The Preparation Group's 250SP grinds and polishes up to edges

THE Preparation Group, a leading expert in environmentally friendly solutions for surface preparation, polishing, cleaning and dust containment, has launched the new 110v 250SP Single-Head Grinder.

Of steel construction with a powerful motor, yet light and compact, it offers optimum grinding and polishing performance combined with simplicity and ergonomic design.

Developed specifically for the hire market for small commercial and domestic projects, the 250SP has a wide range of interchangeable diamond accessories for cleaning and keying all types of surfaces, removing concrete laitance, smoothing and levelling, de-scaling and removing glue, bitumous adhesives and paint.

The guard has a removeable section to enable the disc to prepare and polish right up to vertical edges that are usually inaccessible.

A unique feature is that the 250SP is also ideal for economical wet polishing of hard, previously ground surfaces such as concrete, with a water pipe port to feed water onto the surface and a range of resin polishing pads.

An adjustment lever lifts and lowers the wheel height and along with the built-in spirit level, allows the operator a level, even connection with the surface.

The adjustable handle enables a comfortable operating position and folds down for compact transportation and storage.

Says Kate Walshaw, Group Hire Manager, said: "The 250SP Grinder was very well received at the EHS with visitors remarking on its ease of use and portability.

"It’s versatility, low operating costs and low maintenance yields impressive ROI and hire potential."

For further information or a demonstration call The Preparation Group on 01522 561460.

Zero Emissions, Zero Noise: the EcoSmart ZERO welfare unit from AJC EasyCabin

THE London Atmospheric Emissions Inventory have stated that construction sites are responsible for approximately 7.5% of damaging nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions, 8% of large particle emissions (PM10) and 14.5% of emissions of the most dangerous fine particles (PM2.5).

The vast majority of these emissions come from the thousands of diesel engine site equipment. Soon London will introduce a ‘Low Emission Zone’ for non-road mobile machinery (NRMM) as current estimates of emissions show that NRMM is responsible for 7% of NOx emissions, 14% for PM2.5 and 8% of PM10 emissions across the Capital.

In response to these figures, one of the leading manufacturers of mobile and static temporary site cabins, AJC EasyCabin, have designed and built a range of welfare units that emits zero emissions.

Lisa Gillet, sales director of AJC Trailers, said: "According to the Carbon Brief website, the amount of carbon dioxide sent into the atmosphere last year totalled 381 million tonnes.

"For most of the past years we have been driven to reduce the carbon emissions from our products and design the most environmentally sustainable temporary site units. Our recent Green Apple Awards have confirmed our passions in this regard."

The units, all entitled the ‘EcoSmart ZERO’ were officially unveiled at the site equipment exhibition – The Executive Hire Show on 6th February 2019 at Coventry’s Ricoh Arena.

The EcoSmart ZERO is powered by a combination of a hydrogen gas powered fuel cell and an advanced solar power system. This means the unit operates almost totally silent and emits only pure water vapour.

The Ecosmart ZERO range has been designed to have the same user friendly operation as the standard Ecosmart welfare units, with power to run the heating, sockets, kettle and microwave coming instantly from the battery bank.

The batteries are constantly fed by the built-in hydrogen fuel cell and solar panels.

Lisa added: "Encouraged by our rental partners to push the boundaries of environmental and technological advancement, we believe that in the EcoSmart ZERO range represents the ultimate in carbon emission reduction."

Hydrogen gas is readily available through the Internet or at local gas suppliers. AJC EasyCabin can introduce user of the EcoSmart ZERO to hydrogen gas suppliers and a click and collect service is often available.

The Ecosmart ZERO fuel cell only needs periodical replacement of air filters; there are no moving parts and ground contamination from fuel spills is totally eliminated. 

To produce the EcoSmart ZERO range, AJC EasyCabin engineers worked in close collaboration with Intelligent Energy - a world leading fuel cell engineering company focused on delivering zero emission PEM fuel cell products to the automotive, UAV and stationary power markets.

