Conceived out of necessity, born in the arms of innovation and inspired by sheer will and determination, Wilden Pump & Engineering Company began in a walnut grove in San Bernardino County, CA, through the genius of Jim Wilden.
The epiphany began in 1955 when a large water pipe ruptured several feet below ground, flooding a shop at a steel factory. Amid the bedlam, a cool-headed foreman surveyed the inundated workshop and drenched workmen and yelled out to "Slim,” Jim’s nickname, "Hey, Slim, you would make a million dollars if you could invent a pump to get this stuff out of here." And thus history was set in motion, changing the landscape of industrial and commercial processes forever.
Jim went on to invent the air-operated double-diaphragm (AODD) pump based on the need to create a pump tough enough to handle the job of pumping water, slurry and any other finely-divided substances, such as cement. His engineering genius developed a new type of pump that had the right air valve and diaphragms needed to meet the stringent demands of the mining and heavy-construction industries. After years of trial and error, Jim Wilden began successfully manufacturing and selling M16 and M14 model AODD pumps.