Flame-Cut started with very humble beginnings in the garage of owner, Ron Jenkins. Using a CIG Type 48 radial arm machine, many thousands of profiles were cut from templates. A roller magnet followed the template profile and the items were cut one at a time. Pieces of plate had to be dragged from the backs of trucks and then cut into manageable pieces before they could even be moved into the garage.
Flame-Cut was first registered on 12 October 1971 working from premises in Violet St. Revesby in the south western suburbs of Sydney. At the end of 1976, with the business expanding, it was time to move on and new premises were found at Smithfield. Only five years later and another move was required. This time though, it was nearby at Wetherill Park. When building work first commenced, many thought that we had chosen the wrong location. Although very close to Smithfield, it seemed a long way off the beaten track and difficult to get to. However, Wetherill Park grew rapidly into the major heavy industrial area of Sydney and a majority of clients are now close by.
Naturally machinery has changed greatly in this period. Optical tracing machines followed the original CIG Type 48, which required templates to be made. These machines had a “magic eye” which followed a full size black line drawing, which was done by hand. These machines are still in use today although now most have NC controllers fitted to them. Computers soon were used to draw and program the NC controllers. Early programs required point to point programming which was quite slow and cumbersome. With new computers and software we can now draw and nest in a fraction of the time it used to take.
Surface grinding of plates had always been sub-contracted but as demand grew the purchase of a Lumsden 60 inch grinding machine allowed us to do most of the grinding in house.
The latest innovation has been plasma cutting. Although somewhat slow to take off due to their high cost and beveling of the cut face, the latest torches cut much squarer. With greater accuracy due mainly to less heat input on the material, plasma cutting is now highly accepted for all material under 20mm thick.