Following the launch of the EcoSmart ZERO at the Executive Hire Show, AJC EasyCabin will be inviting all environmentally conscious hirers and uses of site temporary accommodation to their factory in Luton to view the features and benefits of the EcoSmart ZERO range, first hand.

Toolbank and partners launch 3 new ranges for the Big Blue Book

WE 'journos' should sit up and take note when the UK’s largest tool wholesaler decides to add some new ranges of quality tools to its Big Blue Book – aka its catalogue, by PETER BRETT.

To mark the occasion and showcase the new additions, Toolbank held a launch event in January. Simon Bicknall, Marketing Director of Toolbank began by giving us some background to the company itself and the decision making behind the inclusions.

It may have all the trappings of a vast corporate business, but Toolbank and its associate companies are still, in fact, a family owned and privately run business which has a history stretching back to 1829. It prides itself on having many longserving and loyal employees who help implement and enact Toolbank’s motto of ‘Service, Support and Integrity’.

Toolbank itself was established in 1972 and currently has around 30,000 products and 250 different manufacturers represented in the catalogue. It serves around 14,000 outlets in the UK both on the high street and online, and by its own estimation serves around 20 different categories of customer, from the casual DIYer to major construction companies.

To man the ship, so to speak, 964 full time employees in 12 different offices throughout the country provide the many services needed to ensure, as far as possible, next-day deliveries, adequate stocking levels and all the hundreds of other functions required to run a modern, customer-facing company. Some statistics might help to give a sense of scale: over 96% of stock is available immediately from the warehouse and the stock is usually worth a cool £18m or so at any one time.

On top of all this, Toolbank also run 10 regional trade shows every year at which dealers can stock up on show deals and get help with merchandising and own brand deals.

Faithfull Tools launch premium trowel range

Faithfull is a well-established brand on the high street with its good basic quality, well priced range of tools. Everything from spades and shovels to saws and chisels is included – over 3,800 different products in all.

So, it was with some confidence that the company embarked on what turned out to be a six-year long project to develop a premium range of trowels aimed at the trades and discerning DIYers – in other words those users who would appreciate and notice the difference in quality, but who are also looking to get the best value on the tools that they buy.

John Connick from Faithfull Tools explained the original thinking behind the project which was to look at the competition and consult end users to find out how their products were perceived and then to see if they could do better.

Some elements were found to be key markers for users. For example, what trades want in a brick trowel is a bit of flex in the blade (but not too much), a one-piece forging for strength, a high lift handle and a strong end cap for tapping bricks into position.

The trowel had to be made from high quality materials with features to limit the amount of mortar that inevitably sticks to it during its working life.

When it came to pointing trowels, it turns out that the standard curved edge, small pointing trowel is not really fit for purpose.

Users liked the Faithfull version with its straight edges, one-piece construction and soft grip handle.

Plastering trowels are another problem entirely because plasterers can be fussy people with very individual styles and requirements depending on their technique and the difficulties of the job in hand.

The Faithfull solution was to design a plastering trowel that has a 301-grade stainless steel blade with an ultra-smooth finish and a two-way curve – side to side and top to bottom.

The riveting for the tang fixing had to be almost invisible and the soft-grip handle itself shaped comfortably and smooth enough not to attract sticky plaster particles.

There were similar design features picked out for a range of 25 edging and tiling trowels with concentration on the best materials for an average price point.

But trowel users like to try before they buy so Faithfull designed a hard-wearing packaging sleeve made from PVC/vinyl that could be slipped on and off many times so that potential buyers can examine the trowels closely and feel the all-important surfaces and edges. With information about the tool itself and the other tools in the range printed on the packaging, end users can make a savvy and informed purchase.

Faithfull is justifiably proud of its research and outcomes in this Prestige project – the start of February saw the new ranges hit the retailers’ shelves. End users too will be pleased to note that the pricing of on a typical Faithfull brickie’s trowel is around £31 – half the price of a ‘best’ trowel from other leading brands. Dealers and end users will want to keep an eye out for the new ‘Prestige’ branding of these trowels.

