Category Archives: Tools

Frank Shaw (Bayonet) Limited, Frank Shaw (Challenge brand)

Frank Shaw (Bayonet) Limited, Frank Shaw.

For over 100 years Frank Shaw (Bayonet) of Redditch in the UK has been supplying the finest quality hardware products to both the trade and DIY’ers. Marketed under the brand names Bayonet, Challenge, Solstuds and brand “X” – plate stands, plate hangers, picture hooks, picture hanging accessories, pins, cable clips, drawing pins, panel pins, tacks, carpet tacks, upholstery nails, nails, etc. All still made in England. Available in builders merchants, good hardware and DIY shops and on the Frank Shaw website.

Challenge 20mm Bright Steel Panel Pins - 1 x 50g. Made in England.

Challenge 20mm Bright Steel Panel Pins – 1 x 50g. Made in England.

Challenge 20mm (3/4") Bright Steel Panel Pins - 1 x 50g. Made in England. Photograph by author. Front view.

Challenge 20mm (3/4″) Bright Steel Panel Pins – 1 x 50g. Made in England. Photograph by author. Front view.

Challenge 20mm (3/4") Bright Steel Panel Pins - 1 x 50g. Made in England. Photograph by author. Rear label and bar code view. 22/1/17

Challenge 20mm (3/4″) Bright Steel Panel Pins – 1 x 50g. Made in England. Photograph by author. Rear label and bar code view. 22/1/17

British Made Tools – British Made DIY, Trade, Agricultural and Garden Tools and Equipment – British Made Engineering Tools and Equipment – Building Work – Scientific Equipment

British Made Tools – British Made DIY, Trade, Agricultural and Garden Tools and Equipment – British Made Engineering Tools and Equipment – Building Work – Scientific Equipment

British Made Tape Measures  and Rulers

Fiscohttp://www.fisco.co.uk – make tape measures in Essex in England.  They make tape measures (the kind used by builders and in DIY), spirit levels, laser measures, long tape measures and surveyor’s tape measures, set squares, wooden rulers (bench rules, surveyor’s rods), steel rulers, and chalk line reels.  I am not sure if everything they sell is made in England, so best to check before buying.  Their products are available in Jewson, on the net, etc. Fisco are not British owned, rather they are part of the Hultafors Group AB which is in turn a business area wholly owned by Swedish Investment AB Latour.  I have a Fisco Pro-Flex and it is a really good tape measure at a reasonable price.  I also have a Fisco Un-Vision tape measure. I note their tape measures, whilst still made in England, are now marked Hultafors Fisco rather than just Fisco.

Fisco Pro-Flex tape measure. Made in England.

Fisco Pro-Flex tape measure. Made in England.

Big T tape measure by Fisco. Made in England

Big T tape measure by Fisco. Made in England

A vintage Fisco Uni-Vision 3m 10ft tape measure. Made in England. Photograph by author.

Rabone Chesterman (a company resulting from the 1963 merger of Rabone of Birmingham and Chesterman of Sheffield), maker of spirit levels and rules, of Whitmore St, Birmingham, were sold to Stanley in 1989. Rabone had previously acquired Dean Tape measures, the main British maker of non-metallic tape measures for the haberdashery trade, in 1986. In 1989, Stanley Tools purchased the assets of Rabone Chesterman from Bardsey PLC.  Since then, the name and the name Dean have disappeared from their product lines.

Vintage Rabone Chesterman Handiflex 3.5meter/12′ Tape Measure. Metric and Imperial. Made in England.

VINTAGE STEEL RULE IMPERIAL/ METRIC 6" MADE IN ENGLAND (1)

VINTAGE STEEL RULE IMPERIAL/ METRIC 6″ MADE IN ENGLAND.

I also found made in England tape measures branded Lion Heart on e-bay.

Does anyone know of other companies making tape measures in the UK?  What about sewing / tailor’s measuring tapes (Dean as far as I know no longer exist)?

Vintage Tape Measure with brass ends by Dean. Made in England

Vintage Tape Measure with brass ends by Dean. Made in England.

Woodworking tools, engineering tools, DIY tools, trade tools and equipment, glues, and other Tools

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