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What are you bending and is it dangerous?


EJ Livesey
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im going to compile a list of steel that i have bent in my time.  I will go through what i feel shouldnt be bent.

 

CRS: Cold Rolled Steel

this is the staple of bending steel.  It is very easy to find and fun to bend. It is very safe and benders should have no worries about it snapping.  In the USA when have two major types.  12L14 and 1018.  there are others but these are the easiest to find and most available to us.

12L14: this is a nice steel with some bounce back and some binding on the crush.  It is easier than the 1018 due to the higher lead percentage.

1018: tougher than the 12L14 due to the lower lead content.  has the same properties as 12L14, such as binding and bounce back but more extreme.

NOTE: any CRS is not ideal for braced or scroll work.  the bounce back could cause injuries.

HRS: Hot Rolled Steel

A36 is the most readily available on the market today.  This stuff is perfect for braced bending and scrolling.  However the quality control is very loose.  It does not go through a final crystalization process so it can be very inconsistent.

SS: Stainless Steel

303/304 this steel can be interchanged.  The nickle content between the two is negligible.  this is very fun stuff to bend and will add strength through all steps of the bend.  It is springy and binds up quite a bit, so you have to work for the bend.  It will not snap.  Yes, this SS will rust and does have magnetic polarity with a strong enough magnet.

DR: Drill Rod

O1: This steel is very similar in feeling to SS.  However it will bind more on the crush but kink may feel easier in certain diameters.  The diameter selection is virtually endless and it is readily available and very cheap.  This steel comes with a thin layer of oil on it to keep from rusting.  No fear in snapping this steel

W1: has a higher content of carbon than the O1, because of this I personally would not bend it.  the yield strength is made to be a little harder than that of O1, because of the carbon content.  slight chance in snapping this

Brass:

Industrial: this is the stuff you buy from FBBC.  its a great metal to build up crush strength.  This metal will be easy to kink and damn near impossible to crush, so be ready for a fight.  No worry in snapping

Decorative: higher carbon content to keep costs down and keep the metal lighter.  high risk in snapping this and i would stay away from it.

Key Stock:

this is some very very tough stuff.  It has a high carbon content. It isn't designed to withstanding bending. Think gears. Transmission gears, clock gears, woodruff keys- stuff like that. Head on force they are very strong, side force (bending) very weak. Due to the extremely high carbon content it has a very very good chance of breaking or snapping..

 

Edited by EJ Livesey
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Graded Bolts:

g2/g5/g8: This is spring steel and tough.  It depends on the level on how tough exactly it is.  On the top of the bolts will be hash marks, marking what level bolt it is.  zero hash marks is g2, three hash marks is g5 and six hash marks is g8.  g5 and g8 come in three colors; silver, gold and black.  From my experiences the black is always a touch harder due to the coating.  these will snap if not wrapped properly.  they always snap at the threads so be careful.  they are great for build strength and toughening bones, skin and tendons.  but be ready for a fight.

Titanium

this is a novelty steel and is rarely bent.  It is very expensive and very springy.  It will not snap.  However the cost benefit to bending benefit is not worth it in my opinion.   But it is fun 

Galvanized 

Most 60d's come from the manufacturer galvanized.  these are the go to nails for benders and strongmen.  they are fun to bend and bend easily with some practice.  I would not worry about these snapping or breaking. galvanized steel has a grayish coating and feel chalky, not smooth like CRS or SS.  

Fully Threaded Anything:

DANGEROUS.  you really roll the dice when bending this stuff.  inside the threads it is a smaller diameter and significantly weaker and poses a great threat of snapping under the pressure.  If you choose to bend this stuff full wrap the center with shop rags or the like to avoid possible injury.   

 

Edited by EJ Livesey
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Awesome list, thanks. Thoughts on hex bar?

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11 minutes ago, wobbler said:

Awesome list, thanks. Thoughts on hex bar?

what kind of hex bar?  if the material is anything listed as might snap, stay away

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40 minutes ago, wobbler said:

5,6,7 mm from mcmaster

http://www.mcmaster.com/#steel-hex-bars/=13eykzc

it says cold drawn low carbon which is cold rolled steel. You're good to go with that stuff. No worries about snapping 

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I like what you are doing with the Bending section Mr. @EJ Livesey.   Too seldom do people get recognition for their efforts.  Thanks.

 

Since wraps are an extension of bending...what do you think about the various options?

Can you give a quick rundown on the +/- and implementation of each?  

