About RA Medical
R A Medical Services are a family based Company started by Janet & Chris Pickles in the early 90’s, following Chris’s redundancy from Ohmeda during the final days of that Company’s presence in Steeton. Taking the extensive experience and knowledge base dating from the Cyprane years, they steadily built up a large customer base of NHS Trusts and High Street Dentistry to the present U.K. market leader position enjoyed today. The staff level has grown to meet the demands placed upon it, but turnover is low, our longest serving member of the office staff having been with us for 27 years. A old fashioned level of courteous service is offered, combined with great attention to detail and this winning formula works extremely well, customers remaining with us year upon succeeding year.
Products are constantly under review to ensure only top of the range items are offered, although length of placement on the marketplace is no bar – one of our flowmeters – the Quantiflex Analogue MDM Flowmeter – having been around from the 60’s! (see Our History section) and is endearingly popular, remaining one of the bestselling items with newer equipment such as the Porter brown breathing system – only available in the UK since 1996, competing for the title!
From celebrating 20 years In February 2014, hopefully our winning formula has allowed the Company to grow, continuing to serve the dental profession in the U.K. and now branching out with the award of a 510K manufacturing license from the FDA, in May 2017, allowing us to manufacture and export the Miniscav™ for use in the American medical field.
Rather than being a ‘disembodied’ voice over the telephone, our staff try and get out as much as possible, attending Conference, Exhibitions and Study Days, therefore it is possible that you may spot a familiar face on some of the website photographs. Basically divided into two areas; in-house office staff and engineering team, we operate as a team rather than individuals from the dedicated ladies who answer the phones to the engineers who attend on site. Enquiries are dealt with in a timely fashion by the best person – although, unlike some Companies where you may have to speak to many people before your query is resolved, quite often the first person to answer the phone will be able to assist you. This is due to the level of dedicated training which is a constant process.
It is our intention to eventually have individual pictures of everyone, but to start with here is a photograph of the team who manned the Dental Showcase Exhibition of the NEC in November 2009: From right to left: David Pickles, Joanne Rooke, Charlotte Moran, Stuart Dearing, Sharon McNeil, Chris Pickles, Janet Pickles
Keighley has sometimes been referred to as ‘The Anaesthetic Capital of the World’. This is due to the history of anaesthetic and sedation equipment being developed and manufactured in the area. Also due to the number of Companies that have developed since for the ongoing supply and maintenance of this range of equipment. Of them all, only R A Medical Services decided to specialise in the field of Inhalation Sedation.
Our knowledge base extends back to the 60’s and the days of Cyprane, a Company then located in West Lane, Keighley who manufactured the Quantiflex Monitored Dial Mixer (MDM) under license from Fraser Sweatman. Manufacturing was transferred to Orchard Park, Buffalo, NYS in the early 70’s but the unit remained a very popular model for IS across Europe. In November 2008, the Nitrous Oxide Sedation Division was purchased from the owner, Matrx Medical by Porter Instruments and the manufacturing base in Orchard Park closed. All manufacturing moved to Hatfield, PA.
Our Company has operated in its present form since 1994 and continues to care for a wide range of inhalation sedation flowmeters and associated equipment. The Cyprane heritage is a long-lasting one – some of the flowmeters manufactured in the late 1960’s still being in regular use today and maintained by our Service Department. We also are constantly looking forward to the future and strive to continually ensure the equipment and services we provide are exactly what the 21st century marketplace needs and requires. This can be difficult at times – but we love a challenge!
A World of knowledge
In August 1947 two talented men, who at that time were working for Coxeter and Sons decided to return North and start a Company called Cyprane Ltd. This was located in a garage in Oxenhope. The men were Bill Edmonson and Wilf Jones. They had a third sleeping partner called George Wellesley. Three years later the Company moved to larger premises in Haworth. During these years, much valuable work was done to develop the Tec range of anaesthetic vaporizers, but as the saying goes, that is another story…
By 1962, the Haworth site was becoming cramped so an old mill building was purchased. This was in West Lane, Keighley – 18,000 sq ft. The Haworth works were retained for some time, but gradually all work was transferred to Keighley. In 1964, Bill Edmonson was ready to retire and the Company was purchased by Fraser-Sweatman – a Canadian, with Wilf Jones retaining a small interest and being appointed Managing Director. Fraser Sweatman owned a Company called Fraser Sweatman Inc which had a property in Buffalo, New York. Their Sales and Design Engineer at that time was Gary Porter who went on to form Porter Instruments – the current manufacturer of the Quantiflex range.
