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Bending Aluminum Rod for a Pack Stay
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Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Bending Aluminum Rod for a Pack Stay on 11/24/2010 10:01:00 MST Print View

I'd like to bend 1/4" aluminum rod stock into a "U-shaped" pack stay, similar to what is done in a Gossamer Gear Gorilla and a Six Moon Designs Swift.

Can this be done cold, over a jig?
Which alloy is better - 6066 or 3003?


Christopher Mills
(Hiker816) - MLife

Locale: Denver
Re: Bending Aluminum Rod for Pack Stay on 11/24/2010 10:21:39 MST Print View

I did the same thing last spring. See this thread .

I used 1/4" 7075-T6 aluminum rod. I bent it with a cheap tube bender. I broke the first tube bender, but finished the job with a slightly higher quality one. It wasn't easy, but it worked. I used the frame on a homemade pack that I hiked with on about half the PCT this summer, and it worked great.

Good luck!

Edited by Hiker816 on 11/24/2010 10:24:09 MST.

Mark Hudson
(vesteroid) - MLife

Locale: Eastern Sierras
rod stock on 11/28/2010 20:41:19 MST Print View

3003 is a softer alloy than the 7 series.

you can absolutely bend this with a fixture.

A small torch can help with the bends as well.

Lawson Kline
(Mountainfitter) - M

Bending Tubing on 11/28/2010 22:36:33 MST Print View

In order to bend thin wall tubing you must fill it with something like sand or water and cap each end. Something that will not compress. Once you do this you will be good to go.

Bill Fornshell
(bfornshell) - MLife

Locale: Southern Texas
Re: Bending Aluminum Rod for a Pack Stay on 11/29/2010 03:00:58 MST Print View

From one of my threads here:

SUL External Frame / 1-1-2009

This is how it starts out: "I bought some 3/8" (GG is using 1/4") 6061-T6 aluminum tubing and have bent my first two tubes. I am happy so far with how they turned out.

Check out my thread. It is almost easy. I have bent both 3/8" and 1/4" 6061-T6. It was NOT necessary to fill the tube with sand or anything else. Grant at GG bends his in a "U" shape.

Bending Tubing

Edited by bfornshell on 11/29/2010 03:03:19 MST.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Re: Bending Aluminum Rod for a Pack Stay on 11/29/2010 08:08:04 MST Print View

Thanks for the Link.

I'd forgotten about the Harrier. That is one very impressive project.