Edmonton Valve & Fitting Blog

Our CNC Tube Bender Delivers Speed & Accuracy

Mon, Mar 05, 2018 @ 14:03 PM / by Katie Reid posted in Value Added Services, Tubing, Custom Solutions


Complex bends and large runs are easy thanks to computer controls

edmonton valve custom bends

Need a 180-degree tube bend? No problem! Our CNC tube bender is fast and precise. Tube bending is one of our custom solutions, which you can learn more about here:

Custom Solutions

We love to show off our CNC tube bender when customers take a tour of our shop. At 10 feet long, three feet high and three feet wide, this machine looks like a brute. But while it's powerful enough to bend bar stock, we use it instead to bend tubing with delicate precision.

The CNC bender can handle any tubing from a quarter-inch diameter up to one inch, and any wall thickness. It can bend any angle, even 180 degree bends. Its size allows it to handle bends with a radius of up to 42 inches.

One more time

But the big advantage of the CNC bender is repeatability. CNC stands for "Computer Numerical Controls." Once we program your job into the computer, we can create exactly the bends you ask for every time, no matter how complex the combination of angles.

We can create hundreds of finished pieces, and each will be identical. And it's fast, so even if you just need a couple of simple bends in a piece of tubing, the CNC bender is still ideal for the job.

When we finish your job, we store the specifications in the computer forever with a unique identification number. If you gave us a drawing in 2010, you can use it to produce fresh copies today. As with any valuable database, we backup our data to guard against accidents.

Copying and improving

In fact, we don't even have to start with a drawing. Give us the part you want to replicate, and we'll put it in our vector machine that works with the CNC bender. The vector machine scans your part, produces a 3D drawing of it, and sends the information to the bender.

We don't have to worry about wasted tubing, because our machinery will tell us the exact length to cut, down to a thousandth of an inch.

Maybe you have a damaged piece of tubing that you need to replace. We can use that as the starting point to recreate the original. We'll scan it and adjust the drawing to return everything to its proper alignment. We'll even print out the new drawing for you.

Or maybe you aren't exactly sure what the finished part should look like. We can start a drawing and show it to you, then make any adjustments you want until the design meets your approval.

Even if the original part is fine but you want to revise the design, we can adjust the dimensions in the computer to add an inch here or a bend there. The CNC bender assigns a different part number to each version, so you can always go back to the original design if you want.

Quick turnaround

Because the CNC bender is so quick and efficient, we often can turn out a single-part order on the same day it comes in. More involved projects usually can be turned out within a week.


Next: Would you like a demonstration? Please contact us to schedule a time:

Contact Us

(Prefer to talk live? Please give us a call at 780-437-0640.)

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Small Bore Tubing Has Big Advantages Over Piping

Wed, Nov 22, 2017 @ 08:11 AM / by Alecia Robinson posted in Cost Savings, Tubing


It's light, it bends, it creates a smooth flow path, and the installed cost is lower

tubing vs pipe.png

Threaded connection points are the most vulnerable areas to leakage in a fluid distribution system so why not reduce the number of threaded connections and switch your pipe system to tube.

Tubing Data PDF

Let's bust a myth about small-bore tubing. Too many people still think it's more expensive than pipe. That might be true if all you did was buy the tubing and leave it in a pile on the floor. But whether you buy pipe or tubing, you still have to install it. That's where tubing makes up the cost difference, and then some.

If you are welding pipe, you'll need a hot-work permit, plus a welding expert who will cost you about $100 to $150 per hour. A regular tube fitter can assemble small-bore tubing with only a half-day of training. And we offer the training as well as the tubing.

If you are installing pipe with threaded fittings, someone still needs to cut all the threads. With tubing, assembly is quick and easy. By the way, the reason pipe walls are so thick is not to hold more pressure, but so that material can be cut away to make the threads. The fact is, tubing has a much higher ratio of strength to weight than pipe does.

