BUSINESS BOOST: Dobinsons Spring and Suspension owner Glen Dobinson was joined by Rockhampton MP Barry O'Rourke (left) and Minister for Regional Development and Manufacturing Glenn Butcher to inspect their new cold coiling machine and stress relieving low temperature furnace.
BUSINESS BOOST: Dobinsons Spring and Suspension owner Glen Dobinson was joined by Rockhampton MP Barry O'Rourke (left) and Minister for Regional Development and Manufacturing Glenn Butcher to inspect their new cold coiling machine and stress relieving low temperature furnace.

Grant helps key Rocky manufacturer spring back into action

THANKS to a bit of help, one of Rockhampton’s leading manufacturing companies is shaking off the COVID-19 lethargy to spring back into action and resume its thriving export trade.

A fixture of CQ’s business landscape for the past 67 years, Dobinsons Spring and Suspension received a $581,062 grant from Round 2 of the Made in Queensland program in October last year.

They’ve put the money to good use, purchasing and installing a $1,265,500 cold coiling machine and stress relieving low temperature furnace.

Visiting the facility yesterday with Rockhampton MP Barry O’Rourke, Queensland’s newly minted Minister for Regional Development and Manufacturing Glenn Butcher said supporting regional manufacturers to grow their businesses was an important part of the Queensland Advanced Manufacturing 10-Year Roadmap and Action Plan.

Dobinsons Spring and Suspension manager Ben Dobinson watches a worker make a coil spring.
Dobinsons Spring and Suspension manager Ben Dobinson watches a worker make a coil spring.

“Dobinsons is a great example of how the Palaszczuk Government is helping to bolster

Queensland manufacturing so they can get through tough economic times like we’re seeing now because of COVID-19,” Mr Butcher said.

“This pandemic has shown that Queensland needs to be self-reliant when it comes to manufacturing and I am committed to working with manufacturers to invest in advanced manufacturing to create thousands more jobs throughout Queensland and boost our economy.”

Mr O’Rourke said the new equipment has allowed Dobinsons to increase production, lower costs and support additional local jobs.

GEM Energy snapped this aerial view of the 519KW roof-mounted solar system, mounted on the Dobinsons Springs and Suspension Rockhampton warehouse to offset their power costs.
GEM Energy snapped this aerial view of the 519KW roof-mounted solar system, mounted on the Dobinsons Springs and Suspension Rockhampton warehouse to offset their power costs.

“This leading-edge technology has allowed the company to increase their daily coil spring output by 400 per cent, employ three new full-time workers and set them on the path to create more new jobs over the next five years,” Mr O’Rourke said.

“The first small run completed in December 2019 demonstrated a reduced processing time of up to 83 per cent and gain a 10 per cent reduction in offcuts, resulting in cost savings per unit – a fantastic result that could mean big things for the company globally.”

Dobinsons Spring & Suspension Director Glen Dobinson said the company has a long history of manufacturing a comprehensive range of springs and suspension components for the private and heavy vehicle market, exporting to over 50 countries.

GLOBAL AMBITION: GEM Energy's Jack Hooper (left) and Dobinsons Spring and Suspension's Glen Dobinson of with a small part of the solar panel array on top of Dobinsons' roof.
GLOBAL AMBITION: GEM Energy's Jack Hooper (left) and Dobinsons Spring and Suspension's Glen Dobinson of with a small part of the solar panel array on top of Dobinsons' roof.

“In the last week orders have started to drip feed in again, and once we are back up to speed our skilled-casual staff will be back in the stores,” Mr Dobinson said.

“We have taken the opportunity to do some maintenance on machinery during the quieter weeks and now we are ready to get back to creating quality products for new clients in the off-road racing sector and other markets we previously weren’t able to accommodate.

“We also anticipate our extensive range of 4x4 springs and suspension componentry will be popular as travel restrictions continue to ease.”

The $46m MiQ program has supported approximately 75 projects across Queensland, helping create more than 930 jobs over the next five years and is expected to generate approximately $92m in private sector investment.

Nick Dobinson demonstrates how to make a coil at Dobinsons Springs and Suspension Rockhampton factory.
Nick Dobinson demonstrates how to make a coil at Dobinsons Springs and Suspension Rockhampton factory.