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Making the cut safer and quicker

by Jennie Ward

Guardian Tools has worked with roofing contractors to launch its Roof Tile Jig, which offers both “safety” and “time-saving” benefits when it comes to cutting all types of tiles on site.

The roofing industry has always had to address the task of cutting roof tiles; holding the tile secure, safely using the cut off machine (disc-cutter) and the suppression of silica dust whilst cutting, are all essential but often challenging and expose the individual to unavoidable risk. In response to these important issues, the team at Guardian Tools, the tools manufacturer, have worked closely with roofing contractors within the industry and as a result have launched the Guardian Roof Tile Jig.

Above: the Guardian Roof Tile Jig – Guardian Tools says the benefit of working with roofing contractors is that they have been able to develop a product that roofers would use and can do so without expecting them to change the way they work.

The traditional practice to secure and stabilise any roof tile whilst cutting is to stand on it. However, this brings the foot closer to the cutting blade and creates significant risk of a serious accident. Once water has been included in the process for suppressing silica dust, the risk is further increased because the operator is cutting whilst trying to follow a quickly disappearing line. Guardian says the Jig simply replaces the operator’s foot and does not change the process. The tile is aligned on the base of the Jig with a ‘stop’ and held in place by pushing a clamp down on the top of the tile, and Guardian Tools says this then gives the user an edge to follow and makes the cutting safer, more accurate and easily repeatable. By using the Jig in the cutting process, not only does the risk of harm substantially reduce, it also saves time and therefore money.

Andy Fitzmaurice, Guardian Tools Director, explained: “For a number of years we have worked across different sectors of construction with Stihl and their cut-off machines. Through this, we have been able to gain an in-depth understanding of the ways in which cut-off machines can be supported to improve the key roles they have on a construction site. For roofers, the cut-off machine is a valuable tool, so to help improve its ease of use and its safety, plus reducing overall cutting time, is a benefit to both the contractor and their client. Even the simple benefit of raising the tile off the scaffold boards and avoiding the frequent cutting of boards will have a positive impact on site.”

Guardian Tools says the benefit of working with roofing contractors is that they have been able to develop a product that roofers would use and can do so without expecting them to change the way they work. Jason Wright, Managing Director at J Wright Roofing Ltd., explained: “We have looked at the Jig with different types of tiles, including ridge tiles. We can see the benefits of the Jig from both the safety and time-saving aspects and are looking to include this innovative and practical tool with our teams for everyday use.”

Benefits of the Roof Tile Jig:

  • Holds roof tiles secure and stable
  • Does not change the way the tiles are cut
  • Cuts any size roof tile including ridge tiles
  • Easy to cut by simply following the cutting guide
  • Enables the user to cut wet and therefore comply with COSHH regulations
  • Improved safety for operator because the blade is kept straight and away from the foot
  • Better accuracy as the position of the cut is set at the start for that series of cuts
  • Saves time over a series of cuts and ultimately saves money
  • Can be used with any cut-off machine including battery models

The Roof Tile Jig will be officially launched online on Monday 14th September 2020. Visit the Guardian Tools website www.guardiantools.co.uk to pre-order yours for £169.00 plus VAT with free delivery. National distribution via merchants will follow shortly after launch.

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