It is the objective of the Gardner organization to supply high performance
bellows competitively for aerospace, nuclear and other equipment applications.
Metal bellows, which are important components of modern machines and devices,
have often been selected on the basis of empirical or "rule of thumb" methods
which do not take into full account material limitations or the internal mechanical
stresses created during operation. Unsatisfactory performance has been the
consequence in many cases. The major goal of Gardner Bellows Corporation
is to deliver parts which will operate as desired and predicted. This accurate
forecast of bellows performance can only result from careful engineering
analysis followed by careful attention to all details of manufacture. A
parallel goal is to use manufacturing methods economical for prototype quantities
with short lead times.
Gardner Products Company was formed in 1958 to supply the aerospace industry
with high-performance metal bellows. At that time there were no available
design analysis techniques for reliably predicting bellows performance and
the bellows being made at that time were based mostly upon the experimental
testing of samples. Although the art of fashioning bellows from metal had
existed for nearly one hundred years with the industry well established,
efforts at that time were directed toward high production requirements for
which an experimental approach was feasible.
An intensive study of metal bellows was undertaken which culminated in
a body of engineering design techniques and data. The analytical methods,
thus developed, enable the accurate prediction of bellows performance and
the selection of the optimum bellows for a particular set of design requirements.
Much better system designs result from such analysis.
To fabricate the bellows which were able to be designed new hydroforming
techniques and equipment were developed which formed deep, close-pitch convolutions
with no local thinning and no zones of uncontrolled stress concentration.
The equipment and related techniques also permitted the accurate prediction
of first article performance, where the first part of a new production run
performs nearly as anticipated with only minor adjustments needed to produce
the desired function.
In 1966, a name change to Gardner Bellows Corporation was made in order
to identify better the product orientation of the company.
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Last UpdatedOctober 28, 2003