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#57657 - 10/18/05 09:20 PM 1-1/4 EMT bending  
BigB  Offline
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 719
Tucson, AZ USA
Well I just bent a bunch of 1-1/4 today with a hand bender, offsets and 90's. I must say that it is a real feeling of satisfaction when pipe that big comes out looking so good with a hand bender. However I also must say I am beat. That was a real workout, even tho I am 6'3" and weigh 236 lbs.

Do many of you bend 1-1/4 by hand? If so, any tricks or suggestions? I don't do enough big pipe work to warrant a hydraulic, maybe someday.

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#57658 - 10/18/05 10:30 PM Re: 1-1/4 EMT bending  
Cow  Offline
Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 33
Hermiston, OR
Sorry, don't have any tricks to offer but can you rent a bender for jobs like that? Benders can't rent for that much I wouldn't think.

#57659 - 10/18/05 11:12 PM Re: 1-1/4 EMT bending  
Gregtaylor  Offline
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 212
Boise, Idaho, USA
When I use a 1 1/4 emt hand bender I put the tail of the piece against a wall and get the whole thing up close and parallel to a wall so I can keep my balance. And I still have to wear all my tools to have enough weight to do a proper job. I really try to avoid the whole thing.

#57660 - 10/18/05 11:14 PM Re: 1-1/4 EMT bending  
renosteinke  Offline
Cat Servant
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,316
Blue Collar Country
Here I will speak of the unspeakable, and suggest non-approved methods, in violation of the manufacturers' instructions!

I have had great success bending 1 1/4 and 1 1/2 EMT with the $75 "hydraulic pipe bender" sold by Harbor Freight.
This device is little more than a frame with a bottle jack inside. The instructions make it plain that it is NOT for bending electrical conduit.
Lets see...$$$$$$$$ for Greenlee, or $75 for HF.....I think I'll try HF anyway.

The "secret" is to limit this thing to very small bends....even a 15 degree bend is best done in multiple steps, moving the pipe a little each time. Thus, you are able to make nice, gentle offsets and saddles. For the right angle bends, store-bought sweeps are the answer. Don't even dream of exceeding a 20 degree bend!
The shoe provided for 2" is way over size for EMT, and my experience with it has been very poor.

#57661 - 10/18/05 11:26 PM Re: 1-1/4 EMT bending  
BigB  Offline
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 719
Tucson, AZ USA
Greg, They also said to eat all your lunch first so you will weigh more!

[This message has been edited by BigB (edited 10-18-2005).]

#57662 - 10/18/05 11:32 PM Re: 1-1/4 EMT bending  
Peter  Offline
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 92
San Diego
As President and chief executive secretary of the Intergalactic Oganization Opposed to 1 1/4" EMT, I should be entitled to a few comments.
Bravo to you for your success but I should point out that not all electricians are "6'3" and weigh 236 lbs".
The evil abomination 1 1/4" EMT lies is a no-man's land between what is hand bendable [1"]
and what is plainly not [1 1/2"]. Since hand benders are made for this size [purchased by the electrician employee], the EC owner doesn't bother to buy a mechanical bender with a shoe of this size.
If you need a larger size tube than 1", then why not use 1 1/2"?
note: our organiztion has been rather sucessful: have you seen any 3 1/2" EMT or its fittings at Home Depot lately?

#57663 - 10/18/05 11:34 PM Re: 1-1/4 EMT bending  
lamplighter  Offline
Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 101
I have never had enough ass behind me to bend 1-14 with a hand bend unless I segment bend it with a rigid hickey. even then it never comes out the way I'd like.

#57664 - 10/19/05 12:32 AM Re: 1-1/4 EMT bending  
DougW  Offline
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,143
North Chicago, IL
I asked my foreman what that huge *ss bender in his truck was once...

He replied "It's an inch and a quarter hand bender... although nowdays I mostly use it to scare the sheetrockers who fill our boxes full of mud!"

#57665 - 10/19/05 12:56 AM Re: 1-1/4 EMT bending  
Attic Rat  Offline
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 524
Bergen Co.,N.J. USA
... Weighing in at a buck-80,and the upper body strength of 10 rats,.. if I need to bend anything over 1",I go for the pre-fab bends...I'm not shy....I'm just lazy...

.."if it ain't fixed,don't break a Licensed Electrician"

#57666 - 10/19/05 12:58 AM Re: 1-1/4 EMT bending  
Tesla  Offline
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,273
Sacramento, CA
1.25" hand benders are uneconomic for standard bends.

I use mine strictly for kicks and offsets -- and small ones at that.

I regard it as a two man tool: one heavy dude to apply pressure at the bend; the other to hump the bar.

A solo bend looks like an OSHA violation, to me.


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