Wrought Iron Curls

roscoOctober 9, 2004

Hope you guy's don't mind a Kiwi joining but I'm not only a keen fisherman and gardener but love making gates and things out of Iron.

So far I've been able to make a simple bender for doing curves but have trouble making fancy bends which are all the same on my wrought iron ( really steel in this case) gates and fences.

Will post some photo's tomorrow of what I've made so far. I'm actually a certified fitter Turner amongst other things and can probably help with machining techniques but when it comes to bending steel consistantly the same cheaply I'm having a few problems.

Glad I've found this forum. For year's I've been tied up with the Tomato growing one amongst others.

Hope to get to know you all as well as the people I've met there.

Kind regards.


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Welcome Rosco,

Glad you have checked in. We are in need of your experience !


    Bookmark   October 9, 2004 at 9:49PM
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Looking forward to the pictures! It's great to see what others have done and get ideas for future projects.


    Bookmark   October 10, 2004 at 10:37AM
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Hi Ross

Another Roscoe here,
I'll introduce myself first, I'm 42 married with 2 young girls. I'm been a licenced steamfitter and plumber for about 20 years. I don't weld at work (because I am surrounded by professional welders) but at home I make wrought iron (steel) garden trellises obulisks etc, and a few gates and fences. I do all my own work on my cars,burn wood in a home made boiler and we do alot of gardening.

In answer to your question about fancey curls you can do this two ways depending on how much room you have. The table is the same in both ways but one way the table moves (via a motor/gear box) or the other way you walk around the table with your metal. All you do is make plate jigs that you drop in as you walk around with you steel. The jigs should be plate about 3/4" to 1" thick and be cut like a half moon but larger on one end. The first one in the centre will be small and you will be able to rotate your steel about 3/4 of the way around it, then drop in the second jig which will be bigger and longer and the seel will bend around it. You can do this as many times as you want to. In order to get the right shape of jigs you can cut them out of wood and bolt them through the table and experiment that way. Your seel jigs will have harden steel pins tacked in them to drop into the table. When you build your table you should drill all you holes in an X (at right angles of corse) then put your pins in your jigs to suit your X. You may end up with 3 or 4 sets of jigs (colour coded of corse)
If you need to I should be able to e-mail you a pic?

I hope this will help you out, it is easy to build and very interchangeable.
Would you be intrested in trading seed with a Canadian
Check out my page

    Bookmark   October 11, 2004 at 9:31AM
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Hi guy's,
Sorry for the delay in getting some photo's uploaded of what I've beeen trying to do. Unfortunately work gets in the way of other interests.
Anyway all this started with us getting a puppy so I had to keep him on the section and out of my vege patch.
First photo is of a couple of short fences and a gate which caused me problems getting a neat arch over the top. Even a wooden form did'nt help much. The curly bit's I added I finished up having to buy and they are the sort of thing I'd appreciate help in making.

Next gate I made I found an engineer shop with a huge metal roller for the arch so if anyone can show me a design to make a smaller version for home use that would be great too.

Then I made a garden gate and had it powder coated which came out not too bad in my humble opinion.

Lastly out of the leftover steel I've been making these window type boxes which are galvanised then powder coated so they should last for years.
Again my biggest problem was coming up with jigs for making all the curves the same size.
Any thoughts or idea's you have I'll be watching for with interest. And Roscoe do you think you could post some photo's or drawings showing how you built and use your jigs.

Cheers for now.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2004 at 7:26PM
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Dang Rosco, That looks great! I cant help a whole lot when it comes to artistic stuff. All I can do is tell you what I think about how it looks :). The last 50% of my welding were things for a chicken coop and the chickens arent all that picky :). About the only artistic thing was a branding iron and it was pretty basic.

I have seen some nice scrolls made with a harbor freight model. A friend of mine has one and he as made some pretty good looking scrolls as far as I could tell. I also believe it was pretty inexpensive. They also have a cheap roller, but I cannot say I've ever seen anything made with it.

Thanks for posting the pictures.


    Bookmark   October 12, 2004 at 8:56PM
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I've tried to post a pic with no luck.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2004 at 9:17AM
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Someone on the tractor forum posted a thing for me on how to post pics, I think it was Ed. I'll try to find it and re-post it.


Your gates and fence look VERY GOOD.

If your not going to do hundreds, the manual way with fixtures is the way to go. I have done it this way myself, but with a twist. I made a fixture to mount into a Reese Hitch. And my, tacked on mandrels were 1" slices of various sized sch 40 and 80 pipe.


    Bookmark   October 16, 2004 at 4:38PM
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My reese hitch receivers are welded on each corner (underneath) my bench. Now I can slip in any vice, bender or jig that I have mounted on 2" tubing into any corner of my table.


    Bookmark   October 16, 2004 at 7:04PM
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Roscoe and Joe,
First Roscoe I got your photo's of the commercial unit but really was more interested in what you had made up yourself. The photo's are in TIF format which may be why they were difficult to post!!!!!!!!!!
It's really difficult to tell from the 2 photo's just how they work. If you like I'll convert them into JPEG format and post them for you. Also It's a bit difficult to simply ring the company in the US without incurring huge expenses.
Really I was hoping some of you guy's had come up with clever idea's for making your own benders which I can borrow.
Judging by the photo's I expect such set up's are pretty expensive especially as they are castings.
First here are the pic's changed to JPEG I hope.

I really appreciate your efforts to help but just from the photo's I don't quite understand how they work. Maybe I'm just a thick Kiwi but if you ever get over here for a holiday there's plenty of accommodation and a load of awesome fishing on our boat. That go'es for you all. Ali and I have met so many freind's via the gardenweb who we stay in contact with now constantly who have come to NZ for a visit. JOE, I understand what you're saying but with things like the window boxes it's not too difficult keeping the main curves equal but when you get to the corners thing's tend to to turn to custard. Hopefully this may turn into a neat forum though it seems a little slow at present. Guess like me you all have to work for a living weekday's. Lastly let me inroduce myself with a photo. Cheers. Rosco
    Bookmark   October 17, 2004 at 12:36AM
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Hi Rosco

Sorry if I mislead you I haven't started building mind yet(only because I haven't needed it yet), when I need it I'll build it. I've got all the pieces that I think I'll need.

Let me describe the 1st pic.
The table will not move, now to start the inner part of the curl you would remove the large jig. then insert the end of the rod in the middle of the small jig. The outer part with the adjustable (horzontal) shaft has a handle that inserts in the hole in the bottom and then rotates around the table, taking the seel with it on the roller.You will take the steel about 300 degrees then set in the second jig. From there you will take the handle around another 360 degrees or what ever is is required.

I hope this helps you.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2004 at 10:32AM
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i agree with horseman 1--dang roscoe, youre good!!

    Bookmark   February 1, 2005 at 7:57PM
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