First Cut has announced that it has entered into a merger of interests with Gas Safety International (GSI), a Johannesburg-based company that has been providing certified training and supplying gas equipment to the industrial sector in South Africa since 1985.
The agreement became effective from 01 November 2021 and will allow both companies to explore opportunities that are mutually beneficial to both.
“We have joined forces with GSI so that we can strengthen and expand our offering in the metal cutting, grinding and welding aspects of manufacturing across a broad spectrum of industries and market sectors. In January 2019 we announced the addition of Messer Cutting Systems’ plasma, oxyfuel, and large-plate processing equipment to our metal fabrication equipment product lines. Messer Cutting Systems, a leading German company, has had a long history in South Africa and much of its capital equipment is being used by steel processors and fabricators throughout the country,” said Andrew Poole, MD of First Cut.
First Cut has announced that it has entered into a merger of interests with Gas Safety International (GSI), a Johannesburg-based company that has been providing certified training and supplying gas equipment to the industrial sector in South Africa since 1985. In January 2019 they announced the addition of Messer Cutting Systems’ plasma, oxyfuel, and large-plate processing equipment to their metal fabrication equipment product lines
“Messer Cutting Systems’ machines are suitable for solutions for various sectors, such as automotive, construction, custom cutting/steel service centres, energy, material handling, mechanical engineering, metal products/heavy steelworks, plant and pressure vessels, recycling, shipbuilding and shipyards, rail, agriculture, job shop, structural steel, general engineering and precision fabrication applications. Messer Cutting Systems also provides full system support with technical and applications training, including software.”
“We subsequently opened up a welding division, which included the local manufacture of the full range of Messer Electrodes, used for welding mild steel, stainless steels, carbon-manganese steels, problem steels, gouging and hard-facing applications and more. The electrode range is manufactured under licence from Messer and the products have to comply with German, British and American quality standards such as DIN, AWS/ASME and BS.”
“First Cut’s history dates back 65 years and in that time we have built a reputation on a solid base of manufacture and distribution of hack saws, band saws, bow saws, butcher saws and various hand tools. We subsequently opened up a capital equipment division, which specialises in supplying equipment general cutting, plate processing, plasma cutting, oxy-fuel cutting, drilling, sheet metal processing, coil processing, roll forming, laser cutting, bending, punching, shearing, structural fabrication, beam processing, flat and angle processing, surface treatment, tube processing, tube mills, tube bending, perforation and end forming.”
“First Cut has evolved into a company that now offers a total solution and focused range of products designed around providing cutting solutions for various industries – the most important being steel, timber, meat, foam, textiles and the DIY trade.”
Fuel your safety knowledge
“With this comprehensive basket of products for cutting and welding, which principally use gas or oxygen as a medium.”
“However, when using gas or oxygen as a cutting or welding medium there are many safety requirements to take into consideration. At the start of every gas control path pressure regulators are the decisive connection between the gas supply and the torch. Depending upon pressure, volumes, connections required or the type of gas, various aspects must be considered. A technically faultless and simultaneously safe take-up point has the highest priority here.”
GSI’s gas safety training material is accredited by the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA). They are the only company locally to have achieved this, and it means that engineers who attend their courses can earn their requisite continuing professional development (CPD) points
“Messer’s flashback arrestors provide reliable protection against reverse-flow of gas and flashbacks for pressure regulators, tapping points of pipe line systems, individual cylinders, hose, oxyfuel equipment, flame-cutting machines and gas supply stations.”
“However, we felt that we were lacking in the aspect of safety when using gas or oxygen. There are many safe practices that you should implement before using these mediums, as there are “dos and don’ts.” The preliminary “do,” of course, is training, which you should have before you even consider picking up a torch or turning on a machine.”
“GSI is a well-known and well-respected gas safety products and training company. GSI’s MD, Peter Rohlssen, has given presentations, lectures, audits and seminars in many industries and countries around the world as well as being a member of many advisory boards, including the Gas Safety board of the South African Bureau of Standards.”
“In addition, GSI’s gas safety training material is accredited by the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA). They are the only company locally to have achieved this, and it means that engineers who attend their courses can earn their requisite continuing professional development (CPD) points,” explained Poole.
“The new relationship will strengthen our service offering, providing our customers with even more choice of products and solutions, as well as access to the highly-respected training experience and expertise offered by GSI with regards to gas safety training, consulting and auditing. In addition, welding safety training, consulting and risk auditing will be offered by GSI’s welding engineer Robert Lawrence,” said Poole.
“I will remain at the helm of GSI, which will continue as a separate brand, entity and team, while working collaboratively with First Cut to expand and explore mutually strategic and advantageous opportunities. This includes ensuring that through this merger, the legacy I have built up since founding GSI will continue so that the enormous knowledge and experience will be preserved and our client base will also continue to be serviced,” said Rohlssen.
“We will be combining a portfolio of excellent international suppliers, and this will allow us to boost our joint offering, providing our customers with an even wider choice, and importantly, with our combined ability to deliver the appropriate solution for their applications and requirements,” said Poole.
Both Poole and Rohlssen are adamant that stringent safety rules are critical when it comes to working with gas or oxygen, irrespective of the sector.
“We improve gas safety through our strict adherence to compliance regulations, as well as providing clients with the benefit of our significant industry experience via our gas safety training and risk audits. Gas safety standards must be applied in any sector where gas is used, including welding. It should however be noted that the applications are certainly broader than the industrial sphere alone. They also include the mining, medical, pharmaceutical, agricultural, domestic and many other markets,” said Rohlssen.
“Rohlssen is an expert in gas safety training, consulting and auditing and we are very happy to be associated with him and GSI. This new relationship can only be beneficial to our clients and all in the industry. If you cut or weld material talk to us,” concluded Poole.