Under the Spotlight: Jim Hayward

This month Jim Hayward (AKA Mark, after British cyclist Mark Cavendish) is under the spotlight. 

Jim is a Manufacturing Engineer who works in production. You may remember him from his starring role in the short Linkam film 'behind the scenes; a tribute to 30 years' in which he narrowly missed being nominated for Best Actor at the BAFTAs.

One of his main tasks is to help with the construction of the TS1500 systems, including the heating elements. 

How long have you worked at Linkam?

It will be 10 years in March

What’s the best part of working at Linkam?

The people I work with. I wanted to say the TS1500 ‘scratching’ but working in such a fun environment makes getting up in the morning that little bit easier.

Tell us about your studies and work experience. What were you doing before Linkam?

Can I skip the ‘studies’ part? (Not the highlight of my life). My first job was dressing up as a lion at Chessington World of Adventures and since then no other job has quite filled the fun factor. Prior to Linkam, I had several different jobs  including; vacuum cleaner salesman, van driver/electricians mate, fork lift truck driver and finally (where the science starts) in a biotech company.

Why did you choose a manufacturing career?

I’ve never been much of a ‘thinker’, so a career where my eye for detail and dexterity skills are used in creating beautiful bits of scientific kit suits me down to the ground.

What makes you passionate about science?

I think the ‘inner me’ has never really grown up. Hearing about science and technology always keeps you feeling youthful as you never stop learning.

What do your parents do?

They are both retired.

How would you describe your average day at Linkam?

That’s the great thing about working at Linkam; there is no ‘average’ day. Every day something different is going on, different stages to build, different problems to overcome, but guaranteed, there’ll be plenty of laugh’s.

Has the company changed much since you started working here?

Yes, and No. I’ve seen people come and go, new products created, new buildings taken on, but at its core, it still feels like the family company I joined 10 years ago.

What are your hobbies?

As anyone here can tell you, I have a passion for anything bicycle related and enjoy nothing more than getting trussed up in my lycra and half killing myself trying to beat Vince’s time up Box Hill. I also love photography (which can be seen in the Linkam Stage art section)

Where do you want to be in ten years?

I would love to be island hopping up and down the Dalmatian coast on a private yacht, exploring the many islands on a far superior bike than I have at the moment.

And lastly, where did you go on your last holiday?

My wife comes from Croatia, so every summer we spend 2 weeks with her parents on the island of Krk. The island has beautiful weather, amazing food and I even managed to spend some time cycling.


Well that's it for now.

We hope you are enjoying the snap-shot into the lives of the people that play a part in creating your Linkam stage. If there are any questions you would like us to answer, please email us at info@linkam.co.uk.

P.S If you are wondering what 'scratching' is, here is your answer.

The TS scratching procedure is a slow but critical part of the TS heater assembly procedure.  During the build, the thermocouple is attached and poked through the aperture of the heater. It is then surrounded by cement (to ensure contact with the heater cup).  We are then left with a small lump of cement surrounding the platinum sensor.  The ‘scratching’ comes into play here, as this is how we level the lump of cement and sensor to the bottom of the cup.  This is important because if it is not flat to the cup, the sample window will ‘rock’, therefore not making good thermal contact, thus making the entire heater next to useless. The scratching can take anywhere from 20mins- 1hour+ to achieve the flatness required.  This was the motivation behind the scratching scene’s in André’s Linkam video 'behind the scenes; a tribute to 30 years'

Bye for now

Caroline Feltham