ToughBuilt – Built tough for a tough market

The ToughBuilt brand has been around for a while on the high streets and, having used a few of their products, I can confirm they do live up to the name. Largely aimed at trade users, the ranges are comprehensive and aimed at complementing each other.

Take the ClipTech range of pouches and belts, for example. ToughBuilt’s designers have created a range of trade-specific pouches that can be easily attached to the ToughBuilt belt using its ClipTech system.

Many of the pouches can stand up via a small kickstand so can be removed, stood and replaced quite easily to suit the job being done. Because they are not only customisable by trade but also by job, they offer end users a very flexible and modern way of working.

The ClipTech system also means that pouches can be hung in a van, workshop or even on a worksite, by simply purchasing a few more clips.

Supplementing this system is a range of totes and bags. Again, these are made in tough 1200 denier nylon with reinforced joints and solid bases in some cases.

The bags might be used to hold a set of ToughBuilt kneepads. Some of these are simply lightweight for light duty use but others are designed for the everyday user who needs kneepads that are exible, comfortable, non-marking, hardwearing and, most importantly, do not fall down when you stand up.

Similarly, a range of gloves provides users with a choice of grades of hand protection.

An absolute necessity on many worksites is a few trestles that can be employed in a number of ways. The adjustable legs on the ToughBuilt trestles take care of uneven ground and even steps. With the addition of a couple of 2x4s and a top, two trestles can be formed into a workbench – and at the end of the working day they can be folded and loaded into the back of the van.

I didn’t get much of a chance to try out the new spring loaded mitre saw stand, but its big wheels and 3m crosscutting support capacity will certainly be of use on some jobsites.

Milwaukee Hand Tools – Added to the power tool mix

In my view, Milwaukee is a company that has barely put a foot wrong in bringing a range of desirable (and therefore successful) power tools to market in the last few years. It is the fastest growing professional tool brand with over £69m in sales in the UK in 2018.

Milwaukee users are often the most loyal in my experience, so it seems like a nobrainer for the company to launch a range of hand tools that is now being exclusively marketed by Toolbank.

Predictably, most of the range of about 400 tools features the distinctive red and black Milwaukee livery and the range covers about 17 out of 20 of the most commonly used categories of trade tools: think knives, levels, pliers and wrenches, for example.

Since quality and design are key features of Milwaukee power tools, the hand tools have to reflect this philosophy too.

Therefore, the company spends a lot of time on research finding out what end users want, as well as discovering the best partners to manufacture the tools to the required standards.

I explored a few of the range of tape measures where it was clear that quality and ease of use made them stand out from the competition and an easy buy for a Milwaukee user.

The Milwaukee Packout tool boxes showed very clearly that the designers might have actually tested the problem of moving a range of tools around a city environment - safely and securely too.

The trolley has big 228mm diameter wheels for easy movement on pavements and stairs – or even getting onto an underground train. The boxes slot together firmly and are held to the trolley frame so that they can be individually removed in any order. With an IP65 rating they protect tools from dust and water too. I think I can feel a movement away from my current box system coming on.

I want a secure method of holding the boxes on the trolley, not just a nylon strap.

So, three new ranges to the Toolbank stocklist, and every one a winner on the face of it. I will be keeping my eyes open for them in my local independent tool shops.

JCB Workwear release two new products to enhance protection

PEOPLE skidding and falling as they walk down the street, the sound of sniffling around the office and people complaining about standstill traffic can only mean one thing: the winter months are setting in.

Safety is paramount around this time of year, especially for tradespeople, and the best way to minimise danger is through wearing the latest protective equipment.

JCB Workwear’s new products are designed to meet the high requirements and demands for a wide number of industries, including the tool sector.


JCB Workwear’s newly released XSERIES Black Boots provide ultimate protection for workers’ feet with their inner aluminium toe cap and outer heavy-duty scuff cap and heel protection, all the while delivering the latest in comfort and durability.

Additionally, the sleek, heavy-duty XSERIES is lightweight and features a water-repellent design through its material of black leather, to protect against the cold, wet and damp months.

