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Hydrajaws Company History

Hydrajaws Limited was established in 1960 based in Birmingham. The core business until the late 1980's was the design and manufacture of workholding fixtures for the machine tool industry. Since then We have established ourselves as specialists in the development, manufacture and supply of fixings testing equipment.

From the beginning

The Company was purchased by Royston Morgan in 1988 but the initial idea for the portable tension tester was designed and manufactured in 1985. Since then the manufacture and sales of portable tension testers for anchors and fixings has become Hydrajaws main business.

With the continued growth in the use of fixings throughout the building and construction industry, where they offer a quick and convenient method of securing structures, components, scaffolding, safety harness and other fittings, the need for simply yet reliable means of establishing their strength and installation efficiency to the satisfaction of the Health and Safety Executive and local government building inspectors has become a vital necessity.

Original Testing Method

The testing method originally used by the industry was to erect a bridge or stool, normally fabricated with three support legs, on which was mounted a single hydraulic cylinder with the piston rod secured to the anchor by bolt or nut depending on the type. The cylinder was then connected to a hydraulic hand pump and the pressure built up monitored on a dial type gauge until the required force was reached or the pull-out strength exceeded. Clearly this was cumbersome and time consuming. Furthermore, it usually involved engaging a specialist testing consultant or representatives from the fixing suppliers or manufacturers themselves.

Local Authorities

Many local authorities and councils are now imposing safety guidelines on their main contractors and scaffolding companies. They are required to test scaffolding ring bolt tie anchors in accordance with the latest TG4 guidelines.

Contractors are required to carry out preliminary test on the suitability of the base material into which the anchors are installed and then to test a sample of anchors up to a maximum of 12.2 kN prior to commencing the installation of the working ties.

Most recently Hydrajaws has been involved in the development of their heavy duty tester for the use of the Highways Agency approved contractors involved in the installation of motorway safety fences, barriers, bridge parapets, lighting columns, and road sign gantries. Another recent development is a special highway testing rig for establishing the strength and stability of safety fence and barrier fixing posts. Comprising a double acting hydraulic cylinder, chain, extension tubes and pump, this equipment provides an accurate two-dimensional measurement of loading as applied both to steel and timber fixing posts.