Stewart-MacDonaldEverything for building and repairing stringed instruments!
Your order cart Your order | Account | Saved list
Sign in
800-848-2273, 9AM-6PM EST, M-F
Home Free catalog Quick order International Customer service

Home : Tools : Special tools for Bending sides : Bending Iron

Bending Iron

Read 29 Reviews   |   Write a Review

Variable temperature and versatile bending radii. Here's a well-made iron that's ideal for bending wet or steamed sidewood in the small shop.

See details below

Email a friend
Bending Iron
  Item# Description In stock Price Quantity
0689 Domestic, 120-volt Yes

4049 International, 220-volt Yes

0688 Mandolin/Violin Side Bending Extension Yes

Selected currency  


Related items

Side Bending Practice Wood

Side Bending Strap

Archtop Side Set

Rosewood Back and Side Set for Small Guitar

Historical Lute Construction

Side Bending Practice Wood
Side Bending Strap
Archtop Side Set
Rosewood Back and Side Set for Small Guitar
Historical Lute Construction

Crafted from 6-1/4" long cast aluminum, it features variable temperature control and a versatile shape allowing a wide variety of bending radii.

Tip: Bending wood successfully requires practice, and we recommend using stainless steel Side Bending Straps to support wood sides during bending. We offer inexpensive practice wood and free instructions to help you get started.

The Bending Iron's highest temperature is approximately 500° (good bending temperature is between 350° and 400°). A surface thermometer placed on the aluminum iron is the best way to monitor the temperature.

To bend the tight curved sides of a mandolin or violin, screw on our unique #0688 Mandolin/Violin Side Bending Extension.

The sturdy wooden base can be clamped to your workbench horizontally or vertically.

#0689 Domestic model is a 120-volt (200 watt) AC electrical appliance. It has a U.S. standard Type B plug with two flat parallel prongs and a grounding pin.

#4049 International model is a 220-volt (200 watt) AC electrical appliance has international plug CEE 7/7 (compatible with Type E and F receptacles) with two round prongs and two grounding clips on the sides and female contact to accept the grounding pin.

/\ Top of product page
 Ratings and reviews
Bending Iron
Bending Iron
4 out of 5 stars
Based on 29 ratings Write a Review
Sort reviews by
Displaying 11 – 20 < 1  2  3 >
5 7-12-2012
Works just fine!

I have bought this bending iron (220 Volt version) a few years back (2008) and it works just fine, no complaints so far (except first signs of disintegrating insulating pad at the base).

I have read repeatedly of poor performance regarding heating up speed (like 20 minutes or so) and/or max. (insufficient) temperature that could be reached. I can NOT confirm such shortcomings which maybe are due to some "Monday morning production" heating elements.

My iron takes about 8 minutes until reaching working temp. (water drops on the top will jump off the iron as sizzling balls) and will hold it at setting 4 (scale goes from Lo - 2 - 6 - High) or for some woods even less. Holds temperature within a pretty narrow range.

M. Schmid  Switzerland
5 3-26-2012
Too Easy!

I just finished my first bend using highly figured maple. The instructions say it is difficult to bend figured maple but I found it almost too easy. I have a background in metal working and bending. I found that it bent wood very similar to metal. Just spritz the side your bending and apply light pressure and watch it go. Awesome wood bender. 5 star from me.

Hink  Ohio Read my reviews (2)
4 1-24-2012
bending iron for binding

I bought this about 5 months ago. Finally used it. I mainly use it for bending my wood bindings. It did take a little while to heat up, but theres plenty to do in the shop, so Just plan ahead! I threaded a smooth shank bolt into the end so I could get the super tight radius that I need. 1/4 " to be exact. And on walnut, it worked great! Patience is all thats needed in bending wood. slow and steady will get it done!

Loux Custom Instruments  Harleysville,Pa Read my reviews (3)
2 1-14-2012
Bending Iron

First time ever trying to bend guitar sides. The Iron took a long time to heat, and then didn't stay hot enough do the job on oak. I placed a piece of 85 pound/foot rail on a kerosine heater, heated that to 375 degrees and got my first side bent acceptably.

