Metals4U helps to get a rare classic back to the races

(Last modified: June 27th, 2017)

We love to hear about your restoration projects and seeing how our metal helps to make them a reality. The enthusiasts among you will know that restoring a classic car takes a lot of time, effort and TLC. But with the right parts you can get off to a great start.

Metals4U customer Bill Cowling set out earlier this year to modify and repair a Ginetta G18B Historic Formula Ford. Only seven were ever made and just three survive in current day, making this restoration project truly unique.

Ginetta G18B Historic Formula Ford

A car with providence, the HFF was driven by a very young Adrian Raynard (above). Raynard went on to become one of the most influential race car designers, manufacturing cars that won races around the world. The G18 HFF is said to have influenced Adrian’s first chassis design and is also mentioned in his autobiography, where he crashes it (again) at Brands Hatch.

Bill is fully restoring the race car, returning it to its former glory, and plans to enter it into historical racing as soon as possible.

Chassis of G18 HFF racecar

Bill started by stripping his HFF down to the frame work. He used the tubes purchased from Metals4U to repair bracing struts at the rear of the car, and replace the copper alloy coolant pipes that run from front to back. Smaller alloy tubing will also be used in constructing struts for the radiator.

HFF racecar

Currently down to the chassis, he’ll be crack testing before constructing new bracings and brazing them in. Then working alongside his ‘chassis man’, an ex world champion side-car designer, some new designs will be drawn up to bring it to life.

Bill hopes to get his HFF completed by March 2016 and into the world of historical racing. He’ll be attending international events such as Spa, Monza, Pau and Zanyoort. We certainly can’t wait to see how this true classic will look crossing the finish line. Watch this space!

If you’d like to tell us about how you’re using our metal products, please get in touch and we may feature your project on this blog using projects@metals4u.co.uk

Metals4u expand beyond online by opening its first branch in Wetherby

(Last modified: June 27th, 2017)

We are the UK’s market leader in the online supply of metals, tools and engineering goods, and have chosen Wetherby as the location for our first physical store.

Known as the trade’s go-to supplier of metals, mild steel, Stainless steel, aluminium, Brass, and bronze products, we stock 15,000 lines – including workwear, clothing and tooling supplies – with a wide range of these now available in branch for customers to drop in and collect.

In addition to being the only stockist of welding consumables and accessories in the local area, our branch holds products from leading brands Weldability, GYS and Esab, as well as workwear from Dickies and Snickers. In branch, many products are displayed on custom built stands that use Metals4u products to demonstrate their versatility.

Our MD and owner Paul Mcfadyen, explains the decision to open a bricks and mortar branch: “When Metals4u was established in 2002, we were the first supplier in the UK offering customers the opportunity to buy metal online. We wanted to build on this and make it more convenient than ever for the local trade, and public, to find the metal materials they need for projects of any size and scale.”

Our Metals4u branch can be found at Armitage Works, Sandbeck Industrial Estate, Sandbeck Way, Wetherby, LS22 7DN and is open six days a week.

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And the winner is…

(Last modified: June 26th, 2017)

Congratulations go to Peter Kealey who is the winner of our latest Tube Clamps competition. You can see his winning design below:

tube clamp winner

Peter’s innovative idea for how to use the ever versatile tube clamp impressed both ourselves and our special celebrity guest judge Max McMurdo. It was by no-means an easy decision as we received some fantastic entries, the highlights are included in our previous post. However Peter’s design for a ladder base stabiliser really caught our eye.

As a prize, Peter now wins all the materials he needs to build his design, courtesy of Metals4U.

Congratulations Peter!

Our tube clamp competition reaches its judging stage – here are some of the best designs

(Last modified: June 26th, 2017)

A few weeks ago we launched a competition where you could win the metal materials you need to build one of your very own creations. We’ve received a variety of inventive project submissions, and now we have the difficult task of selecting a winner!

The competition was open to everyone and anyone. It had just one condition: that the designs you sent us showed how you planned to use tube clamps, along with some approximate measurements so we could understand the size and scale of your project.