Within the construction industry, sharp objects on the floor pose a significant and all-too-common threat for both outdoor and indoor workplaces.

The XSERIES boots have been tested against EN ISO 20345:2011 safety standards, which means the Kevlar midsole protection will resist a penetration force of 1100N, as well as providing thermal insulation. In addition, the aluminium toe cap will withstand a 200-joule impact.

The new XSERIES footwear is also a product that is SRC slip-resistance tested. This means it has been SRA tested on ceramic tile wetted with dilute soap solution; and SRB tested on smooth steel with glycerol.

The XSERIES Black Boots provide a 5-loop fasten with black and gold round lace, and as an added benefit for those working in high temperatures, is a heat resistant to 300˚C.

The Baselayer: D+SA and D+SB

JCB Workwear’s Baselayer is made up of the D+SA top and the D+SB bottoms, which are made up of 100% polyester and come in sizes medium, large and extra-large.

It is easy to wash and dry, and keeps its colour and shape before and after wear.

The D+SA and D+SB both provide high performance antimicrobial fabric ACTIO:PRO™: a fabric which wicks away moisture from the skin.

This is beneficial as it provides a body climate-controlling aspect to suit its user in both hot and cold weather. Both items also have SPF50+ UV Protection, blocking 99% of UV radiation.

Snickers Workwear Baselayers to boost productivity during the winter months

DRESSING for the cold is like building a house – start with a good foundation.

Snickers Workwear Baselayer clothing uses high-tech breathable fabrics for ventilation and body moisture transport for consistent warmth and comfort.

The seamless designs are available in 37.5® ventilating technology as well as polyester and merino wool to cold weather conditions.

The cutting-edge FLEXIWork and LITEwork designs and fabrics will keep users warm and dry – so they will not get cold, wet and shiver. All the garments are made from quick drying, lightweight fabrics that come with special ventilation features to control and regulate the heat from the wearer’s body.

All in all, Snickers Workwear Baselayer clothing will provide the kind of warm, dry and fresh working comfort that users would not have thought possible. That is why Snickers Workwear is the brand of choice for working outside in the winter.

To get the more information on Snickers Workwear Baselayer Clothing, call the Snickers Helpline on: 01484 854788


Mather+Stuart announce multi-million pound Volt Safe investment

MATHER+STUART Power Solutions, the temporary power equipment division of A-Plant, has announced that it will be investing almost £3m in new Volt Safe equipment.

The company’s spending spree forms part of a wider strategic investment programme and follows a £6m order of Harrington and JCB Generators last autumn.

All of the new equipment features the latest telemetry and the first £1.3m order, comprising 56 units, has already arrived into the fleet.

An additional 60 units will be delivered in the coming months, providing a further £1.4m investment.

Gary Orton, Director of Mather+Stuart, stated the investment reaffirms the company’s commitment to offering customers the very best equipment available in the industry.

He said: “To support our expansion plans, keep up with customer demand and ensure we remain one of the UK’s market leaders it is vital that we continually update our fleet.

“Volt Safe systems are unique to the industry and we are thrilled to be able to continue offering our customers the most innovative, reliable, safe and environmentally friendly equipment available.”

Volt Safe is a super-silenced generator, electrical distribution board and a high capacity, triple-bunded fuel tank.

Reducing noise to as low as 58dpa at one metre, the system is amongst one of the quietest machines across Europe making it ideal for use on noise sensitive sites.

As the equipment is housed within an anti-vandal steel container the system also helps to battle incidents of theft and vandalism on site, as well as protecting the system against spillages of engine oil, anti-freeze and diesel.

Makita introduces Brushless LXT Rebar Tying tool

MAKITA’S first-ever introduction of a cordless rebar tying tool is now available allowing fast and efficient application of rebar tie wire and eliminates manual action.

The new DTR180ZK Rebar Tying tool is powered by a Brushless motor for extended runtime and increased power, and is compatible with both 14.4V and 18V Makita Lithium-Ion batteries.