At some point after 1964, a U.K. manufacturing license was granted and production of the Quantiflex Mark 1 (Fig.1) and later, the Quantiflex MDM (Fig.2) and Quantiflex R A Mark II (Fig.3) was started. This continued until the Company purchase, in 1972 by BOC and following this, production ceased. Manufacturing of the MDM and Fraser R A (Mark II) continued at Buffalo, N.Y.S. until the purchase of the Matrx Nitrous Oxide Sedation Division, by Porter Instruments in November 2008 and all production was transferred to Hatfield, P.A. where it continues to date.
Footnote Written By Chris Pickles (Always Known As John To His Cyprane Colleagues):
In 1960 I got a part time job at Cyprane during the summer holidays. My Father, Thomas Pickles was Works Manager at the time. The work involved assembly and testing of the Fluotec 2 Vaporizer and I found this and my involvement in the early years of compensating vaporizer design, absorbing. Leading on from this, I was offered a full time position.
New products continued to be developed at Cyprane and in the late 1960’s the dental flowmeters were produced, starting with the QRA Mark I and Mark II and then the MDM. As Quality Controller, I was responsible for writing procedures for assembly and test of this range, which also included the A.E.Gas Machine (Fig.4).
I had the pleasure of meeting and working with Fraser Sweatman in the early days of his involvement with Cyprane and witnessed many changes that took place at Cyprane over the years. One amusing incident with Fraser was a comment I made regarding the large, loud kipper tie he was wearing; “I like your tie” to which the reply came “You do – here it is” – at which point he whipped it off and presented it to me!
The MD at that time was Wilf Jones, a very clever man and a real gentleman. His son, Keith Jones and I were friends, an association which has continued to this day, even though Keith now resides in Buffalo, NYS. Wilf continued an interest in this equipment to his death and would often visit the R A Medical premises in the mid to late 1990’s, prior to his death, to see what we were up to! Keith still visits us from time to time on his trips to the UK to visit family. The photograph (Fig.5) was one taken on a Cyprane works outing – sometime in the early 60’s and shows Thomas Pickles on the extreme right and Keith Jones 6th from the left.
Why you should use us
Whilst we understand that to some people choice of supplier is very important, it is equally true that sometimes there is no choice! The field of Inhalation Sedation equipment has always been very specialised and by the same token, quite narrow in terms of numbers of Companies offering equipment or services.
Commencing with Cyprane in the 1960’s, there have only been a handful of organisations offering equipment or services (or both) in this field. Nowadays the numbers have shrunk even further. For some years now, R A Medical have been the exclusive Distributor for the Porter range of equipment, this recently extending also to the Matrx and Accutron ranges. In addition, partly due to the level of experience and knowledge base held by us, we now hold sole Manufacturer O.E.M. (Original Equipment Manufacturer) Service Status for Porter and Accutron.
This applies to a wide range of units, including; Matrx MDM, RA and Digital MDM nitrous oxide/oxygen mixers (also known as Quantiflex MDM, Ohmeda MDM, Fraser Harlake MDM & Cyprane MDM), Porter MXR models C2000 & C3000 and the Accutron Ultra & Newport machines. This effectively means that we are the only UK Company with access to spare parts and on-going training by the Manufacturer (latest training revision carried out at Porter Instruments, Hatfield, Pennsylvania in December 2014). Letters to this effect are available and if you would like a copy, then please email firstname.lastname@example.org to request one.
Anyone requesting a service from us can do so in the sure knowledge that equipment will be maintained according to OEM specification using correct specification of replacement parts. Please note: we are not able to supply spare parts to any manufacturer unauthorised companies or organisations.
Meet The Team
Our staff are divided into two areas; in-house office staff and our engineering team. We operate as a team rather than individuals; from the dedicated ladies who take your calls to the engineers who attend on site and in our Service Centre.
Office & Contract Manager
Service Co ordinator
Sales and Orders Co ordinator