Feeds

Inventor of the Workmate dies

Also designed the Lotus Elan

Seven Steps to Software Security

Ron Hickman, the inventor of the Black & Decker Workmate, has died in Jersey, where he had a design factory. Hickman died after a long illness that followed a serious fall five months ago.

blackanddeckerworkmate

Hickman, who lived in Jersey, was 78. His design for the wood-and-steel foldable workbench and vice was rejected by several tool companies that believed the bench wouldn't sell.

Tool company Stanley told him the device would sell in the dozens rather than hundreds, while other companies told him the design would not sell at the necessary price. It has since sold about 30 million units around the world, and 60,000 were sold in the UK last year alone.

Hickman sold the benches himself when he couldn't find a backer through trade shows direct to professional builders. Black & Decker saw the light in 1973 and began producing them. By 1981 it had sold 10 million benches.

lotusElan

Hickman designed the iconic lotus Elan too... Pic: Wikimedia

He came up with the design when he accidentally sawed through an expensive chair while making a wardrobe. He had been using the chair as a workbench.

The design was copied by many other companies and Hickman successfully defended his patents in court.

Hickman had a life-long love of cars, and also famously designed the original Lotus Elan, the Lotus Plus2 and the Europa. He was a member of the Jersey Old Motor Club. ®

Seven Steps to Software Security

More from The Register

next story
Canuck reader threatens suicide over exact dimensions of SPAAAACE!
How many As? Reg hack's writing cops a shoeing
Delaware pair nabbed for getting saucy atop Mexican eatery
Burrito meets soft taco in alleged rooftop romp outrage
Japanese artist cuffed for disseminating 3D ladyparts files
Printable genitalia fall foul of 'obscene material' laws
Brit Rockall adventurer poised to quit islet
Occupation records broken, champagne corks popped
Apple: No, China. iPhone is NOT public enemy number 1
Beijing fears it could beam secrets back to America
Accused! Yahoo! exec! SUES! her! accuser!, says! sex! harassment! never! happened!
Allegations were for 'financial gain', countersuit claims
Carlos: Slim your working week to just three days of toil
'Midas World' vision suggests you retire later, watch more tellie and buy more stuff
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Mobile application security vulnerability report
The alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, and the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.