Woody F.  Baudette, MN
4 1-01-2012
I'm Happy

I bought this mostly to make mandolin ribs. I had the same problems like the rest, Like the extension piece and having to screw backing the bolts at the core. I worked slowly with the heat low. You gotta craw before you walk.

Joseph Fitzpatrick  Lexington KY Read my reviews (4)
4 11-28-2011
Great execution but Needs Improvement

This bending iron is great. It takes about 20 minutes to heat up but once it is fully heated, it keeps a constant temperature. Proper planing to uniform thickness on sides and pre soaking in hot water is pivotal for proper bending. The iron itself is not cylindrical, but rather an upside down teardrop. This allows for tighter bending on aggressive curves.

The only issue I have with this is that the mounting holes are circular, which is difficult to clamp. When attaching it to my workbench, I really had to crank down with some C Clamps to be able to get it stabilized on the bench.

Overall, I would recommend this item to someone who wants a consistent and reliable means to manually bend sides.

jtwood411  Kentwood, MI Read my reviews (2)
Customer supplied image for review
3 8-17-2011
Disappointing Quality

The heat and control work fine but the tapped hole for the small mandolin component was not properly threaded. The hole was full of metal chips and the thread edges were bent indicating that a bottom tap was not used to clean up the threads. The bolt provided was cheap Chinese junk with very poor threads. I expected better.

The Lefty Luthier  Spring Branch, Texas Read my reviews (40)
4 8-16-2011
Bending Iron

I ordered a bending iron from Stewmac because it looked slightly better than the alternative I was looking at from another company. I was planning on purchasing my bending iron and a couple of other small items from Stewmac and the rest of my gear from somewhere else.

However when my bending iron arrived, there was slight damage to thread on the mandolin attachment. I could have used the iron as it was but was worried that I might have problems in the future if I keep screwing on and removing the mandolin attachment when I need it. I contacted Stewmac about various options. Without hesitation they sent me another iron that arrived in less than a week. They always answered my emails within a day or two and kept me well informed of progress.

When the bender arrived, I found it really easy to use and for my first bend, I successfully created a very nice cutaway. I found the iron doesn't stay at a constant temperature as well as I expected and took too long to heat up but I am pleased I bought it. In hindsight, I should have bought the temperature gauge at the same time as the iron. I bought the temperature gauge later and also bought the bending strap.

Because of Stewmac's fantastic customer service skills, I bought all the rest of my gear off them too.

Rhys' Guitars  Australia Read my reviews (7)
4 7-25-2011
Bending Iron

This is a very useful and versatile tool, not just for bending guitar sides, but for making novelty items such as a back-scratcher anything else you can dream up. Very easy to use but can get very hot.

Dan O'Connor  Ireland Read my reviews (2)
5 7-17-2011
bending iron

Fantstic piece of kit, i could have bought the same iron in the u.k but buying from Stewmac made so much sense, i saved at least £50.00 buying from you guys compared with the u.k and that's including shipping and custom duty... just wish i could stop burning myself though, lol... :o)

Rob the luthier  Scotland Read my reviews (8)
Customer supplied image for review
Displaying 11 – 20 < 1  2  3 > /\ Top of Reviews

Shown on page 76 of our latest catalog.
Select your items, then click ADD to order

To add items to your order, select the check box next to the item you want. You can edit the quantity you wish to purchase here, or in Your Order.

Select your items, then click Save for later

To add items to your saved list, select the check boxes next to the items you want. You can edit the quantity you wish to save here, or in your Saved List.

Toll-free order line:   800-848-2273   9am-6pm Eastern Time, M-F

Your order | Your account | Trade Secrets E-mail Newsletter
Home | Free catalog | Catalog Quick Order | International | Customer service
Our guarantee | Shipping | Security & Privacy | Contact us
Site map | About Us | Employment
© Copyright 2014 Stewart-MacDonald
Your shopping is secure with VeriSign! Trusted Commerce