The FormFlow Bend
The FormFlow Bend
FormFlow has developed a world first metal forming process to bend corrugated roofing sheet sharply at precise angles to create a seamless corner. This eliminates gaps in wall roof joins and produces structural connections that add strength to a structure. This improves insulation and stops dirt, dust and animals entering the building. It reduces the risk of ember attack during a fire and provides opportunities for the development of innovative new building methods.
The story began in the 1980s. J P (Jim) and J L (John) Duncan were cousins from South Australia. When Jim was Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of British Columbia and John was a professor at McMaster University, Ontario they found a mutual interest in applying the ancient art of origami to sheet metal forming. The concepts are used in packaging too. A popular example is a container for potato chips in fast-food outlets. Jim and John were able to define the mathematical rules governing the shape of curved surfaces on either side of a curved line fold (defined in geometry as “developables”).
John Duncan has had a long association with the metal forming group at Deakin and in 2013, Matt Dingle, a PhD graduate from Deakin University, became interested in applying the folding concept to corrugated roofing sheet. Matt and John developed a prototype tool design, which was built by the Geelong engineering company, Austeng. Dr Matthias Weiss of Deakin University became involved with trials. The results were so encouraging that, under the direction of Matt Dingle FormFlow was created.
Since September 2016 FormFlow has:
• Developed a range of new products based on the same technology
• Signed an exclusive deal with BlueScope to manufacture, market and sell the C90 bend under licence in Australia.
• Created machines and processing equipment to produce bends at commercial volumes
• Developed a modular building system based on the aesthetic and functional advantages of the bend to deliver affordable, sustainability housing solutions that address specific social needs.