For over 100 years, BARCO has been solving fluid flow problems in the processing and power industries. In 1908, Francis Bard, the founder of Barco, developed a leak tight fluid connection that allowed rotation and angular flex of piping elements. These Self-Aligning Swivels and Ball Joints were used heavily in the railroad industry for locomotive steam piping and intercar steam heating connections.
Over the next 40 years Barco developed new products allowing a greater range of motion and fluid flow: Swing Joints or Plane Swivels for single and multiplane movement for loading arms and steel mill BOF oxygen lance connections; High Pressure Self-Aligning Swivels for aircraft; and Rotary Unions for water and steam on continuous rotating machinery.
In 1961, BARCO was purchased by Aeroquip Corporation. The Barco plant in Barrington, Illinois, remained the production facility for the existing products. New lines for Venturi Flow Measurement, Flexmaster Pipe Joints and Marmon couplings were added.
Barco gained international exposure through Aerooquip's world wide distribution network. Operations were centralized and a new organization was established in Redditch, England for Barco products.
Marison Industries purchased BARCO products in 1988. To create a stand alone company, Lane Hoffman, President, developed a new organization to fill the voids left from Aeroquip's centralized corporate structure. Mr. Hoffman's goal was to form a problem solving company, and to ensure customer satisfaction. To do this, management layers were reduced, operations were streamlined and a new marketing department was formed.
Recognizing that the greatest potential for growth was in the Rotary Union and Swivel Joint business, other product lines were discontinued or sold.
In 1995, a new facility was built in Cary, Illinois, to house corporate headquarters and manufacturing. From this modern facility Barco designs and manufactures the highest quality rotary unions and swivel joints.
Through continuous improvement, unique new designs are built to customers' requirements. Barco's mission statement is "Innovative Solutions Growing With Tomorrow's Technology."