Most searched

Air bending

Air bending is the most flexible method of bending sheet metal on a press brake. In combination with WILA’s durable and high quality precision tooling, air bending is the preferred bending method for the majority of bending applications.

Bend a variety of angles using a limited set of tools

Air bending with WILA segmented tooling enables you to bend a variety of bend angles and lengths, with just a limited set of tooling. Limiting your tooling selection to only what’s necessary leaves room for investing in tooling quality, leading to the lowest cost of ownership and maximum productivity for any press brake operation.

Tools for air bending



With just a limited number of WILA New Standard tools a large variety of bends can be made with different angles and inside radii, in various materials.

Less tool changes

With air bending less tool changes are needed, resulting in a higher press brake productivity.

Lower tonnage

Compared to bottom bending, air bending requires a lower tonnage.

Frequently Asked Questions

Air bending is the preferred bending method for most press brake applications. With just a limited set of tools you can make a wide variety of bends. Less tonnage is required compared to other bending methods. Air bending allows for a slim tool design, giving you more bending freedom. Additionally, it’s easier to compensate for springback.

The general rule of thumb for air bending steel is to select a V-opening of 6-8 times the sheet thickness. By deviating from this you can influence the product radius, the required bending force, degree of marking and minimum leg length. But be aware that a modified V-opening will also affect the flat pattern of the sheet. Learn more about the V-opening.

Using air bending, you can bend different angles with a limited set of tools and need to change them less often. Choose a tool combination with a sharp tip and groove angle for the greatest flexibility. Learn more about the tool angle.

Oddly enough, when air bending, it is not the tip radius of the punch that you use to influence the product radius, but the V-opening of the die. Choose the punch tip radius as close to the natural radius as possible without exceeding it. Learn more about the tip radius of the top tool.

Yes, with WILA standard tools, the shoulder radius is linked to the working height. By bending in a die with larger shoulder radii, less marking is visible on the product, or it is even possible to bend mark-free. Learn more about the shoulder radius of the bottom tool.

A larger tool height offers more bending freedom and also gives you the most flexibility in the future. When choosing the height, do take into account the stroke and installation height of the press brake. Learn more about tool height.

Choose a punch with a gooseneck for the most flexibility. The larger the gooseneck, the more bending freedom. This does come at the expense of maximum load capacity. Do you want to be able to set different angles with the same punch? Then choose a 28° point angle and a small gooseneck. A straight shape has the least bending freedom, but the highest load capacity. Learn more about tool shapes.

The shortest flange you can bend will depend on the V-opening and shoulder radius of your bottom tool and the angle of your bend. Check out the WILA Smart Tooling App for advice on the minimum flange length.

Check out our ‘Mark-free bending’ applications page, to learn how to minimize part marking while bending sheet metal.

Check out our ‘Bending near holes and cut-outs’ applications page, to learn how to prevent deformation of holes and cut-outs.

Questions about air bending?

Or any other type of sheet metal bending on a press brake? We're more than happy to share our expertise. Just give us a call.

Contact us

Find a dealer close to you

WILA dealers have the knowledge and expertise to support your press brake tooling needs. There is always a WILA dealer near you.

Find your local dealer
World Map Figure