The HEL Story
HEL Performance – Our Journey to the Present Day
HEL’s ancestor, Hose-Equip, was established in 1985 as an authorised Aeroquip distributor, and soon made a name for itself the Industrial, Marine and Hydraulic market, based on a friendly and collaborative approach to quality and service. Hose-Equip quickly became an authorised MOD contractor and ISO9000 quality-assured.
HEL Performance acquired Hose-Equip in 2000 as a strategic means to compete in the performance fluid-transfer marketplace. The name became Hose Equip Limited, shortened to HEL, and the HEL Performance brand was born – along with the now world-famous Devil’s Tail logo. To this day, quality remains central to our success.
Courage to Change the Market
With established reputations and experience in the hydraulics market, Simon Lane and Chris Porter launched HEL Performance’s new approach to motorcycle brake lines. The rest is history…
HEL Performance’s market distinction was, and remains, simple: our brake line products have never competed directly with reusable ones. Our system – the first fully swaged brake line in the UK market – uses only stainless steel and titanium. We’ve always shunned mild steel or aluminium, as they invariably corrode. Sure, stainless steel fittings cost more to manufacture, and to buy. But for us, cost has never, and will never, be more important than quality. Or safety.
Since we introduced our swaged system, our competitors have followed suit because it makes so much more sense. This is great for the market, and merely qualifies our leadership in bringing tamper-evident, safer, permanently attached brake line fittings to the fore.
We’re glad we were brave – brakes are better now.
Quality over Compromise. Always.
HEL Performance was also the first in the industry to apply a PVC cover during hose manufacture to protect vehicle paintwork. Until then, covers were typically applied by heat-shrink, which not only meant a substandard finish, but also made it almost impossible to colour-match future lines accurately. Such a move meant significant investment and vastly expanded stock holding, but it secured the highest quality finish in the marketplace – and the reputation that comes with it.
Soon all our competitors replaced in-house heat shrinking with pre-covered hose. And when we decided to be the first manufacturer in the world to offer coloured stainless steel fittings instead of aluminium ones, we ruled out electrolytic corrosion in the lines. We simply didn’t think it was right to use aluminium if it meant potential brake line failure.
We were also the first of our kind to fully exploit the internet, by offering the first online shopping area and warranty registration.
We feel we’ve led our industry forward by pioneering radical concepts and designs, and by making brave decisions. And we now know that, through innovation, we’ve created safer and more durable products that apply where it matters most. But the story doesn’t end there…
The Restless Pursuit of Perfection
We’ve never slowed down or become complacent, or thought ‘we’ve done enough’. More recent developments include the world’s first self-crimp mountain-bike brake line kit, which includes all fittings required to manufacture a hose for any current system. We’ve also launched a full automotive brake line application list. As with our motorcycle range, our automotive lines only use stainless steel fittings directly swaged on PVC-covered brake lines, available in 15 colours. Meanwhile, we’re working with one of the world’s largest motorcycle brake disc, caliper and master cylinder manufacturers to allow them to offer their customers a complete system.
Today, our brake lines and associated products feature prominently in local, national and international racing competitions, and we’ve even helped set new world records.
One HEL of a Ride
Since starting this journey at the turn of the millennium, we’ve seen our products and reputation spread all over the world. And we’ve done it without sales reps – our products, and the difference they make, have done the talking.
HEL Performance products are now available through local outlets in 72 countries across six of the seven continents.
Next stop – Antarctica!
Steady Growth on Firm Principles
As the team at our UK HQ grows, so does the number of manufacturers and distributors around the world that belong to the special group we call HEL Performance:
The best people, supplying the best products to the best customers – ethically, responsibly, technically and happily.