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Discussion Starter #1
Hey folks...

I'm having a real bear of a time getting a double-flare in some 1/4" line. It doesn't help that it's up underneath, and we all know how much fun it is working on your back....


Anyhow, i don't know if the tubing is just too hard (old or thick?) or what, but even when i clamp the sh$%t out of the bars (use a screwdriver as a lever to tighten the wing-nuts) the anvil just pushes the tube back through the bar.

The basic procedure i'm following is:
http://www.carcraft.com/howto/50919/index.html

This results in the anvil (die, the disc shaped bit) getting REALLY stuck in the end of the tube, but no half-flare at all. I know something is wrong because i have to crank REALLY hard on the clamp to even get it to go in... like hand-hurty hard.

It's just not right.

Has anyone else experienced this? Google says no...

;-(


Thanks!
 

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I didn't run into that problem when I did mine. could the tool itself be bad or worn out? a ridge on the anvile causing it to not flare smoothly? maybe try lubricating the anvil so it slides in easier?
 

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Is it a stainless line?
 

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Are you using the right dies? Thought my lines were 3/8ths. :dontknow:
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks folks!

In no particular order:


1) The size is 1/4"... this is because it's not on the elco, but rather the s-10 beater. It's the 1/4" combined line from the rear. The truck has ABS, but this doesn't seem relevant,

2) I'm pretty sure it's not SS. The reason i'm doing this is because it rusted through at the first bend to go back (under the driver door) after coming out of the MC area. It had that coil on it, which seems to have the sole purpose of catching moisture and salt to cause rust.....

3) I'm using the right die... i think. It's the one where the stem fits snugly into the tube. None of the others are even close. It's a brand new cheap-ass Advance Auto tool.

4) I hacksawed and filed the first attempt, and then dremel-cutoff and emery paper the second. The metal just isn't folding at ALL. Even with massive, massive pressure.

5) Heat isn't a bad idea, but it shouldn't be required? I'm doing this under the vehicle, which sucks.


All the videos i see on youtube, and my own hazy previous experience doing this years ago was it was MUCH easier. A snap. My problem isn't getting a good flare, it's getting ANY sort of flare!

;-(

But, thanks again for the input! All things to think about...
 

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that must be some absurdly hard steel. lol
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Yeah, it sure is! Here's what i've figured out:

1) i HAVE been using the wrong die. One size too large, but the stem fit inside! It also got massively STUCK inside the line.

2) Practicing on the bench with the good part of the line i took out does not help. No matter how hard i crank the clamps closed, and with the smaller die, all i can form is the barest start of a bubble before the line slides out of the clamp.


It's crazy! The steel can't be THAT strong! The serrations on the tool show visible wear from the handful of times i've used it, and clearly the tool is a hunk of junk.

Normally, i'm no fan of the buy-use-return for tools.. but this piece is going back to Advance Auto. And i guess i'll try to find a better one.

Maybe anneal the steel a little? Heat/quench?

Thanks again guys!
 

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Had the same problem, turned out to be the tool itself genuine made in china/japan junk.Purchased an AMERICAN MADE tool and worked fine .
 

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Yup, the problem is the cheap tool. You REALLY do need a quality tool when flaring tubes. The Ridgid brand tool that is mentioned in that Car Craft article is the one that I use and it works like a champ. In fact, that Car Craft article is the same one that I read when I was first learning how to flare. Just like you, I ignored the part about using a quality tool and thought I could get away just fine with a cheap auto part store tool and I ended up with the same troubles you're having. I went ahead and returned that piece of junk and headed over to Grainger for the Ridgid tool. I tell you, the difference is night and day...you know, the tool actually works! All of the flares I have done have turned out looking like factory and no need to use heat.

Making sure the ends of the tube are flat/square and fully deburred is vital. You have the right idea using files and emery paper, but I wouldn't make my cuts with a hacksaw or a Dremel. The Ridgid flare tool kit comes with a good quality tube cutter that does the job.
 

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I have a Craftsman flaring tool and it recommends that you file a bevel or chamfer at the end of the tube to aid the anvil in starting the flare. Add a drop of oil to the anvil at the tube.
 

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Flaring tool junk

I purchased an advance auto parts flaring tool. About $35.00 it would only flare off to one side or just push the tubing through the anvil.. I returned it and went to NAPA, not cheap but it will flare. I no longer buy tools from auto zone, advance or O'rileys and no Performance tools as all have failed and most are a piece of junk. The advance auto coil spring compressor is DANGEROUS...
 

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TrannyMike
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I have a Craftsman flaring tool and it recommends that you file a bevel or chamfer at the end of the tube to aid the anvil in starting the flare. Add a drop of oil to the anvil at the tube.

novelle is right about filing a bevel into the line first. I've done double flairs many times. Good tool + bevel = success! :beer:
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Sure enough, it was the tool.

I returned the junk, and went to the Auto Zone to see if they had the same garbage...


Their "rental' tool is "OEM" brand, and is in a blow-molded red case. I don't know if it's as good as the Rigid or Snap-On would be, but it worked like a charm twice in a row....

First on the bench for practice and then while lying on my back... perfect!

This tool was only $30 to purchase (the crappy Advance one was $33), and of course as a 'rental' they're happy to take it back.

Excellent!

Thank you again, guys, for your help!
 
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