The roll cage saga, has
finally come to an end. Would you believe that it has taken me over 9 month's
to make an internal roll cage. OK, where to start with this story, actually, I could write a book on this
one. BUT I will give a condensed version here.
I drew up a set of plans for
an internal roll cage, that I thought that I could build myself, with the help
of a few friends. My plan is to have 2 hoops, that are connected by runners . The front hoop, will be one
piece, that will have 6 bends in it, so that it rests on the Land Rover's tub floor. The rear hoop will have just
2 bends and it will rest on the upper seat box, in the tub. On the rear hoop, I will have 2 vertical tubes
located on both sides of the rear door openings. As for the runners, I will be using at least 4. ( I'll play
this by ear, during the build .)
One guy that was going to help me,
worked at a welding/fabricating firm. They have a pipe/tube bender.
After looking at my drawings, he agreed to bend my tubing. I purchased 12 meters of 45mm X 2.5mm Cold
Drawn Steel (CDS). I then cut the tubes to length and sent them off. At first I expected to have the tubing
back in a few days, then that changed to a few weeks..... month's..........
Well, after 5 month's and 4
deadlines passing, I was finally fed up with the lies and demanded my tubing
back. Would you believe, I never got my original tubing back ( no where's to be found and no idea where it
was ), so he gave me double so much back of a lower grade/quality pipe.
SO, now I thought, I'll give it a go myself and bend the tubing. Promptly, I bought a pipe bender locally.
The first try didn't go so well, the tube buckled in the middle of the bend. The second bend the same
thing...third bend, the same.....F'n pissed now! It was suggested to fill the tube with sand and
when I bend the tube, do it very slowly and continually move the die's location on the tube. Even this didn't
work. Then it was finally explained to me that you can't bend tube in a pipe bender. You can only bend
pipe in a pipe bender. Then it was suggested to use Blue Gas pipe for the roll cage material, apparently
it's a favourite option because of it's strength and lower cost.
Thinking I've made progress with the new found information/suggestions/idea's, I bought 12 meters of
Blue Gas Pipe. Once again I began bending the pipe and it was buckling in the middle's ......again !
Thoroughly pissed and uncertain if
I could ever build a roll cage, I decided to search the internet for
specialized Swedish firms that worked directly with bending tube. 30 - 40 phone calls later I found a small
firm in Lund, that does all types of remanufacturing for all types of vehicles. Talking with the owner, he
confirmed that yes he does and can bend tubing for "roll cages" , he agreed with the first selection of tube
I originally was going to build the roll cage with. An appointment was made...........finally progress!
The day came, 3 hours of
driving , I was in Lund at Competition Cars, which is owned/ran by Bengt
Wittlander. Bengt, was great, he directly got to business with my measurements , working with the tube
and setting up the bender. I have to add, Bengt is a true automotive enthusiast, we talked the whole time
about cars, old cars, race cars, and of course Land Rovers. We worked together bending the tubing, I have
to admitt, I didn't think that it would take so long. It took us over 3½ hours to make 8 bends, but the
final result was great and I was very pleased.
Finally I've made some
progress,- at a great expense - 6 hours in the car plus gas, one days vacation,
buying tube and pipe 3 times and buying a useless pipe bender. This is the point that things began to finally
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