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Gimbal expansion joints or universal angular expansion joints operate on a similar basis to hinged angular expansion joints, but they allow multi, rather than single plane angulation. Gimbal expansion joints are often used in pairs as part of a ‘2-pin’ system or in combination with a single hinged expansion joint bellows assembly as the third element of a ‘3-pin’ system by effectively converting relatively large amounts of axial movement in to relatively small amounts of angulation.
As a ‘restrained’ expansion joint, the integral hinge/gimbal ring design on a gimbal expansion joint restrains the pressure thrust generated by pressurisation of the system, therefore relatively light anchors and guides may be utilised as only minimal forces are transferred to the adjacent pipe work installation. Gimbal universal angular expansion joints can also be manufactured as ‘double’ gimbal bellows units to absorb multi-plane angulation.