Curving at Wrigley Field

Baseballs won’t be the only thing curving this spring at Wrigley Field. This season when Kris Bryant crushes a deep ball into the second level of left field at Wrigley the cameras will see a new beautifully curved fence.

Using heat Induction bending, a collection of 5 X 3 X ¼ rectangular tubes were bent to 18” and 39” inside radius respectively. This custom fence called for the rectangular tubes to be rolled to tight radii and then have straight tangents on both ends. In the picture below you can see the material being curved through the heat induction process – first being heated to a temperature that allows the material to be bent, then immediately cooled by a controlled water cooling system.

Heat Induction Bending of 5 X 3 X ¼ Rectangular Steel Tubes
Heat Induction Bending of 5 X 3 X ¼ Rectangular Steel Tubes

Because the contractor required these tubes to be formed in one piece to these exact radii, the customer sent over a template that the operators used to test every piece. This template is a close replica of what will actually be attached to these rolled rectangular tubes so the tubes had to precisely mirror the arc and radius of the template. The rectangular tubes were curved within 1/16 of an inch held to the customer’s template.

When the order was placed the shop had to work together to create the correct tooling to bend these rectangular tubes. Although this job was unique and challenging, the skilled operators were able to create these pieces to fit in the template perfectly with virtually no concavity or distortion. Here is a picture of the final product fitting the customer template.

Curved Steel Fencing at Wrigley Field
Curved Steel Fencing at Wrigley Field

curved steel fencing at Wrigley Field

So this spring if you find yourself walking down Clark Street outside of Wrigley and see a beautifully curved fence, take a second to appreciate the perfect induction bends. If you have questions about bending for a custom fence it always helps to call an expert engineer or estimator at a bending company to get their advice.


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