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VMA's 75th Anniversary: The History of Valves
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Valves Through the Years

Since early 2012, VALVE Magazine has been running a column on "The History of Valves." This series, started as part of our extended 75th anniversary celebration, is written by Greg Johnson of United Valve, a contributing editor to the magazine and considered by many to be the valve industry's leading historian.


Please check out this most-interesting series, which concludes in the special Fall 2013 anniversary issue of VALVE Magazine:

The Great Teflon War

You might call it either the "Great Teflon War” or "The Battle of Massachusetts,” but either way, the fight took place in the courtrooms of The Bay State, rather than in its cities or countryside. No matter how it’s labeled, however, the victory prize was substantial: rights to the patent for the first functional bidirectional elastomer-seated ball valve. More...

A History Made in Metal

Today’s valve material choices are like a Chinese buffet: Everything imaginable is on the menu. The multitude of choices has grown in response to the demands of customers and their expanding process requirements. The first Roman valves were made from a bronze alloy very similar to today’s ASTM B62 bronze chemistry. These valves were used in plumbing systems in houses and public buildings. The bronze valves and other engineering discoveries of the Roman period would disappear under the thick cloak of the dark ages, and it wasn’t until the steam era that valve materials became a topic of interest again. More...

The U.S. Valve Industry in World War II

While valves didn’t directly sink ships or shoot down planes, the American valve industry played an important role in winning World War II for the allies. Without the contribution of the industry, many key chemical and petrochemical developments that helped secure victory could not have been made. In addition, the floating arsenal of democracy—naval ships, liberty ships and victory ships—could not have been built without tons of well-built valves delivered on time.More...

Standards Spring From Need to Protect

Most of us in the valve industry take for granted the interchangeability and standardization of the valves produced today. Yet it wasn’t that long ago that valves were individually produced in accordance with the standards of each manufacturer. More...

From a Humble Beginning, an Industry Rises

Although VMA members might think the valve industry began with formation of the Valve Manufacturers Association on Sept. 1, 1938, in reality, the industry in this nation was around for 100 years before that date, its roots firmly attached to the American industrial landscape. More...

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