Thursday, March 15, 2012

To Make a Single Ox Yoke, Part 14

How to Bend an Ox Bow with an 8N Tractor and a Cream Can

There are a number of ways to bend an ox bow. Here's one.

I've had a piece of PVC pipe that is probably as near antique as PVC pipe can get; I removed it from our kitchen sink drain when we moved our kitchen to another room in the house.

I tried a hot air popcorn popper, and hot sand warmed in a coffee maker, to warm it, but neither worked. My final solution, as you see here, works quite well.

I slipped the PVC pipe over the end of the smokestack of my son-in-law's 8N Ford tractor, with the engine running at a fast idle.

I switched ends on the PVC pipe every few minutes to warm the pipe evenly. When it became pliable and rubbery, it was ready for bending. 

I wrapped it around the end of an appropriate size cream can and held it in place until it cooled. Heavy leather gloves and a windy evening were necessary safety requirements for this job.
It really took quite a bit of experimentation to get it just right. But, next time, it should be as easy as it looks in the pictures. The PVC pipe is pretty forgiving in that it can be reheated and reformed.

Now I need to flatten the ends and find a means of attachment.

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