Introduction – Tube Gear Limited (TGL)


The company was started by Mike Grant in 1982. Whilst working for a larger distribution company, Intertruck, Mike identified that airline fittings had the potential to be sold as a consumable rather than being given away. His breakthrough came when he first designed a point of sale packet that would fit the whole range.

Mike then identified that trailer manufacturers were being poorly served by the current direct fitting manufacturers and, after much searching, found a manufacturer who was prepared to work with them (WIRA in Germany). They developed a concept of putting fittings in kits and then converted most trailer manufacturers from compression fittings to the more expensive but easier to use push in fittings at a better margin for TGL.

This initial concept of innovation is the basis for the business model today and the team are always looking at how to provide a better service, better quality, more economical product, or to isolate and gain exclusive access to the next generation of components to sell to the market.

The company developed a market leading catalogue which today has become the industry standard, a “go to” catalogue to solve any air brake fitting or tubing problem.

The company deals with the market leading suppliers and brands and in most cases have agreements for exclusive access to these components. There are attractive offers for the customer base as all supplier ranges can be offered without prejudice which gives the customer the best component for their job rather than just something that suffices from a limited range. Suppliers consistently approach the company at early development stages for advice on new components or ranges. They have found TGL to be a convenient and efficient way to launch and distribute their own components rather than take them to market themselves.

Current position

The company is a mature business that has defined market places with a good sense of the needs and wants of each market and how to supply those needs whilst defending the market from competitive influences.

The main market place is supplying air brake fittings and tubing to the truck, heavy vehicle articulated trailer market as well as having a fast developing Public Service Vehicle (PSV) and agricultural vehicle production market places.

The company is in the unique position to supply both ends of the market for the life cycle of a trailer, truck or bus, from supplying the manufacturer at production, or Original Equipment (OE), market, through to supplying the spares distribution After Market (AM) network.

The Owners

Ian Stanley – Managing Director

As the son of a farmer, Ian spent many years fixing and patching up machinery giving him essential hands on engineering experience. From the age of 18, Ian was in complete charge of the farm whilst his parents went on … Read More

Tony Varndell – Commercial Director

After leaving school Tony started a 5 year engineering apprenticeship with Overlander Trailers. Initially starting at the very bottom Tony progressed through the ranks and became the Company’s Technical Service Engineer. After 12 years Tony left Overlander and joined M&G … Read More