Appleton Control Systems was founded in 1997 to address machine control needs in the paper industry and quickly turned to providing controls for cranes and winches in the offshore oil industry. Since that time the company has added supply of equipment and services to the US Coast Guard and Navy. Within the commercial and military marine industry ACS developed its capabilities to include PLC software, design for difficult environmental conditions, and shock qualifications to MIL-S-901D.
In the early 2000’s ACS began to develop belt drives and tensioning systems. ACS experience in the paper industry led it into development of tensioners for multiple types of machinery that is commonly belt driven. Blowers, feeders, pumps, and conveyer systems use belt drives to manage torque spiking. ACS identified that proper tensioning of belts, specifically the slack side of a belt system, can dramatically increase the life of a belt and the machinery. Additionally, belt tensioners reduce the down time required to change a belt on a piece of machinery from many hours (or days on large equipment) to a matter of minutes. ACS used this belt system knowledge and applied it to machinery for the mining industry and mineral processing; especially jackshafts for crushers. ACS has continued to grow this capability and produces equipment for mines around the world.
In 2021, ACS was sold to True Bear Engineering, LLC. True Bear Engineering was started by Geoff White who has decades of experience in mechanical system engineering, manufacturing, and project management. Throughout his experience, he has delivered equipment and systems on recreational vehicles (ATV’s/ORV’s), marine equipment (deck machinery, cranes, underway replenishment systems), and utilities (substation buildings and control equipment). This acquisition brought with it a new set of capabilities in engineering and ability to offer a larger Systems Engineering approach to design. The company continues to do business as Appleton Control Systems and thrives by providing custom controls and support to any type of system, mechanical, electrical, hydraulic, or a combination of them.