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Tuesday 26 February 2019
by Jackie Emson

Meet the Member - John Casey from Fourmula

  • Who are you?   ‘Fourmula’ is a design and industrialisation consultancy offering services primarily to medium voltage switchgear companies. However this expertise can be useful in any mechanical design and manufacturing business.  
  • What sets you apart from the competition?   I have worked in the medium voltage switchgear industry for 45 years staring as an apprentice at Yorkshire Switchgear in Leeds at 16 years old and worked for, Yorkshire Switchgear, Merlin Gerin, Schneider, (Leeds) Reyrolle / Rolls Royce Power (Newcastle), GEC/Alsthom, Alstom (Manchester), Lucy (Oxford), P&B Switchgear (Manchester) in positions including Designer, Project Leader, Chief Engineer, New Product Development Manager, Research and Development Director, Engineering Director and Managing Director. In all my Engineering positions I have designed market leading 12 – 24kV Distribution equipment utilising, (oil initially), air, SF6, solid insulation, Vacuum as insulation and Circuit Breaker interruption methods. I have been the inventor on several patents. My main claim is that I have designed 4 market leading Ring Main Units (RMUs) which have dominated UK and Middle East markets. This is the really ‘cut throat’ market. This experience could be seen to set ‘fourrmula’ apart from the competition in the RMU sector. The management side of business is now not my passion, it is success and designing that I find challenging and satisfying and ‘fourrmula’ (four rmu) gives me the opportunity to pass my knowledge on to young designers at other switchgear and mechanical engineering companies, should it be required. The ultimate aim of ‘fourrmula’ is to design a final market leading ‘future proof’ RMU with a switchgear company which will be used to distribute electricity for the next 40 years.  
  • How did the business come about?   At age 58 and the Managing Director of a Manchester switchgear company, I longed to be designing switchgear again. I had ideas for future RMUs and had ‘tested’ the concepts 18 years ago. They were well received at that time. I wanted to see them to fruition but also enjoyed mentoring and teaching my methodology and approach to younger up and coming engineers. I am also involved in National and International committees. The way to satisfy all these aspects was to set up a consultancy where I was at liberty to attend seminars, colloquiums etc. to learn and to assist with projects for various companies when required and in the slack time work on my RMU concepts. ’Fourrmula’ allows this. 
  • What are your main targets? (Markets? – Mechanical engineering companies)   Aims of ‘fourrmula’ include:    To share knowledge and experience to assist companies with design and cost reduction.  To design an advanced Non-SF6 RMU to add to the existing ‘four’ SF6 RMU designs. (Ringmaster 2, Guardian, VRN2A, VRN6A).     To enjoy being part of a successful design and product introduction team with the aim of introducing a world beating, novel, environmentally friendly, cost effective and future proof RMU product.  
  • How long has your business been in existence? ‘Fourrmula’ was registered at Companies House on 16th August 18.