Winner of the Red Dot Award 2014: Watering Solutions from Japan by Takagi

Takagi is a Japanese family enterprise, founded by Toshio Takagi in 1961 . They started out as a manufacturer for precision metal and synthetic casting moulds for the industry and turned out to be the leading producer for watering products in Japan today.

Their products are compact, extremely lightweight, easy to handle and made from durable ABS-plastics. One of the products new features is the soft and gentle water stream with an impressive range that is produced by specially moulded conic holes in the head. According to the company, they have a complaint rate of 0.03%, a sign of the customers satisfaction.

Winner of the Red Dot Award 2014: The Premium Nozzle (Handy Type)

This allround nozzle can be used for various watering purposes. The design is ergonomic, functional and gives a safe grip.

It is constructed for a simple use with one hand. The Premium Nozzle has four continuously variable water streams, which are adjusted with the thumb. The “One-click function” allows a one-handed locking of the water stream.

Watering Wand

The Watering Wand makes it possible to target plants and flowers that are out of reach. When the water is flowing, it balances lightly in the hand. The grip is made of soft rubber and is easy to hold with a wet hand. Just as the Premium Nozzle it has four different spray patterns and the one-click locking mechanism.

Compact Hose Reel

The Compact Hose Reel is a watering set for small gardens, balconies, terraces and for different outdoor activities. It includes a hose (10 or 15 meters), a supply hose with the Compact Nozzle and a storage case. It is under two kilos in weight, but very durable. The hose itself has a special coating, making it easier to rewind and not twisting. Japanese compactness and practicality make it a handy solution and an alternative to the old fashioned hose drum.

In Germany, a selection of Takagi products is available in numerous garden centers and they are constantly expanding their range.

Visitors of the spoga+gafa 2014 will be able to have a close look at their watering innovations in hall 6.1 at stand C029.

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Hörby Bruk: Reliable Craftsmanship from Sweden

Hörby Bruck is the leading manufacturer of wheelbarrows and playground equipment in the Nordic countries.

Founded in 1920, Hörby Bruck has always emphasized a combination of Swedish craftsmanship and modern technology. They are continuously using high-end production technology to produce unique products of the highest quality.

Hörby Bruk is best known for the Ekeby wheelbarrow range. It includes classic wheelbarrows, deep and narrow mortar barrows for improved access and several models of plastic tray barrows for moving big volumes of light materials. Electric wheelbarrows are offered as well. Other transport equipment includes special trolleys like the fire wood trolley.

For their playground equipment they have two main requirements: it has to be fun to use many times and it has to be safe. When Hörby Bruk designs a swing it is therefore done with serious consideration and with all the knowledge they have gathered from decades of experience. Their reasoning is that if you create play equipment with high quality and safety, you also create enjoyment for children that will last year after year. Their popular CanCan swings, which have their 50th anniversary this year, are the best example for this.

The main market for Hörby Bruk is within the Nordic countries, but more and more customers from Europe and the rest of the world are counting on the quality and reliability of their products. Visitors of the spoga+gafa 2014 can find Hörby Bruk in Hall 6.1, stand B028.

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Husqvarna: 325 Years of Swedish Engineering

The world’s largest producer of outdoor power products is celebrating its 325th anniversary.

The small village Huskvarna in southern Sweden gave the company its name and its headquarters is still located there. Husqvarna started in 1689 as a weapon factory, producing rifles for the Swedish crown. In 1867 this contract ran out and Husqvarna expanded its product range and started producing sewing machines, hunting weapons, wood stoves, mincing machines, bicycles, motorcycles, gas stoves, microwave ovens and much more. From the 1960s on, Husqvarnaspecialized in outdoor power products like chainsaws, lawn mowers and hedge trimmers. Now the company is the largest producer of motorized tools. According to Husqvarna their secret to success is constant passion for innovation, the urge to develop and improve. Net sales in 2013 amounted to SEK 30 billion, and the Group had 14,000 employees on average in more than 40 countries, their products are sold in over 100 countries. 

