Accurately measure the length of each tube segment (Figure 7.1). Inaccuracy can compromise joint quality. If the tube is too short, it will not reach all the way into the cup of the fitting and a proper joint cannot be made. If the tube segment is too long, system strain may be introduced which could affect service life.
Cut the tube to the measured lengths. Cutting can be accomplished in a number of different ways to produce a satisfactory squared end. The tube can be cut with a disc-type tube cutter (Figure 7.2), a hacksaw, an abrasive wheel, or with a stationary or portable band saw. Care must be taken that the tube is not deformed while being cut. Regardless of method, the cut must be square to the run of the tube so that the tube will seat properly in the fitting cup.