Custom Aluminium: Transforming the mini jet industry

” Our products rely on BlueScope Distribution’s reliability and assurance. It comes down to quality and accuracy for our product and processing needs. ”

Established in 2002, Custom Aluminium is a leading sheet metal and aluminium fabricator in Perth, Western Australia. Custom Aluminium produces metal products for the architectural, building, residential construction industry, mining, industrial, marine, retail, and automotive industries.

“Custom Aluminium’s services extend from aluminium powder coating, perforating, welding, extrusions to custom sheet metal fabrications, for just about any design you can imagine,” explains Jamie Buchanan, BlueScope Distribution Account Manager.

Starting out as a small family-run organisation has led to extensive aluminium experience and a highly skilled team. Combining the unrivalled expertise with state-of-the-art facilities, means Custom Aluminium is best known for their aluminium fabrication work and projects.

The workshop boasts the latest in metalwork automation technology and innovation. Along with an off-site powder coating plant, leading-edge computer-generated 3D designs and a water jet cutting machine, limitless design and manufacturing capabilities are delivered to the industry.

Custom Aluminium has a long-standing partnership with BlueScope Distribution. “We are lucky to have such a strong relationship with BlueScope Distribution. Quality products, delivered on time, with technical support when needed is essential,” explains Jake Whately, Director of Custom Aluminium.

With Custom Aluminium’s ‘make it happen’ attitude, strong focus on quality and customer service, partnering with dependable, experienced suppliers such as BlueScope Distribution is paramount.

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Customised metalwork solutions

While based in Perth, Custom Aluminium services both local and regional customers. They specialise in working with businesses of all sizes that require customised metalwork solutions.

“We have a strong customer centric and creative approach to our work – which sees us produce a range of products for our customers serving different industries. From large scale commercial sheet metal supply to intricate, one-off custom projects for a unique need, we pride ourselves on being highly innovative, cost effective and reliable metalwork fabricators,” says Jake.

The strong relationship with BlueScope Distribution allows Custom Aluminium to deliver on their commitment to providing high-quality tailor-made aluminium products, delivering quick turnaround times and 100% customer satisfaction.“

BlueScope Distribution supply our sheet metal and aluminium products in the specific grades that we require. They also support us with some processing services. Our business relies on BlueScope Distribution’s reliability and assurance. It comes down to quality and accuracy for our product and processing needs. The turnaround time and technical support is all very important” explains Jake “and I know we can rely on Jamie and the BlueScope Distribution team.”

Custom Aluminium sources BlueScope Distribution aluminium products – grades 5005 and 5083 supplied in kit form. 5005 is the most malleable among the alloys in the 5000 series, it can be easily shaped and has great weldability. Additionally, it boasts exceptional resistance to corrosion, making it ideal for various applications such as architecture, general components, food appliances, and sheet metal works.

The 5083 alloy boasts the highest strength among its peers and exhibits exceptional performance even in extreme conditions. Moreover, it is highly resistant to corrosion from salt-water and industrial chemicals. BlueScope Distribution offers DNV certified aluminum plates made from this alloy that are suitable for a wide range of applications, from defense and construction, to automotive and transport. However, it is especially critical for businesses serving the marine industry.

BlueScope Distribution also supply Custom Aluminium TRUSPEC® steel, GALVABOND® steel, COLORBOND® steel coil for different applications.

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First class mini jet innovation

Custom Aluminium recently established a sister company, Custom Craft, which offers a range of aluminium mini jet boat kits for river racing.

Born out of a desire to help customers design a boat for their lifestyle, customers can choose from three styles and three delivery methods:

  • Client receives the design and sources their own material and build
  • Client receives pre-cut flat pack to fabricate themselves
  • Client receives built and ready to go boat.

Custom Craft immediately turned to BlueScope Distribution for support with their new venture.

Jamie Buchanan explains “We support Custom Craft with all their requirements. They provide our operations team with their files in CAD to be programmed for processing into our custom aluminium router. We then deliver the processed product to Custom Craft to further fabricate, bend and weld.”

“Products are nested to minimize waste,” Jamie states “We can put three boats worth of material on one sheet and use the whole sheet. If we do one boat, we could waste half a sheet which can be very costly. ”

Pre-processing eliminates the need to cut the whole boat by hand, saving Custom Craft significant time and labour costs. The effort of the mini jets has certainly paid off. “We recently won first prize in the Avon Descent for its class, using a boat that BlueScope Distribution processed for us on their router,” remarks Jake. “The information that Jamie and the BlueScope Distribution team provides on material grade, strength, bendability and different purposes is extremely useful. They have a great understanding of what’s required and also available.”

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Giving back to the community

Much of the success of Custom Aluminium is attributed to its family origins, with a good group of people who’ve been with Jake for a very long time. And while cutting edge processing and manufacturing, continuous improvement and innovation defines the company, so too does giving back to the community.

Custom Aluminium and Custom Craft sponsor local grassroots clubs and make substantial financial donations. The impact is profound as Jake explains “I’ve used my boats to build on community support and a new following.”

Custom Aluminium’s next big investment will be in processing, innovation, and technology, with new sheet metal CNC machinery. The new technology will allow Custom Aluminium to fabricate things that previously weren’t possible. “It’s
all about steady growth and evolution for us, though we fully intend to remain dedicated to our customers and the industries they operate in.”

For BlueScope Distribution “It’s about understanding what’s important to Custom Aluminium and Custom Craft. Drilling down and ensuring our products and solutions meet their specific requirements. At the end of the day, we work hard to look after Jake and the team, and we appreciate their support. It’s a win-win relationship on all levels,” says Jamie.

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