Tube hydroforming: a short history. In many ways, the past holds the keys to the present. If those who have gone before us had not accomplished great things, we would not be where we are today. That’s true in many aspects of life and industry; it’s also true in the world of hydroforming.
To that end, in order to appreciate where we are regarding the advancement of tube hydroforming, we must first discuss a brief history.
Hydroforming itself can be broken into two basic aspects. The process itself uses high-pressure fluid to form a metal part into the desired shape of the die. The two most basic applications of this process are tube hydroforming and sheet hydroforming (Scribid).
As we have discussed in a previous post, hydroforming became popular at the beginning of the twentieth century. It continued to rise in prominence in the United States between the 1930s and 1950s.
According to The Fabricator, tube hydroforming experienced two major jumps in its development.
The story of how tube hydroforming came to be used as it is today for large structural parts has at least two beginnings. First, the process most commonly used today is based on the one used for making copper plumbing T’s, which starts with a straight tube, uses high internal fluid pressure to expand and directly form the part, and then pushes more material into the end to compensate for wall stretching. Less than 15 years ago, this process was adapted to make even larger structural parts.
In a separate stage of development occurring around roughly the same time, tube hydroforming was refined to address specific design needs and to combat dimensional instability. Although there’s an overlap in the timing, the concurrent developments took the development of tube hydroforming techniques on slightly diverging tracks.
Now, experts choose among the available methods to determine which is best for the project at hand.
That’s where we come in.
We Can Help
Here at American Hydroformers, we have decades of experience helping satisfied customers determine which style of hydroforming best suits their needs. If you have questions or comments about our tube hydroforming techniques, or if you would like to chat about any of our other premium services, please feel free to contact us.
We have expert technicians standing by, and we would love to hear how we can best serve you.