With the success of Team GB at the Rio Olympics & Paralympics still fresh in the memory it’s good to know that British business is achieving Gold back home with Heico Fasteners UK Ltd being awarded the much coveted Furniture Industry Research Association (FIRA) Gold Award for their new ‘Blaquer’ rust resistant Super Loop springs.
Dave Read, General Manager of Heico Fasteners UK (c), receives the Gold award for the Zig-Zag Springs from Lord Hoyle of Warrington (l) and Phil Reynolds, General Manager of FIRA, (r)
FIRA Gold Product Certification is a quality mark operated by FIRA International and backed by the Furniture Industry Research Association, experts in the furniture industry for 65 years, and is the only certification scheme recognised by the furniture industry and audited by an independent third party. Now, hot on the heels of their recent Gold Award for their ‘Blaquer’ Zig Zag Springs, Heico Fasteners UK Ltd have followed that up with another Gold award from the industry body.
Heico’s ‘Blacquer’ Zig-Zag and Super Loop springs have been developed to meet the exacting demands of the UK furniture industry and the unique anti-rust coating provides unrivalled corrosion resistance. The unique coating of the ‘Blacquer’ springs is fully elastic, meaning it will not crack with movement, thus no reduction in corrosion protection even under the strain of continuous use. The lack of rust coupled with no oily residue makes the springs far cleaner to use in production than existing alternatives, adding real benefits to manufacturers.
Past attempts have been made to provide such a coating to furniture springs using lead based paints but the new ‘Blacquer’ springs use a lead free substance developed using the science of nano technology that is environmentally friendly and fully complies with EU regulatory requirements. The process of electrophoretic deposition is used to coat the springs, a process which enables the entire spring to be evenly coated, ensuring corrosion resistance to 100% of the spring surface.
Only after the most rigorous assessment of a product is the FIRA Gold Certification awarded and, having become the first distributor in the UK to receive this prestigious accolade for their Zig-Zag springs, Heico have now become double award winners. The extensive tests undertaken by FIRA for Gold Certification include height measurement tests (in accordance with BS EN 1957:2012) and fatigue tests (in accordance with BS EN 1728:2012), both at 200,000 cycles. The height measurement tests are particularly rigorous with a loss of greater than 10% being a fail but the ‘Blacquer’ Super Loop springs scored an impressive average loss of just 0.28%.
Phil Reynolds, General Manager for FIRA International, said of the latest award: “Heico’s Super Loop springs have been through a thorough testing regime assessing the strength and durability of the springs when used in an item of furniture. They have gone through a 200,000 durability cycle, simulating heavy contract usage, without failure. In addition we have inspected Heico’s manufacturing facility and audited their control processes to ensure that the product is produced to a consistently high standard”
Dave Read, General Manager at Heico, commenting after receiving their latest award said “We were really proud to be the first distributor in the UK to achieve this prestigious award with our ‘Blaquer’ Zig-Zag springs and to achieve the same award for our Super Loop springs makes us the only supplier in the UK to have both their Zig-Zag seat springs and Super Loop back springs certified to FIRA Gold standards. The new ‘Blaquer’ range is unique and both the Zig-Zag and Super Loop springs offer superior corrosion resistance that cannot be matched by any other springs available in the UK furniture industry and we believe these springs are a real game changer in the market”.
Dave continued “The tests that FIRA conducted on our springs provide our customers with the confidence that our new springs perform to the highest standards coupled with the additional real benefits of a clean, environmentally friendly and corrosion resistant product”.
The FIRA Gold Standard gives manufacturers providing extended warranties additional confidence that these springs have been tested under the most rigorous conditions by an independent authority of high standing within the furniture industry.
Heico’s National Sales Manager, Roger Freeman, said of the new award “Its’ great to achieve FIRA Gold again for the Super Loops. These new springs offer real benefits to customers and we are confident that these unique products will really make a difference as they offer excellent independently certified performance coupled with superior corrosion resistance as well as being clean to use and environmentally friendly”.
Roger added “The corrosion resistant qualities of our unique coating removes the risk of any rust being transferred onto the fabric during production and as the springs do not have an oil coating another contamination risk is avoided. We feel these unique qualities add real benefits not only to our manufacturing customers but also of course to their clients”.
The new springs are also fully tested as part of the production process with hardness testing, cycle testing, seat simulation and salt water dip testing all carried out as part of a stringent in-house quality testing process, ensuring that every batch sent out performs to the highest standards.
Heico Fasteners have been supplying an extensive array of products to the furniture industry for decades and their product portfolio also includes elasticated webbing, wooden legs, brass castors, nail strip and tack strip to name but a few. They are also well known for their decorative upholstery nails, being a group member of the world’s largest manufacturer of such items. The new ‘Blacquer’ Zig-Zag and Super Loop springs are an exciting addition to Heico’s already impressive offering.
With FIRA Gold Certification for both the Zig-Zag springs and now the Super Loops, coupled with unrivalled corrosion resistance, the development of the new ‘Blaquer’ range really puts Heico Fasteners at the forefront of the furniture springs market in the UK.