Extra advantages

Your piping design options will be restricted by the limitations of pipe. Pipe has to make a straight run from one connection to the next, whereas tubing can be bent. The bending means you can change direction without having to add a series of fittings. That means fewer potential leak points, and a smoother flow path than you would get with the sharp angles of piping.

Aesthetically, tubing looks a lot nicer too.

When it comes to weight, tubing is the obvious choice over pipe. That's important not only for the weight of the fluid system in place, but also for shipping. If you are an OEM and building an assembly, more weight means higher shipping costs.

Tools and training

Despite the name, small bore tubing is small only in comparison to the pipe it replaces. It's actually larger than most tubing, and includes anything from 3/4 inch on up. That means it requires special tools and training. But don't worry: Edmonton Valve & Fitting provides both. You don't even have to buy the tools, because we rent them.

Over the years, we've seen demand increase for our hydraulic swaging units and tube benders, which tells us that more companies are realizing to the advantages of tubing

Will small-bore tubing really save money compared to piping? We have a cost calculator that can show you. Call us at 780-437-0640 or contact us through our website, and then tell us the lengths of pipe you need, how many fittings, and other details of your project. We we can come up with an estimated cost comparison if you use small bore tubing instead.  

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Small Hole Creates A Big Advantage For Flush Systems

Thu, Nov 02, 2017 @ 13:11 PM / by Alecia Robinson posted in Tubing, Fittings


Special Swagelok flange adapter with pre-drilled orifice simplifies design


Threaded connections can be problematic when dealing with rotating equipment. Swagelok offers orifice flanges to reduce the number of threaded connections within your flush systems. Get in touch with us today to learn more.

Get In Touch

Sometimes a small modification can make a big difference in a fluid system component. Take, for instance, Swagelok's flange adapters. We've written about them before, explaining how they provide a threadless, weldless transition from flanged pipe to tubing.

We have a special flange adapter made with flush systems in mind. For our customers with rotating equipment, we offer the Swagelok orifice union and orifice flange adapters. Because the orifice is pre-drilled into the flange, between the tube fitting and the flange itself, you get a unique solution that helps reduce the number of threaded connections in your flush systems. You no longer need to worry about threaded adapters leaking due to vibration or freeze-thaw cycles. You'll also save money by not having to weld the flange.

As with all our flange adapters, they reduce both the number of connections and the overall weight.

Typically the orifice is drilled out to 1/8 inch, but we can supply custom sizes too.

If you are already using flanges to simplify your system design, reduce weight and end up with fewer leak points, you already understand the value of these flange adapters for flush systems in rotary equipment. If you haven't yet made the switch to flange adapters, we can help you get started. All it takes is a call to 780-437-0640, or you can contact us through our website.

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What Are Swagelok's PFA Fittings All About?

Wed, Oct 25, 2017 @ 09:10 AM / by Adam Telenko posted in Tubing, Valves, Hoses, Fittings


PFA 1.jpgpfa 2.jpg

We have a full line of PFA fittings, valves, and tubing, to get your copy of these catalogues download them below.

PFA Catalogues

Swagelok carries a variety of materials for our fittings and tubing so selecting the correct one for the job can be daunting. We discussed some of the options in our blog on special alloys earlier this year but today we will further explore our PFA line of tubing and fittings.

PFA, or Perfluoroalkoxy, is a type of fluoropolymer. It has very similar properties as the more common polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) – also called Teflon.

PFA is generally used for plastic lab equipment because of its optical transparency, overall flexibility, and extreme resistance to chemical attack. PFA is also often used as tubing for handling critical or highly corrosive processes.

What to consider

You can use Teflon or metal fittings with Swagelok PFA tubing. Just remember using PFA fittings with PFA tubing you need to use a Swagelok groove cutting tool to 'groove' the tubing and achieve higher working pressures.

Some other important things to consider when selecting PFA tubing and fittings are the following:
  • An audible ‘click’ sound ensures tubing is properly inserted
  • 316 SS fittings can be used with PFA tubing
  • PFA Plug and Needle valves are available 

How to order

PFA part numbers are slightly different than Swagelok’s common tube fittings, for example:

  • PFA-420-1-4 for a 1/4" male connector
  • PFA-820-6 for a 1/2” tube union

But don't worry about memorizing part numbers, give your local Swagelok experts a call and we will be glad to help out.

