R & I Instrument & Gear Co. Pty Ltd was originally a family owned partnership established in 1948 by Robert Brown and his wife Irene. The business initially started out in the garage at home and over time grew and progressed to the point when they relocated into the premises in Neerim Rd Carnegie where it continued to grow for over 40 years.

R&I become involved in the manufacture of automotive instrument parts and fine pitch gears and was a prime supplier to OEM’s and also automotive instrument repair industry both in Australia and New Zealand. Through the late 1960’s and 1970’s R&I found its way into the infancy of the development of Medical and Scientific machines in Australia.

Jeff Rowell and his wife Joyce took over the business in 1978. Jeff had previously had dealings with the Company dating back to 1958 when he started ARGOSY Instruments after leaving the RAAF where he had become a highly regarded Instrument maker. Under his guidance R & I continued to make their mark on the industry as instrument and fine pitch engineers.

In 1993 Andrew Rowell took over as the operating manager, as the start of a succession plan for Jeff and Joyce to step back from the business and retire. Andrew was familiar to the company as he had first worked with R & I in 1976 during his summer school holidays.

By 1999 it was obvious that considerable expenditure to update machining capabilities and computerise our Resource Planning and Job Management capabilities was needed to move into the 21st Century. Discussions exploring various options were held and eventually a deal was done with the Hardman family to take over the business and relocate it into a new building being built at the time on the existing Hardman Bros site in Lower Dandenong Road, Dingley Village.

With Hardman Bros and Andrew Rowell’s attentive leadership R&I have gone from strength to strength due to their exceptional business ethics and superior results. R & I has an appreciation of the value of customer service and the need to meet various KPI's required by a diverse customer base. The company have KANBAN agreements; manage RoHS considerations and meet demands of Customers to satisfy requirements of both the US FDA and also AS9100 managed by our M1 ERP Software and guided by our own Internal Quality System currently established to AS9001 (we are now working towards achieving AS9100)

We understand that every customer may have slightly different expectations and requirements however this does not diminish our philosophy to produce high quality components that meet and exceed customer’s expectations with Delivery in Full on Time.

Our pro-active approach to establishing and building value managed relationships has enabled us to have long standing relationships with many companies supplying parts that are used in medical & scientific equipment as well as defence and aerospace applications to all parts of the globe.

Under the astute guidance and investment by the Hardman family the business continues to expand and cement its place in a niche market where it is still highly regarded as a quality supplier to many of Australia's leading manufacture's of medical & scientific instruments, industrial users, public utilities, universities, R&D and is also engaged in both the defence and aerospace Industries.


Team photo 2009

Team Members February 2009

Carnegie Factory - 1992






Carnegie Factory - 1992