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Baileigh TN-250 Tube Notcher - PRODUCT REVIEW
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October 18, 2017, 09:40:00 PM

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Baileigh TN-250 Tube Notcher

We do a lot of in-house metal fabrication on our Projects and having the right tools makes all the difference. I've been doing off-roading and metal work for 20 years and I've come to a point were I enjoy metal work almost as much as going out off-roading. There is something satisfying about visualizing a part you'd like to make and seeing it come together. Over the years I've accumulated a good variety of tools and this year we added a tube notcher to the shop from Baileigh Industrial. I've never had the pleasure of owning a Baileigh tool so we decided to take a look at the TN-250 tube notcher to help out with a new roll cage project for Project Rock Spider.

The TN-250 is simply a Monster when it comes to tube notchers. Very few can even compare while the others look down right pathetic when you compare them. Built from 3/4" & 1" solid cold rolled steel it weighs in at a whopping 50lbs. Featuring some unique and appealing characteristics such as the
self centering radial vise for clamping tubing, the ability to notch up to 2-1/2 diameter tubing, square or flat stock, 0-230 degree bending capabilities, offset notching and a heavy duty 1-1/4 shaft with needle bearings to name a few highlights. See below where we talk more about these features.

TN-250 Features

  Main Body
The main body of the notcher is built from 3/4" cold rolled steel and is the core component in the notcher. The Rotating Assembly and radial vise is attached to the main body with machine head allen bolts.

Radial Vise
The radial vise is comprised of 6 zinc coated teeth fitted between two 1/4" cold rolled, zinc coated plates that firmly lock the tube into position using a 3/4" machine threaded shaft and 3/16" powdercoated handle running on a solid bronze bushing for smooth operation. The unique radial vise allows you to notch round, square and flat stock.

Rotating Assembly
This part of the notcher is built from solid 1" machined steel for maximum strength. There are 2 slots that the shaft and bearing assembly can ride on. This allows you to notch from 0-90 while the other slot allows you to go 0-45 degree's. The rotating assembly is attached to the main body with 2 machine head allen bolts and can be adjusted down 1" for offset notching.

Shaft and Bearing Assembly
The main shaft is a 1-1/4" Thompson is supported by a large aluminum bearing block featuring 2 needle bearings for smooth operation.

Box opening & Assembly
When the package arrived I opened it up and found that the packaging was very well put together using expanded foam to securely protect the notcher during delivery. Most people don't care about this part but I feel it says something about the company.

Ok onto the assembly, The TN-250 requires a few minutes worth of assembly, this involves
attaching the handle for the radial vise, mounting the degree wheel, attaching the notchers rotating assembly and finally the main shaft and bearing assembly to the main body of the notcher. Overall assembly took about 5 minutes including the unboxing. Once complete I mounted the notcher to a 500lb 4x6 steel welding table with a 6" Wildon vise attached to it.

Click on images for large view


Notching some tube

I have been doing some serious fab work on Project Rock Spider and have come to a point were it was time to start building a roll cage. The TN-250 got very well used during this review with roughly 50-75 notches. Having built a number of roll cages and plenty of tube work I am familiar with notching tubing whether that be the hard way with a 4" grinder and chop saw or with a tube notcher. Having the TN-250 was an absolute time saver and pleasure to use!

Not many notchers can can slice a 70 degree notch with ease!

Notching Tips
- Determining your angle and depth of the notch is the hardest part. Take your time and notch a 1/2" longer than you think it needs to be and take a little more each time until it's good. It's no fun when you make a cut a 1/4" to short.

- I cut off any excess tubing a leave a little more than half the diameter of the tube being joined too. That way the notcher isn't ripping a full circle through the tube.

- Use lot of lube such as WD40 or cutting oil. This will make your notcher work smoother and will save the life of your blades.

- Keep a 4" grinder or pneumatic cut off wheel handy if your doing severe angle notches because hole saw blades are too shallow in depth and will bottom out before you make it through the other side. You will need to cut off part of the notch and then continue through.

- I make a line with a sharpie on the top of the tube running parallel at both ends of the tube. This helps if you need to take a little more off the notch or if your notching both side of a tube.

More TN-250 Pictures

Clean consistent notches every time! Notice the 6-feet of unsupported 2" DOM easily being held by Baileigh's patented radial vise.


Well after a few weeks of building a roll cage, tube fenders, tire carrier and other parts we really put some miles on the TN-250. I would say we notched about 100 notches after you take into count 1-4 notches for each piece of joining tubing. The Baileigh unit kept up with us with ease providing perfect notches every time. I am rather impressed with how overkill this notcher is. This beefy notcher doesn't move at all when your ripping into a notch. I especially like the T-handle radial vise which holds the tube with some serious kung fu grip and is very easy to operate. You can really cinch down on the vise with 1 hand while your holding the tube with your other.

Overall im extremely happy with this notcher, The TN-250 is an absolute Monster and although more expensive than the cheaper notchers on the market I truly feel it's worth every penny. You can't even compare this notcher to others on the market. If the price tag is too much for you take a look at the Baileigh TN-210H.

For more information about Baileigh Industrial products check out there website or give them a call.

Baileigh Industrial
Phone: (920) 684-4990

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