Why Custom Aluminum Tubing Is Right for your New Product

Why Custom Aluminum Tubing Is Right for your New Product

Why Custom Aluminum Tubing Is Right for your New Product

When it comes to bringing innovative ideas to market, the choice of materials plays a crucial role. Many inventors and designers often start their projects using readily available materials such as PVC tubing, or off-the-shelf tubes like painters poles or mops handles. These materials might work for showing your friends what you had in mind, but if you want a telescopic tube for a new product, you want a material with a proven commercial track record. This is where aluminum tubing shines for both fixed length tubing for new products as well as extendable metal tubing for new products.

This article is meant as a resource. Unfortunately, we don’t have time to sit on the phone with every inventor that reaches out, but we DO want to help you. That’s why we’ve invested to build out resources including TestriteAluminum.com, TestriteOEM.com and our Youtube page to help you see for yourself all that we can offer, so that you can design the product yourself and then we can help you manufacture it. Use this article as a roadmap to help you understand why aluminum tubing is the right choice and then to build prototypes and finally, moving forward with a made in USA commercializable custom tube from Testrite!

The Starting Point: Common Tubing Materials

PVC and other plastic tubes are popular for several reasons. They are readily available, affordable, and easy to cut. Here’s why inventors and designers often start with these materials:

  • Accessibility: Plastic tubing is easy to find at most hardware stores, making it a convenient choice for quick prototypes.
  • Cost-Effectiveness: PVC and similar materials are inexpensive, which is ideal for early-stage projects with limited budgets.
  • Ease of Use: These materials are simple to work with, requiring minimal tools and expertise.

However, as the design matures, these materials often reveal their limitations:

  • Flexibility: With plastic you’re limited to the colors and sizes available, as well as to fixed lengths of tubing.
  • Strength: Plastic tubing will bend and bow, or even break under stress
  • Durability: Exposure to UV light and extreme temperatures may damage plastic tubing
  • Rigidity: For applications requiring stable and sturdy structures, plastic’s flexibility can be a drawback.
  • Aesthetics: While a plastic sample may help provide your idea could work, PVC tubing doesn’t provide a polished look most commercial products have.

Similarly, telescopic tubes used in products like mops offer convenience but don’t not provide the customizability or strength needed for most projects, unless you’re also building a cheap mop.

The Advantages of Aluminum Tubing

If you’re developing a new product, Aluminum tubing may be the perfect material for your new invention. Aluminum tubing helps to take your design to the next level offering increased strength, incredibly portability, corrosion resistance, flexibility, and an attractive look. Here’s why aluminum tubing is an ideal choice for inventors and designers:

Strength and Durability

Aluminum has an excellent strength-to-weight ratio, meaning it can handle substantial loads without bending or breaking. Its inherent durability ensures that structures made from aluminum tubing can withstand harsh environments and remain functional over time.

Aluminum tubing is available in a variety of wall thicknesses, which explains how thick the walls (sides) of the tube are. Typically, new product developers want to start with the thinnest and therefore most cost effective tubing possible, which is Testrite’s .038” Wall Aluminum telescopic tubing. If that proves to not be thick enough, a heavier duty tube like Testrite’s .058” Wall Aluminum Tubing may be appropriate.

Every application is different and it’s important to test to see what works in your application, aluminum tubing has proven itself over 100+ years. Aluminum tubing, first made in 1913, only predates Testrite’s founding in 1919 by 6 years. We’ve grown up together!


Despite its strength, aluminum is lightweight. This property is particularly beneficial for projects where portability is critical. Whether you’re designing a new product for overlanding, aerospace, hunting, fishing, networking, or helping out around the house, Testrite has a range of parts, accessories, and tooling that may be of help. Aluminum tubing provides the necessary support without adding excessive weight.

Corrosion Resistance

When Steel oxidizes, it forms rust, which is the steel being eaten away. Aluminum when it oxidizes forms a protective oxide layer which is harder than the original aluminum. This means Aluminum is incredibly resistant to corrosion. Aluminum tubing may be appropriate for both indoor and outdoor applications, as it can withstand exposure to moisture and other environmental elements without rusting. Again, test in your application first!

