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How to bend EMT conduit with a conduit bender?

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How to bend EMT conduit with a conduit bender?

What is a conduit bender?

Conduit bender (plural conduit benders) is a tool used in conjunction with a very long lever, used to bend angles in conduit, that electric wires are placed into.


How to bend EMT conduit?

There are four instructions:


1.Calculate the Bend

The first step in making a 90-degree bend is to determine how long the bend needs to be. Let’s say that you’re running a piece of 3/4-inch conduit straight down a wall, then turning it 90 degrees to run horizontally to an electrical box that is 12 inches away.

 

Look at the head of the conduit bender. You should find a notation about the take-up dimension. It might say something like, "Stubs 5 to arrow." This means that for this particular tool, a 90-degree bend adds 5 inches to your horizontal measurement. (A stub is what electricians call a 90-degree bend.) The arrow is near the front end of the head and indicates the beginning of the bend.


In our example, the conduit needs to extend horizontally 12 inches from the vertical portion of the conduit. If the take-up dimension of your conduit bender is 5 inches, subtract 5 inches from 12 inches, giving you 7 inches. This is where the bend will begin on the piece of EMT.

 

2.Mark the Conduit

Measure from the end of the conduit and make a mark at 7 inches to indicate the start of the bend. Slip the end of the conduit into the bender so the 7-inch mark is aligned with the arrow. This 7 inches, plus the "Stubs 5 to arrow" will give you the total horizontal run of 12 inches, including the bend.


3.Marking and readying to bend conduit.

 

4.Bend the Conduit

Pull the handle of the bender back toward you while applying heavy foot pressure to the bender heel at the backside of the tool's head. Continue with a steady motion until the length of the conduit on the floor reaches the 90-degree mark indicated on the side of the bender's head.

Tip:

Keep firm foot pressure on the bender head while pulling back on the handle. If you don’t, the bender can slide on the conduit and the measurement will come out wrong.

 

5.Check the Bend

Remove the conduit from the bender and check your work with a framing square. The two sides of the bend should align with the two legs of the square, indicating that the bend is at exactly 90 degrees.

 

Next, check the length of the bend. Position the conduit with the long end on the floor and the short end pointing upward. Measure straight up from the floor to the end of the conduit; in our example, it should be 12 inches.

 

If the bend is less than 90 degrees, you can put it back in the bender and bend it a little more. If you somehow end up with more than 12 inches on the horizontal, you can trim off the short end with a hacksaw or a tubing cutter. However, if you came up short, you'll have to start over with a new piece of conduit. 

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