Rolling beams and steel plate are processes most often used to curve metal. With the right machines, machine operators, and methods, however, the processes can also be used to straighten steel sections.
In our plant today we are straightening three different shapes on three different machines for three different customers and for three different applications.
In a plate roll with the capacity to bend 2 inch thick plate 12 ft. wide, we are flattening 3 inch plate 20 x 64-1/2 tomahawk-shaped burn outs. The flatness tolerance is +/-1/8inch; we are holding a +/-1/32 tolerance. These are OEM parts.
In a large section bending machine with the capacity to bend a W36 x 210, we are straightening S15 x 42.9 beams. When they were cut to 15 ft. lengths, they went out of straight ¼ inch in sweep and 3/16 in camber. The straightness tolerance is +/-1/8 inch. We are holding a +/- 1/16 tolerance. These are also OEM parts.
Lastly, in our largest beam bender with the capacity to bend W44 x 290, we are straightening W16 x 89 beams 40 ft. long which when heat treated went out of straight as much as 2 inches in both sweep and camber. The customer wants us to get them as straight as we can. We are holding a 1/8 or better tolerance over 40 ft. These are parts for oil derricks.
Ram benders can also be used to straighten material but usually do not work as quickly or as accurately as plate rolls and section benders.
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