In high-performance hydraulic and pneumatic systems, three-way or four-way valves of very high precision are required. Conventional spool-type valves used for this purpose have been found to be difficult and expensive to manufacture. This paper describes a new type of metering orifice and several valve designs utilizing this metering orifice. These valves have proved to be considerably easier to make and more trouble-free than the piston-type design with the same performance. Flow-force-reduction methods for this type also are described. The work to be reported here was carried out at the Dynamic Analysis and Control Laboratory and was supported by the U. S. Navy Bureau of Ordnance Contract NOrd 9661 with the Division of Industrial Cooperation of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.