We’ve enjoyed looking through the entries as they’ve come in, and we’ve been impressed with not just the ideas but the level of detail some of them have included.

Here we’ve listed some of the designs that are in with a chance of winning. This is Jilly Hatton’s impressive design for a modular climbing frame:

Jilly Hatton - Modular climbing frame

Mike Wood has come up with a wheelchair design that’s easy to manufacture, and which could be used in third world countries:

Mill Wood

Peter Kealey has put health and safety at the heart of his design, choosing to develop and build a ladder base stabiliser:

Peter Kealey - ladder base

Paul Davis has shown how he plans to use tube clamps to build this bench for his salon:

Paul Davis - salon bench

Rusty Murphy has sent us this neat design of a floating bathroom cabinet:

Rusty Murphy - Bathroom cabinet

While Jen Smith has also submitted a precise design of a child’s climbing play frame:

Jen Smith - climbing frame

Thanks to everyone who has entered the competition. As much as we like them all, there can be only one winner – and we now need to decide who that is.

We’ll be announcing the lucky winner early next month, who will get the metal materials they need to make their idea a reality – and we’ll also make it available as a package for other customers at Metals4U to order!

Win the metal you need to turn your clamp creation into reality!

(Last modified: June 26th, 2017)

Today we’re launching an exciting competition where you could win all the metal materials you need to build one of your very own creations – and then have it featured on the Metals4U website.

Not only that, but we’ll also make it available as a package so other customers at Metals4U can order all the components together and assemble it for themselves.

What are the details of the competition?

A few weeks back we blogged about the surge in popularity of the humble tube clamp. Put simply, we’re looking for people to submit designs for projects that feature tube clamps.

Whether it’s a chair, a table, a bed, a bookcase, a clothes rail or a completely new invention, it doesn’t matter how big or small your project is – all that we ask is that it features tube clamps as part of its design.

How can I enter?

All you need to do is sketch your designs, which should show us how you plan to use the tube clamps, along with approximate measurements. They don’t need to be professional sketches, but if you want to provide us with a more detailed ones then you’re more than welcome! (See our example sketches below.)

Use your mobile phone to take a picture of your sketch and post it to our Facebook page. Alternatively you can post it on Twitter using the hashtag #M4Utubeclamps (and mention us @metals4U_uk) – and that’s it, you’ve entered!

 

When’s the deadline?

The competition is already open – so send us your ideas before the closing date of Friday 14th August to be in with a chance of winning the metal materials you need to make your idea a reality.

Once we’ve received all the entries we’ll assess them and pick a winner! So keep an eye on our website in the days that follow to see which creative customer will win the metal to make their project.

We’ll also be choosing runners-up who will get their project featured on our website as a package for others to order.

Rewarding the imagination

When you see a tube clamp, what do you think of? Send us your ideas of what you could build using tube clamps today and you could win the materials to build your vision and have it featured on our website!

The reasons why tube clamps have surged in popularity

(Last modified: June 26th, 2017)

A structure is nothing without the things that hold it in place. Traditionally those are the nuts and bolts, but let’s not forget about tube clamps – they give structures their strength and shape.

Tube clamps have been used for years in the construction industry, effectively acting as a T-junction or 90 degree joints for metal tubes. The range of types and sizes means different directions and gradients can be catered for, so structures like handrails, warehouse racks and shelves, exhibition stands and safety barriers can all be fixed together exactly as intended.

With most things that are modest, dependable and functional, they often miss out on the glory. But more recently we’ve seen a trend of tube clamps being used by designers and even furniture makers as they strive to achieve a more authentic look.

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Those who use them to make ‘industry chic’ furniture tend to go for tube clamps with the smallest diameter to match the small tubing. That tends to be our Size A, which is 27mm in diameter and manufactured from galvanised mild steel.

So they’re now being used at home as well as in the industry. Perhaps one of the reasons why their reputation has shifted is down to how easy they are to use. Basically you don’t need to be a welder to work with them – it’s simply a case of tightening a couple of grub screws.

