If you have steel or copper pipe that needs to be bent for a home project, it is often easiest to use a pipe or tube bender. However, if one of these is not available, there are some other ways to bend it at home. Here are some tips for using different methods of bending pipe without a fancy bending tool.
Fill the Pipe With Sand
The reason you want to have the pipe filled with sand is that when it is filled with something, you are able to avoid snapping or buckling the pipe. If you are bending it while it is empty and not using a pipe bending tool, there is a greater chance of it breaking instead of having a gentle bend in the pipe. All you need to do is take some sand and compact it as tightly as possible. When the sand is more compacted, it sticks in the pipe easier than if you are using loose sand or dirt.
Use a Blowtorch
A common way to bend pipe when you don't have an actual bending tool is to use heat, such as with a blowtorch. Use a blowtorch that provides a high amount of heat. The heat is going to make the pipe a lot easier to bend instead of attempting to bend it cold, which requires considerably more muscle power. When using a blowtorch, the tube should be placed in some type of vice so you aren't holding onto it when it gets hot. Put on some gloves and heat the tube just in the area where you want the bending to occur. You can then wrap it around something about the same size as the desired bend, such as a cylinder-shaped object, then start bending it.
Try Using Bending Springs
Even if you don't have the money for a pipe bending tool, you can still use other bending tools, such as springs. These springs also work with heat from a blowtorch, but provide a different method of actually bending the pipe. When using pipe bending springs, you first want to heat up the pipe as you did before, then place it inside the springs. You are now able to bend it much easier while it is supported by the springs, instead of in a vice. You still need to use gloves for this method and be careful when using both the blowtorch and the spring tool. Keep in mind different springs are needed for each size of tube you are trying to bend.