Kai Wärn, President and CEO for Husqvarna Group states: “As we look into the future we will continue to deliver high performing products and solutions building on our values of entrepreneurial spirit and staying close to our customers.” 

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Red Dot 2014: Fiskars Wins Three Awards

The Red Dot Awards are one of the most highly anticipated events in the world of product design. For 2014, the Finnish gardening equipment producer Fiskars is again one of the top players. This time they are being awarded with three prizes.

Fiskkars SmartFit™

This telescope scissors with adjustable arms is able to cut hard to reach branches and twigs. It is ergonomically shaped and developed for professionals as well as hobby gardeners alike. The hardened steel blades have a non-stick coating and can cut through branches that are up to 50 mm thick. The handles are made from aluminum and fiber-glass reinforced plastic. The SmartFit™ is a winner in the “Product Design” category. It is already available at Fiskars dealers.

Fiskars Xact™

Xact™ is a line of classic gardening tools consisting of gardening spade, garden fork, compost fork and shovel. They are designed to relieve  the back and to be as comfortable to use as possible. The spades and the shovel have a new innovative paddle design and the handle is made of high quality steel with an anti-slip surface. All tools are available in two sizes. The Xact™ tools are winners in the “Best of the Best” category. They will be available in Germany in 2015.

Fiskars KitchenGarden™

The KitchenGarden™ is a miniature green house for the kitchen. It is equipped with an LED-Light, which, according to Fiskars, keeps herbs longer fresh. It will be available in two versions: the basic version has five LEDs with white light that promotes growth in all kinds of plants.

The premium version has a light unit with six LEDs that can shine in red blue and white. It also comes with a remote that can control the light’s colour and intensity. You can program the KitchenGarden™ for a night and day rhythm. The Xcat™ wins in the “Product Design” category. It will be available in Germany in 2015.

The Red Dot Awards

The Red Dot Design Awards 2014 will be held in Essen, Germany in the Red Dot Design Museum on July 7th. There will also be a grand opening of the four week special exhibition, where all winning products will be put on display before they join the permanent exhibition of the museum. The Red Dot Museum has the largest exhibition of contemporary design in the world: About 2.000 products are shown on more than 4.000 square meters.

Further Information: and Red Dot Awards

VIPUKIRVES™ – The Finnish Reinvention of the Axe

Faster, safer, easier – A new axe from Finland revolutionizes the way of chopping firewood.

The axe is one of the oldest tools known to humanity. For thousands of years men handled wood with a simple construction of a wooden shaft and a metal wedge. That is, until a Finnish lumberjack realised that chopping firewood with this kind of axe is too dangerous, exhausting and inefficient and there has to be a better way. The solution took Heikki Kärnä 15 years of experimenting before it struck him like a hit with an axe: Watching a crowbar work he suddenly knew what his new axe would have to look like.

A thrust with a standard axe costs much power and often more than one hit is needed to split a log because the wedge gets stuck. The VIPUKIRVES™ axe uses less power and more lever action (Vipukirves means lever axe). Immediately after it hits the wood it turns to the right and separates the chopped portions apart. The blade doesn’t get lodged in the wood, which saves time and effort. Also, you can work more precisely when you don’t have to put that much force into one thrust. When chopping up a large log for firewood the most efficient way, according to Kärnä, is to use an old tire for stabilisation.

Working with the VIPUKIRVES™ is also safer than with a normal axe. There is always the possibility of going through the wood too easily when striking with full force and hitting oneself. The VIPUKIRVES™ has an extra long handle and a knob on the side which makes it stop when going too deep.

The VIPUKIRVES™ is fully made in Finland. The birch handle is made in a workshop specialized in turning. The blade is a precision-cast product made in Riihimäki by Sacotec Components Oy.

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