An airbed manufactured by Trelleborg more than 50 years ago, was recently found in a basement in Sweden, still in its original packaging. Trelleborg’s company historian, Carl Aspegren, picked it up, pumped it up and it was as airtight as when it was first made.
Airbeds were one of Trelleborg’s postwar signature products, with production starting in 1935, and reaching its peak in the late 50s and early 60s. Originally used when camping or as extra beds, the airbeds were also used on the beach, as illustrated on the product’s packaging. The photograph of the two bathing beauties was taken by Swedish master photographer, Georg Oddner, on the beach at Falsterbo, Sweden, in 1956.
Johan Frithiof, Commercial Director within the Engineered Fabrics business of Trelleborg, says: “For Trelleborg, delivering high quality materials and performance to our customers that will last, has always been key for us. Even 50 years ago standards were important - these airbeds needed to be tested to make sure that they could retain 1 kilogram of air pressure.
“The attention to detail and high level of manufacturing is clear today, given the quality of the airbed’s material and ability to withhold air after 50 years. The product, based on our engineered fabrics, was designed to last and this is certainly proof that it does.
“Though a well received product, as markets changed and Trelleborg moved its strategic focus to other areas, production of airbeds ended in 1965. However, development and production of engineered fabrics by Trelleborg today, is still going strong. Now the product area focuses on customer partnerships and advanced solutions for such industries as aerospace, medical equipment, materials handling, safety and marine.”