Alan Mackie, General Manager, Cyclone Industries

Alan Mackie, General Manager, Cyclone Industries

Steel Nous Makes Garden Tools Like the Pros Use

15 August 2005

The company behind one of Australia's icon gardening brands has revamped its use of steel in locally made tools of exceptional durability for the home. Cyclone Industries worked closely with Australia's foremost steel supplier, BlueScope Steel, to develop a special grade of hard steel comparable to the heavy duty gear used day in and out by professional tradespersons.

Each shovel and spade made by Cyclone is cut from boron titanium steel using a computer controlled plasma cutter to adhere to exacting production specifications. These basic tool shapes are then hot formed, quenched and tempered to achieve extreme hardness and toughness.

"It all starts with that special grade of XLERCOIL® hot rolled steel from BlueScope Steel," said Cyclone general manager, Alan Mackie.

"The boron in this steel provides excellent hardness, allowing us to produce garden tools with superior strength and abrasion resistance. We conducted some trials and made certain modifications to our processes and equipment in order to use the new steel. BlueScope Steel was very supportive throughout this review."

Cyclone Industries buys hundreds of tonnes of steel from BlueScope Steel each year.

According to Mr Mackie, the close working relationship the company has forged with BlueScope Steel has contributed significantly to its success amid a home market flurry of flimsy cheap imports.

"We operate in a homogenised marketplace," Mr Mackie said. "There has been a great rationalisation in the retail sector, leaving us with three very large hardware franchise customers. When you have a small number of customers, you need to supply huge quantities at a time, and BlueScope Steel provides impressive responsiveness to fluctuations in our order patterns. In many ways, we are similar to BlueScope Steel as we are both well established companies with proud Australian histories."

The company recently joined the Steel By Brand Partnership Program to leverage its association with Australia's leading steel supplier, and the quality of XLERCOIL® steel.

For further information please contact:
Jacquie Andrews
Cyclone Industries
Ph: 03 8791 9300

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