Australian Innovation

Innovation in hand rail manufacturing

Klein Architectural, a Queensland-based manufacturer of high quality stainless steel products, has developed a hand rail with 80% more grip than conventional hand rails and engaged with the Australian Institute for Commercialisation (AIC) to commercialise the opportunity.

Klein Architectural is a family owned business which manufactures high quality stainless steel products for a range of purposes and customers. Projects range from customised decorative metalwork for the home to the fabrication of materials for supermarket refurbishments.

The company recently developed a new product - the Klein Architectural Grab (KAG) Rail - that due to its rope-like motif has 80% more grip than the conventional grab and hand rails on the market (independently tested by QUT). This innovation has clear health and safety benefits for a variety of industries. After taking the first important step to protect the invention through an application for an Innovation Patent, Klein Architectural sought external support to commercialise the product.

The company engaged the AIC through its innovation coaching program and Enterprise Connect. The AIC Innovation Coaching program is a joint initiative with the Queensland government Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (DEEDI) under the Q-WIN (Queensland Wide Innovation Network) program which provides innovation coaching services to high-potential small and medium enterprises.

Due to the breadth of potential markets for the grab rail, the AIC in conjunction with Klein Architectural and Enterprise Connect, identified a small number of key targets to test market acceptance which included the mining, health and defence sectors.

The KAG rail is currently being used in the marine rescue sector with positive results. Ken Gibbs, Unit Training Coordinator, Volunteer Marine Rescue (Southport) said “…the rail offers superior holding capacity in both wet and dry conditions without compromising strength”.

Scott McNeil, Southern Region Innovation Coach at the AIC said “Whenever I show Klein Architectural’s innovative grab rail to people they are amazed at how much grip it has and then start telling me about all the places it can be used. Uptake of Klein Architectural’s grab rail by industry will have a profound impact on the size of Klein Architectural and the number of staff employed”.  

For further information on the AIC’s Innovation program visit www.ausicom.com, call (07) 3853 5225 or e-mail info(at)ausicom.com.

For further information on the Klein Architectural Grab (KAG) Rail please visit www.klein.net.au, call (07) 3290 5880 or e-mail gk(at)klein.net.au.

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