Additional resources

In a hurry or have a question? Please click here to get in touch - we respond fast! Or call 780.437.0640.


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Forget Trial And Error; Take Our Tube Bending Course

Tue, Oct 10, 2017 @ 15:10 PM / by Alecia Robinson posted in Training, Value Added Services, local expert, Tubing


Acquire the skills that will save time, save money and increase system efficiency


Edmonton Valve has been offering a variety of courses over the years, from teaching about fitting installation to improving sampling system performance, we've got you covered. Download our free training catalogue today and find a training class to suit your teams development.

Training & Education

What do valves, fittings, gauges and most other Swagelok components have in common? They need tubing in order to be of any use in a fluid system. Without tubing, all you'd have is a pile of parts.

It's vital, then, to understand how to handle tubing, plan a route for it, cut the correct length of tubing and bend it accurately.

There's not need to learn by trial and error. There's no need to wonder if your co-workers are passing along any bad habits if you rely on them to show you want to do. Rely instead on Edmonton Valve & Fitting. Our four-hour Tube Bending Essentials class on tube bending will show you what you need to know. With guidance from a certified expert, you'll learn how to consistently make optimal tube bends, and do the work efficiently.

What we cover

We start at the beginning: How to handle tubing without damaging it. We'll show you how to properly cut and debur the tubing as well as how to bend it. You'll learn how to calculate the length of tubing you need to get from Point A to Point B. That's especially important when you are using expansion loops and offsets, which we'll also cover.

Good craftsmanship not only saves money by reducing the amount of expensive scrap, it also improves fluid system performance.

The course has hand-on exercises as well as classroom instruction, so you'll be able to practice what you just learned. 

Who should attend

Anyone who has to install tubing can benefit from this course: fabricators, contractors and technicians. But it's also valuable knowledge for people who design fluid systems: engineers and draftsmen. Anyone responsible for inspecting or maintaining a fluid system also needs to know if the job was done right: quality control personnel and safety engineers.

Tube Bending Essentials is only one of many classes that we offer. You can contact us through the linked page to sign up for the next class in our new training center, or we can bring the class to your location. If you prefer to talk with a live person, we're at 780-437-0640.

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ABSA and MTRs: We Have Your Parts Covered Part 2

Tue, Sep 12, 2017 @ 15:09 PM / by Alecia Robinson posted in Online Services, local expert, Tubing, Resources


We have documentation for components for systems running at more than 15 psi


Need an MTR for one of your Edmonton Valve orders? Head over to edmontonvalve.com/mtrs to download a copy, all you need is the heat number which is stamped right on your tubing.

As we discussed in an earlier post about ABSA and CRNs, the Alberta Boiler Safety Association is the pressure equipment safety authority authorized by the Alberta Government to administer and delivery safety programs related to boilers, pressure vessels and pressure piping systems through their complete life cycles. In this weeks blog we will discuss how ABSA relates to Swagelok when it comes to Material Test Reports (MTRs).


For threaded piping and tubing, ABSA suggests that owner companies have certain procurement and purchasing requirements from its approved vendor list. Although Material Test Reports may not be required by construction code, MTRs may be required in owner specification. So it's up to the owner to train personnel in the MTR verification and other documentation requirements

MTRs and CoCs

Edmonton Valve & Fitting can help out by providing documentation. We provide MTRs for all tubing orders. They are based on the heat number printed on the lay line of the tubing. We also have a self-serve option available for MTRs for tubing online at edmontonvalve.com/mtrs. Simply enter the heat number and you can download the MTR. If you are cutting the tubing, then the heat number should be written onto the tubing

MTRs are typically not provided with other products, but they are available on request. All parts are traceable for alloy materials with a three-letter heat code that is stamped onto all fitting components which meets the ABSA requirement. It speeds up the process if you request the MTR at the time of order.  Keep in mind that a tubing tee could have up to 10 MTRs associated with it.

