Round the Bend: Induction Pipe Bending vs. Press Bending

If part of your manufacturing process requires tubes or pipes to be bent, there are several different ways this can be achieved.  Two of the most popular methods are heat induction pipe bending and press bending.  But what are the advantages and limitations of each of these methods, and under what circumstances are they suitable?  Does one produce better quality than the other, and how will each impact your budget?


Press bending requires a pre-cast die or mould.  Your pipe is forced at high pressure against this die, forcing it to take the same shape.  The induction bending method heats the appropriate part of the pipe, and then carefully bends it to a set angle.


Because it requires only a die and some force, press bending is quite low-cost - at least, compared to induction pipe bending, which requires many more precise components.  However, as in every industry, there is a reason for this price difference; lower price means lower value, and you will get what you pay for in terms of versatility and the quality of the end result.  Equally, it's worth mentioning that the induction method is not by any means prohibitively expensive; it's simply further up the scale than press bending.


As mentioned, press bending is not a hugely versatile method.  It bends your pipe against a pre-fabricated mould, forcing it to take the same shape.  As such, you can only produce shapes that you have cast dies for in advance.  If you need to make only one part over and over again, this may be suitable - but if you're looking for a machine that can produce any kind of bend without requiring extra equipment, then induction bending is likely better suited.


Induction pipe bending is valued across industries for producing neat, even bends which do not distort or damage the base materials.  By contrast, press bending does put some stress and strain on the material.  As such, if you're looking for a product that has the same thickness and an even internal circumference, the induction method is the obvious choice.  However, if it's not necessary for the bend to be 'clean', then press bending may be fine.


As mentioned, the induction method is extremely versatile.  It can be adapted to work on parts of many sizes, and can bend to any angle.  Press bending, on the other hand, is limited to the size of the die cast.  It is usually used for smaller pipes.  As such, if you're looking to work with a variety of shapes and sizes, you should opt for induction bending.

This really does come down to quality versus budget.  If your budget is limited and your project is suited to the size constraints of press bending, then you can safely opt for it - but in almost every aspect, induction pipe bending is a more precise method, with far broader applications.  If you can afford the equipment, it's almost certainly a wiser investment. Contact an induction pipe bending manufacturer, like Inductabend Pty Ltd, to learn more about this process.