What is induction bending?

'Induction Bending' is a term used to describe the process of using electrical heat to bend pipes into specific shapes. These pipes are usually made from metals or alloys.

An induction coil (a coil which generates and transmits high voltage currents) is positioned around a piece of piping. The heat that the coil emits is then transmitted to the pipe. This softens the pipe to the point where it becomes malleable.

When the section of pipe that needs to be bent reaches this pliable state, its shape is then altered as it is pushed through the coil. After it has been bent into the correct shape, it is cooled (using either a cold water spray or a strong gust of cold air) in order to ensure that it retains its new configuration.

Benefits of this method

Some industrial facilities use cold-shaping methods instead of induction bending. However, there are many benefits to opting for the latter. Generally speaking, induction bending allows for a greater level of accuracy; this is particularly useful in instances where the bend that needs to be created has to be in an extremely precise section of the pipe.

In comparison to other methods like cold-bending, which can cause distortions in piping, induction bending inflicts little to no damage on the pipe material; issues such as unwanted indentations and a weakening of the pipe wall are a rare occurrence. The latter is especially important in industries where the finished pipe will be used to transport valuable materials or will be needed to build public infrastructure (such as bridges, for instance), as the pipe's structural strength is crucial in these scenarios.

This method also allows for several bends to be created on the same pipe. Additionally, it is considered to be far more cost effective than welding together separate pipe components (using curved elbow-like sections of piping to connect straight pipes), as the welding process significantly increases labour costs.

What industries make use of induction pipe bending?

The induction bending process is used in many settings, including but not limited to, the construction, gas, oil, petrochemical and ship building industries.

The construction industry, for example, makes use of induction bending to create the components needed to build structures such as bridges, roof beams, and arches, to name just a few. For more information, contact companies like Inductabend Pty Ltd.