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H360 and MCG Mobility

Martin McGilligan of MCG Mobility has teamed up with H360, a sister company of SJC Hutchinson Engineering, to invent a ‘standalone’ adaptable wheelchair lift at competitive price, offering greater accessibility to those who couldn’t previously afford it.

Previously, ‘all in one’ wheelchairs that raise and lower the user have costed thousands of pounds, pricing many individuals out of the market. This invention, the ALTO, comprises a scissor lift mounted onto the users existing wheelchair, allowing the user to be raised – enhancing quality of life. The ALTO can be easily attached or detached by the user allowing for a range of benefits, including; heightened independence, safe working at standard height appliances, eg cookers and a reduced dependency on others.

Martin McGilligan, MCG Mobility explained: “I first encountered some of the difficulties faced by wheelchair users at the age of 16 when my younger sister who was born with spina bifida began to use a wheelchair more and more until eventually becoming a full time wheelchair user.

“Most of the world around us has been designed around the able bodied population, particularly when in a standing position. Other solutions on the market with the height function built in were highly expensive and couldn’t be easily transported, meaning the user had to once again depend on others for mobility. I spent several years from an A-Level technology and design project to now working on a range of products that would give wheelchair users actual independence.

“I must say thank you to H360. I came to the company with the original concept designs, but it was Ian and his team’s hard work and dedication that brought my vision to life. My sister is now using the ALTO and it really has changed her life for the better.”

Ian Ferguson, Senior Design Engineer at H360, said: “The ALTO will be adaptable to various designs of wheelchair. We are currently working on adapting the structure for different models of wheelchair, so it is difficult to project costs for each structure as they may have to be designed bespoke. As we are mounting an attachment on to the user’s existing wheelchair, this drastically cuts the costs instead of the user having to purchase expensive ‘all in one’ wheelchairs.”

H360, otherwise known as the ‘complete solutions provider’ in the industry, takes a concept from idea right through to production. It includes an initial consultation, a feasability study, through to design and development, producing a prototype before going into full production.

“We are known for taking on concepts and making them a reality. Late last year we also fully converted a Ford Tourneo Connect van for mobility purposes. From working on bespoke stand systems for a high end audio equipment manufacturer, to designing surfboard manufacturing equipment for Skunkworks Surf Company, we have worked on a vast range of products and become known as the engineering solution provider in the industry. Clients come to us at various stages of the design /manufacture process, and with 45 years experience behind us at Hutchinson Group, we are able to assess the client’s needs and help with any engineering problem,” Ferguson explained.

Hutchinson Engineering

Hutchinson Engineering is one of the UK and Ireland’s leading sub contract laser and metal fabrication companies. Operating from a 60,000 square foot state-of-the-art production facility, they offer their customers the complete in house engineering solution. Hutchinson Engineering services include laser cutting, angle and tube cutting, steel bending and folding, fabrication, finishing, as well as product development and design.

Hutchinson Engineering is a high quality supplier of laser cutting, folding, fabrication, kitting and design services, which uses state of the art 3D design software and the most modern laser technology available. Established in 1971, the company is a medium sized, family run business which has developed into one of Northern Ireland’s leading Sub-Contract Laser cutting and fabrication companies.

Services

Hutchinson Engineering offers laser cutting and fabrication services to operators in numerous sectors and works with global elite companies. The firm offers customers operating in the aerospace, agriculture, construction, energy and transport sectors the complete engineering solution. As well as being a full service fabrication and laser cutting provider, Hutchinson Engineering also offers customers folding and finishing services.

Laser Precision

The company’s customers demand accuracy and laser technology allows Hutchinson Engineering to work to tight tolerances and deliver rapid cutting speeds without sacrificing quality.

Laser cutting capabilities include;
• Mild steel
• Stainless steel
• Aluminium
• Hardox
• Chequer plate

3D tube laser capabilities include;
• Mild Steel Box, Angle, Pipe, and Channel
• Stainless Steel Box, Angle, Pipe, and Channel
• Aluminium Box, Angle, Pipe, and Channel

Fabrication and Folding

Hutchinson Engineering employs a range of state-of-the-art fabrication equipment for precision metal folding and bending. With high tolerances and flexibility, a broad range of materials can be formed to meet specific requirements.

Finishing

Hutchinson Engineering can further enhance your products through quality metal finishing techniques. The company employs a finishing machine to polish stainless steel, mild steel and aluminium to provide high quality finishes and can advise on the most appropriate finish for each product.

Hutchinson Engineering also offer;
• Powder Coating
• Zinc Passivation
• Galvanising
• Wet Spraying

All in one Engineering Solution Provider

Additionally, Hutchinson Engineering offers complete design development consultancy including conceptual design, working drawings and stress analysis through their sister company, H360. The firm doesn’t just design your product – it takes it from concept to full production, with the ability to help customers at any stage of the process, whether you have an initial design concept or not. The company are able to design a prototype that works, refine the design to be more efficient and cost-effective and finally manufacturing it at our purpose-built facility.
Hutchinson Engineering aims to be at the forefront of technology, investing substantially in the latest state of the art laser cutting, folding and welding machinery as well as 2D and 3D CAD systems in order to maximise the hardware available.

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