Leathers

Suede

BBW

IMPs

Min wraps (cut down wraps)

Crush Pads -various

Bands

No bands

Bare Hand Bending

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13 hours ago, EJ Livesey said:

Fully Threaded Anything:

DANGEROUS.  you really roll the dice when bending this stuff.  inside the threads it is a smaller diameter and significantly weaker and poses a great threat of snapping under the pressure.  If you choose to bend this stuff full wrap the center with shop rags or the like to avoid possible injury.   


Great resource EJ!  With the fully threaded stuff, absolutely, stay away from it.  If one of these snaps on you (and they will), you are in serious trouble.  

I've had a lot of graded bolts snap at the threaded point too.  After a close call, I started cutting them down - either half of the threaded part, or the entire thing.  

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7 hours ago, anwnate said:

I like what you are doing with the Bending section Mr. @EJ Livesey.   Too seldom do people get recognition for their efforts.  Thanks.

 

Since wraps are an extension of bending...what do you think about the various options?

Can you give a quick rundown on the +/- and implementation of each?  

Leathers

Suede

BBW

IMPs

Min wraps (cut down wraps)

Crush Pads -various

Bands

No bands

Bare Hand Bending

Yea, Nate I can do that. I'll write something up later today. people might not like it though

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That's ok. I personally feel that thick wraps early on are asking for injury. You end up trying to bend steel that you have no business picking up yet. 

Edited by canthar
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Great list. Many thanks. 

Perhaps some helpfull information for europe...

Similar to the CRS in the list from EJ Livesey (it's hard to find in europe) you can buy :

EN 10025 - S235JR and S355J2

For the stainless steel you can use the the numbers 303 and 304 here too. The norm for them is EN 10020. 

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19 hours ago, EJ Livesey said:

Yea, Nate I can do that. I'll write something up later today. people might not like it though

It's more important to get your thoughts out there than worry about people's reactions.

 Besides...you keep forgetting...you're EJ Livesey dammit!

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Yea thank you for the accessible info! - Also I've personally never snapped a fully threaded 1/4, 5/16, or 3/8" grade 2 bolt but have snapped every fully threaded 1/4" grade 8 bolt I've ever attempted  - I've never tried a fully threaded grade 5 - have you found the likeliness of snapping fully threaded bolts increase from a grade 2 to a grade 8 also?

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Thank you EJ for writing that up. 

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  • 1 month later...

I see some 1144 rods on mcmaster, 100ksi yield strength, and it's the cheapest 1/4" bar you can get ($2.25/3ft)

6628k224

Any experience with that stuff?

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Great resource EJ - I've been seeing some Green G 5 bolts out there at a couple places.  Haven't tied bending any of them yet - have you - anything different about them?

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52 minutes ago, Andrew P said:

Chris these green bolts? 

image.jpeg

Yes those are the ones - anyone know if that are any easier/harder than any others in general?

 

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From all the bars I've bent they are the same as the normal shiny Grade 5's. I think the coating is just as a way to distinguish them from the grade 2's at the hardware stores. 

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  • 2 months later...

Hi EJ and other guys! 

Is "silver steel"  safe to bend? (we don't have drill rod here in UK) 

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silver_steel

Ive attached a copy of the exact specification for the type of silver steel which I had been looking at. 

Thanks, Brian 

Screenshot_20161126-215357.png

Edited by Briso
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  • 3 months later...

This is an amazing piece.

Im from Australia so having all the grades makes it easier to find a local supplier and source the materials myself. Postage is a killer if i have to order since iv found this been able to source local suppliers of dofferent variety of steels

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On 11/26/2016 at 4:56 PM, Briso said:

Hi EJ and other guys! 

Is "silver steel"  safe to bend? (we don't have drill rod here in UK) 

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silver_steel

Ive attached a copy of the exact specification for the type of silver steel which I had been looking at. 

Thanks, Brian 

Screenshot_20161126-215357.png

If you're unsure about the silver steel snapping, you can always put a piece in a vise and bend it from a distance to see how it handles.  I can tell you, though, that this silver steel looks like it would behave a lot like a grade 5 bolt, because it's a whopping 27 HRC in the annealed state.  At a glance it reminds me of W-1, but it looks significantly tougher.

Also on the topic of fastener grades, grade 5 and 8 fasteners are not typically spring steel, but are usually made from 1141 and 4140 material respectively (in the US).  Grade 5 is quenched and tempered to 25-34 HRC, and grade 8 is 33-39 HRC (the spec. is wide enough that you can see the potential for quite a bit of variation even among graded bolts).  Spring steels generally have higher carbon content, but no special alloys (plain carbon steels like 1065, 1095, and anything in between), and are used at a higher hardness.  Spring steels pushed beyond their working dimensions are also more likely to snap than the tougher but softer alloy steels used for fasteners.

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