How To Save Money On Tube Bending Costs
Looking to save money on tube bending costs? We can work with you to understand your requirements and offer quality solutions. In this article, we’ll cover what makes up the cost of tube bending and offer suggestions for how to save money and manage your costs.
What Makes Up The Cost Of Tube Bending?
The cost of tube bending is made up of six factors that vary from one job to the next. Let’s take a look at each one individually.
The type of materials and their quality make up a large portion of the cost.
Steel is less expensive than aluminum but can rust, even grades that are corrosion resistant. You can galvanize your tubes or wires to protect them from rust; however, that process will add to the overall cost.
Material quality matters a great deal. A lower grade material may be less expensive but could lead to more issues from fractures and breakage. That’s why it’s important to ask the manufacturer what grades of materials they carry and ask for a bill of materials that lists the metal grade for your project.
The design of your tubing product also influences the cost. You can save money selecting a stock design or using common sizes, wall thicknesses, and material grades.
Two factors that influence design costs are bending tangents and bending radius. Almost all bending machines require more material than the usable arc in the finished bend. These bending tangents are necessary for the bending machine to apply leverage to the material during the bending process. Additionally, the bend radii may require a custom-built die or machinery to perform the bend. Using a common bending radius and adjusting the tangents can help lower costs. Typically the bigger the radius, the easier it is to make the bend and the fewer tangents required.
Manufacturers are willing to provide cost discounts on higher volume jobs. The higher the volume, the lower the per unit cost for each item. This lowers the manufacturer’s cost, which allows them to pass those savings on to you. That’s why it’s a good idea to avoid smaller orders with a minimum charge. If a high-volume order doesn’t make sense, you should see if you can wait until you can order a larger quantity or look for a manufacturer that offers an alternative low-volume process.
A good manufacturer has the right equipment and experienced technicians to complete the job as efficiently as possible. When considering a manufacturer, don’t be afraid to ask for a tour of their facilities and have them explain their equipment and processes to you. Look for companies that use state-of-the-art equipment like CNC bending machines and belt furnace brazing machines.
5. Quality Assurance
Manufacturing quality control costs money which is factored into the cost of your quote. Choose a manufacturer with good quality control and assurance processes which lead to:
- Reduced warranty costs
- Lower service costs
- Better customer satisfaction
A manufacturer with thorough and stringent quality assurance processes will save you money. By comparison, manufacturers that offer limited quality assurance may have lower upfront costs, but you’ll spend more money picking up their slack in the quality assurance process.
Shipping also factors into the quote. Overseas shipping can add significant costs to your order, while shipping by truck is a much shorter and less expensive process. Overseas manufacturers are also less likely to fulfill a low-volume order because they have to fill a standard cargo container. If you have a low-volume order, you can save money using a regional manufacturer to take advantage of lower shipping costs.
The above factors comprise the bulk of the cost estimate for your tube bending order. That’s why it’s important to consider each factor instead of choosing the lowest bidder. Doing so will help you save money in the long run.
Another way to lower your costs is to work with the manufacturer. Good suppliers will offer cost savings ideas including changes to the manufacturing process. Ask your manufacturer what changes they can make to your job to reduce costs. In many cases, they can help you come up with money-saving options and avoid costs that don’t add value to your order.