View Full Version : can PVC be bent?
10-18-2005, 08:34 PM
can PVC be bent with a tube bender? or does that only apply to metal tracks?
10-18-2005, 08:39 PM
10-18-2005, 08:42 PM
I've heard of it being melted by boiling water.... but that's a ridiculous amount of work, and I don't think it's very consistent.
10-18-2005, 08:49 PM
Yes it can. You need a blowtorch.
10-18-2005, 09:00 PM
lol it's gotta be diffused heat though, having a direct source on one pinpointed spot can't be accurate.
10-19-2005, 06:51 PM
sounds difficult and extreme.
10-19-2005, 06:53 PM
has anybody actually used this method of bending PVC?
if i managed to get my hands on a reliable heat source how should i proceed?
and lastly how much should the pvc be bent for optimum curvature, and would this weaken the pvc?
thanks, sorry for all the questions
10-19-2005, 06:57 PM
Why would u want to bend PVC in the first place?
10-19-2005, 06:59 PM
so the tracks for my home made dolly could turn, allowing more flexible and interesting shots.
10-19-2005, 07:28 PM
10-19-2005, 07:30 PM
A heatgun and a jig seems like the best way but I found these also...
10-19-2005, 07:50 PM
Before getting started you need to know that there is a potential of letting off some very dangerous dioxins with other toxic and potentially cancer causing gasses, so you must work in a well ventilated area and should wear a good respirator. Moreover, the result will not be as strong as it was before you made your changes.
10-19-2005, 09:15 PM
oh my god! the questions...
isnt that what we are here for?
10-19-2005, 09:26 PM
When I dented my plastic sea kayak the manufacturer first recommended I try hot rags on the dent to draw it out, when that didn't work they told me to use a blow torch. Neither of these turned the concave into a convex but the kayak became very soft and malleable. So I would think if you had a basic form or jig that was the basic finished shape of the track you could easily bend it. Try a section. Good luck.
10-20-2005, 12:54 AM
This idea seems somewhat plausible. Why not get a smaller piece of electrical pipe, slide it into the PVC pipe, plug up the ends (make sure to leave enough room for the PVC to get hitched), and THEN bend it with a standard pipe bender. They'd be a little heavier, but it seems like it would work. Hell, the weight may be a bonus feature; keeps the pipe ON THE GROUND!!!
10-20-2005, 06:44 AM
Before you proceed you'll want to keep in mind that unless it is a long slow curve your dolly will not work - unless it is one of the smaller ones. The designed that I have seen and built have been the bigger dollies that allow someone to sit on them, and the wheels do not rotate. So tight turns would not be possible. If you have one of the designs that is just for your tripod you should be fine , probably ...
10-21-2005, 05:50 AM
Or you could build one....
10-21-2005, 10:07 PM
I know you want pvc, but consider this: try calling a local metal supplier and asking them if you purchased some metal tube if they would bend a couple pieces for you.
The worse thing they will tell you is no, but if they say yes you will enjoy it much better that warped pvc
10-21-2005, 10:19 PM
I like that Idea Edweirdo.
10-24-2005, 07:00 AM
Run a rope from one end to the other of the PVC to make a bow - tightening the rope makes the PVC bend.
10-24-2005, 06:12 PM
I wonder if boiling water would soften PVC enough? You could tie the ends of the PVC with a rope to form a bow at the curvature you want. Plug one end of the PVC pipe. Raise the other end so it's above the plugged end. Then pour boiling water in the PVC until it's filled. While it's cooling, boil some more water. Dump out the now warm water and refill with more boiling water. The PVC might need to be bent in a slighter tighter curvature than you want since it might flex back a bit.
Anyone know if boiling water is hot enough to soften PVC enough?
10-24-2005, 07:30 PM
The PVC you'd have to use for the tracks would probably be too thick for the water to affect it.
10-24-2005, 10:47 PM
this wouldnt work this time of year or in anyother place but here in the southwest, but in the summertime you can put roped off pvc in clear plastic trashbags, the greenhouse effect takes over: it gets over 200 deg in the bag. this probably doesnt help, but thought I'd mention it.