Conduit bending math is the math used by electricians to decide where to apply force to electrical conduit to create the right shaped bend in the right place for accurate installation. Electrical conduit is the tubes or pipes that electrical wires run through in buildings or underground.
Electricians use a variety of tools to bend conduits, such as hand benders, table benders and offset benders. The exact measurements needed vary depending on the type of bender and the material of the conduit. Most electricians use pre-prepared charts to calculate bends, and some benders have the necessary numbers right on the tool. On the other hand, chart numbers are somewhat approximated, so understanding the underlying mathematical principles helps electricians complete neater jobs.
Another consideration is the strength of the conduit material. Some materials bounce back a bit after a bend, so the electrician needs to overcompensate by making a smaller angle than is needed to account for the bounce back. Conduit math or a conduit math chart help the electrician know how much to compensate depending on the diameter of the conduit and the material from which it is made. A basic understanding of trigonometry and the geometry of circles is necessary for electricians to compute conduit bends without the aid of a chart.