Being related to someone that works in the steel bending industry, particularly a bender/roller company, has some side effects. Here are some insights from my wife Judy, who has endured my many years working in the industry:
“Over the past 18 years, we have driven to job sites to check out some curved steel. I will admit that there has been a lot of sighing and eye rolling when we have stopped to take pictures of yet another example of metal tube bending, rolled pipe, even plate rolling. However, over the years, I have come to appreciate the aesthetics of curved steel as opposed to a straight beam or the squared-off lines of some generic looking building.
Visually, it is more appealing to follow the lines of curved steel and I have found myself comparing the beauty of curves over the straight lines of other architecture – especially when you are able to see the two in close proximity to each other.
Inevitably, I also end up getting a lesson in whether something has been rolled the hard way or easy way, and whether it is leg in or leg out; but ultimately I have come to value the vision of those who have drawn up the buildings with curved steel in mind.”
So, the next time you are out and happen upon a shopping center that has roof trusses that have been fabricated from curved steel, the entrance of any building with a curved canopy, or see an impressive showroom where they have a circular staircase, keep in mind that curving steel is an art. The men and women that work the bending machines have become artists in their own right, after years of experience learning the skills to tweak an aluminum tube or steel bar to a difficult and tight radius without damaging the material. There is a shared satisfaction they receive from seeing the finished product and being able to say, “I did that!” and it is one they share with those around them. The photos in this blog are some of the many projects we have stopped to see over the years.