Since 1962, Bull Moose® Tube Company has earned a solid reputation as an innovator in the industry – seeking constant improvement of its products to drive the highest level of efficiency and the best results for its customers. The company’s DF-Tube line of 100 KSI high-strength tube steel is a prime example of its ingenuity and drive to provide the products that allow their customers, in turn, to drive innovation in their own industries. DF-Tube’s direct-form rolled1, 100 KSI tube steel offers a higher strength-to-weight ratio, which opens up many possibilities for new designs and applications, as well as the opportunity to reduce the weight of conventional designs and applications.
BMT customers in several industries already have discovered the benefits of high-strength tube steel and have incorporated DF-Tube it its own products and components, often innovating and expanding their industries along the way.
Founded in Fremont, Nebraska, in 1988 by Rob and Pam Kreikemeier as R.K. Aerials, Rosenbauer Aerials, LLC, has been producing turntable ladders, rescue platforms extinguishing arms and lift platforms as part of the Rosenbauer Group since 2000. Rosenbauer is a fire-fighting vehicle manufacturer with a storied history in firefighting that dates back to the 1860s.
Seeking a strong, yet lightweight alternative for the construction of its aerials and fire ladders, Rosenbauer Aerials started using 100 KSI high-strength tube steel in its product line in 1998. By utilizing DF-Tube high-strength tube steel, the company was able to achieve significant reductions in the overall weight of its products. As an example, the company reduced the overall weight of its Cobra 101-foot aerial platform model by 15 percent.
This innovation allowed Rosenbauer Aerials to offer customers an enhanced array of products and models, from five in 1998 to 29 today – each of which contains high-strength tube steel in some amount or application. This product expansion includes the addition of single-rear-axel models, including the company’s Viper Aerials, the Raptor Aerial and the Roadrunner Watertower lines of firefighting vehicles. The product-line expansion, in turn, equated to sales increases over the same time period, and the company went from producing 30 aerials per year in 1998 to 100 aerials per year today.
“By utilizing 100 KSI high-strength tube steel, we have been able to significantly change the way we build and market our products,” said Rob Kreikemeier, founder and president of Rosenbauer Aerials, LLC. “We currently use 100 KSI tube steel in our complete aerial line, and our customers couldn’t be happier with the quality and durability of our products.”
Direct Form is a method of manufacture where a square or rectangular tube of steel is directly formed from a strip of steel, then welded. Conventional methods include forming a strip of steel into a round, welding it, and then cold-working the tube shape into a square or rectangular profile. While conventional methods rely on cold-working to meet minimum strength requirements, Bull Moose Tube Company starts with 100 KSI high-strength steel that already meets ASTM 500 requirements, ensuring product quality and high tolerances on twist, straightness, concavity and convexity.