The Story of QSM Fabrication

Join us as we take a look back at the past 40 years’ of QSM!

We can’t believe that this year QSM Fabrication is celebrating 40 years’ of operation in the metal fabrication industry! It seems like only yesterday that Quality Sheet Metal was formed in 1982 by partners at the time, John Siciliano and Steven Aubrey.

In order to commemorate our 40th year in the industry, it only seems right that we take a trip down memory lane and revisit how QSM came to be metal fabrication Perth-based specialists.

Where it all began…

Quality Sheet Metal (now QSM Fabrication) was born in the trying times of the 80s in a small factory unit on Bickley Road in Beckenham. Siciliano and Aubrey, both sheet metal workers, combatted the high interest rates and tough economy of the time with old fashioned hard work and door to door sales techniques. Their main service offering was that of sheet metal products to the construction and agricultural industry, including truck cabins, toolboxes and chutes. It wasn’t long until John and Steve formed a loyal customer base.

A new home and scope of work

As the industry grew, so too did the company, resulting in a shift to 5 Tilli Place in Welshpool during 1993. The first factory was built and gave Quality Sheet Metal the opportunity to expand in line with the ever-changing Perth economy. With Chinese products then arriving in WA, QSM had to get creative with their product offerings and took advantage of the first surge in WA mining. Underground mining velation and energy generation works gave the business the opportunity to flourish throughout the 90s.

Another factory, additional metal capabilities and iconic projects

John came to the realisation that there was a need in the industry to roll and bend sheet metal and decided to invest in metal forming. After just 7 years, Quality Sheet Metal outgrew the first factory and a second was built and completed in 2000 to focus on metal forming services. The workshop was fitted out with custom machine pits, high overhead cranes, and a brand new 400 Tonne Press Brake, giving QSM the ability to step up to the plate and meet metal rolling and bending industry demands. Iconic projects such as the City of Perth Christmas Decorations and the amusement services of Splash Down Ride were brought to life!

A growing team and an exciting, fresh direction

John’s son, Giuseppe started his apprenticeship with Quality Sheet Metal in 2004 and it didn’t take long for him to become a tradesperson and then an office estimator – you could say metal fabrication expertise runs in the family!

It was in 2004 that General Manager, Vince Barbatano, joined the Quality Sheet Metal team. A true testament to the success of the business today, Vince’s wealth of knowledge and experience in heavy mining fabrication gave QSM the opportunity to further grow in the industry.

Under the mentorship of John and Vince, Giuseppe has learned how to steer the ship into the next decade. One of his changes included the alteration of the trading name from Quality Sheet Metal to QSM Fabrication to better reflect the size of its product offerings and services.

QSM prides itself on an extensive list of long-term employees, including Steven Aubrey (40 years, Co-Founder), Grant Taylor (25 years, Sheet Metal Worker) and Scott Swinburne (25 years, Sheet Metal Worker). These gentlemen are just a few to mention, all of whom have helped shape the business into what it has become today.

Strategies to withstand WA’s ‘boom and bust’ economy

From 2003 to 2012 QSM thrived under the first big mining boom. The explosion of WA’s economy gave QSM the chance to invest in more bending and rolling equipment, specifically a 1500 Tonne Press Brake x 7.5m Long being John’s biggest investment to date. QSM weathered the storm that was and still is Western Australia’s ‘boom and bust’ economy through capitalising on previous investments as well as the diversity of the products and services we were able to offer across many industries.

With his father’s strategy in mind, Giuseppe purchased a laser cutting machine from Japan and paired it with an automatic press brake machine, and this is how QSM Laser was formed. QSM could now offer laser cutting, rolling, bending and fabrication, making it a one stop metal fabrication workshop! As quality requirements became stricter, Giuseppe also noted that there was a market for this service offering and introduced QSM NDT and QSM Weld Testing services.

Clay Williams, a previously employed sheet metal worker at QSM, returned as a Cert10 Weld Supervisor and now runs this division. We have been offering NDT and weld testing services to the market since 2018 and have expanded rapidly into Karratha and other regional mining towns.

Finding solutions to the most complex jobs – no matter how big or small!

As we find ourselves in 2022, reflecting back on 40 years’ of service, it is safe to say that QSM has established itself as a well-respected metal fabrication workshop in Perth, Western Australia. We thank our long serving staff, loyal customer base and appreciate the foresight, investment, and blood, sweat and tears that Founding Director, John Siciliano, has put into this business. QSM prides itself on being a versatile company with talented and creative staff. From metal rolling and metal bending fabrication to working with aluminium and stainless steel, we are more than qualified to handle the gamut of steelworks required in the industry today.

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