Another commonly requested document we receive is a Certificate of Compliance. We can provide a Certificate of Compliance upon request, just mention this request when speaking to your customer service associate.  A CoC will be issued for the entire order, and parts are listed out.

Additional resources

In a hurry or have a question? Please click here to get in touch - we respond fast! Or call 780.437.0640.


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Freezing Weather's Almost Gone, But It's Not Forgotten

Thu, Apr 27, 2017 @ 09:04 AM / by Alecia Robinson posted in winterization, Tubing


Start planning for next winter now with our insulation and tracing packages

insulated & heat trace.png

Edmonton Valve is your single source for tracing products, equipment, and training. To find out more about our line download the Pre-Insulated Tubing Bundles Catalogue.

Now that the weather is warming up around Edmonton, it's tempting to forget about the cold-weather hassles we're leaving behind. But you know better. You know that this is the time to start thinking about how you'll make improvements before next winter comers.

Edmonton Valve & Fitting makes it easier because we can be your single-source supplier for heat tracing and insulation packages. It starts with the tubing itself: bare coil tubing, traced tubing, and insulated tubing. We also have pre-insulated tubing, banding and clips, heat transfer compounds, steel tags, heat shrink boots, fluid distribution headers, valves, and of course all the tube fittings and unions you need to complete a job.

A dual stage tube straightener is available for rental to complete your job.  This will help get all the kinks out of any bare coil tubing size. 

Whether yours is a glycol, steam or electrical application, you don't have to go to 10 different suppliers, because this is one area where we go beyond Swagelok's product offerings to make sure you have what you need.

Why worry about this now? Because you need to think about coordinating with your planned shutdowns, facility upgrades and capital projects. Most of our clients go for two to five years between shutdowns. If you need to replace steam lines, proper tracing and insulation can't be a last-minute add on.

Get it right

Components can't do their jobs well if they aren't properly installed. Proper training also increases safety and decreases costs. For people who don't spend a lot of time installing and upgrading tracing packages, such as crews for insulating contractors and construction contractors, it's smart to get a refresher. We're here to help on that score as well.

We offer a full-day class each month on tube fitting installation training, a mix of classroom lecture and hands-on practice. The seminar emphasizes choosing correct tubing and fittings for the site, proper handling, preparing, and installing components to specification. Each participant gets to assemble tubing and fittings, then see how their work holds up under pressure in our burst chamber. Pass the class, and you get a certificate of completion that is ABSA recognized. 

Whenever you need to jog you memory, we also have detailed installation instructions in printed form, with reference photos.

So while you are enjoying the warm weather, make plans to keep everything running smoothly when it turns cold again. Call Edmonton Valve & Filling at 780-437-0640 or contact us through our website, and we can help you put together the insulation and tracing packages that you need.

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Grace Under Pressure: Swagelok's IPT Fittings

Tue, Jan 10, 2017 @ 09:01 AM / by Alecia Robinson posted in Tubing, Fittings


Cone-and-thread fittings make a tight, reliable seal

 IPT Fitting Diagram.png

 The image above highlights the key components of the IPT fitting.The cone and thread fittings are desgined to withstand medium and high pressure environments.

IPT Download

When you have a fluid system running at above-normal pressures, you need something sturdier than the standard Swagelok tube fitting. For great performance under pressure, we have the IPT series. We offer two types of IPT fittings: The medium pressure fittings are designed for up to 20,000 psig or 1378 bar and the high-pressure fittings for up to 60,000 psig or 4134 bar.

These cone-and-thread fittings are designed specifically for the oil and gas, chemical, petrochemical, water jet cutting and blasting, and aerospace industries.

A good angle

The threaded tubing ends with a cone at a 59-degree angle. It fits into the primary seal surface, which has a 60-degree angle. All manufacturers use the same interference angle between the male cone and female body, which allows for interchangeability. This is one of the rare times Swagelok gives a green light to mixing its components with those from other manufacturers.