Weighing a comfortable 2.6kg with the battery, the DTR180ZK is designed to achieve the fastest method of applying rebar ties quickly and consistently and automatically delivers double loop ties for a range of construction applications such as building concrete foundations.

It can be operated by a single hand operation, in single or continuous action, allowing the other hand to remain free to adjust the position of the rebars.

This tool can be used with D10, D13 and D16 rebar in varying combinations of two, three and four pieces of rebars.

The traditional method of rebar tying is by hand with a metal hook, which is fine for small areas.

However, for larger construction sites the DTR180ZK will prove to be economical as it will save time and manpower while achieving maximum consistency of application.

With a maximum power output of 340w, this tying tool can be used in continuous action mode for the most efficient tying.

The applicator can tie rebars simply by pushing the contact arm against the rebars when the trigger is continuously pulled.

According to the condition of tying material, the tying strength can be adjusted in six stages. Using a 5.0Ah Li-Ion battery, up to 120 ties of 0.8mm diameter annealed wire can be delivered.

The DTR180ZK does not produce heat or sparks and therefore overcomes the need for operators to hold a GC07 Hot-work permit together with all the safety logistics this entails.

This is required for any operation involving open flames or producing heat and/or sparks. Hot works include brazing, torch cutting, grinding, soldering and welding.

This body-only machine features an ergonomically designed handle with soft grip, on-tool storage of hex wrench, and has low sound and vibration for increased user comfort and safety.

The tie wire reel, available from Makita’s accessory range, is easily replaced by opening the reel cover.

The new Makita Brushless Rebar Tying tool complements the range of battery-operated rebar cutters, as well as the steel rod cutter, and is supplied in a robust carry case.

TB Davies’ two game changing products are setting the bar high

WITH a heritage spanning four generations, Cardiff-based TB Davies is leading the way with height and ladder technology and have two innovative new products to prove it.

Little Giant Safety Cage

First up, the Little Giant Safety Cage, which features a bottom-rung signal and has a 150kg maximum load.

The Ground Cue trains the operator to feel and hear an audible alert reminding the staff member it is safe to step off the ladder. The Safety Cage is constructed with a non-conductive, high-strength fiberglass-resin composite.

The product is mobile and lightweight compared to other enclosed platform options like scaffolds or powered lifts, so customers can use it in areas like stages or interstitial levels – where a mechanical lift or ordinary stepladder could never go.

The Safety Cage allows operators to work hands-free in any direction in complete safety because, unlike platform step ladders, its wrap-around guardrail actually encloses the operator completely in total compliance with tie-off rules.

The product comes in Little Giant’s patent-pending Hi-Viz Green and provides a selfenclosing platform which is versatile – a safe alternative to ordinary step ladders.

Specifically, the Safety Cage comprises a full-enclosed platform and a five-inch kick plate and mid-span. Additionally, it has a slim storage profile; and tip-and-glide wheels for easy transport.

Tubesca X-Tower

The second innovative product within TB Davies’ portfolio is the Tubesca X-Tower, which saw TB Davies join forces with Tubesca-Comabi – France’s market leader for ladders and access equipment.

As a result, TB Davies became Tubesca-Comabi’s preferred partner for industrial and professional ranges in the UK.

The revolutionary X-Tower is unique in more ways than one: it is both the world’s first industrial telescopic tower and the world’s tallest telescopic tower.

This industrial quality tower is designed for regular use and is an ideal option for both site maintenance and the hire industry

Safe operation

As with all the products TB Davies supply, safety is key. The user is never exposed to a fall while erecting the tower, which can be built within three minutes from the ground to a platform of 2.8 metres (with a working height of 4.8 metres).

The X-Tower’s sturdy structure is designed to avoid jamming problems, and provides a base that is completely captive with no loose parts, set on four locking castors that can be adjusted for use on uneven ground. The X-Tower has only two parts: the tower and the folding, anti-slip platform with a trap door.

TB Davies currently sells over a dozen products from Tubesca-Comabi including the Raptor, Profort Xtend, Sherpascopic, MP Pro, and Probat.

