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hack of all trades
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was wondering if you guys who deal with flashing and site made coil details have any tips on folding metal.

A brake is obviously the best thing to use, but I don't do enough of this to justify the cost right now. Any tips on how to make long-ish bends without one?

I'm mostly wanting to make some trim and detail pieces for aluminum siding. I haven't been able to find a lot of the pieces I need for repair and replacement without going through some special orders etc...
 

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I was wondering if you guys who deal with flashing and site made coil details have any tips on folding metal.

A brake is obviously the best thing to use, but I don't do enough of this to justify the cost right now. Any tips on how to make long-ish bends without one?

I'm mostly wanting to make some trim and detail pieces for aluminum siding. I haven't been able to find a lot of the pieces I need for repair and replacement without going through some special orders etc...
I would get a roofing place to do it for you. I have access to an old school 6' brake and anything bigger or for production gets done by a roofer.
 

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hack of all trades
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The particular piece I was just dealing with was a 7' aluminum "corner post" that's in bad shape, but i just cleaned it up a little and hammered out the defects; reused it.

I haven't been able to find aluminum J-channel that will accommodate the siding, only the really tight J made for soffit panels.

I was getting frustrated just scoring and folding some strips. Before breaking off, they were getting very warped and cupping up near the cut. If I had actually spent 5 or 10 minutes setting myself up with a flat, rigid surface to work on, I would have been much better off. Instead, I was hunched over, scoring and folding in a dark corner of the basement floor with no flat surface in sight!
 

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a break is the best way to go, look for a used one. In our area one of the lumber yards has a break and will make pieces for you. It is not cheap but if you don't need a lot it would work out. some will even rent you break time.

When I have things to bend that are heavier than my break will allow, my heating subcontractor will let me use his.
 

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You can find some rather inexpensive used brakes.
I have a 2. A tapco pro 19 and a Van mark. I found the van mark on the side of the rd with a free sign on it.
 

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Your in IN.Pole barns everywhere and plenty of shops that sell the metal to build them.If they don't have it they will fab it for you in metal or AL.I own a brake and do all of my aL myself but don't like doing metal on my brake so go to the pole barn place.I also buy all my metal roofing from them.It's weird because they are Amish but have this computer controlled brake.Put the metal in ,push in some numbers and out it comes while they ride their bicycles and buggies home.
 

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hack of all trades
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I need to look into that Amish tech-e shop. I'm very new to the area so I'm still not too familiar with the resources. I do know I can get piles of scrap limestone for dirt cheap. If I eventually build myself a nice wall, I'll be getting some of that.
 

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Take 2 2x4s slightly longer than the metal you want to bend( or not)
Nail them together with one nail on each end.
Bam, you have a brake
Slide your metal in between the 2x4s and start banging with your hammer or rubber mallet.
Sometimes I put use a fastener or two to hold the metal in place while I hammer out a bend.
Yes, I have the Malco! Great tool box brake.
But you can make your own with just a few bucks..
 

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Pretty tough to do nice metal work with a DIY brake. Do yourself a favor, bite the bullet and buy at least a used one. It will pay for itself.
And if you're bending custom trim with built in j-channel, I don't think it will look good at all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Take 2 2x4s slightly longer than the metal you want to bend( or not)
Nail them together with one nail on each end.
Bam, you have a brake
Slide your metal in between the 2x4s and start banging with your hammer or rubber mallet.
Sometimes I put use a fastener or two to hold the metal in place while I hammer out a bend.
Yes, I have the Malco! Great tool box brake.
But you can make your own with just a few bucks..
I was thinking about setting up something dirt simple like that doing stuff that didn't need to be perfect. I found a supply house 2 miles away that I didnt know about. They had the j-channel i needed for like $4 and I actually rode my bike down there to pick some up.
 

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I was thinking about setting up something dirt simple like that doing stuff that didn't need to be perfect. I found a supply house 2 miles away that I didnt know about. They had the j-channel i needed for like $4 and I actually rode my bike down there to pick some up.
Wish i had a pic of you riding bike with 12' lengths of j.. lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
NYGUTTERGUY said:
Wish i had a pic of you riding bike with 12' lengths of j.. lol
You should've seen the stupid things I biked with in Chicago... 7 - 8' 2x4, bundle of 1/2" RMC (aluminum), 4- 10' 2x6, a steel coffee table. Beats driving and parking downtown if you don't have to!
 

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You should've seen the stupid things I biked with in Chicago... 7 - 8' 2x4, bundle of 1/2" RMC (aluminum), 4- 10' 2x6, a steel coffee table. Beats driving and parking downtown if you don't have to!
Do you have a trailer you attach to the back or you carrying like a bundle of shingles and pedaling?
 

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hack of all trades
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I've been "planning" to build a trailer for.... 6 years, but that still hasn't happened. I just usually load up a huge 80's jansport bag with circ saw, tools, whatever and put long stuff on my left shoulder so I can still use rear brake. No accidents yet! Except maybe irreversible back and shoulder damage
 
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