Triton in Australia

There has been much discussion recently here “downunder” wondering about Triton, the brand, and what was once the flagship – the Workcentre 2000. Traditionally, the centre of the Triton universe was a tablesaw (the Workcentre 2000 (WC2000) and the Router Table, and accessories to match (finger jointer, biscuit jointer, height winder and so on).

A bit of a revolution started when Triton then introduced power tools, not made in Australia (but designed there, or at least with the design modified by Australian Engineers). They were (and are) some of the best power tools out there for their designed role. The router in particular (and it’s more recent little brother) is arguably the best table-mounted router in the world.

Moving forward again to the present, and there is now a fleet of Triton power tools, and although the emphasis on innovative design seems to have tapered off, a collection of these orange tools makes any suburban shed a woodworking haven (or heaven!). We are still waiting on the promised lathe btw (and the collection desperately needs a planer/jointer).

There are some new tools on the horizon as well – (there’s an earlier thread here somewhere on the subject), and Triton sound like they are starting to do very well in the USA.

However, here in Australia, the core of the system (and their related products) seem to be fading in preference to the power tools (and getting to actually see them is difficult at best, which makes choosing a Triton x over its competitor tricky), and in a recent forum discussion I made the following comments, that I thought I’d relay here. It centres around the WC2000 and a possible need of a successor (a proposed new version with an extruded aluminium top currently looks unlikely). So at the risk of stepping on lots of toes, this is what I had to say (with some minor amendments):

What I’d like to see, is a new workcentre – around $1500, and it being an orange TSC-10HB. It could be done. Especially if there was an option to fit a Saw Stop – that sort of technological innovation that Triton was once known for! Don’t reinvent the wheel with a new workcentre – if it is not to be made in Australia, lets not muck around with aluminium, let’s go straight to CI (cast iron).

The brand is definitely viable, but we need to get existing owners excited about the brand again, and not with secondary tools that are harder to justify, but upgrading the heart of the workshop – the tablesaw. Dump the Powered sawtable, and come out with a contractor’s type saw in the $700 bracket. Carbatec sells one near that price that looks pretty good (although needs more motor power).

If they chose a saw worthy (which is what I meant by painting a TSC-10HB orange), I’d welcome it. Even better, if they spent a little time with it ensuring that anything stupid was improved – low cost fixes that people would be prepared spending that little bit extra.

As much as some mock Triton, it isn’t the original 2 powertools that get included – the saw and the router, for bloody good reason. They are good tools, and whether they were designed from the ground up (router), or based on and improved from a pre-existing model (saw), they are what Triton was all about – quality and innovation. As much as things need to be affordable, I never saw Triton as a cheap tool. They were something to aspire to – a normal saw, or an extra $100 (or more) and get the Triton.

You bought orange tools knowing that – even if you knew very little about tools they would at least be a damned fine example. I bought the saw knowing little about saws, and it turned out to be an amazing beast. I bought the orange router because I was starting to trust that orange was a good choice, despite the high price and I ended up with a router that is one of the world’s best, particularly for table-mounting. When I wanted a bandsaw, I went looking for an orange one, again because I trusted that without knowing anything about bandsaws, it would be innovative and right up at the sharp end, but at that stage there wasn’t one. Not that today’s Triton doesn’t have good tools, but that emphasis on best of the best despite the price has changed.

Recognising that, there are enough woodwork forum members who swear by the TSC-10HB that I’d think anyone who bought one simply because it was orange wouldn’t feel misguided.

Looking back again for a sec – when I was buying these tools, this was a company who’s product was so good there were demonstration nights at Bunnings just on their tool range – WOW! They must be some fine tools that I’d be proud to own!

Triton needs to discover some self-pride again. The brand is worth protecting from rebadging ordinary crap. It is worth advertising. It is worth demonstrating. It is worth the customer service of old that was some of the best I’d seen of any company, with knowledge and spares at the drop of a hat (and at very reasonable price). It is worth being innovative. It is worth being proudly Australian, being built and/or designed in Australia, and supporting local industry. It needs to continue to grow, including online spares ordering (with 24 hour turn-around).

That sort of stuff shows pride in a product, and the customers will be proud to own it, and will buy other orange products because they will know Triton is worth owning.

8 Responses

  1. Completely agree with your article. I haven grown to trust triton gear (except the drill battery).

    i was so frustrated a couple of months ago with the non appearance of the bench drill, i went and bought a Carbatec bench drill.

    i will also probably buy a Table saw shortly suitable for dado cutting – in the absence of a Triton, I will probably buy Carbatec

  2. After moving house my husband discovered that we have arrived with his triton 2000 series workcentre with no legs or side rails ( the boxes containing these have gone missing). Is there anyway that we can purchase new ones as he has never used the work bench?

  3. I agree with the poster. Triton is a good brand and needs to regain that innovation it had. I saw table that could take dadoes and have 45 degree of blade titlt would be amamzing.

  4. Does anyone know where Triton is headquartered in Australia?

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