Award winning TYROLIT POWER set to revolutionise sanding and finishing

ABRASIVES manufacturer TYROLIT presents TYROLIT POWER, which won the Innovation Award at Troy Means Business (TMB) 2018 back in October.

TYROLIT, which is a family-owned company, is one of the world's leading manufacturers of grinding, cutting, drilling and dressing tools as well as machines for the construction industry.

The new award-winning product is tipped to revolutionise the sanding and finishing of hard surfaces.

As opposed to conventional dual-action sanders, the patented POWER machine allows for a vibration-free application which minimises the issues associated with hand-arm vibration syndrome.

Replacing grinding disks with strips TYROLIT POWER Strips replace the traditional grinding discs used on a dualaction sander, which dramatically reduces the risk of vibration white finger.

UK Area Sales Manager, John McKechnie, spoke about the product's health and safety features at TMB.

He said: “There are a lot of white finger claims when using grinder disc. Grind discs are still commonly used, but if you use a strip, or flap disc, it’s a lot smoother and there’s less vibration.

“We’ve been putting a lot of our time into improving grinder alternatives because grinding discs produce phenomenal removal rates.”

Cost effective

TYROLIT POWER Strip technology consists of layers made from cactus hair and diamond, which provides extreme hardness compared to traditional abrasives, such as aluminium oxide or silicon carbide.

The specially-developed diamond-coated mesh extends tool life by a factor of six and prevents clogging of the strips – allowing for fast stock removal.

The diamond-coated strips also provide greater control for surface finishing, especially for large mould production.

Longer life span

Sanding is often slow and can be a well-known bottleneck in the finishing process. TYROLIT POWER allows its users to sand down large surface areas, such as turbine blades, eight times faster than the conventional way, which reduces the threat of possible backlogs considerably.

Depending on the customer’s application needs a variety of grit sizes are available along with a range of widths.

Multiuse for larger moulds

Regarding hand-held devices, the abrasive brushes can be fitted to a range of applications including straight grinders, TYROLIT’S air-driven POWER machine, or to a surface sander with a core of 265mm.

All these solutions offer highly mobile and efficient sanding for large moulds.

The toughness of the abrasive brush grain means it can be used to machine glass or carbon fibre, gel coats and other hard composites.

Initially designed for the machining of large wind turbines, applications can be found in boat building, railway carriage construction, aircraft manufacturing and mould making.

The diamond strips are available in grit sizes from 80 to 500 mesh and slot into holders of various diameters and lengths.

For fibreglass, they are able to replace traditional abrasive cloth flaps and reduce processing times by a factor of eight.

The machines and diamond brushes can be used wet or dry. Additionally, the machines have specially-designed dust extraction guards guaranteeing very little dust production during work.

The family-owned company, which was founded in 1919 and is a member of the Swarovski Group, is based in Schwaz, Austria, and currently has over 4,300 employees at 26 production locations in 11 countries and on five continents.

TYROLIT’s Metal and Precision, Industrial Trade, Construction and Stone – Ceramics – Glass divisions manufacture 80,000 different products.

Surface preparation expert returns to Executive Hire Show

TO continue supporting the European rental market, US-based surface preparation manufacturer, National Flooring Equipment returns to the Executive Hire Show.

You will find a range of its walk-behind and ride-on-floor strippers, as well as its newly launched equipment on stand K6 at the Ricoh Arena.

On the stand, National Flooring Equipment will showcase its 5000 cinq-mille and 5700 ride-on-floor strippers. The 5000 is a compact ride-on-floor stripper that can be used in a range of applications, including soft and hard goods removal.

The 5700 all-day battery powered ride-on stripper can work for up to 12 hours on a single charge and remove goods in most applications.

Visitors to the stand will also be able to see the power hammer trolley. Working with an upright power hammer can be uncomfortable, making it more di cult to work e ciently. Contractors can use the trolley to change the angle of the power hammer, making it more ergonomic to manoeuvre.

National Flooring Equipment will also be launching a new shot blaster at the show. The new machine will strip, clean and profile concrete in a single step, increasing productivity. Contractors can visit stand K6 to find out more.


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