Tube clamps provide a temporary or permanent solution, and they can be used outside as well as in. They’re durable, long lasting and easy to fix. When you piece it all together you can see why they’ve grown in popularity.

They’re also available in sizes B to E, which range from 33.9mm to 60.3mm in diameter. These are all hot dipped galvanised steel and suitable for bigger structures.

We also supply tube clamps to fit handrails that comply with the Equality Act 2010, and they meet the requirements of the Building Regulations 2010 Part M, British Standards BS 8300. Don’t forget – we can also supply you with the steel tubes, handrails and balustrades too!

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Next time you’re out and about, see if you can spot these tube clamps in action. If you’ve bought them from us to use as part of your project, let us know.

Jim puts time, energy (and metal) into restoring a couple of British classics

(Last modified: June 27th, 2017)

The ability to bring something from the past back to life requires great vision, skill, time, energy – and bucket loads of commitment. Let’s not forget that it might need some metal too!

Metals4U customer Jim Perkins is currently restoring two classic Austin cars from the 1930s – an Austin 7 Pearl Cabriolet and an Austin 12/6 open road tourer. Those of you who have an interest in classic cars will know how well loved these models were (and still are).

The Austin 7 was nicknamed the ‘Baby Austin’ and gave British families in the 1920s an opportunity to own a motorcar because it was made genuinely affordable through mass production. But of the 290,000 made, only 8,000 remain – in various conditions – and Jim has one of them.

He tells us that it’s being fully restored and has been replacing metal on the body and around the rear wings because the original metalwork had succumbed to rust. He’s using a metal plate to hold the check strap on the driver’s door.

 

The Austin 12/6 is also being fully restored, although this is more of a challenge since Jim bought the vehicle as a ‘basket case’.

“Someone had stripped it right down – possibly to restore – but never got round to putting it back together,” he says. “We purchased it as a load of parts. Some parts were missing and there were a few parts that weren’t even for this vehicle.”

Jim and his team are in the process of putting it back together themselves – and when the project is complete we’re sure it’ll look magnificent. We’re certainly keen to see how our metal has helped to restore a couple of British classics!

 

If you’d like to tell us about how you’re using our metal products, please get in touch and we may feature your project on this blog.

Metals4U bikes on show during inaugural Tour de Yorkshire

(Last modified: June 27th, 2017)

A few weeks ago we made 35 iconic bikes to give away to cycling enthusiasts who could display them in a show of support for the first ever Tour de Yorkshire. The winners did us proud as we saw plenty of them along the various routes of the three-day event – and we’ve got the pictures to prove it!

More than 1.2 million people lined the streets to watch some of the world’s best cyclists compete in the very first event of its kind – the legacy of what was a hugely successful Tour de France Grand Départ last year.

The first overall winner of the event was Norway’s Lars-Petter Nordhaug, of Team Sky – which is worth knowing (and remembering), just in case the question pops up in a pub quiz!

The routes, which ran from Bridlington to Scarborough, Selby to York and Wakefield to Leeds, took in some of the best sights our great county has to offer. Our special bikes were constructed from bright yellow plastic, so they were pretty easy to spot (and a lot of fans must have been wondering where they came from!).

Lisa Gair, one of our 50 winners, sent us this photo of her bike displayed on the gate to her driveway in East Bramhope near Leeds:

Lisa Gair - East Bramhope Leeds

Here’s another bike sat proudly outside the Chocolate Factory in Thornton le Dale, just east of Pickering on Day 1 when the riders were approaching Scarborough:

@VisitTld - Visit Thornton Dale - Thornton Dale

David Bird decided the best place for his bike was to perch it delicately on the front of his caravan!

@davidjgbird - David Bird

David Church left his yellow bike in a place where other real ones have no doubt rested over the years – just outside a shop in Pickering:

@starbuys2014 - David Church - Pickering

And here we have Richard Jones securing his bike to a lamppost at a junction just before the Cote de Goose Eye along Stage 3, just west of Keighley:

Richard Jones - Just before Cote de Goose Eye- small blog

Thanks to everyone who made the effort to display their bikes over the three days – and to have sent us your pictures. Unfortunately we couldn’t include them all, but we were impressed with how many of you brought them out for the big occasion!

