This month at Monkeytoe July 2020

Check out what's been happening at Monkeytoe in July in our latest monthly news feature.

A note from Budd

We’re already in the second half of the year, and what a year it’s been for us here at Monkeytoe. The XBeam has been taking the design, building and engineering worlds by storm. We’ve had great feedback on its performance – the time and stress it’s saving on site, the ease of the modular install. Head over to our website to check out more information about the beam that’s raising the bar.

It’s been great to work with so many diverse clients this year, too, who have helped get Monkeytoe and the XBeam coast to coast. As a small snapshot, you can find our handiwork at Woolworths Flagstone and Rockhampton, The Foundry Toowoomba, Harvey Norman Cairns, five Coles stores, the Bankstown and Canberra Airports, St Sava College, Macquarie Uni Sydney and the Horsby RSL. And that’s just a taster.

This month, we’ve got a couple of success stories to celebrate from both sides of the Tasman. The first is the recent mechanical plant platform and screens we recently installed for liquor supermarket Dan Murphy’s in Batemans Bay, NSW; the second is a series of custom aluminium solutions for Waste Management (NZ) and their truck washing bay.

One thing that Glen Thomas of our Research and Development division can’t get enough of is innovation. For him, it’s about the challenge of finding a solution that’s better than what others have – and making it work. It’s the pursuit of better that’s seen him and our team come up with some creative solutions and ground-breaking products like the XBeam. This month, we sat down with Glen and got to know how he moves from client need to finished product.

We’ve still got a few rugby balls to give away, so make sure you read on through our newsletter to see how you can get your hands on one today.

All the best,

Budd Prestidge, General Manager

Dan Murphy’s Bateman Bay, NSW

Dan Murphy’s is a popular destination in Batemans Bay, NSW, not least of all because the liquor supermarket’s impressive range and ‘lowest liquor price guarantee’ often makes it the first stop on many a Friday night.

Recently, Monkeytoe were headed there for other reasons – to install yet another quality mechanical plant platform!

Dan Murphy’s needed robust and reliable HVAC plant platforms that would sit discretely on their store’s roof, so we arranged an ideal solution for them that would offer them the strength and support they needed, and at a fraction of the weight of a steel alternative.

To hide things from street view, and reduce noise transmission, we also supplied screening systems for their HVAC. If you catch us there on a Friday night, it’s because we’re checking on our handiwork!

Waste Management, NZ

When a client comes to us with a problem and gets a solution that 100% satisfies their needs, then that’s job done for Monkeytoe!

Cleaning recycling and refuse waste trucks takes something a bit different from what your standard car wash can offer, so when Waste Management came to us for a solution, we did our bit with proposing a custom platform and stair structure that ticked all the boxes.

They’re now making the most of their aluminium stairs, aluminium handrails and a HVAC plant platform, keeping their trucks – and New Zealand – looking good.

Glen Thomas: Evolving and innovating with Monkeytoe

This month, we sat down with Glen Thomas, one of the innovators in our Research & Development division who sets the bar for what’s possible through Monkeytoe technology.

Research & Development is all about finding and creating better solutions to our clients’ problems. I work closely with Logan Klenner, our Development Manager; he’s in charge of engineering, research and testing, while I’m more focussed on understanding materials and our product options – how we can create a solution and the benefits it’ll bring to our clients.

Take the XBeam, for example. It started, like a lot of our products do, by asking how we can make life easier for our clients. What do our clients want to see? What do designers, architects and engineers want? And what’s the most effective route to take us to where we want to go?

What kept coming up was that clients wanted something that’s easy, modular, lighter, and fast to install on site – after all, time is money, so something that’s simple saves in a big way. Add to that the fact that existing purling mount platforms are getting to the point where they’re maximising their permits – so how can we go bigger, longer, and stronger?

We start researching. We look at options, present rough solutions and costings, and go back and narrow them further. It’s extremely easy to come up with an idea – but it’s a different kettle to make it work in real life. That’s where we’re balancing regulations and standards, material specifications and performance, and ensuring that it’s going to be worth our clients paying for it. There’s a lot of costings, materials and market research. For the XBeam, we looked at polymers, metals, glues, carbon fibre – what they can and can’t do. We also look at what’s happening in other industries, like fashion, because we might find an innovation there that hasn’t made its way across to engineering yet. And we run a lot of tests. Some of this we can do on paper, or through FEA (finite element analysis), but there’s only so much you can do on the computer before you have to build a physical sample. That’s where materials and designs really reveal themselves.

Just because no one’s done it before, some people think that it’s not going to work – which is why we’re pretty impressed with what we’ve achieved with the XBeam. The combination of carbon fibre and aluminium (and adhesives) to arrive at something that not only delivers more useable space for engineers and architects, but also makes for a simpler and faster install for builders, is something of a winner. Add to that the modular design – and the versatility that comes with that on site. It’s an effective product: easy to install, works well, is certified and durable and lightweight (so it doesn’t exert more stress on a structure). It’s everything better.

As a company we’ve got to keep innovating, keep pushing the boundaries to get there before anyone else. Sometimes that’s little steps – small improvements from listening to our clients – and sometimes it’s big leaps. At the end of the day, though, it’s about having a quality product that’s worthwhile for our customers.

Rio Tinto and the future of Australasian aluminium

As you’ll no doubt know by now, Anglo-Australasian aluminium giant Rio Tinto has announced that it intends to shut down the Tiwai Point aluminium smelter in August 2021.

The plant has been operating at the southernmost tip of New Zealand’s South Island since 1971, processing raw alumina from Queensland and the Northern Territory of Australia and largely exporting processed aluminium.

Having a high-quality aluminium smelter on our doorstep has been ideal for us, since it means that we’ve had what’s considered the world’s purest aluminium (an impressive 99.98%) readily available. While the closure is far from ideal for many, we’re pleased to report that Monkeytoe’s supply chain will be unaffected, and we’ll still be able to continue producing aluminium and other products without issue.

The Tiwai Point closure has been a long time coming, so our direct suppliers have already secured backup supply and prepared for this change. And of course, both our suppliers and ourselves have been trialling alternatives for years now, to ensure that we can keep doing what we do best.

Rugby Ball Competition

We’ve hit rugby season for 2020 – and although it might look a bit different this year, given the state of things, we reckon it’s time to get your hands on a Monkeytoe rugby ball, invite the mates around, grab a drink and let off some steam.

We’ve got 10 Monkeytoe rugby/AFL balls to give away, and all you need to do is CLICK HERE to submit a possible application where you believe XBeam could be utilised (outside of a standard portal-mount platform application!)

The top 10 suggestions will get a ball sent their way. Usual sort of rules: make sure you include your mailing details with your submission, and only one ball per household, thanks.

Get our latest ebook: 9 Better Efficiencies with Monkeytoe & XBeam

Our latest ebook 9 Better Efficiencies with Monkeytoe & Xbeam is now available for download from our website.

Efficiency has always been at the heart of engineering and design. It’s the way we deliver great performance – faster, more economically, with better use of space and other resources.

This thinking undergirds all our work at Monkeytoe, and especially our latest product the XBeam, which is longer, lighter and stronger than the steel solutions of the last century.

Head to the download page and see how the XBeam is helping designers, architects and engineers realise some incredible new solutions.


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