[TowerTalk] Bending, Not Breaking Aluminum Tubing

Jim Lux jimlux at earthlink.net
Sun Mar 14 06:36:03 EST 2004

> Someone drive their car over the KT 34XA a while back and bent some of the
> thicker elements.  (Near center of driven element, abt 1 1/2" tubing.  I
> tempted to use a vise, and or other stiff clamp and some armstrong to try
> straighten the elements, but dont want to break or kink them in the
> process...Once I heard of a trick of filling a tube with sand to support
> tube, and minimize chances of collapse under bending forces...Any ideas,
> tricks to bending antenna tubing without breaking?

Or fill it with molten lead/solder  and let it cool.  The lead is soft
enough to bend, but supports the tubing.  I've had mixed success with the
sand approach. If the sand isn't tightly packed and starts to loosen up, it
sort of defeats the purpose. I suppose any reasonably firm material that you
can pour in and remove would work.

One possible hiccup with the lead approach is that the heat from the lead
might change the temper state of the tubing.

Jim, W6RMK

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