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Executive Report:

Probilt takes the floor

It may have an unfamiliar name, but some of Probilt’s products are already very well known to hirers. Alan Guthrie reports from Liverpool.

Launched this month, Probilt is the new brand encompassing products that were previously offered under the Eurofloor name. Eurofloor was originally established as a division of the Liverpool-based Lawtons group, operating as a supplier and installer of hardwood flooring. It also became a distributor of related products, such as Porta-Nail nailers and fixings, sealants and other accessories. The hire industry developed as an important market and the business detected niches for other products outside flooring that could be offered.

The Eurofloor name could not have reflected the breadth of the expanded operation, and so Lawtons has now established three separate divisions. Eurofloor Projects is the contracting operation, Della Flooring sells hardwood flooring products directly to tradesmen, while Probilt distributes machinery throughout industry, including hire.

“We now have everything in place to offer hirers an array of tools for professionals,” states Russell Cooper, who becomes Divisional Manager for Probilt. “All the products we offer will be innovative and designed for use in many aspects of the built environment.”

The initial line-up obviously includes former Eurofloor range items like Porta-Nail equipment and Clarke American Sanders products. Alongside popular Clarke models like the EZ-8 expandable drum sander, the B-2+ edge sander and the Super E extension edger, Probilt is introducing the FloorCrafter 8, described as an aggressive high work-rate, low vibration belt sander.

Additionally, Probilt has established exclusive supplier arrangements with several manufacturers, such as Bullet Tools of America, and is offering its Magnum Shear. This is a hand-operated guillotine that can precisely cut a wide range of flooring materials without creating dust. Russell Cooper describes it as “the Holy Grail for wood floor contractors, since they typically spend so much time cutting wood to size with saws and covering furniture to protect against dust. There are also Health & Safety considerations. The Magnum Shear can cut 18mm-thick solid hardwood, as well as parquet, PVC, leather, vinyl and skirting boards. The range includes models with widths from 23-122cm.

Another new product is the Paint Shaver Pro from American International Tool. Featuring tungsten blades, it operates at 11,000rpm and is claimed to be able to remove 1ft2 of paint, varnish or other surface coatings within 20 seconds. It can be connected to a dust vacuum and operating depth can be adjusted so that the base material is unaffected. It is suitable for use on window sills, frames, doors, boats and other items. Also being offered is the Sander Vac Pro, a small sander with heavy-duty aluminium oxide pads. It can be used to create a particularly fine finish after the Paint Shaver Pro. It can similarly be connected to a dust vacuum for greater operational efficiency. Both products are seen as particularly useful for removing potentially hazardous coatings such as lead paint. As such, the Paint Shaver Pro is often used in interior decorating.

Showing Probilt’s ability to serve completely new markets is the Joe Built HD-500 motorised barrow. Weighing 102kg, it can carry payloads of up to 545kg and is said to be optimally balanced to enable effortless tipping. Fitted with a 2-stroke petrol engine, it has three operating speeds plus reverse and is 97cm wide. Russell Cooper contends that the machine has very strong hire appeal “because it can be used in so many industries, such as construction and landscaping. It can be fitted with low ground pressure tyres and the non-stick polyethylene hopper facilitates emptying.

“We see huge potential for the entire Probilt range. Our sister contract flooring business has seen huge demand for hardwood flooring recently, which requires regular sanding unlike laminates.
We are also eager to introduce our new products to the hire market, and we will be using the Executive Hire Show (on 31 January and 1 February 2007) as the launching pad for them.”

T 0151 479 3000
W www.probilt.co.uk

Executive Hire NewsArchivesSeptember 2006Executive Report › Probilt takes the floor

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