jh36 Reader
1/19/19 9:17 a.m.

I am about to embark on what I like to call my "lifetime build".  More details to be incorporated in a separate thread, likely to be called "Porsche/Audi, MY HAPPY PLACE". 

One aspect of this build is designing, fabricating and installing the cage.  I have bought plenty of pre-bent cages and welded them in.  But with bending and notching, I'm basically starting at the beginning...my fabrication experience is limited to sheet metal and small stuff and on the other end of the spectrum, fabricating and welding bridge girders in a steel plant in Colfax, NC in the early 80's.

I've done some sweet googlin' but I'd like to get opinions from those in the know.  I will be looking to build out of mild steel, but do plan on using this as an opportunity to buy a TIG welder and see what I can do with that.  Plus my build will undoubtedly require welding some aluminium. So why not. 

So for starters...who has advise on benders and notchers?  Anything I'm missing in my quest?



jfryjfry HalfDork
1/19/19 9:57 p.m.

If you’re doing it once, you can use a plasma, torch, or just an angle grinder to fish mouth. 

Benders.....   might look into renting one.  But the jd2 I hear is a good choice and not the most expensive

loosecannon Dork
1/19/19 10:21 p.m.

You want the style that bends the tubing around a die. Attached is a picture of the style you want and make sure it has dies for 1.5 and 1.75 tubing (assuming you're doing a roll cage). A tubing notcher is cheap and valuable, like the one pictured.  A bandsaw or chop saw will also be helpful.


RacetruckRon Reader
1/19/19 10:33 p.m.

JDSquared and ProTools both make great cheap fab tools.  I'd recommend checking out Trick Tools they are some good ole boys out in Iowa that have awesome fab tools.

jh36 Reader
1/20/19 2:25 a.m.

In reply to jfryjfry :

I appreciate your advice...I want this cage to be all I can make it be so I will be springing for a notcher. Including two of my sons, I have a group of 4-5 Racers who always need a little extra fab work, so I am in purchasing mode.  Add to that, I want to take my time and do this well....when I rent, I tend to rush.  

jh36 Reader
1/20/19 2:27 a.m.

In reply to loosecannon :

Yep, this is a cage....and also some tube material frame replacement.  Thanks for the advice!

jh36 Reader
1/20/19 2:32 a.m.

In reply to RacetruckRon :

Awesome....spent some time on the protools site.  The bender/notcher kit looks to be a great fit.  I think I would want the pedestal rather than bench mount.  I will look around a bit more, but this looks like the ticket, and the reviews are outstanding.  Thanks for the lead!


jh36 Reader
1/20/19 2:46 a.m.

In reply to RacetruckRon :

The JD2 Beast looks....like a beast. Good to see there are great options for quality tools without breaking the bank.  

untchabl Reader
1/20/19 6:28 a.m.

Be sure to check out Rogue Fab, they make a very nice bender and notcher. I personally prefer a vertical bender over a horizontal.

jh36 Reader
1/20/19 7:40 a.m.

In reply to untchabl :

Thanks.....they have also popped up on my radar. Right now it’s between them and JD2 on the notcher. They also have a nice hydraulic bender reasonably priced with good reviews. But for the amount of work I plan to do I think manual is ok.

Rodan HalfDork
1/20/19 9:55 a.m.

I have a JD2.  Works great on a cart I built from eBay plans, bends in the vertical plane, so no anchoring required.

Some tubing bender threads:

 Learn me: tubing benders

Which tubing bender

Good cheap tubing bender

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