Versatility and Customization

Aluminum tubing is available in a wide range of sizes. Testrite stocks aluminum tubing as thin as 5/16” diameter and as large as 2” diameter currently. We stock round aluminum tubing for telescoping as well as square aluminum tubing for telescoping. We can also provide square telescoping tubing, though it’s not available for inline purchase. Aluminum can be easily cut, drilled, and shaped, allowing for precise adaptation to your application.

Aesthetic Appeal

With its sleek, modern appearance, anodized, painted, and powder coated aluminum tubing enhances the visual appeal of any project. Anodizing provides a modern look that emphasizes the natural attributes of the metal. Paint is a low cost way to provide a uniform look. Finally, Powder Coating is available in qty 25+, and powder coating offers a wide range of color options (the more volume of parts to be finished, the more options become commercially feasible).

Transitioning to Aluminum Tubing

We developed TestriteAluminum.com to help provide inventors and companies launching new products the parts and pieces to build your own prototypes in a low cost and independent way. Here are some tips for those starting out:

  • Start Small: Begin by trying out aluminum tubing in the most basic aspect of your application. Will it handle the weight/stresses? What size tubing feels appropriate? Will the thin wall .038” aluminum tubing work, or do you need something heavier duty like the .058” wall telescopic tubing?
  • Build a Prototype: We make buying tubing and parts easy. You can buy cut to size aluminum tubing right on TestriteAluminum.com. Do you need a custom telescopic tube for new product? You’ve come to the right place! You can check out our video on How to Build Telescopic Aluminum Tubing, which will walk you through the steps.
  • Test, Test, and Test: The best way to know if an item will work is to use it. Test it on a good day and a bad day. See if it works., Are there tweaks that would make it better? Great, improve your design. Always test in a way that if your prototype fails, no one and no property will be harmed. Keep in mind, you’re testing something no one has ever done before, be careful!

Moving into Production

Once you’ve figured out exactly what works and you’re ready to make the investment to move ahead building up inventory and selling the item, you need to decide who will manufacture it. Many customers who have their own existing fabrication teams will simply buy the parts and make products in house, and as your volume grows, TestriteAluminum.com offers volume discounts. If you feel you need a better price for your volume, feel free to reach out to a member of our quoting team.

If you’re ready to move from Prototype to Production, you need Qty 25+ manufactured, and you want Testrite to manufacture it for you, head on over to www.TestriteOEM.com. Testrite is an Original Equipment Manufacturer. That means we make parts for other companies products. On TestriteOEM.com you can find out about our wide range of in house fabrication capabilities, from riveting to welding, from aluminum tube bending to manufacturing custom brackets. We even do custom color powder coating, laser sheet cutting, and large format printing. Need custom foam inserts? We do that too. Spend some time on TestriteOEM to learn about which capabilities might be right for your project. You would also benefit at this stage from visiting our Youtube page where we show a wide range of fabrication capabilities which can be easier to understand and digest in video form.

Ready to Request a Quote? Click our Request Fast Quote and complete the form. Please please please upload a print, even if it’s a hand sketch. Did you make a prototype with parts from TestriteAluminum among other places? Great! Send us a photo or video showing us exactly what it is and how it will be used so that we can provide the most complete quote possible the first time. Let us know any accessories you will need, including bases, steel brackets, pack out requirements, and more.


Testrite’s Aluminum telescopic tubing is a game-changer for inventors and designers looking to commercialize their inventions.

Aluminum’s combination of strength, durability, lightweight, and versatility makes it an ideal material for a wide range of applications, while Testrite's wide range of existing parts, tooling, and know how make it easy to move from idea to prototype in days not months. Aluminum tubing can provide the reliability and performance needed for attractive, commercial, and long-lasting designs.

We wish you success and hope we can work on your large production run soon!