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Squaring the end on tubing?

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  • Squaring the end on tubing?

    Hi All,

    I'm making a gantry crane and the legs sit square on top of some channel. I was just wondering if anybody had some tricks for squaring the end of the tube. If it matters, the tube is 3"x3"x3/16"

    Thanks for any tricks you guys might have.

    Craig

  • #2
    I'd just use a speed square and drew a line all the way around, then cut.
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    • #3
      I just use my coldcut saw. I built a rest for when I make cuts and the rest is pretty exact. My cuts on4" 3/16" tube always come out to +- .020

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      • #4
        I actually cut the pieces on my bandsaw but it's not very accurate, which is probably due to user error. Using a square and grinding each side until it's all square is probably how I'm going to do it. Would love to have a cold saw, .020" is amazing. I just wasn't sure if there was an easier way instead of grinding them.

        Thanks for the input, gotta work on getting one of those cold saws .

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        • #5
          http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/w...5120_200365120
          http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...emnumber=93762
          I found one of these cheap, 100 bucks.
          Little work to adjust and it cuts square.
          Be safe
          Jeff

          Give more than you get and
          you will get more than ya need.
          This is true for the good and bad
          that life puts out.

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          • #6
            On the bandsaw I can see several possible causes for not getting square cuts.

            Number one would be a misadjusted fence. Or you have a ton of crud on the bed /fence. those chips can effect how square the saw cuts. I always make it a point to brush off the bed it I have to make a critical cut.

            Number 2 would be unsupported work, both on the infeed and out feed sides if it's long. Often the change weight as the piece starts to drop will cause it to shift in the saw and cause an unsquare cut. Be sure that you have the piece well supported and level with the machine surface on the infeed side and leave just a small bit of room on the waste side so the blade doesn't bind.

            Number 3 is a bad blade. It's possible that the set on the teeth on one side has been lost and the blade will wander away from that side of the cut towards the good side that is cutting easier. If your blade is old or if you know that you possibly damaged the blade when it bound up or cut very hard material, try a new blade. I know it takes a bit of trial and error to set up my saw again after I change the angle.

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            • #7
              you can just us you saw and cut one side at a time. less grinding.
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              TB 302
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              • #8
                In any case, a slightly off-square cut, is not an excuse, for an off-square fitting and weld.
                Obviously, I'm just a hack-artist, you shouldn't be listening to anything I say .....

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                • #9
                  Welding a crooked tube is one thing. Welding a tube crooked is another.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by TS-Off-Road View Post
                    Welding a crooked tube is one thing. Welding a tube crooked is another.
                    True statement.
                    Obviously, I'm just a hack-artist, you shouldn't be listening to anything I say .....

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                    • #11
                      Very true and I could have welded the tube square on the channel but I like a good fit up. My thoughts are a job worth doing is worth doing right which is why I spent around 2 hours getting my saw sorted out because it's worth doing right in the end.

                      Thanks for everyones input, getting the saw sorted was a much better solution than grinding the ends square.

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                      • #12
                        You can weld a square cut tube crooked

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                        • #13
                          Fact is, if you're fabricating something (aside of butting together high pressure, with code welds, pipe), most cases it's actually easier to end up with square/precise angles, after welding, if the cut is slightly off. Start the tack, where it touches, then you have plenty of room to tap it whichever way, to compensate for the pull.
                          Obviously, I'm just a hack-artist, you shouldn't be listening to anything I say .....

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                          • #14
                            When i worked in the big factory and did a lot of tube and beam fitting to steel plates. I just took a combo sq and found the high corner on the tube or beam than i would tack a little booger with the mig on the low side and touch it with a hammer or a small grinder until all corners were the same. Then the part would sit flat on the plate. Sometimes the tubes or beams were ready cut at the steel place and they don't give a rats butt if they are square or not...Bob
                            Bob Wright

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                            • #15
                              One outfit I worked for we used to mill all our cuts. Even for simple frames, cut slightly over and mill to size. Measure our lengths with a dial caliper. Dead square and within thousandths for size.

                              Complete waste of time for most weldments. But it's just what you did there.

                              Sounds like you have the time and determination. If you want it square you can always use an "apprentice mill"....the largest flat file you have and a good try square.

                              Files are slow and forgiving. Leave a nice finish. Give you a personal interaction with the metal. Allows for philosophical reflection of life in general. Makes you appreciate the power tools made to replace it sometimes.

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