About Us

Our History

1991

Chris Kay with 12 years of earthmoving experience for local farmers developed the Bay Plugger, that fits onto the end of a pipe and controls water flow for flood irrigation, previous to these farmers would use a plastic bucket to block the pipe off which would leak and was hard to use.

1991

1996

Bay Plugger sales were now sailing into the 1,000’s per year and Chris’s son Terry decided to join the busines.Terry joined at age 16, after completing Year 10 at secondary school before leaving to undertake a boiler maker’s apprenticeship.

1996

1997

Chris proposed a new process to make large bore diameter agricultural drainage pipe from recycled plastic scrap. He had an established reputation for engineering innovation in the irrigation business having worked in manufacturing the bay plugger since 1990 and for 12 years prior had a earthmoving business. After sourcing recycled plastic and an engineer to developed manufacturing equipment he began manufacturing 11” and 15” pipes and the first sales occurred in late 1997.

1997

1998

Production was moved to a larger factory in Moama and with financial and development assistance from Visy Plastics and Eco Recycle Victoria, larger manufacturing equipment was made.

1998

1999

The initial manufacturing process was not quite as Chris had expected, so he moved the plant back to Lancaster in April. He developed an innovative method of making a heavier version of the original pipe so in August 1999 the fully formed bell joining system was introduced.

1999

2000

A new partner, Peter Mason joined the business. With him, Peter brought over 40 years of specialist knowledge of the plastics industry and recycling. Recycled Plastic Pipe Manufacturers P/L trading as RPM Pipes was established and began manufacturing and marketing the new and improved pipe. Together Peter and Chris refined Chris’s innovative method to give a consistent high-quality product that is widely accepted by the agricultural community, forestry departments, councils, and Goulburn-Murray Water.

2000

2005

Terry, Chris’s son, begins to take a more active role in the business and begins to manage the factory.

2005

2009

A family business through and through. With Nancy, Chris’s wife, managing the office and Terry still managing the factory, Terry and his wife Lauren decide to buy into the business after Peter Mason retires from the company.

2009

2011

Chris and Terry designed the nUdoor, an aluminium sliding door with a revolutionary seal design. This hadn’t been done before and fixed the issues with the original seal design of aluminium sliding doors that were currently seen in flood irrigation.

2011

2012

RPM purchase some vital machinery to add to their existing plastic processing line to begin the end to end processing that still occurs today.

2012

2014

In December, Chris and Nancy decide it’s time for retirement and contemplate selling the business they had built as a family. Luckily, Terry and Lauren made the decision to take over the business and the RPM Pipes story continues.

2014

2015

Since their change over in 2014, Terry and Lauren along with the rest of the RPM team worked tirelessly to improve the process and the procedure of their manufacturing. Many changes and improvements occurred, and continue to occur to further improve RPM Pipes products, as well as expand the Australia wide reseller and delivery network.

2015

2016

RPM Pipes was nominated for the Victorian Manufacturing Hall of Fame, in recognition of excellence in manufacturing and longevity in the small business category.

The RPM team received a grant through Sustainability Victoria to perform an energy assessment, material assessment and material assessment program. Later in the year, Terry gave a talk at Tabilk Winery in Nagambie, for Sustainability Victoria, to potential grant applicants about the benefits the grant had on his business. Footage from Terry’s talk and a one on one interview with John Dee appeared on Smart Money, which airs on SKY News Business Channel. This footage can be viewed here or on the right-hand side of this page.

2016

2017

A completely new plastic processing line was installed to produce high quality plastic flakes. This new line allows RPM to process all of the material needed for pipe manufacturing from regional Victoria and beyond and supply material to other businesses for further manufacturing.

2017

2018

Looking to continue the growth, development and diversity of the business Terry and Lauren welcomed new partners to the business. A board of directors was formed with a wide range of expertise to keep RPM at the forefront of manufacturing products out of recycled plastic now and into the future.

2018

2019

RPM Pipes received approval from the Department of Transporit (VicRoads) for their pipes to be used in large scale civil applications.

2019
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