Metals4U relocates to Wetherby

(Last modified: June 26th, 2017)

Metals4U relocates to Wetherby.

While most of the country was enjoying some lovely weather and relaxation time over the Easter break, here at Metals4U we were busy relocating from Pontefract to a newly refurbished and extended warehouse covering 21000 sq feet in Wetherby. At Metals4U, we have seen our business triple over the last two years. This growth meant we rapidly outgrew our premises in Pontefract where the business started over a decade ago.

Located on the Sandbeck Industrial Estate, Armitage Works has enabled us to double our warehouse capacity and plan to incorporate a shop within the spacious open plan sales office area. The customer experience is set to improve, with dramatic increases in the amount of stock we can now hold and improved opportunities for interaction between our friendly and knowledgeable sales team and our valued customers.

metals4u Armitage Works Wetherby

Armitage Works, Sandbeck Industrial Estate, Wetherby.

 

Our relocation has already had positive impact on the local community with the employment of additional staff from the local area. As the company continues to grow, more job opportunities will be created in the near future to maintain the high level of quality service customers have grown to expect from the UK’s leading online metal and plastics supplier.

Managing Director, Paul McFadyen said, “The move to Armitage Works has enabled the company to expand to better meet customer demand, increase the range and quantity of stock we offer our customers and provide employment opportunities within the local community”.

metals4u new warehouse

The newly refurbished and extended warehouse nearing completion.

Intricate planning and really hard graft ensured the move went smoothly. We kept customer delivery disruption to an absolute minimum while our stock was being transferred to the new site,  and we would like to thank our loyal customers for their amazing support and patience over the Easter bank holidays.

Win a unique Metals4U bike to celebrate Tour de Yorkshire

(Last modified: June 27th, 2017)

This competition has now closed!

The Grand Départ was such a success that organisers were keen to replicate the feel-good factor (which did a lot to revive the bunting and yellow paint industries). So this year we have the Tour de Yorkshire – three days of cycling that will again attract some of the top professionals in the sport to race on our shores, taking in places like Bridlington, Scarborough, Selby, York, Wakefield and Leeds.

Sir Bradley Wiggins says he’ll be there. Not only that, he says he’ll be leading his own Team Wiggins development squad for the event, since he’s leaving Team Sky at the end of April.

We’ve been excited about this ever since the event was announced in September last year. It’s the first of its kind, so we wanted to do something special for it.

A bike like no other

We’ve made 40 bikes for people to display outside their homes, offices or any other building they like, as a show of support for the Tour de Yorkshire. It’s around 60cm high and 100cm wide – and a unique memento for what is, after all, a unique event.

yellow bike

How to win

We’re not selling these bikes – we’re giving them away. So if you’d like to win one, all you have to do is let us know what Yorkshire means to you.

Tell us why you love Yorkshire – or show us in a picture – on Twitter by tweeting us @Metals4u_uk and using the hashtag #Metals4ubikes. Alternatively you can tell us what Yorkshire means to you by posting on our Facebook page.

We want these specially made bikes to be with the winners in time for the Tour de Yorkshire, which begins on 1st May, so please show us your passion for Yorkshire before Friday 24th April and we’ll pick our favourites and send the bikes to you.

The celebrations are already underway

Welcome to Yorkshire – who are running the event with Amaury Sport Organisation – have organised a Tour de Yorkshire Festival, which began on 1st April. It’s showcasing the county’s great arts through 200 exhibitions and performances.

If you want to know more about the race, visit the Tour de Yorkshire website. Welcome to Yorkshire have also made a rather cool video that shows the key points of the race from the air.

Around one million people are expected to watch the race along routes that total more than 500km (over 310 miles) – with plenty more watching on TV. Get your unique Metals4U bike and make sure you’re part of the first ever Tour de Yorkshire!

 This competition has now closed!

References

 

*All competition rules & guidelines are at the discretion of Metals4U*