A collar surrounds this area. A threaded part, called a gland, creates a load on the collar to ensure a seal on the tubing. This is another area where standard procedure departs from the standard Swagelok tube fitting. Instead of prescribing a fixed number of turns for proper tightening, IPT fittings require a specific amount of torque.

Another key element in IPT fittings is a weep hole at the collar. It's a quick way to detect leaks and verify proper installation. Even steam leaks are easy to spot by applying a bit of Snoop leak detector at the weep hole. When removing the collar and gland for maintenance, the weep hole also releases trapped pressure to avoid a "live loaded" thread. But never use the weep hole to bleed the system or vent system pressure. This could cause a pressure-injection injury to your employees.

The medium-pressure and high-pressure components have the same basic design, but the parts are not interchangeable. The high-pressure version has a larger collar and gland, and the collar sits inside the gland when assembled. The high-pressure design also uses thicker wall tubing to compensate for threads.

Both the medium-pressure and high-pressure versions have anti-vibration assemblies available. That's useful when the fittings are placed near a compressor, for example. Again, the assemblies are not interchangeable. An easy way to spot the high-pressure version is its additional slotted collet, which must be pointed in the right direction for assembly. (The medium-pressure slotted collet can be oriented in either direction.)

Tough tubing

The special cold-drawn tubing used with IPT fittings is also different from the standard used in other applications. It's harder and has thicker walls in order to allow cutting away material for threads with a tap-and-die set. In a sense it's really a very small pipe. We'll gladly rent you the tools to do the coning and threading, or we can do it for you if you tell us the dimensions you need.

Another difference from ordinary tubing is the outer diameter, which is slightly smaller than the nominal tube OD.

The harder steel and thicker walls also come into play when bending the tubing. The bend radius must be larger, at least 1.25 inches for quarter-inch tubing. (Keep that in mind when planning out your installation, as you'll need some extra space.) Don't try using a hand tube bender; use the bench-top version as you will also experience greater spring back.

Even extra-tough tubing is softened by heat. That means high temperatures (greater than 93.33º C) will have an impact on the pressure rating of the connection. At 204º C, the pressure rating drops to 93 percent of normal for strain-hardened 316 stainless. At 537º C it drops to 84 percent of normal.

Multiple assemblies

If you've properly installed your IPT fittings, you can take them apart and reassemble them up to five times. But it's important to make sure the cone stays perfectly smooth. If the cone doesn't fit tight against the body, you won't get a proper seal. Tubing can be re-coned if you aren't sure, though be aware that doing so can shorten the length of the tubing.

So don't let the pressure get to you the IPT download has even more information on all the types of IPT fittings and ordering information.

IPT Download


Additional resources

In a hurry or have a question? Please click here to get in touch - we respond fast! 
Or call 780-437-0640

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Your Checklist for Tubing Quality

Fri, Dec 09, 2016 @ 11:12 AM / by Tristian McCallion posted in Tubing, Fittings


Quality is one of Swagelok's six core values; here we offer up a checklist to make sure you get the best quality out of your tubing and what to look for

Tubing EVF.png

It's important to know what to look for in tubing quality and we have you covered with our checklist below. Still looking for more information on tubing, download our Tubing Data PDF. 

Tubing Data PDF

There are 5 main parts to a tube fitting connection.  Nut, back ferrule, front ferrule, and fitting body are all parts that are manufactured to exacting tolerances and standards at Swagelok.  The fifth component, that Swagelok as a manufacturer has no control over, is the tubing. 

Setting the tubing standards

There are a number of standards that apply to tubing depending on material, but we will focus on the stainless steel specs as this makes up the bulk of what we see being used in northern Alberta.

ASTM sets a number of standards for tubing, so when you get your tubing, it is always a good practice to check the lay line on the tubing for the ASTM standard to which it is manufactured.  It should be printed on the tube, along with the heat number for the tubing.

