MSA 4X4: AN INDUSTRY LEADER IN STORAGE SOLUTIONS
In 1999, with a plan to travel the country, Shane Miles identified the need for quality canvas accessories products
Fast forward to today, and MSA 4X4 Accessories is renowned for creating some of the 4WD Industry’s most innovative products.
Whilst the company has remained true to its roots with quality canvas storage products, it reports they now form only a small part of the complete range offering of MSA 4X4 Accessories.
MSA 4X4 says it prides itself on its original products which include the world first, revolutionary patented Drop Slide; the patented Explorer Aluminium Storage Drawer System which delivers a whole new level of access to the drawer contents; the Fridge Barrier system; the original Water Bra; its fully adjustable Air Lumbar Support systems; and an extensive range of 4WD accessories that have stood the test of time.
Shane Miles is the proud owner of MSA 4X4, and the man behind the products that MSA 4X4 is famous for.
His passion is in the detail of his products, as no matter where you look, everything is carefully thought out for maximum practicality, quality and ease of use.
When he invented the drop slide, only straight fridge slides existed.
“There was one company who had designed the tilt fridge slide, and after using it, I found that I didn’t like the way it worked,” Shane explained.
“I could see some flaws – that’s why I came up with the drop slide. No one had yet imagined the possibility of a Drop Slide, let alone the engineering required to make it a reality.
“The platform had to lower, but how do I get it to easily raise back up? And that’s where the design came from. I wanted it to function as a drop slide or a straight slide. It was a necessity.
“People didn’t necessarily always want to drop them. I didn’t want it to just lower – I also wanted it to extend out further.
“If you just lower the fridge, you can get into all sorts of grief, especially around the tailgate. So, you actually want it to come out further, not just drop.
“Then you’ve at least got half your fridge past the tailgate. The awesome part of the Drop Slide design is that its very simple to use and it lowers the fridge platform completely level (horizontal) throughout its function and finishes with the over-extension.”
Unfortunately, Shane didn’t know much about the patent process when he invented some of his earlier products, and as a result, a lot of copies were made and claimed by others.
By the time the Drop Slide came along, Shane had learnt the hard way how best to protect his IP with patents.
Due to the large-scale popularity and commercial interest in these Drop Slides, MSA 4X4 has had to attribute a significant amount of time and money to defending their design from copies, Shane explains.
“Unfortunately, while the law is on our side, we still have to go through the expensive and time-consuming process of going through the courts to have copies of our products removed from the industry, and claim money lost,” he said.
“We have started naming and shaming infringing companies, to act as a deterrent to those companies that may be considering copying Aussie inventions.”
MSA 4X4 says its products come from necessity and not being able to source the perfect product that they need.
“We think way outside the square and design the products that we think are by far the best. We cover the downfall in everyone else’s products,” Shane said.
“When we design any new product, it has to be as safe as possible; we’re all about safety. It also must be extremely tough and durable; we can’t have any failures, and with our pretty ordinary outback roads, it must be safe, tough and the highest quality that we can manufacture.
“It must also be simple, not over complicated or difficult to use.”
After years of using other companies’ drawer systems in MSA 4X4’s company vehicles, Shane says he knew that he could build something better that would make life easier for people, and redefine storage drawer systems.
The objective was to create a brand-new drawer system that was designed from the ground up that completely revolutionised what a storage drawer system should be.
After more than three years in development, the Explorer Aluminium Storage Drawer System launched in late 2016, and as testament to its vision, immediately became one of MSA 4X4’s most in demand product ranges.
MSA 4X4 says the Explorer Aluminium Storage Drawer System has re-set the benchmark in quality 4WD Drawer Systems from a safety, functionality and quality perspective, and has also opened the door for customers wanting the complete MSA 4X4 storage solution fit out, which includes Drawers, Drop Slides, Fridge Barriers, Tourer and Basket Pack rooftop bags, Seat Organisers and a multitude of canvas storage accessories.
“Our Explorer Aluminium Storage Drawer System has been successfully tested to ADR3/02, ADR34/01 and ADR42 and we even include a copy of the Crash Test Certificate with every drawer sold. It is the first ever aluminium drawer system to pass crash testing, which we’re very proud of!” Shane explained.
“Crash tested cargo barrier mount points and child restraint points are incorporated into the rear of the drawer frame as standard. Safety is obviously something that we take seriously here at MSA 4X4, as items of load (cargo) carried inside the vehicle can weigh 20 – 30 times their own static weight during impact, which is capable of causing severe bodily injuries or even death to vehicle occupants.
“The MSA 4X4 Explorer Aluminium Storage Drawer System is covered in patented features: the patented ‘stay-open block’ prevents a fully loaded, open drawer from unexpectedly slamming shut whilst still in use, and doubles as two electrical contacts that, when the drawer is open, create an electrical circuit without any moving wires to power the included LED strip light!
“The patented ‘Pro-Glide’ system utilises the side of the drawers and the frame as the actual slide unit, which means that no usable storage space inside the drawers are lost to traditional side slide runners. The over extension using custom sealed bearings, removes the need for additional slide components, maximising storage space.
“Further, the injection moulded design-registered lock system with purpose-built injection-moulded frame and aluminium components help deliver a 100 percent safe and secure lock system that cannot be levered open from underneath, providing safe storage. An anodised knurled aluminium handle has also been designed for comfort and practicality.
“Whilst every detail has been taken into account and engineered specifically to deliver the best and most reliable 4WD Storage Drawer System available in the market, MSA 4X4’s Lifetime Guarantee ensures all Explorer Aluminium Storage Drawer System customers have the peace of mind that if anything were to go wrong, they’d be looked after.”
With the strength of its brand, innovative growing product range and national stockist network, MSA 4X4 Accessories says it is a company positioned for growth.
Want to join the MSA 4X4 Accessories stockist network?
MSA 4X4 says its customers are its most important asset and that its stockists play an important role in providing those customers with support and service both prior to and after the sale.
The company says much of its success comes from the long-term loyalty of its customers and the mutual respect built with its stockist partners.
If you’d like more information on how you can become an MSA 4X4 Accessories stockist, please contact your local State Sales Manager: Robert Ardolic (VIC/TAS/SA) on 0499 016 605; David De Castro (QLD/WA) on 0487 045 555; or Will Campbell (NSW/NT) on 0497 000 747 or email MSA 4X4 Accessories on firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information on MSA 4X4 Accessories, visit www.msa4x4.com.au