Cairns manufacturer using robotics to enhance their business

Cairns-based steel fabrication company CSF Industries is using the assistance of the manufacturing hubs grant program to adopt advanced manufacturing techniques and leading technology.

Fast facts


CSF Industries Pty Ltd


Cairns, Far North Queensland


131 full-time employees

Grant funding

$425,000 from the Manufacturing Hubs Grant Program (2020-21).


  • Purchase and installation of a Zeman scanning and plate cleat sorting robotic system.
  • Train staff in use of new technology.


  • Improved fabrication production and quality.
  • Enhanced workplace health and safety.
  • Skills training.
  • 10 New jobs.

Future growth

  • Increased productivity, new jobs and high-skilled roles developed.

A family run business, CSF Industries has been in operation since 1979 and is a leading supplier of steel fabrication to major clients across Australia and South East Asia. CSF Industries holds a unique position in the construction and fabrication industry in Northern Australia as a major single-source engineering, fabrication, coating, roofing and installation company in regional Queensland.

With the assistance of the manufacturing hubs grant program, CSF Industries will purchase advanced robotic machinery to further improve their productivity through advanced manufacturing.

Two men looking at a document in a warehouse

Why the manufacturing hubs grant program?

CSF Industries have been working with the Cairns regional manufacturing hub to get support with their ideas for advanced manufacturing and get advice on skills and technology requirements. Through the Queensland Government’s Manufacturing Hubs Grant Program, CSF Industries has been awarded $425,000 to introduce new robotic technology which, in turn, has improved their fabrication productivity and enhanced workplace health and safety.

What did the project involve?

CSF Industries will purchase and install a Zeman scanning and plate cleat sorting robotic system. Cleats are a steel component used to bolt one beam onto the side of another beam and this new machine will be able to sort the cleats automatically and remove an existing bottleneck. CSF Industries Director Sean Adams said they are the first to use this new technology which will be a great benefit to the business.

'CSF Industries is the first company in Australia to install a fully automated robotic cleat sorting machine and we are truly excited about the benefits that this will bring to our organisation.' Mr Adams said.

'We are constantly striving to be at the forefront of manufacturing and this will be the 5th automated robotic machine within our organisation.

'Our apprentices will all spend time operating this machine and our goal is to expose them to the opportunities and career paths that are available in this new age of advanced manufacturing.'

What happens next?

Mr Adams said the cost and time savings of the new robotics will enable their business to grow.

'Our new cleat sorting machine cuts the sorting time of plates in half with the added benefit of undertaking a complete quality assurance check of the plates prior to being issued to the fabricator and the cost and time savings through the fabrication process are significant.

'We expect that through these savings we’ll be able to further expand and put on an additional 10 employees and further skill our existing workers as we continue to grow.'

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Last updated: 07 Jul 2021