For stainless steel tubing, ASTM A269 or A213 are common grades.  A269 refers back to ASTM A1016 General Requirements, which gives us the following information:

  • 13.1 – Finished tube shall be reasonably straight and have smooth ends free of burrs.
  • ASTM A269 also gives guidelines for the tolerances of the tubing OD. It is +- 0.005in.  Ovality is allowed to be two times the OD tolerance.

Even with the ASTM specs, there is a lack of standards and there can be variations in the quality of the tubing that you get.  Tubing quality really does depend on the integrity and quality consciousness of the tubing supplier. 

Tubing quality checklist

Before installing any piece of tubing into a Swagelok fitting, the installer should take a moment to take a look at the following items:

  • Is the tubing seamless or welded?  If it is welded are there any signs of corrosion or pitting along the weld bead? Can you see the weld bead on the OD?   If there are, it may create issues.
  • What is the hardness of the tubing?  For best performance with a Swagelok fitting, it is recommended that the tubing not exceed a Rockwell hardness of 90 HRB.
  • Make sure the surface finish is free of scratches.  As the tube fitting seals on the OD of the tubing, scratches can result in potential leak paths.
  • Check for ovality of the tubing.  Oval tubing should not be forced into the tube fitting as it may damage some of the components.
  • Check the OD and ID to make sure they are free of burrs.  A burr on the OD can scratch and damage sealing components.  A burr on the ID can get flushed downstream and damage O-rings or other seals in valves, regulators, or other components.
  • Check the wall thickness to make sure it is sufficient for the pressures that the system will see.
  • Check the tubing for concentricity, that is, check that the wall thickness is consistent all the way around the tubing.  You don’t want a thick wall on the top of the tube and thinner wall on the bottom.

If you have any questions about the quality of the tubing you are using, please contact your local Swagelok supplier.  Edmonton Valve has a number of tools that we can use to help improve the overall quality of your tube fitting connections.

For even more information, the Swagelok Tubing Data Sheet has lots of great information and pressure ratings for most common types of tubing.


Additional resources

In a hurry or have a question? Please click here to get in touch - we respond fast! 
Or call 780-437-0640


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Insulated Tubing Gives You Temperature Control

Fri, Oct 28, 2016 @ 12:10 PM / by Katie Reid posted in Training, Tubing


Because it differs from ordinary tubing, so do the installation instructions


There are times when ordinary tubing alone won't get the job done. One of those times is when you need to control the temperature of the fluid inside, or control the surface temperature of the tubing itself. That's when you might want to consider insulated tubing - download the catalogue below.

Download Pre-Insulated Tubing

Swagelok insulated tubing is designed for use in applications such as steam supply, condensate return, and gas and liquid transport lines, where weatherproofing and energy conservation are important. It helps protect personnel from hot process and steam lines, reduces heat loss, and offers a cost-effective alternative to field-installed insulation of small-diameter tubing systems.

Tubing lengths and bends

Because the tubing itself is different, so is the installation procedure.

First consider the length of tubing. You'll want to allow at least 12 inches of straight tubing before connecting it to fittings. For steam-trace tubing bundles, add enough length to connect the tracer to the supply connection and to the return connection. For electric-traced tubing bundles, add enough length to connect to the power supply. Include 6 inches for inside the junction box. Don't forget to include extra length to heat any other devices at the end of the bundle. Also, use the approved power connection and termination kits.

You'll want to use a centerline tool when you are bending tubing bundles to connect them to instrumentation. Start by cutting and removing the jacket and insulation on the tubing, so that you can see the process and tracer tubes. Insert the tube bundle through the seal boot in the tool, unscrew the center nut, and remove the center bend shoe. Now you'll be able to fully insert the tube bundle and gently bend the tubes against the outer shoes.

Install the center bend shoe and tighten the center nut. Bend the tubes against the center shoe until the tubes are parallel. Insert the tube bundle through the seal boot again, and remove the tubing bundle from the tool. To protect the insulation, seal the bundle ends with a heat shrink end seal boot.

Need further assistance on installation or have questions on our pre-insulated tubing bundles? Call our office, we are here to help at (780)-437-0640

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