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#54547 - 08/01/05 03:08 AM Conduit bending levels?  
e57  Offline
Joined: May 2003
Posts: 2,876
I have had several different versions of this type of item. Bubble level conduit bending aids.

For example: (Haven't had this one..)

But have had a "No-dog". (a few times, experimented with it, lost it.)
And right now have a Greenlee with a simular condiut attacthment, which I don't use. I like it because it is a decent size torpedo level.

Anyway, question to you all is:
Are they of any real use to bend conduit?
Does anyone use these effectively using hand benders?

Or is it me? I find that these levels attatched to a coduit being bent, could only work if you also had a level on your bender to match it up to. Right? I seem to make more dog-legs with, than without it. Only time it works right, is with a fixed hydralic bender.

Mark Heller
"Well - I oughta....." -Jackie Gleason

Work Gear for Electricians and the Trades

#54548 - 08/01/05 06:36 AM Re: Conduit bending levels?  
Tiger  Offline
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 706
Crystal Lake, IL USA
I have a no-dog also and rarely use it. I wouldn't even go to the truck for it unless I was doing a large offset. I thought it would be more useful when I got it.


#54549 - 08/01/05 09:29 AM Re: Conduit bending levels?  
Joey D  Offline
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 259
Arlington MA U.S.
Bending is just something that takes practice. I have the little Ideal bender book and it is all you need besides a good eye.

#54550 - 08/01/05 09:38 AM Re: Conduit bending levels?  
renosteinke  Offline
Cat Servant
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,316
Blue Collar Country
Funny thing about bending pipe....the best "aids" seem to be part of the the job site!

My truck's "utility body" provides me with several places where I can see if my bends are square, or measure my offsets.

And the brick walls, or door frames, on many a site have helped with the same functions.

#54551 - 08/01/05 01:08 PM Re: Conduit bending levels?  
Ray97502  Offline
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 55
Central Point,OR
I have a No-Dog that I use, but just on rigid or large pipe, mostly for multi-shot bends or occasionally for parallel saddles and offsets if the work is going to show. When it's going to be seen and it has to match in appearance I put the dog on. I also use the travel method for making matched bends. (Not for hand bends)
Travel method description:
When you bend any angle the travel distance is equal to the # of degrees and so you can calculate inches of travel per degree (usually a fraction of an inch per degree). To use the travel method, pick (or create) a fixed point on the bender about a foot back from the back of the shoe. After the conduit is loaded into the bender and ready to bend, place a mark at the fixed point. Make the bend and before you release the pressure make a second mark on the conduit at the fixed point. When you take the piece out of the bend use a protractor to measure the exact angle and then measure the distance between the 2 marks. That distance is proportional to the number of degrees of the bend.
If your first mark winds up in the bend and is no longer on the straight portion of the pipe then you need to pick a “fixed point” farther back from the shoe. I have attached a piece of all-thread to a bender with a #6 wire arm at the end that I could swing into position so that it lays on the top of the conduit while I make the mark.
So let’s say you bend a 1” and get 11 inches of travel in an 89 degree bend, that’s about 8 degrees of bend for each inch of travel or 0.124” per degree. So a 30 degree bend would be 30* 0.124 or 3.7 inches. If you want to bend a 30 degree offset, lay out the offset and load the conduit into the bender. Make a mark at the “Fixed point” and make another mark 3.7” back. Bend the conduit until the second mark travels to the fixed point. Your bend should be 30 degrees, and every bend you make using the same method with 3.7” will be exactly the same as every other bend. Most of the time when you make a bend it isn’t exactly the number of degrees you were trying for and you have to massage the piece to your liking. With the travel method you will have very little need to add additional work to the piece. Yes it takes a bit longer but if the work is going to show then it is worth ever bit of that extra effort.

[This message has been edited by Ray97502 (edited 08-01-2005).]

#54552 - 08/01/05 01:10 PM Re: Conduit bending levels?  
Ray97502  Offline
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 55
Central Point,OR

[This message has been edited by Ray97502 (edited 08-01-2005).]

#54553 - 08/01/05 03:32 PM Re: Conduit bending levels?  
Dnkldorf  Offline
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 1,064
nowhere usa
The thing for me that makes pipe bending better and easier is the right conduit.

Some places sell the pipe with the red line down the whole pipe, forget what it is called, but that makes things easier.

I hate when the manufacturers print machine goes haywire, and the lettering is messed up. I used to use that as a basis, but learned the hard way to check it before bending.

Anyone know of a after market marking machine or similiar out there. Something you can put pipe in and it will draw a line on one side of two sides of the pipe?


#54554 - 08/01/05 03:55 PM Re: Conduit bending levels?  
Celtic  Offline
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 361
If you spend all day running multiple runs of pipe, a "no-dog" AND a protractor are must have tools.
If you are running the occasional pipe...good luck.
After running a few thousand feet of 4" RGS, 3/4" EMT is a joke.

~~ CELTIC ~~
...-= NJ =-...

#54555 - 08/01/05 03:58 PM Re: Conduit bending levels?  
hbiss  Offline
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 886
Hawthorne, NY USA
Can't see how a level is going to help you bend conduit. It's only going to be level or plumb when it's in place and that depends on how you bend it.

Some places sell the pipe with the red line down the whole pipe, forget what it is called, but that makes things easier.

My supply house gets top dollar for some junk that is made in South America and smells like cat urine. Connectors don't even fit sometimes. [Linked Image] And you're looking for a straight printed line?


#54556 - 08/01/05 04:07 PM Re: Conduit bending levels?  
Dnkldorf  Offline
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 1,064
nowhere usa
Yes, the straight printed line. I used some recently. I think it is called "slick silver" or "silver stick", or maybe niether. I forget.

What I would be intersted in though is a unit that would take evrything from say 4" down that you could slide pipe in and it would draw a straight line down the pipe.

Boy would that make my poor eyesite better to bend pipe.

(editted cause I'm a bonehead typer)

[This message has been edited by Dnkldorf (edited 08-01-2005).]

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