Have you ever needed to bend a length of PVC pipe for a project? PVC is such a great, light-weight building component for structures and costumes, but the sharp angles and straight lines leave a lot to be desired.
Today, Tom is going to show us how to do with with the help of our HomeRight Dual Temperature Heat Gun (affiliate). We use this heat gun for all sorts of projects around here, but using it to bend PVC was a new one for me. I’m sure there are plenty of other ways to bend PVC pipe, but this is how he does it.
Tom is building Zack’s Halloween costume (he goes ridiculously all out for Halloween!), and he needed some nice curves in the PVC pipe. Using heat resistant gloves, he turned the heat gun on the highest setting and warmed up the pipe, trying to bend it as it heated. Once the pipe was heated enough to become pliable, he curved it to the angle he wanted it to be.
As soon as he got it where he wanted it, he immediately ran a wet microfiber cloth across the bend. The wet cloth cools the PVC pipe down and effectively freezes the pipe in the position that it’s in.
Now for some warnings. Melted PVC does let off some not-so-great-for-you-fumes, so you’ll want to do this outside. Also watch to make sure that the PVC doesn’t get overheated, because it could end up looking like this.
Or even like this.
Tom says there’s a fine line between pliable and burnt, so really pay attention to what you are doing. Burnt pipe is okay if you are painting it or using it underneath other materials, but be careful if you want to use it without covering it.
Here’s what Tom’s costume structure looks like now. Any guesses as to what he and Zack are making? And here’s a hint – it’s NOT a dinosaur.
HomeRight is giving one of their awesome heat guns away to one of my readers – now you can make your own Halloween costumes a la Tom. 😉 Simply fill out the Rafflecopter box below to be entered to win (if you are reading this via email, you’ll need to click over to the blog to enter).
As a HomeRight Ambassador, I have been compensated for this post. All opinions are my own.