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tube bender no. 396

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  • tube bender no. 396

    hello guys,

    got a slight problem and thought this might be the place to ask.

    I am bending some brake lines for my 86 chevy 3/4 ton chevy pickup and have never used a tube bender before.

    My neighbor loaned me his rigid tube bender no. 396 and said it was his grandfathers and he has never used it and does not know how. I looked on the rigid web sight for any manuals thet they may have but came up empty. I also tried googling it but to no avail.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

  • #2
    Bending tubing isn't as hard as it may look.Assuming the benders are in good shape.
    Look for the marks "R" and "L" on them and "0" and the "45"
    If you measure from the left and are going to bend a 90 degree turn aline the 0's and set your measured mark on the "L" If you measure from the right aline it with the "R". If you turn the piece over you use the opposite (in other words if you were coming from the left and rolled the tubing 180 degress you would use the R and vise versa.
    If you are bending a 45 just set the mark there.
    I did a panel board once that had 162 tubes coming into that was a challenge.


    • #3
      BTW if you are bending stainless tubing, you cannot beat Ridgid benders for holding up to the task.


      • #4

        the above address is for a PDF file that creates a slide rule for tube bending. It might be useful to you.

        Also the is a 100+ page PDF that is the "tube bending manual " It has a good example on calculating bends and desired lengths.


        • #5
          I found a copy of the old instructions for the 396 bender. Here is a link to view them. I hope that this helps.
          396 Bender